SSiFM Ltd Facilities Consultant Christopher Balmforth was appointed by Coventry Building Society to manage the physical relocation of over 1,100 colleagues over a period of 10 weekends. The moves relocated teams into newly purchased buildings in Walsgrave, and within and out of existing buildings in Binley and Coventry City Centre.
“Chris played a critical role in ensuring the moves were a great experience for CBS staff. Our Executive Sponsor has quoted the Programme delivery as ‘seamless’ and Chris’s expertise and management of office moves and facilities consultancy contributed massively to this fantastic achievement. Chris is very personable and fitted in perfectly to the organisation immediately creating strong working relationships with key stakeholders at all levels. His hard working ethic, flexibility, high standards and total professionalism have been recognised by many CBS colleagues that have worked with Chris. As Programme Manager I was delighted to have Chris on my team and would highly recommend him and his company’s services for relocations and Facilities consultation.”
Alison McChesney – Programme Manager
The continued growth of Coventry Building Society placed its head office accommodation availability under increasing pressure and its city center head office, as business as usual office accommodation, did not fulfill the needs of a modern workplace and was not conducive to effective collaboration between head office departments.The moves had varying complexities:
- Time Constraints – all physical moves were to be conducted over a weekend period and out of hours.
- Refurbishment Works – throughout the Programme the removals contractor worked in close proximity to various refurbishment contractors.
- Building Locations – six buildings throughout Coventry including the City Centre.
- Contact Centre – Objective “No disruption to customer service levels”.
Relocating can be extremely beneficial but, if not planned and executed properly, it can prove to be disruptive and costly.
Christopher formed a key part of the Relocation Programme Team.
Christopher built strong relationships with all stakeholders; he listened and understood the different requirements at all levels.
What is seen as important to one colleague isn’t necessarily the same for another. Nevertheless, Christopher improvised, adapted and overcame all challenges through extensive and regular communications.
To assist with the communications Christopher created various project documents; Incident Log (including MI reporting), Move & Packing Instructions, Crates Delivery Instructions, Weekly, Daily & Hour by Hour Plans (Gantt Charts) as seen in fig.1.
This enabled Christopher to manage each physical move and assisted with what was a seamless transition for Coventry Building Society.
“Your attention to detail is outstanding and nothing is too much trouble”
Margaret Mullins – Head of Savings Operations
- Creation of 500 new workstations across a new operational hub in Walsgrave.
- The provision of revised office accommodation, enabling the implementation of new operating structures.
- Provision of over 440 car parking spaces at Walsgrave, additional car parking spaces at Binley, and the implementation of a Society wide car parking policy.
- The relocations fostered greater collaboration between Business Change and IT, by bringing the teams together in the same building
- No degradation to customer service levels were experienced during the Moves.
Every single one of the moves went to plan and was completed on time. This involved 1,100 desk moves and the involvement of around 75% of head office staff. This phenomenal achievement was as a result of great teamwork from the Programme team including IT, Property and the Move Champions from across the business.
“Chris’s contribution was crucial to the success of each of our 10 moves, and I soon formed a very strong working relationship with him. He understood what was expected of him very quickly, and constantly used his initiative and experience to suggest smarter ways of working. He was the pivotal point during each move weekend, and resolved most ‘niggles’ by his constructive ‘can do’ attitude, before they had a chance to become incidents. His attention to detail shone through in the immaculate presentation and layout of the work spaces in readiness for their new occupants on a Monday morning. I would love to work with Chris on another set of complex moves in the future”
Mark Evans – Detailed Design & Implementation Readiness Manager