If you’re shutting up shop over the festive period, there are a few things you’ll need to remember to do…
Whether you’re an office based small business or a small retailer, if you’re shutting down on Christmas Eve for a week or so then you’ve got to make sure everything’s in order.
Here is our checklist of things that needed to be done before you go…
1. Make everything secure
Even if you don’t run a customer facing business, you’ll still need to secure your premises. This means removing any valuables, storing important documents, hard drives and other valuables in a safe and making sure the security system is fully set up.
It’s a good tip to change your passwords before you leave and shut down all the computers. Go around the various desks and check for any Post It notes with information like passwords or email addresses on and bin them.
Also check the windows to make sure they’re locked and any fire doors are closed.
2. Contact clients
Send an email at least a fortnight before you shut up shop to let any clients know when you’ll be closed over the festive period.
This can help prevent unwanted deliveries from suppliers or angry clients expecting you to be available on certain days. It will also help you get everything you need done before the close up date.
3. Set up Out of Office emails
Once everyone knows your closing times, set up an Out of Office email. This will hoover up anyone you’ve failed or forgotten to inform of your closing times. Provide details of the time you’ll close up to the time you’ll be open again.
It might be worth providing an emergency contact number if clients need to call you – or at least an email address that will periodically be checked over the festive period.
For more details on what to write, check out our blog on Writing the perfect Out of Office email.
4. Turn things off
Check that everything is turned off before you go out. Not only is this good for the environment but it’s also safer – especially if you’ve put up Christmas decorations and a tree.
Pay close attention to lights, heaters, coffee machines, toasters or anything that could become a safety hazard. It’s also worth unplugging phone chargers, printers and TVs.
5. Sort out rubbish
It’s often forgotten by many, but it’s an important factor to remember – take out the rubbish.
Firstly, empty the cupboards and fridges – any food left over the festive period could go mouldy. Once you’ve got that sorted, make sure you take it out on the last day.
You’ll also need to sort your recycling. This might need to be done a few days before you close up depending on council recycling times. If you’ve missed them, take a trip to the local recycling centre. It’s also not a good idea to leave bags of paper lying around unattended as they could become a fire hazard.