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No Nightmare Office Moves Here!

You found out your office is moving, exciting news!


At least those were your initial thoughts until your agenda and checklists keep filling up and you haven’t even hired a mover yet!  Never fear!  Not only because I’m here to help you look like the professional, but because using these introductory straightforward tips when orchestrating an office move will aid in making your office move as smooth and efficient as possible!

My suggestion is simple: find a moving company that offers comprehensive move management services!  You’ll be laughing with joy throughout the entire move process, and well beyond move-in day!

Moving forward using these tips as a starting point will help alleviate undue stress and potential wasted energy when hunting for a competent mover.

  • Let’s Talk Insurance – Your mover should be able to meet, if not exceed, your building(s)’s minimum requirements; make sure of this even before asking for an estimate!  RUN, far and fast, if your mover cannot produce a current Certificate of Insurance listing required coverage amounts.  Also make sure your moving company has the ability to add, not only your company, but the building ownership entities as additional insured on the certificate.
  • Safety #1 – Obtaining a Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) Clearance Letter from your mover will identify if the company (a) has a valid WCB account, (b) whether it is in good standing with the WCB, which includes (c) having their premiums paid to-date.

WOWZER FACT: did you know that if you hire a company, moving or otherwise operating within your workplace, and their premiums are not paid up-to-date, the possibility exists to hold YOUR company liable for not only the owed premiums, but also the associated claim costs should an injury occur on your site!  The WCB even suggests requesting another Clearance Letter prior to releasing final payment!

Thoroughly check your vendors’ references and credentials.

  • Full-service moving company or just the movers?  Hiring a company that performs more than just the physical moving of your office furnishings is crucial!  For instance, levelling the file cabinets, bookcases and desks when moved, more often than not is completely overlooked by “just movers”.  Any uneven furnishing can be a safety hazard!  And omitting this step can actually cause permanent damage to your furnishings!  It will also lead to reduced drawer functionality over time, lock mechanism wear, etc.

Also consider this, does the moving company provide after-move services, such as hanging artwork, adjusting keyboard trays and work surface heights to each worker’s preference?  Do they move file rooms including the shelving too?

  • Furnished?  Move with Furniture?  Do you move with your office furniture, get new furniture, or are you moving into a space already furnished?  Your moving company should be able to provide you with pricing options for all scenarios to help give you a realistic perspective on the decision at hand.
  • Got supplies?  Plastic moving bins/lids with security ties, labels, computer or map bags, packing materials, bubble wrap covers for monitors, various sized cardboard boxes, Masonite to protect the flooring, walls and door trim – your moving company should be able to supply all of these materials and so much more!  What about the moving company’s equipment they’re going to be using – are they stocked well enough for your move and is it maintained in a respectable, safe condition?  Are their trucks up to date with the annual inspections as part of Alberta’s CVIP (Commercial Vehicle Inspection Program)?

Plan ahead whenever and wherever possible!  For instance, booking of the elevators and loading docks can get very sparse depending on what else is happening in your office building.  As soon as you know anticipated dates, lock of the elevators and book the
loading dock at all required buildings (or if you have an awesome full-service moving company like CSS, we’ll take care of this entirely for you).

Bottom line is this: ensure you’re hiring a full-service moving company offering comprehensive move services, a company that know what they’re doing with your office furniture, files and assets.  These are important to you and your company and should be even more of a priority when being relocated by your movers!

These tips are merely tiny specks of sand out of the entire desert on guidelines to coordinate a streamlined office move.  I could write a book on tips on how to properly choose an office mover, so please feel free to contact CSS Office Solutions by phone or email to speak with one of our Account Managers directly if you have any questions regarding your office move.

A Clients’ Magical Experience with Office Moves

Does your office furniture magically appear or set itself up?  The short answer, no!

Picture it: you walk into your place of work – it could be an office/bank/school etc.  You sit down at your desk and begin your day: answering e-mails at your desk, working on projects, whatever your day entails.  After about an hour or so, you raise your standing desk so you can stretch your legs while you continue working.  You return to sitting in your comfy chair.  You collaborate with team members on the white board or around the boardroom table.

Do you ever wonder how those items got there?  Did they magically appear?  It seems like they do.  Like the fairy tale – the Shoemaker and the Elves.  These elves though, are the members of the office furniture moving industry.  These hardworking people of all genders make your office space as comfortable, clean and appealing as possible.  Paying attention to the smallest details.

While it seems these office transformations happen overnight, there are many days, weeks or even months that go into the planning and execution of an office move or set up.  The first contact comes through to CSS via a Google search, a referral, or by someone clicking the “contact us” area on our website www.cssoffice.com.  Our diligent Account Mangers ask all the questions to understand what you require.  They ask the details of where you are moving, what’s moving and gather all the details in between!  They measure, then measure again, to be sure they know the fit and space requirements.  They assist you in the design of your new or rearranged space.  They help plan out what your space will look like, including assisting with individual office layouts.  They plan out the route and finally, they help you plan the day or days of the move (and the days leading up to the move and days after your move too!).  Your team will have filled, labeled, sturdy, and strong moving bins with their personal items, and their specific office chair – because we are all very particular about our chairs and of course that’s important to us, because it is important to you!

