IT relocation is an exciting endeavour, but also one that requires careful planning and consideration, especially when it comes to your IT infrastructure. Your technology setup is crucial for maintaining workflows and operations, so any office move needs to consider how to successfully transfer your systems to ensure little disruption and hopefully no downtime. Here we evaluate the key factors when coordinating an office move.
Assessing Your Current IT Infrastructure
You need to fully understand your existing IT infrastructure before looking at new offices. This helps to define the requirements and considerations when planning your new premises. This involves:
The first step in your IT relocation is to audit all your hardware that will be moving to the new office. This includes:
- Computers (desktops, laptops)
- Network devices (firewalls, switches, wireless access points)
- Multi-function devices (print, scan)
- AV equipment
- Other peripherals (webcams, drawing tablets, etc.).
Ensure that you document manufactures, model numbers, technical specifications, and any peripherals for all devices that will make a smooth move. You will need this information later for reassembly and installation.
For information on audits, see our system audits page.
Network and Cabling Considerations
In your IT relocation you will also need to map out your entire network infrastructure and topology. Note where and how devices are connected and the cabling that facilitates this. Key elements here include:
- LAN IP Ranges
- VLAN configuration
- Wireless access points
- Location of cabling and conduits
- Type of cabling used (Cat 5, Cat6, fibre optic)
- Telephone lines
- Electrical outlets.
A clear picture of your network will allow better planning for the new office in terms of placement, configuration, and launch connectivity.
Evaluating New Office Layout, its Infrastructure and Readiness
Once you have a complete understanding of your existing IT setup, attention shifts to preparation and layout for IT infrastructure in the new office. Key facets of your IT relocation include:
IT Infrastructure Needs Analysis
The new office space should facilitate at least the same level of access and performance as the old while allowing for future growth. Carefully evaluate elements such as:
- Electrical capacity to support devices and equipment
- Network connectivity speed and wired access point planning
- Server room size, cooling capacity, and layout
- Ability to configure workspaces efficiently while running cabling effectively.
Issues like older wiring, insufficient electrical outlets, and lack of conduit access can severely constrain an IT environment.
At Cambridge Support have helped various clients move offices. In this case study we helped a Cambridge based charted surveyors migrate their on-premise solution into the cloud while moving offices.
Network Installation and Configuration
With office layout and IT infrastructure needs verified, cabling installation for network and connectivity enablement is next. This involves:
Establish internet connectivity in the new office location.
Wireless access point placement: strategically placing Wi-Fi access points for optimal coverage and performance.
Wired network cabling: running cabling to connect endpoints, wireless access points, and other network hardware with the switching infrastructure.
Backup servers: a backup of the servers would be necessary.
Setting up workspaces
With connectivity established, individual workspaces can be set up, including:
Desktop computers and peripherals: relocating existing computers and devices to assigned areas based on team, role and layout. New items would also be installed.
Site to site VPN to cloud platforms: this may be necessary depending on the configuration with adding new office IP address as a trusted network location in Conditional Access (Microsoft 365 specific).
Ongoing monitoring and optimisation
The implementation of a successful IT relocation initially requires ongoing vigilance including:
Testing strength and coverage: actively testing network speeds and Wi-Fi coverage across the office to detect dead zones or bottlenecks. You can then add wireless access points to improve coverage and reliability.
Troubleshooting issues: despite best efforts, some problems may arise requiring troubleshooting and resolution. Whether this may be connectivity problems or devices that fail to connect in the new environment.
Data and software restore: in some cases with relocation of equipment, backing up data and clean OS installs makes migrations simpler long term.
Working areas adjustments: as employees settle into new workspaces and layouts, may need to re-adjust their new workspace for comfort and productivity, taking ergonomics into consideration where possible.
Maintaining good documentation and paying attention to IT infrastructure from the early planning stage is key for minimising disruptions when relocating offices. With some strategic upfront coordination aligning legacy systems with new office layouts and capabilities, IT equipment can hopefully plug in play once moved. But be prepared for tweak and modifications after the dust settles. Proper mapping, notes and needs analysis completed early allows for fewer surprises down the road.
Feel free to contact us regarding anything mentioned in this article. We would be happy to help.