A day in the life of a removals surveyor…
Let me share an insight into the workings of a Removal Surveyor on a typical Monday. I have spent over sixteen years in this industry in various roles, met so many people and visited many different places from the Channel Islands, British Isles and all over Europe. The philosophy and values of the company I work for are aligned with my own. We have a problem solving approach and set high standards for customer satisfaction. This is why I enjoy my job so much. I get out and about and engage all types of people and help them through what can potentially be a stressful but exciting time for them. The motivation and reasons for moving are as diverse as the people I meet on a daily basis. So although I refer to this as a typical day, in reality no two days are ever the same.
0630-0830 – Early Bird
As an advocate of health and well-being and being a student of meditation and associated practices, I arise early by starting my day with a mind-body practice before the house stirs with the anticipation of another busy day. My wife leaves early for work so we say our goodbyes as I ready the breakfast with my little boy (Cheerios for him and Porridge for me, it’s quite unbelievable how the routine is almost identical nearly everyday). Then onto the school run with all of its own logistical challenges.
0900-1130 – Let’s get going
I arrive at the office and catch up with the team. I begin to scan through the emails (always more on the Monday from weekend senders). The most pertinent for me include:
- Enquiry for a local house move.
- Enquiry for a house move from Guernsey to UK.
- Acceptance of a quote from a survey last week. Good stuff!
I ring our new customer regarding her acceptance of our quote. We have a conversation regarding her forthcoming move and settle on a proposed move plan. A confirmation is sent and I book it in our diary just in time for my meeting with Alan, the Operations Manager.
Alan and I sit down to talk regarding the week ahead. Topics include:
- Appropriate allocation of resources.
- Staffing the workload.
- Diary management.
- Vehicle allocations.
- Breakdown of requirements of a large commercial move that is due to start.
- Overview and briefings on house moves that are booked in the diary.
- Parking suspensions and road closures that are required.
- Reviewing the previous week to ensure all jobs were completed to the customers satisfaction and seeing if possible improvements can be made to our processes.
On the back of an emailed enquiry over the weekend I ring a prospective customer to arrange a survey for their house move. They are moving locally and we have been recommended so I arrange a visit to them for later on in the week.
I call one of our trade Clients concerning final preparations for a forthcoming office move. We are waiting for final building elements to be completed before delivering furniture to the new site ready for installation. A site visit is arranged for this afternoon.
We have an existing customer who is concerned with potential access issues at the delivery address. I call and arrange to check the property for vehicle and potential access challenges internally for some of their furniture.
1130-1300 – In the thick of it
More time is spent fielding calls and emails (and the occasional glance and post or two on LinkedIn). Questions and enquiries include:
- Do you supply the packing materials?
- Can you ship worldwide?
- Do you do storage?
- Can you move a piano for me this week? (Of course!)
- I am thinking of moving abroad and hope to get some advice on moving my belongings.
- Can we add some items to our existing storage account?
- When are you next in France?
- We have a potential office move, can you quote please?
- Can we provide trade rates?
- The Jersey move has been accepted, can you confirm dates?
- I have run out of boxes, can I get some more? (This one’s for you, Alan)
The list goes on…….
1300-1400 – Lunch
I head out to grab some lunch. The importance of taking a break should not be understated, oh and it is a prawn salad for those that were wondering.
1400 -1630 Now I’m motoring
I am on the road this afternoon.
I had booked in a Survey for a local house move the week before. I arrive at the property in good time to set up the Ipad and review the information that has already been submitted.
The gentleman I am meeting is waiting for me at the door and greets me warmly and welcomes me into his home. We take a tour of the house going from room to room whilst I input information into our system on the Ipad. After this we settle in the kitchen and we discuss the various challenges and solutions to his needs. Him and his wife are a couple in their fifties who are downsizing after their children have flown the nest. They need temporary storage and disposal of some selected items. No problem at all. The scale of the job seems daunting to them at this present time. The property has been their family home for a long time. It holds special memories for them and has years of accumulation in terms of possessions. We agree that I will provide options and breakdowns of costs relating to the various needs and requirements for their move. We can provide a full packing service or simply supply the packing so that they can pack at their own leisure. The storage facility and process is explained. The staff and materials we use are also discussed.
Next on the agenda is a site visit for the upcoming office move. I arrive at the destination address and check the parking situation outside. Once in the building, I survey the areas for potential challenges with regards to access for the existing furniture that is being relocated. The carpets are being laid this afternoon and I can see that the finishing touches are nearing completion. Our Client is on site and we review the process together and finalise on dates.This is updated on the Ipad whilst on site to give the office a ‘heads up’ on the current status of the job.
My third and final visit of the afternoon is a meeting with a customer whose house move is on the horizon. The lady has some concerns about a tight driveway and a questionable staircase leading to the bedrooms. My assessment is that a particular vehicle will have to be used for access. Once inside I can see that the stairwell is certainly a challenge! Most of the furniture can be dismantled and reassembled in each room so it is nothing we have not seen before. I update the system to ensure all this info is communicated to the wider team and put the customer at ease and explain what we can do to make the move as seamless as possible before setting out on the road home.
1630-1700 On the road to home
Back in the office. I collate the data from my house survey and submit the quote.
I then spend a little time reviewing my days work and adding information onto our system for the benefit of my work colleagues and to help me offload the information from my mind. I like to make notes for the morning so that I can go home happy and enjoy my evening!