How to survive an office move

You’re moving office. Yay! Well ok, maybe not yay. Maybe it was an exciting idea when you first started talking about, and maybe – probably – it will be nice when you’re in. But now you’re faced with the pesky in-between bit, the actual moving, and that’s perhaps less fun. But it doesn’t have to be an unmitigated disaster, if you follow a few simple steps.

1) Make a really, really good plan

Seriously, this is a step you ignore at your peril. You want to make sure you’ve thought of everything, from how you’ll actually get your stuff from one place to another to how you’ll get your work done while the moving is happening and making sure you have enough pens, tea and toilet paper to start you up again on the other side.

2) Delegate pretty much everything

You know that plan you’re going to make? Against each thing that needs to be done, assign a person who will be in charge of it. And make sure they know they’re in charge and that everyone else does too. Print out your plan and circulate it to the team, so there’s no confusion. When moving day comes, things need to run like clockwork. (They won’t, ok? Something always goes wrong. But at least you’ll know who to blame.)

3) Hire in the professionals to save your sanity

Seriously, you’re going to box up every paperclip yourself? Not a chance. You’ll be signed off with a nervous breakdown before you even reach that shiny new office (and then you’ll need professionals of a different kind). Movers don’t have to be expensive, especially when you consider how quickly and efficiently they’ll get everything done. Just do your research so you avoid the cowboys, make sure you agree up front what’s included and check there’s enough insurance in place, just in case.

4) Do a space plan at the new site

Again, one that people forget because let’s face it, most of us prefer to just get on and do it. But a little bit of thought at this stage can ensure you have a layout that really enhances the office environment. How are the desks going to be laid out? Where is the water cooler going? Will you have a breakout area? Do you need a conference space? If the idea of figuring this stuff out brings you out in hives, just get a professional in.

5) For goodness’ sake declutter

This is a perfect excuse. What on earth is the point of lugging your entire archive across the city / country, when you almost certainly don’t really need it all anyway? Your new place probably doesn’t have much storage space anyway – modern offices usually don’t, since there’s an assumption that we’re all heading towards a paperless office.

There are several ways to tackle unwieldy archives. You can have them scanned, reducing bulky boxes to thoroughly manageable – and meticulously organised – data files. You can store the originals in a secure offsite unit so you can use the office space you’re renting or buying for doing the actual business that you do (you know we do this, right? We’ll even provide the boxes and come pick them up for you).

Or, if stuff isn’t needed any more, you can have it securely destroyed, rather than dumping it out back in a skip for any Tom, Dick or Harry to go rifling through (FYI we can supply polypropylene bags with security ties). We know this is the last thing you feel like doing but honestly, it will pay in the long run, especially once you’re in the new place and you can find everything easily and don’t have to compete for floor space with endless stacks of boxes.

PS. If you discover a hidden stash of old documents on moving day, let us know and we can hold onto it until you work out what to do with it. Our site is climate controlled, alarmed and monitored, so it will be perfectly safe.

6) Call in the caterers

Now this is an added extra and you don’t strictly have to do it, but making sure there’s a good supply of food and drink available for your team on the big day will massively reduce the stress levels that a move inevitably generates. You don’t need to go all Michelin star, but a few trays of decent sandwiches and other finger food, a tea and coffee station, and selection of biscuits and fruit will keep everyone’s energy and morale up and stop people getting hangry.

7) Book a holiday for when it’s over

Probably not immediately – you’ll need to get everyone settled, after all. But you’re going to be pretty tired one way or another, so why not treat yourself to some R&R, even if it is just a long weekend on the Cornish coast. Go on, tell everyone we said it was a good idea. You’re worth it.

If you’d like to talk to the team about storing, scanning or securely destroying any documents as part of an office move, drop us a line today.

10 internet Easter eggs you need to see

Have you ever heard of Easter eggs? Not the chocolate kind. If you haven’t heard of those, you need to get yourself down to Hotel Chocolat quick smart, and take your piggy bank with you. (Pick us up a couple of gin truffles while you’re there, will you?)

No, the Easter eggs we’re talking about are a lot less calorific, but just as fun. They’re bits of code hidden by developers in places you wouldn’t expect, ready to provide the unsuspecting internet user with a bright spot in what might otherwise be a rather ordinary day.

Rather than leave you to find them by chance, we thought we’d round up a few of our favourites for you. Because we’re nice like that.

Anyway, start with this one…

1) Type “Easter egg (media)” into Wikipedia, and hover your mouse over the animal in the bottom right hand corner of the picture. Now click on it.

Pretty cool, right? Now try these…

2) Type Askew into Google. Try not to tilt your head.

3) Search for Loch Ness on Google Maps, then click on the plus button (just once) to zoom in slightly. Now look at the little yellow ‘Street View’ man.

4) One for the Douglas Adams fans: search for “the answer to life, the universe, and everything” on Google.

5) Type Anagram into Google. Get it??

6) Type “Super Mario Bros” into Google… now click the flashing question mark in the sidebar (make sure your computer’s volume is on!).

7) Search for directions from Buckingham Palace to Windsor Castle on Google Maps. Click the public transport button and scroll down to the last option.

8) Type “do a barrel roll” into Google.

9) For the gamers: Type “Zerg Rush” into Google. If you’re not a gamer and you want to know what Zerg Rush actually is, search “what is Zerg Rush” instead.

10) If you’ve got five minutes to kill: type Solitaire into Google. You’re welcome.

What do you think? Fun, aren’t they? We do realise this has nothing at all to do with document scanning, but it’s Easter and everyone deserves a moment to let their hair down and just be downright frivolous for a moment.

Happy Easter everyone – may the Easter Bunny be generous to you!

You’ll never make us talk!

Old fashioned spyDocument scanning is a pretty cool industry to be involved in. No, don’t laugh. Remember that post where we proved that we were basically CSIs? And our Indiana Jones moment with the ancient manuscripts?

Well, if that hasn’t convinced you, this might: in many ways, we’re just like spies. Possibly not 00 level spies. We’re not armed or anything, and we probably wouldn’t have much luck infiltrating a black tie do on a private island, winning half a million pounds at baccarat and leaving with a supermodel on our arm (although we’d give it a good go if the opportunity presented itself).

But we do have access to lots of secrets – commercially sensitive data and the like – and it wouldn’t do to let it fall into the wrong hands. We all know how data leak stories end, and our clients would not like that at all.

That’s why we’re BS7858 accredited. BS7858 is the British Standard used for checking the security and trustworthiness of individuals. Every single member of our staff has been through the official vetting process, which includes ID checking, credit checking, address checking, criminal record checking – there’s a lot of checking, basically. And each individual has to be vouched for by a suitable referee too, just to be on the safe side.

It’s not that we don’t trust them, you understand. It’s just to give our clients peace of mind that their data is being looked after by people who aren’t going to flog a USB stick of their client records to a rival firm. Our team aren’t just trustworthy, they’re trustworthy enough to have earned the BS7858 seal of approval. And just to be doubly sure, we have them DBS checked too.

Oh, and like all good spies, we’ve also signed the Official Secrets Act… but we can’t really talk about that!

If you need sensitive data scanned, stored or destroyed, arrange a meeting with our team and decide for yourself how trustworthy we are.