Commercial Moving

Make your lab move a success - choosing the right partner

By Darlene De Lorenzo

Moving day is no time for experimentation. Relocating a laboratory successfully is one of the most sensitive and complex in the moving industry. There is high-value equipment, potentially hazardous materials, and critical projects underway to consider. If you choose the wrong supplier, it can set research back months . . .  or even years. This blog is the first in a four (4) part series of expert tips to make your lab move a success.

Choosing the right partner

When choosing the right partner, there is simply no substitute for experience. You don’t want to be the “test case.” For example, ask potential movers if they have moved labs similar to yours. They should be able to provide multiple, recent references. As part of your decision process, show them your large equipment and ask specifically how they plan to move it to minimize the risk of damage.

Movers that specialize in lab moves will recommend the best way to transport different pieces of equipment and research materials (dry ice or generator trucks). They will also determine whether the move will require special equipment such as Stevedore, lab carts, and table lifts.

Questions to ask your mover before your lab move:

  • Do they have access to refrigerated trucks? This is for work in progress that must be kept at specific temperatures.
  • Do they have trucks with electrical outlets (including specialty outlets) your equipment may require?
  • Can they provide thermal polar packs and dry ice?
  • Do they have experience decommissioning and recommissioning your equipment and instruments?
  • Do they have partnerships with specialty carriers to transport animals and hazardous materials securely?
  • Are their crews certified in International Office Moving Institute (IOMI®) office and lab certification?
  • Do they have table lifts for bio cabinets?
  • Are their move crews (not subcontractors) trained in moving labs?
  • Are they experienced packing and transporting highly specialized lab equipment?
  • Do they have lab carts for moving heavy tabletop equipment?

To make your lab move a success, there are many considerations to keep in mind. Your schedule matters. Your equipment matters. Yet nothing is more important than safety and demonstrated expertise.

Stay tuned for next week when I will discuss how to identify the services you will need when moving your lab.