Sometimes we visit new places in Colorado that we have never been. It’s one of the “perks” of the job really- this built in ability to explore. Every day we come in contact with new people who need answers to their moving and storage questions as well as tangible aid in moving from point A to point B. But we are always pleasantly surprised to find out that there are so many cities in our great State that provide such carefully thought out communities. This week we decided to highlight a place on our Colorado State map which is both little known and widely loved. This Fresh Place Friday is dedicated to an area called Highlands Ranch.
The History of Highlands Ranch
Originally populated by nomadic Native American tribes including the Arapaho Indians, the area that is now considered Highlands Ranch was sold to the US in 1803 as part of the Louisiana Purchase. There were no permanent settlers to the area until the issue of water supply was solved in 1870. Remaining a group of random farms and ranches strewn throughout the area just a few miles south of Littleton CO, parts of the area were bought and sold over the next 175 years but very little was actually organized or developed. But in 1978 the Mission Viejo Company purchased the area and the first homes were built in 1981.
Highlands Ranch Today
Today Highlands Ranch is a thriving metro district that includes over 95,000 residents making it the most highly populated city in the US that is still unincorporated. It exists and is developing as a “master planned community”, and is 23.5 square miles in size. This year the area is proud to celebrate its 30th anniversary. Sometimes called a “bedroom community”, Highlands Ranch is often the living place of choice for those who work in larger cities nearby because of its proximity to them.
The community of Highlands Ranch has been created with the central idea that an active approach to both your health and your environment is a very positive thing for life. Boasting state of the art recreational facilities, 23 parks and 70 miles of trails, there is no shortage of natural wonder. And with well known opportunities to be active such as the Backcountry Wilderness Area, the Open Space Information Center and various environmental education programs available to its residents, the focus on nature is clear. And with programs such as the “Healthy Steps Program”, dedicated specifically to encouraging the community to adopt a more healthy and active lifestyle in addition to the myriad of sports offered including football, soccer, rugby, baseball and tennis, there is always something to do .
For the high quality of life enjoyed by so many of the people that are fortunate enough to live in this community, it’s no wonder Highlands Ranch continues to receive national recognition for being one of the best places to live in the United States.
A few days ago, we received a comment card from one of our valued customers. And while this is not unique as we are in a constant state of collecting feedback in order to improve our business overall, we are always interested to see what comes back. Every day, with every customer we strive to do our best. We pay attention to every detail of the planning and execution of their move and we provide safe and secure storage for the extra things they can’t take along.
At Exodus, we are consistently involved in improving our community and in taking care of our employees. These values combined with our unmatched work ethic and core value of integrity make us an industry leader when it comes to Colorado moving and storage and beyond. During this often hectic and somewhat vulnerable time in our clients’ lives, we are passionate about relieving the stress. And because of this commitment, we want to know how they found each part of our service.
Estimator: We send a moving expert to your home or office to do a comprehensive accounting of what, how and where everything needs to be moved. With so much experience in the field and with honesty as our guiding professional policy, we don’t not under quote and we are careful to ask the right questions to make sure that there are no surprises.
Office Staff: Scheduling a move and filling out the corresponding paperwork can be a hassle if you don’t have the right team on your side. At Exodus, our administrative employees are detailed, helpful and proactive.
Overall Cost/Value: The old adage, “You get what you pay for,” is sometimes true. But we don’t believe that is any reason to gouge people. We consistently offer excellent service at fair prices.
Moving Crew: In our customer surveys we inquire about three main areas with reference to our moving crew. We ask if they are friendly/pleasant, about their work ethic/efficiency and for our customers overall impression of the crew itself. We realize that your things, whether in your home or business are valuable to you. For this reason and others we never outsource movers but rather send full-fledged employees to complete your move. We train them to work excellently, to work hard and to show you the kindness and respect that you deserve as one of our customers.
The following is an excerpt from one of our latest “How Did We Do” Surveys:
Date of Move: Mar 22nd 2011
Moving Crew: Javier and Carlos
Client Name: Mrs Spanger
On a scale of 1-10 how would you rate the following?
Office Staff 10
Overall Cost/Value 10
Work Ethic Efficient 10
Overall Impression 10
Please Write any Comments or Suggestions:
Everyone I dealt with for this move was helpful, responsive and polite. Everything arrived in great shape. Thanks!!
