Tennessee Valley Federal Credit Union (TVFCU) serves more than 134,000 members from 17 branch locations, offering a wide array of cost-saving financial services through numerous delivery channels designed to meet the needs of their ever-growing membership. The Office Furniture Warehouse team recently had the opportunity to assist TVFCU with their corporate relocation between buildings in Downtown Chattanooga’s City Center.
When we talk about office moves, we usually refer to spaces as “origin” and “destination”. In this case, TVFCU’s destination was a recently acquired building in the heart of downtown Chattanooga. The destination is only blocks from the origin, which housed one of TVFCU’s branches, their headquarters & administrative offices across roughly 45,000 sq. ft. TVFCU’s branch will remain at the origin, while the headquarters and administrative offices are relocated to the 70,000 sq. ft. destination space.
This relocation would indirectly affect hundreds of members of the organization across an extended period, which is only one of the obstacles faced by TVFCU. As a credit union, the number of stakeholders depending on the location’s accessibility is significantly greater than your average commercial space. So, TVFCU has to keep the location fully operational while relocating employees, furniture & equipment.
Phased Moving Schedule
To ensure that TVFCU could remain in operation throughout the transition, we coordinated with TVFCU’s facility manager on a schedule of nine office moves over three months. Since both origin and destination are operating in normal business hours, the bulk of the relocation had to take place after-hours. To minimize the downtime incurred, work areas had to be moved strategically. Our team coordinated with finish contractors’ schedule for buildout at the destination space, as well as with TVFCU’s IT department to have equipment prepped for relocation.
To provide TVFCU with detailed information on their assets and the work being performed, we used a customized software to track assets at origin & destination. First, each office at either building is assigned a location. Next, we perform a site walkthrough with the client to make sure both parties understand the scope of work. For each article relocated, our team uses a labeling system for tying physical items to a digital asset management checklist. Items are labeled, then scanned to confirm that they’ve been removed from “origin”. Once they’ve reached “destination”, our team scans the label a second time to confirm delivery.
Corporate Relocation Services
Personal Belongings & Office Furniture Move
Our team moved approximately (50) offices in their entirety, and the belongings for roughly (150) cubicle workstations that would not accompany TVFCU to the new facility. This included, but was not limited to, (24) desks, (131) chairs, (35) tables, (19) bookcases & (320) plastic moving crates.
Our team uses a system of plastic crates to improve the efficiency & reduce the environmental impact of our office moves. Each individual receives a number of “crate units”, which are comprised of four containers and a rolling dolly. Our clients’ employees then pack their own belongings (everything but IT) and secure the container with a privacy zip tie. This process affords greater cost-savings and security over traditional cardboard boxes (which, even though they’re recyclable, require energy to process while reusable plastic crates keep on rolling).
Office Filing & Storage Move
In addition to (81) normal file cabinets of varying size, TVFCU needed (37) fireproof filing cabinets moved. Regular file cabinets, when emptied, can be moved on a normal flat cart. Fireproof filing cabinets are significantly heavier, and can’t be moved on a normal cart (even when empty). Our team utilizes special equipment that allows fire files to be moved without being emptied, which has multiple benefits. First, it saves clients the employee labor it would take to empty what may be sensitive documents. Second, if the fireproof files do contain sensitive documents, the documents are more secure for not being removed before and returned after the corporate relocation.
Information Technology Move
While the crate rental we provide will accommodate most personal belongings, computers and monitors require a more delicate touch than most corporate relocation services. To ensure the safety of one of the most numerous assets at TVFCU, our team employs antistatic bags (manufactured with a coating that hinders the formation of static discharge) and our mobile computer carts. The computer carts are rigid wooden shelves mounted on casters, upholstered with a non-slip rubber that grips IT assets. Once the computer cart is full, our team shrink wraps the unit to be safely transported to it’s destination.
Live teller stations for TVFCU’s Interactive Teller Machines are available six days a week, 7am to 7pm. They use very expensive monitors, which are mounted on very expensive monitor arms. Monitor arms don’t travel well, especially without being disassembled. Our solution involved bringing a number of our own mobile training tables. We removed the mounted monitors from existing workstations and attached the arms to our tables, padded with moving blankets.
In addition, the live tellers couldn’t be moved all at once. To prevent potential downtime (and inconvenience for TVFCU members), we only relocated two-thirds of the workstations. In case of overflow at the new building, there would be usable workstations at the origin space. Once the destination space was completely built out and connected, we moved the remaining workstations.
Aside from accessibility of the physical location, server connectivity is the most vital aspect of the credit union’s operation. So, we first conducted a risk analysis to delineate predictable issues that had any potential to arise. Because of the server’s vital nature to TVFCU’s operation, any of the foreseeable hiccups could be a multimillion dollar mistake. Additionally, any error on our part would cause lag for TVFCU’s IT department as they reconnected.
In the event of the server being damaged, TVFCU’s entire operation would shut down pending replacement or repair. So, we had the equipment escorted securely by partnering with the Chattanooga Police Department. Our technicians and TVFCU’s operations staff showed up right after the close of business Saturday to execute the server portion of the corporate relocation on a three-day weekend, allowing ample time to get back up and running at new building. Server boxes had to wrapped in antistatic foam, shrink-wrapped then rolled on and mounted to a shock-absorbing pallet.
“As the Facilities Coordinator for TVFCU I was extremely happy with OFW during this project.
I started with the credit union in July knowing this move was only a few months away. I was way behind in the process of all the planning and work that had gone into getting this ready to happen. OFW removed a lot of the burden from me and made everything go more smoothly than I could have ever imagined. The team was always professional and courteous. I never had to worry about the safety of our equipment or furniture throughout the process. OFW did an excellent job finding the best solution to get even the toughest of equipment moved and delivered in the safest manner possible. The guys would always help with any additional requests that may have popped up last minute. It says so much about the character of the company when JJ was there at midnight making sure all of the mission critical IT servers were handled with the care necessary.
I would recommend OFW to anyone and will definitely be using them for any needs in the future.”
– Jacob Robinson, TVFCU Facilities Manager
Thanks for Reading!
Managing change in the workplace entails much more than moving office furniture.
Coordinating all the moving parts takes a lot. Effective project management requires partnerships that make the job easier on all sides. That’s why we’re here – to forge relationships that help make your workspace work as hard as you do. Corporate relocation at hand, or just on the brain?