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Hey everyone, James here, back again for this week’s intern blog post. I’m going to be talking about one of the most stressful and inconvenient things which most of us have had to deal with (no, not when the supermarket self-checkout machine decides to stop working), and that is moving flat.

Moving flat is more annoying than slow Wi-Fi, bad customer service (which I’ve already written about) and a thousand other things – here’s why.

First of all, moving makes you realise how much unnecessary stuff you hold on to. Now I’ve never considered myself a hoarder, but after throwing away the third out-of-date IKEA catalogue from my bookshelf, I did have to question a few things. I decided to try and sort things by priority of importance – is my guitar important? Yes. Is a club wrist band from 2016 important? Not really. By using this method, I did manage to make some good progress and chuck out a lot of stuff which would have weighed me down otherwise.

No matter how ruthless you are with throwing away, eventually you will be left with all the items that have made the final cut. From USB microphones to storm trooper mugs, all of these things need to be meticulously packed up and transported to the new flat. I’ve found that at this point it helps to either have generous friends with cars or just to rely on good old Mum and Dad. All the hours of playing tetris as a kid have been leading up to this moment where I (unsuccessfully) tried to get everything into the car in one trip.

While the moving hassle is going on, you need to find time to research different broadband deals. Do I need fibre? Is there already a BT landline in this flat? These are all things that need to be taken into consideration. While searching for broadband deals I was shocked by some of what I found. It’s 2017, how do internet packages which cost over £30 a month still have download size caps? Having a 20gb per month download allowance gives you under 7 hours of HD Netflix streaming. If you’re anything like me, then you can easily sit through 7 hours of content in a single day, let alone in an entire month.

Now before I get completely absorbed in my own moving annoyances, I should probably talk about how this relates back to Pamoja (this is a blog about our time with them after all!). Pamoja are very excitingly going to be moving offices in September! We’re staying in Oxford, but moving to a much bigger and all round nicer office which also happens to be perfect for me as my new flat is about a 5-minute cycle away. If I thought that a lot went into my move, then it’s a drop in the ocean compared to a companywide move. Every single piece of equipment that belongs to us, from monitor stands to server racks will have to be logged, packaged, accounted for then set up on the new site. The amount of organisation behind the entire move is staggering – shout-out to Harry Copson for being brave enough to take the project lead.

Moving to the office will no doubt at times be a difficult process, but offers us huge potential in changing not just the space we work in but how we work. Currently we lack communal, collaboration space (come on guys, where are the beanbags). We’re moving not just our stuff, but also our work lives into a new environment; this means we can collaborate more at work and will also be much healthier for us. Eating lunch at your desk every day because there’s nowhere else to sit gets dull after a while (and you’re mad if you think I’m paying Oxford pub food price every day!).

So, I guess the message of my blog this week is about change; moving flats gives me a break from my old student halls to a swanky new professional flat. And just like my home, moving office is a chance for us to break free of some of the restrictions of our old office and think in a new way about how we work. Roll on the move(s)!

James – Pamoja Intern Programme, BA Computer Science Undergraduate at Oxford Brookes University

 

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