Would you recommend to others? YES May we use you as a reference? YES
When the announcement is made in a company of impending corporate relocation, most people instantly feel the stress. From the bottom of the ranks all the way to the top, the pressure can be felt. Questions about how best to handle the organization and the packing and how much downtime for the business will be involved begin to swirl around the workplace. How will things change? What kind of new space will be in once it’s complete? Will everything make it from point A to point B in one piece?
Hiring a professional mover is a vital part of moving any office, big or small. There are main core values that are the reason for this: time and money. By hiring a professional company you can minimize your use of human capital to accomplish the move. Professional office movers can streamline the planning of even the most complex office move, keeping valued employees with their head in the game of the business as opposed to putting energy toward a move. And if your moving company specializes in offices moves like Exodus does, they can move you in the evening after the work day has ended and everything will be all set to start business the next day. Getting things done right and fast saves time.
But how could hiring a moving company save you money? While this idea may seem at first blush a bit counter intuitive, when looked at, it becomes obvious. Broken, damaged and destroyed office equipment can happen in moves with “non-experts”. Also when dealing with issues such as expensive IT equipment and complex set ups and cable networking, it can be very expensive to repair damage done by an improper install. Another way that hiring a moving company can exponentially improve a corporate relocation experience is through minimal downtime, offering the opportunity to get back to the business of doing business sooner.
The Exodus Difference
At Exodus we specialize in office moves and corporate relocation. We offer the expertise that other moving companies don’t. With things like specially designed anti electromagnetic bags and shrink-wrap that we use to package everything in the office on site from monitors to drawers, we insure that no dust or water can get in and no items of value can get out. We are incredibly thorough in our packing and unpacking. And perhaps most importantly, our employees are our employees, not outsourced day laborers. This makes them both well trained and able to take true ownership and responsibility for your move. With care and expertise, we specialize in not only saving time and money for our clients but in creating a true sense of peace of mind.
A few weeks ago, our very own Joel Coen (Chief Operations Officer) and Andrew Ross (Chief Process Officer) met up for lunch with some of the key leadership of Commerce City including Brittany Morris (City Development), Jerry Flanery (City Planner) and Paul Natale (The Mayor). With our recent expansion into the Denver Metro and our opening of a new state of the art storage facility in Commerce City, we wanted to take the time to discuss the opportunity being presented. Excited not only for our companies benefit but also the betterment of new a community in which we are a part of, we spoke openly about joining forces with the city to co-promote growth.
The mayor and his team spoke candidly and were truly excited about their plans to renovate and renew Commerce City making it complimentary to Colorado’s other beautifully thriving cities.After speaking with the cities leadership, we became clear of the full scope of their commitment as well as a better idea of the organized efforts being taken toward development. The city illustrated a very high interest in taking excellent care of the people that live in the city in an effort to make sure there is sense of community as the city grows. As community spirit and working together is a major priority for Exodus, we felt reaffirmed in our decision to open a location in Commerce City.
Originally, we had chosen our Commerce City location because of its excellent access to the highway system, the affordable costs of renting a building space and because key members of our staff had recently purchased homes in Buffalo Run. At Exodus, we maintain a commitment to servicing the areas in which we live, work and play and have found that Commerce City best offers us the ability to do all of those things. This paired with the areas ideals set toward community strength and positive growth made it obvious that our focuses seemed to be very much aligned.
By the end of our lunch meeting, it was apparent that the city was very excited to have Exodus on board. We are bringing much needed jobs to the area in addition to offering more choices in the moving and storage industry. Because of our dedicated involvement within other communities, we have been proud to already positively impact so many of the neighborhoods that we serve. We are thankful that we have been very well received by Commerce City and we are looking very forward to partnering with them to promote progress.
At Exodus, our values are the baseline from which we accomplish everything. And fortunately for us, because we take the time to hand pick our employees, these beliefs shine through every day. When a crew shows up to a customers door and they are meeting them for the first time, we enjoy being sure that they will be met with smiling faces. It is always good to get feedback from our customers about their experience with our company. It is also good to know that the hard work and good natured manner of our movers in the field is more than just a goal, it’s a reality…
Date: March 7th, 2011
To: Alie Daniel
Subject: Our Move with Exodus
Exodus Moving & Storage:
Denis and I would like to thank the crew that came to our house on February 24th. This was our first time using a moving company and we were impressed.