Then the real magic happens.  This is where CSS shines and brings life to your office space!

The CSS team of installers and movers arrive on scene.  The installers begin to disassemble the desks for easier transport, because you likely know the famous “PIVOT” scene from Friends, the smaller the surface to move, the better (but CSS could have moved that couch, no problem).  They take down whiteboards, artwork, wall-hung overheads and anything else on the walls that’s moving with you.

Meanwhile the movers are organizing the bins by person, moving the chairs out of the space, manoeuvring the filing cabinets onto dollies for easier transport, wrapping computers and monitors with all the cables and cords in special computer bags with your name.  They load all the other effects of the office – bulletin boards, artwork, white boards, fridges, coffee makers, you name it! – onto dollies, panel carts, tubs or file carts, taking care to wrap items with moving blankets when needed to prevent damage.  On to the trucks we go!  In, one, two, ten trips, your office is off to the new location.  Then the reverse happens.  All the items that came out, go back in.  When you and your team come back to the office on your next workday, it will be like you’ve always been at that location.  

Keeping in mind that the above is a simplified high-level overview of what steps could take place to get your office space set up properly and entail only a few of the moving pieces as seen by our clients and/or their staff.

We pride ourselves on making our clients’ moving requirements, service needs or furniture purchases as simplified as possible.  We know first-hand that what the client sees is not always the whole picture.  If you’re every wondering all the steps that are taken care of by CSS, don’t be shy to ask one of our Account Managers or qualified staff about all the coordinated steps necessary to ensure a seamless and uninterrupted moving/service/furniture experience.

Moving an entire office is one of the more intricate services we provide, but it is just one of the many services offered by our company.  To see the full list of the services CSS offers, check out this link to our services page!

Rome wasn’t built in a day, but your office sure could be!

At the end of the day, if you arrive at your new office space without skipping a beat in your workday, we call that a success and a move gone well!  If you’re interested in knowing what that feels like, call or email our office today!

The CSS People that Make it Happen – Jen!

Meet Jen, our amazing Operations Manager!

It is my wonderful pleasure to introduce you to the wonderful person who handles all things operationally happening at CSS.  If you’ve had any contact with our office in the last 20 years, then chances are quite high that Jen has part in your contact/service/billing, etc.  She currently occupies the role of Operations Manager and has fulfilled many roles while working for CSS!

When Jen was asked the question what’s the best part of being a member of the CSS work family – her response made perfect sense!  She feels that the solid relationships that are built over time and get stronger with each year that passes are pretty incredible parts of her daily work!  She also appreciates knowing how valuable she is to others – and we supremely appreciate how valuable she is to us!

Even in Jen’s twenty years of being a part of the CSS work family, she knows that there is still so much to learn from our business operations and the industry in general!  We’re always learning new things as the industry and economy evolve and Jen is a person that has learned so much during her employment – add to that all that she has contributed that’s resulted in so much positive change at our company, we’re pretty happy to have her at CSS.

If Jen won the lottery, without a shadow of a doubt, she would move to an acreage with too many horses and a collection of chickens, cats and dogs.  Fun random fact about Jen: her post-secondary education is in equine studies, so no surprise where her animal love started and has stayed!

Jen’s most-loved type of food is Caribbean, especially doubles – what she tells us is the most amazing street food in Trinidad and Tobago.  Not too sure how this would pair with her favourite beverage which happens to be whiskey, but I’m sure she manages to enjoy each of these favourites when the opportunity arises.

At CSS we encounter so many buildings and offices in and around Calgary given the nature of what we do, so its really enjoyable for us to ask our staff what building is their favorite, as there are so many to choose from!  We’re always astonished by some favourites shared by our staff, and it brings us joy to discover the buildings that are exciting to them for various reasons!  The Doll Block Building, being beautiful and haunted ranks as Jen’s favorite building in Calgary.

Not exactly a local Calgary destination, but Jen loves spending time in the Peter Lougheed Provincial Park.  Being so close to nature in Calgary, why wouldn’t someone want to enjoy actually being right within the mountains whenever possible!

Jen is such a valued member of our work team and office environment, not a day goes by that there isn’t some form of laughter or comradery that helps define us a wonderful workplace, with an even better work family.

If you’re ever near our office location, don’t hesitate to stop by and say hi to Jen – guaranteed you’ll leave with a bright smile on your face!

Movers vs. Installers

Here’s a hint – they are not the same, but CSS takes care of BOTH!

We all hear the terms “moving company” and  “installation company” but what exactly do they mean?  What’s the difference?  In this post we’ll discuss the differences as they relate to the office furniture world.

