Moving an office is one of those things that employees generally end up helping out with at some point. When you start having employees move around furniture and other items, you may want to keep in mind that there’s a very good reason why professional movers are generally very big, burly types. Overdoing it when you’re lifting furniture and other items can cause a range of injuries that might leave you liable for workers compensation claims and that might end up genuinely hurting your employees.
There’s more than muscle involved in lifting. In fact, if you watch professional movers lift, you can see that a lot of what they’re doing has to do with body mechanics. If you do have to lift something heavy, the right way to do it is to get very close to the object, bend your knees and lift with a straight back. If you bend your back and try to pick something up, you’re at risk of causing serious injuries that could leave you laid up for quite a while.
Another thing you may want to consider about having office employees help out moving heavy objects is the fact that they don’t have the right equipment. Professional movers will generally be wearing steel-toed boots when they perform a move. You might be able to pick up an object but, when you do, you’ll find out very quickly that your muscles tire if you’re not used to this sort of work. Once a heavy object gets out of control, there’s only one direction it’s going to go in and it’s likely going to end up right on top of your foot. A desk, heavy office chair, a filing cabinet or just about anything else can easily shatter a person’s foot.
When people aren’t particularly athletic or accustomed to heavy work, it’s easy for them to hurt themselves in other ways by being a bit too enthusiastic about taking on big challenges. If somebody has problems breathing or problems with their heart, it’s entirely feasible that they’re going to end up causing themselves a major injury or worse by trying to move too much. This is why people generally contract professional movers to handle heavy objects. They’re physically fit enough, big enough and strong enough to carry such objects without great risk to themselves.
Another thing professional movers bring to the game is equipment. Simply put, there is a right way and a wrong way to move heavy objects and, oftentimes, the right way involves using specialized equipment. This does provide for a greater margin of safety for the equipment involved, but it also provides for the safety of the people actually performing the move. Some things, even for the biggest, strongest people, are simply too heavy to pick up safely. This is why movers arrive with a range of dollies, carts and other equipment that allow them to get objects in and out of the building without hurting themselves or damaging the items.
Safety is a big concern when you’re moving. There’s no way around this. If you’re planning to have your office employees help you move, remember that your average graphic designer, computer programmer or accountant probably isn’t physically capable of moving a lot of the furniture and equipment used to work every day. For safety’s sake, it’s a much better idea to hire professionals and to simply have the items packed up and ready to go when they arrive. This minimizes the risks to your employees.
Sarah Brown is a writer for DBIndustries.com. DB Industries offer professional office moving and relocation services in the Washington D.C. and Northern Virginia area.