Hardware

Relocating IT Systems Checklist

glenn-carstens-peters-190592-unsplash.jpgAs my company is preparing to move to a larger location and thus, scale and upgrade our IT equipment, I have created a helpful checklist for ensuring the entire process is both a success and as stress-free as possible. Hope it helps!

  1. Planning
  • Assign a group (IT Team) to coordinate this part of the checklist.
  • Determine # of employees now and into the near future.
  • Dimensions of the new building.
  • Get quotes from MSPs.
  • Hire an MSP.
  • Confirm the move date with MSP.
  • Site visit of both locations with MSP (if required).
  • Inform IT & telecom service providers of move dates and locations.
  • Create/use DRP (Disaster Recovery Plan) and Security Plan.
  1. IT & Telecom Equipment Review
  • Network and hardware documentation.
  • IT & Telecom Service Agreements; Who and Cost?
  • Give vendors plenty of notice before ending.
  • What items will you use in the new location? What items are you not? Label
  • Dispose/recycle/donate unused equipment.
  • Ensure that ISP in the new location will be fast/reliable for current/new equipment.
  • Purchase new/upgrade equipment for the new building. Label
  • Document new/upgraded equipment. Label
  • Server room- Evaluate/plan dimensions, hardware, environment, upgrades, functionality, scale Label
  • Test new equipment before moving and train employees (IT team).
  • Talk to security vendor- Transfer old equipment, lease, where to install cameras, door locks, insurance.
  1. Site Visit
  • MSP- Review configuration plan of the new location.
  • What existing equipment can be re-used in the new location? Label
  • Plan and configure new power outlets, telephone, and network cabling points for new location. Label
  • Printers, copiers, fax, scanners, modems- Where to put, how to install,
  • Minimum requirements for the server room? (security, cooling, dimensions, electrical). Label
  • New location supports structured cabling? If so, how it will be done, cost, install time, best practices. Label
  • Wireless networking- position modems/routers in areas per best practices. Label
  • Workstation Layout. Label
  • Verify/plan HVAC operations/server room.
  1. Business Phone
  • Review line capacity- Need new or more new phone lines? Upgraded?
  • Purchase new phone lines (if necessary).
  • Install new phone lines and internet routers in advance of your move date. Label
  • Obtain quotes for new internet circuits and telephone lines.
  • Determine/purchase/plan Phone Software.
  • Set up call forwarding from old numbers of the old building to the new numbers of the new building.
  • ISP- Internet access for the new location.
  • Review phone systems/phone software.
  • Consider growth and expansion expectation for 3-5 years. 
  1. Data and IT
  • Create several backup copies of company data systems including servers/firewalls.
  • Store copies of backups at an offsite data center (secure).
  • Create a continuity plan to prepare for any unexpected problems during the move.
  • Inventory- software, hardware, storage, servers, and networking equipment.
  • Plan- switching internet connections, phone lines, migration of data, numbers, and transfer of servers.
  • List- business priorities/classify data per business criticality.
  • Emergency- contact details of IT, security, and telecom vendors.
  • Test- Continuity Plan- is/are all information/backups available for complete recovery?
  • Create hot site- Ensuring business can continue due to a disaster or delay.
  • Evaluate the benefits of consolidating servers.
  • Ensure that MSP/IT team and contractors are communicating to make sure data connections/lines are in optimal locations.
  • Get ISP to switch DNS/email to the new IP address.
  1. Prep for Moving Day
  • Move data backups to the new location and independently from the main system.
  • Label wiring & data cables to each piece of equipment, respectively. Label
  • Create a contact list of everyone involved in the move- Vendors, Technicians, Employees.
  • New business stationery with the new address, phone, and fax numbers.
  • Update websites, social media, and email lists with the new address, phone, and fax numbers.
  • Disconnect services at the old office/instruct staff to shut down equipment before leaving on last day before the move.
  1. New Office Test Plan
  • Check that all cabling, IT equipment, and phones are in the right locations. Label
  • Triple check all individual telephone numbers and their locations, including each fax, modem, and all other devices.
  • Test call forwarding from the old number from the old building to the new number from new building is correct and to the right phone.
  • Test every aspect/feature of landline phones/VOIP/Browser-based system.
  • Start/monitor/check servers, test network capability, ensure data transfer was a success.
  • Send, Receive, Check incoming and outgoing emails.
  • Check that all websites, intranet, and extranet are working properly and to their max potential.
  • Frequency test each network connection.
  • Work with security vendor to test cameras and recording hardware/software, verify camera placement and test performance and find gaps in coverage.
  • Verify and test intrusion prevention with hardware, software, servers, firewall, and physical location.
  • IT team should be ready to help any users with connectivity issues, along with MSP.
  • Chronicle each step of the entire process with the action performed, date, location, employees involved, cost, and duration for future inquiries and work.
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