Companies and plants chose to relocate for a variety of reasons; however, many will underestimate the risks involved—both financial and operational—that are associated with such a move. There’s a ton of things to account for, after all.
We’ll talk about some of the biggest risks in a plant relocation, as well as giving a few recommendations on how to avoid or minimize them.
Risks of plant relocation
Reduction of personnel
One of the most important things in a move is keeping your senior management in place; however, some companies will in turn overlook their mid-management, meaning those who know the operations best. This could affect processes as well as relationships they have with contractors or vendors.
Also, companies often experience high turnover in months just after a move, since new employees may struggle to overcome the learning curve.
On a logistical level, we’ve seen this area of the move go south for a variety of reasons. One is that whoever moves the equipment may damage it or set it up improperly, which can result in downtime or production quality issues.
Other issues come in the planning stages, like plan layout and problems with the new infrastructure. For example, electrical and sewage may not be set up properly and could require an upgrade; or, adapting to the new place could take awhile if you weren’t able to retain production managers.
Managing your inventory
This is similar to the equipment issues we mentioned before – moving all of your inventory to a new facility can be quite difficult. If you don’t have a good tracking system in place, you run the risk of losing products.
Minimizing risk in a plant relocation
Factor in timing
You must have schedules and timelines that are laid out for every single task. One of the biggest mistakes we see is companies not accounting for long lead times for certain tasks, like dealing with equipment and services. It’s very important to identify which tasks are dependent upon others for completion, and to plan around that.
Also, do not schedule your move near your busy season. Consider when makes the most sense to bring minimal disruption to your operations.
Ensure everyone’s on the same page
Good communication extends to your employees, your suppliers, your customers, and anyone else who may be affected by this move. Employees need to be kept updated so morale isn’t damaged; suppliers need to be notified in regards to coordinating their deliveries; and especially, customers or contractors need to know what’s happening in case you need to change payment and delivery.
Consider working with a consultant
It can be difficult to keep all these moving parts organized. A third party, or a professional consultant, could advise and possibly manage aspects of the move.
At Storee Construction, we help facilities move throughout Missouri, Oklahoma, Kansas and Arkansas. We have the team that can recommend upgrades or modifications in order to ensure efficiency.
For more information, read into our Plant Relocation services.