What a team/move we had!
Josh called us when they were leaving Ft Collins and again when they were ½ hour out. He is a strong leader and had everyone and everything under contraol from the minute they arrived.
As the whole team arrived, we showed them them the house and without hesitation they were picking up our belongings and taking them back to the truck. There was absolutely no time wasted with this crew.
Rudy was a very hard and courteous worker. Ben, also courteous, was quiet and just wanted to get the job done right. Jason, also a very hard worker, did not say much but smiled and worked efficiently.
One of our neighbors even mentioned how friendly and hardworking everyone seemed. They said they will keep the Exodus name in mind for when they decide to move. Nice job guys, you never know who is watching!
We want to thank them all again for their hard work. We were so very impressed by these Exodus employees. Dennis and I will refer Exodus to our co-workers, friends and neighbors.
Dennis & Sara
Our very favorite thing about being a preferred Colorado moving company is the amazing people we meet and the interesting places are able to take them to. Recently, we had the opportunity to see a bit more of this big beautiful country of ours during yet another of many interstate moves. And so in honor of their move and in appreciation for their trusting us with it, we would like to tell you a little bit about one of the safest metropolitan areas to live and work in in the United States of America, State College PA.
A City Called College?
While State College Pennsylvania is the home of Penn State University, it is actually a separate metropolitan area. The largest borough in Centre County, it is home to over 40,000 residents. This once small village originally founded in 1855, has evolved over the years to accommodate the growth of its main focal point, the University. This somewhat intertwined identity often has people believing that the place and the school are one in the same while they have been and continue to be separate but supportive entities.
State College PA is often referred to as “Happy Valley” by outsiders and residents alike. Perhaps this is because of its continuing ability to rank in the top 5 safest places to live, or maybe it’s because it has been named one of the least stressful places to live in all the United States. It continually appears favorably on quality of life studies as a great place to live and or start a business. With a high population of singles and students, this metro seems to be just bursting with energy, innovation and possibility. Whether you like boating, dinning, mountain biking, fly fishing or just want to take advantage of excellent shopping, this city will keep you busy. Known for its live music scene, several galleries featuring local artists as well as a plethora a Penn State sporting events year round, no one is ever at a loss for entertainment. A great place to visit, State College is also a great place to move to.
Every year approximately 25 billion dollars is spent in the US alone on corporate relocation. That’s a pretty penny. And while there are various motivations for moving the office, the employees or both, the main goal is always the same: to improve the quality of business operations and to ultimately contribute that gain to the bottom line.
But what is the bottom line when it comes to relocating? It’s obvious that key issues involved include the place, the people and the market but that’s only the first step. Once the decision has been made to move, the next part can be tricky. The second phase of office moves comes when you realize that no matter how organized you are, you would be well advised to find yourself a hardworking professional mover with corporate relocation experience. That’s where we come in. But it is important to shop around so we offer the following tips to make sure you get the most out of your search.
Make sure you get an accurate quote.
Lowball offers are an exercise in futility. Some movers will rope you in with cheap estimates and then load you up with hidden charges. Smart moving shoppers know to look carefully for the signs of things that might be missing. A good rule of thumb in this case- if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Watch the Weights
It is always a good idea to get at least 2-3 quotes before you select a company to help with your office move. When you get these quotes, make certain to look at the weights that they have estimated. What things weigh can make all the difference when it comes time for the bill. Keep in mind that what you are actually charged in the end will be based on how much weight you have and how complicated it is to transport that weight from point A to point B.
Knowledge is Power
Perhaps the most important thing to do to get solid quotes and complete information from moving companies is to ask a lot of questions. If you are unclear about any part of the moving process as it is outlined in an estimate, ask questions. If you feel like you understand completely what is being explained to you, ask questions to clarify. A knowledgeable and professional estimator will both welcome any questions that you might have and readily provide you with the answers. In this case it is important to remember that there truly are no stupid questions, especially when the future of your company and its employees are hanging in the moving balance.
At Exodus, we have the privilege of helping people make their moves. Our capacity to pack, move and store covers everything from the US Dept of defense to small residential moves and, of course, everything in between. With this ability to handle such varied kinds of relocation, we encounter so many differing places, people and situations. And because our employees are actual employees and not simply outsourced “hired guns”, we are able to bring a personal touch to any move, big or small, because we operate like a family.