Basically, a moving company is just that – a company that moves you from point A to point B.  There are numerous companies operating like this.  They should be capable of loading, transporting and unloading boxes, crates, and disassembled furniture.  They should be able to provide you with all the moving supplies you’ll need such as boxes, plastic bins, labels, bags for cables/phone/computers, and should have their own maintained equipment to facilitate the move.  You need movers during a relocation – they do the heavy lifting and transportation! 

An installation company has a different purpose and scope.  Installers are trained technicians who know the proper sequence of disassembly/reassembly so that all pieces of furniture can be moved safely and without damage.  Considering some workstations have multitudes of small individual components it doesn’t take long before that becomes overwhelming to someone inexperienced.  Most installation companies do not do the physical moving, they’re often called in before a move to take furniture apart for the moving company and then return after the move to re-assemble the furniture. 

Keep an eye out for these common warning signs for a less-than-ideal moving or installation company:

·         Inability to provide proof of insurance.  This is a huge red flag!  DO NOT hire any contractor that cannot prove they have insurance coverage.  Should the unforeseen happen you are stuck paying for furniture repairs/replacements.  Also consider that most movers carry general liability insurance which only covers $0.60 per pound!  Always ask about insurance coverage and inquire about the cost for additional coverage if it’s needed.

·         Inability to provide a WCB clearance letter in good standing.  As stated directly on the WCB-Alberta website “A clearance letter indicates if a contractor has their own coverage or would need to be covered as your worker.  If the contractor has their own coverage, the letter clears you of responsibility by notifying you if the contractor has paid their WCB premiums.  If you do not have a clearance letter and the contractor has not paid their premiums, you may be liable for those premiums.  You should get a clearance before you hire the company or individual and before releasing payment.”

·         Using temporary workers instead of hiring staff.  Using temporary workers or “independent contractors” may save these companies costs associated with payroll deductions and benefit coverage, but they’re also not likely to be well trained or experienced which can lead to an uptick in damages to your furniture, belongings and even the building you are in which again can cost you more than you anticipated.

Office furniture (and space) is expensive – don’t take the chance with untrained or inexperienced companies, you’ll regret it! 

Want to know more now?  Give us a call or send us an email!

 

The CSS People that Make it Happen – Alicia!

Meet Alicia, our amazing Administrative Assistant!

We think it’s fun to put a face to the name, so we recently introduced #friendfriday so you all can get to know everyone behind our stellar service!

First up, meet Alicia!  You’ve probably spoken to her over the phone or had the pleasure of being greeted by her smiling face when you visit the office.  I’m confident you’ve heard that smile through the phone too, she just radiates pure positivity.  Alicia is our incredibly talented Admin Assistant – and we’re sure glad she is part of our team; we’d be lost without her!

Alicia’s favorite part of being a member of the CSS Family is the work that she does and the appreciation she receives.  An interesting fact she learned from her time with us is that moving furniture is SO MUCH MORE than just putting it on a truck and going.

If Alicia won the lottery, she wouldn’t quit working with CSS!  What?!  She would give it all to her mom to start a before and after school daycare and teenager hangout in her village (see why we love her?  So much kindness).

Her favorite food is anything she doesn’t have to cook, but Subway and Chinese food are the top of the list.  If you want to spoil Alicia bring her some sparkling water or “water pop” as her son calls it, or a Kinder Bueno bar…and watch her eyes light up!

She loves the Bow building in downtown Calgary, especially the Lego display in the lobby (she’s a little bit obsessed with Lego).  Heritage Park and the Calgary Zoo are her favorite local attractions to visit.

She says, “The people I work with are amazing and always willing to help whenever I find myself stuck on something”.

Here’s to many more years of fun, friendship and family Alicia! 

Welcome to The (CSS) Green Side!

We’re happy to introduce you to us, CSS Office Solutions Inc.

It’s official, we have a blog and we’re learning how to use it!

Hello, and welcome to our first post. 

We are so excited to share more of who we are and what we have to offer!  We’re proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish over the years and can’t wait to bring a deeper level of who we are and what makes us tick through this blog.

So, who are we?

CSS Office Solutions Inc. is a long-standing family-owned office solutions company operating out of beautiful Calgary, Alberta. Over the  last 38 years we have established ourselves as leaders in the industry when it comes to catering to the different needs of our clients.

What do we do?

At CSS Office Solutions, we strive to provide superior products with unmatched customer service to ensure our clients receive the utmost satisfaction at every level – from hanging a simple picture, repairing a lock, refinishing your favorite table to relocating over 1,000 offices – CSS is the company to call.  Our talented Account Managers are here to help you every step of the way AT NO CHARGE by helping you design your space, source new or used furniture, and project manage your entire move.

Okay, but wait – what is the green side?

Many of you will recognize the CSS crew out and about in our green shirts…hence “The Green Side”. Over time we will showcase some of the amazingly talented crew members that make up the CSS Office Solutions family and their take on being “green”.

Contact us today and find out for yourself why we truly are Calgary’s ‘ONE STOP SHOP’ for all your office needs!