Relocating any corporate headquarters is a major undertaking. And for a leading biotechnology company with dozens of FDA-regulated lab facilities, the challenges were especially complex. Our client had a tight schedule with a hard stop: The company was required to physically vacate its existing lab facilities in less than six months. But before moving, it had to remodel and build out the new space, including labs and a new data center. Our client engaged Point B to create and lead a plan to meet its tight deadline while ensuring continuity of operations and compliance with FDA requirements.

Structuring for success

Instead of leaving the company’s facilities group to own the entire effort, we quickly created a program structure in a cross-functional manner that addressed the business needs of all functional owners. We created a detailed timeline, crisply defined business requirements and priorities, and aligned required activities. After the program structure and team were in place and roles were clear, people took ownership—and action.

Realigning priorities

Our planning and scheduling process quickly shed light on unaddressed issues that were key to our client’s continuity of operations.

For instance, before the old facility could be shut down, our client needed FDA review and approval of the new facility, which includes 14 separate functional R&D groups and 41 labs in 122,000 square feet. We reprioritized internal work and contractors’ efforts so that our clients could make the early, partial move-in needed to submit applications and meet validation and regulatory requirements.

Likewise, to ensure the new data center’s readiness, we worked with the construction firm to move its work up in the schedule. Prioritizing crucial elements of the relocation shaped the critical path to meeting the tight timeline and the regulatory issues.

Thinking big, small—and human

Large projects with many moving parts often suffer from a tendency to get lost in the details. We helped our client successfully move their world-class facility by constantly balancing the minutiae against the high-level, overall business requirements—then translating those requirements into executable activities.