An area with a rich mining heritage, Anaconda is located between Yellowstone National Park and Glacier National Park. This beautifully scenic little town is full of an interesting mix of white collar professionals and hardworking skilled laborers. Located in Southwest Montana, it boasts charming opportunities for nature lovers in every direction surrounding it. Hunting, hiking, fishing, skiing and wildlife viewing are just a few of the recreational opportunities that abound . This along with its elemental treasures and accompanying surrounding ghost towns, it’s an fascinating place to both visit and move to.
With the continental divide passing just a few miles outside the city limits, this area comes up on our relocation trail. Recently one of our drivers was in Anaconda Montana during a big storm. With an average snowfall of just under 6 inches per year, the scene that he encountered was rather extraordinary. But when you operate like a family, you have the pictures to prove it! Here are a few rather remarkable ones from our drivers adventure in Montana.
There are many factors involved in a process as complex as corporate relocation. Many entrepreneurs, owners and managers are faced with a difficult host of decisions when the concept of moving an office comes into play. With the obvious advantage of having already done business in one place for a while, each organization has a feel for what works and what doesn’t. With the benefit of this experience it is, of course, easier to compare and contrast the advantages and disadvantages of moving to a new place. But there are other things to consider such as how much the business disruption will cost the company and what are the new and differing environmental and regulatory concerns that may become a factor once the move has been made. The following are the first two steps before deciding to make a move.
Be Clear About WHY
While there can be many reasons for moving, making certain to completely articulate your primary goals is a vital activity before deciding to relocate. Are you looking for a more skilled workforce in a specialized field? Are you seeking to lower the operating costs of the company or to improve the quality of life for your employees? Perhaps you are looking to expand your market and have found that a new location would aid in this pursuit. Or maybe it’s truly just an issue of having the physical space you need to realize the growth that you desire. By being as specific as possible about why you want to move, it is much easier to realize your goals and make the best choices in order to maximize a relocation opportunity.
Be Clear About WHAT
A good place to begin, once you have decided exactly why you want to move, is to make a list containing everything you will need for your new office. Again, being as detailed as possible with your location specifications is the key to clarity and ultimately success. Write down everything that is a priority such as the size you need the office to be, the physical placement and in what type of neighborhood, along with what kind of facilities and equipment you will require. In this case your reasons for the move become very important: If your main reason for moving is to find more qualified employees, it’s important not to get caught up in a wonderfully inexpensive new lease in an area where the demographics do not support such a specified labor force. Be clear with yourself about what is needed as opposed to wanted and create your list accordingly. This will ensure that there is less ambiguity and confusion when it comes time to make the most important decisions.
Value means different things to different people. For some, it is a simple, tangible and easily calculated concept. For others it’s a bit more open ended.
When it comes to relocation, value usually refers to both money and convenience. It often comes down to how much it would literally cost to replace items broken in a move as well as things like what it might cost to move during a certain time of year. In keeping with this week’s series on word definitions, the following terms are all about defining the value of your move.
HIGH VALUE ARTICLE
There is a Moving Industry figure that has been created to put a standard value on replacing items. Generally, when items are damaged during a move this figure, referred to as “released value”, is applied. This rate is generally 30-60 cents per pound for each item and this amount is automatically covered by the moving company with no additional insurance needing to be purchased. A High Value Article is an item that has a value of more than $100 per pound. Things such as furs, rugs, jewelry and electronics fall into this category. These items require a separate form called a “High Value Inventory Form” to be filled out.
PEAK SEASON RATES
When is the best time of year to move? Even though there is a season for everything, you will find many different opinions on this topic. Every time period has its pros and cons. While Winter is inconvenient from a weather perspective, it may be less expensive to hire a mover. And while Summer may guarantee good weather, it is also what is considered in the industry to be Peak Season. In order to avoid especially high prices between June and September, it is important to book your mover early.
Although there is some regulation and consistency between moving companies, each one is able to set their own rates. This responsibility is set forth by the Surface Transportation Board, and results in the creation of what is known as a Tariff. A Tariff is a document created to fully outline and explain what a moving company offers and how they calculate their pricing. It is designed to give an overview and to create accountability. Every professional moving company should have a Tariff available for you to consult upon request and we highly recommend taking a look at it to avoid hidden charges.