How to Conduct a Site Assessment for Your Next Facility Relocation Project

Relocating some or all of your company’s operations is likely to be a complex process. Your planning must begin early and include close collaboration across your stakeholder groups to identify each functional area’s needs and expectations for the new space. As the project progresses, you’ll use those requirements to conduct a site assessment of potential new locations. Even if the new space has essentially been selected for you—which sometimes happens when the building next door opens up unexpectedly, for example—you should still evaluate the site through the lens of your organization’s needs as well as your project’s scope, budget, and timeline.

Conducting effective and productive site assessments is critical for the success of your relocation project. Oversights during the evaluation process can result in significant cost overruns and schedule delays. Before you set out to assess potential locations, consider just a few of the elements your team should include in a site evaluation and why.

Space and layout

Not only do you need to confirm the new location has adequate space to support your intended use, but you should also assess its suitability in terms of layout and growth potential. Does the mix of individual offices to open or communal work areas align with your needs? Are there enough conference or training rooms to support occupants’ activities? Will there be any unused space that you can earmark for future expansion? You want to match your growth plans with the site’s characteristics to avoid finding yourself looking for additional space soon after moving in.

Infrastructure and utilities

Work with qualified professionals to review the condition of the existing electrical, HVAC, plumbing, and other systems to ensure they have enough capacity and the right capabilities to meet your near- and long-term requirements. Laboratories, manufacturing facilities, and other niche operational areas may require specialty utilities. Network connectivity is also important, particularly if your business gobbles up bandwidth to support sophisticated technology tools or large-scale data processing systems. If the necessary infrastructure isn’t already in place, confirm you can add what you need without blowing your budget or your schedule.

Security and safety measures

Employees and visitors expect a secure working environment, and your project team should carefully screen potential sites with an eye toward both safety and overall security. Look first at access controls for exterior and interior doors. Do you plan to restrict access to certain areas? Can those doors be properly secured against unauthorized access? Will entry points remain open to the public but rely on key-controlled interior doors to prevent access to the building’s inner areas? Safety is also a priority. Review parking areas and exterior pathways to ensure the lighting is sufficient for nighttime navigation. Check the interior safety lighting and confirm the emergency exit signs and other egress markers illuminate as expected.


Whether you plan to invite the public into your building or limit access to employees and authorized visitors, you want the location to be easy to reach and navigate. Consider the logistics of traveling to the site via car, on foot, by bicycle, and using public transport. The proximity of bus and light rail stations, pedestrian pathways, and roadways to support easy commutes is important for both your workforce and your customer base. Confirm there are enough parking spaces for everyone or identify where alternative parking options exist in relation to the site. Inside the building, any waiting or lobby areas should be large enough to comfortably hold the number of people you expect to receive. Elevators also need to be conveniently located and sized to accommodate your anticipated passenger and freight loads.

PMAlliance, Inc uses a team of highly experienced and certified professionals to provide project management consultingproject management training and project portfolio management.

Discuss Your Project, Portfolio & Training Needs