CapRelo Blog

A Look at the Biggest and Best Companies in the U.S.

Posted by Amy Mergler on Fri, Apr 07, 2017

In business, it’s important to keep up-to-date on the country’s economic landscape. An improving economy and the addition of new jobs have prompted us to investigate some of the top employers across the country.

Our investigation examined  employers in two categories: Largest Employers (based on the number of employees) and Best Places to Work (based on Glassdoor rankings and reviews). It was interesting to see which companies made the lists.

Largest Employers

First, we looked at the largest employers in each state and found that they were most often university systems or “big box” retailers. So, instead, we took a different approach and looked for the largest company headquartered in each state based on the total number of employees worldwide.

Largest Company by State

Using this approach, we could see where some of the largest brands, not only in the United States but around the globe, chose to locate their base of operations. Some of the most well-known brands immediately stood out, such as UPS, AT&T and Starbucks. But it was a surprise to see a large state like Florida have a lesser-known company like Jabil Circuit as a top employer (the company has more than 175,000 employees worldwide). It was also interesting to see who lead in smaller states, like Hawaiian Airlines in Hawaii (6,100+ employees).

Best Places to Work

Next, we explored the best-rated employers across the country. To map this out, we researched information on Glassdoor to find the 50 Best Places to work in North America. Forty-nine of the top companies are located in the United States, while one, Lululemon, is headquartered in Canada.

Top 50 Best Places to Work


California led the way, with 17 California-based companies making the top 50. Many are tech companies and household names like Apple, Facebook, Google and Aibnb. With Silicon Valley and the Bay Area attracting top talent, it’s no surprise to see so many tech companies based in the state.

In addition to technology companies, a number of restaurant and grocery store chains made the national list. Trader Joe’s (CA), Wegmans (NY), H-E-B (TX) and Costco (WA) all appeared on the list of great places to work. Two quick-serve restaurants joined the top 50 list – In-N-Out Burger (CA) and Raising Cane’s (LA). We found it particularly interesting to find these six companies reviewed as some of the top workplaces because quick-serve and retail work is not often seen as glamorous.

Overall, we found only one company on both lists – FedEx, based in Tennessee.

It’s sometimes good to look at the big picture when you’re examining the biggest and best companies in North America. In this case, it was eye-opening to see how states compare when it comes to employers. Every state is unique, and the companies on these lists add to their individuality.

Talent Management: Engagement Article

 

Topics: talent retention, employee engagement, talent management

How to Calculate Tax Gross Up

Posted by Nicole Overholt on Fri, Jan 13, 2017

tax-calculator.jpgIt's said that death and taxes are the only certainties in life. I'll leave the answer to that question to the great philosophers. However, one thing is an absolute certainty: taxes are a fact of life.

This is particularly true in the employer, employee relationship. The government requires that the employer withhold taxes from the employee's paycheck. Some would call this wise on the government's part, others wouldn't be so kind. In the corporate world, practically everything is taxed, including aspects of relocation packages provided to employees.  Most relocation expenses associated with a move, whether it is a reimbursement made to a transferee or a payment made to a vendor on the transferee’s behalf, is required to be reported as taxable income to the employee and is subject to IRS supplemental withholding regulations.

Find out more about relocation and taxes in our free guide.

Can you imagine the look on your employee's face when you gently explain that the generous relocation benefits provided will increase his or her tax burden? It is a guarantee, the once happy employee's mood will change quickly and not for the better.  Well, fortunately for these employees, a portion of the tax liability of the relocation package can be covered by tax assistance (gross up) paid by the employer. Unfortunately, grossing up can add 55% or more to taxable relocation costs. If you consider the obvious benefit to the employees’ long-term happiness, it is money well spent.

Basically a tax gross up occurs when the employer adds to the taxable relocation amount to assist with the tax liability of the addition of taxable relocation costs to an employee's income. For example, if the relocation costs include $5,000.00 taxable dollars, the employer may pay a total of $7,500.00 so that the employee gets the full benefit of the $5,000.00, as the estimated taxes of $2,500.00 are paid by the employer. 

If you are in planning a relocation move, getting your hands on IRS Publication 521, "Moving Expenses" and Publication 523, "Selling Your Home," available at www.irs.gov would be a good place to start to fully understand IRS regulations regarding relocation expenses.

3 main ways to calculate a tax gross up

1. Flat Method 

The flat method is a flat percentage calculated on the taxable expenses and then added to the income.  For example, an employer will gross up at a rate of 25% for taxable expenses.  If the transferee is paid $1,000, the gross up would be 25% of this, or $250, and therefore the transferee would receive a benefit of $1,250 total.  Note that the gross up is also considered taxable income and may create an additional tax liability to the transferee.

It’s important to note that this method likely doesn't cover the employee's tax liability since the gross up is taxable income. Additionally, this method is not compliant with supplemental withholding regulations.

2. Supplemental/Inverse Method 

This method is often used because not only are relocation expenses considered income, but the gross up is considered income too.  Therefore employers will pay the gross up on the gross up.  To determine the amount, add up all the tax rates (fed, state, OASDI, SS) and then divide the taxable expense by the sum of the tax rates. Take this number and subtract the taxable expense. 

Supplemental-Inverse Gross Up.png

This methodology covers gross up on the gross up, but may not accurately reflect the tax bracket of the employee.

3. Marginal/Inverse Method

This method is typically handled by a CPA or full-service relocation companies and also incorporates the tax on tax calculation. The difference is this methodology takes into account employee income and IRS Form 1040 tax filing status. In most cases policy dictates that only company-earned income will be considered and other forms of income, such as spousal income or investment income, won't be taken into account.

These three methods represent the nitty gritty of grossing up taxable relocation expenses to assist with the employee's relocation tax liability. While one can do the calculations, it is always wiser to seek the help of an experienced relocation experts.

Free All-Inclusive Guide  Relocation and U.S Taxes

Although this written communication may address tax issues, it is not a covered opinion as described in Circular 230.  Therefore, to ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, we inform you that any tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments), unless expressly stated otherwise, was not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax-related penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any tax-related matter(s) addressed herein.

Topics: talent retention, tax impact of relocation, calculating tax gross up, talent management

The Hidden Cost of Losing Key Talent During a Group Move

Posted by Rick Bruce on Thu, May 05, 2016

Office_Relocation-thumb_.jpgThere are many corporate relocation costs to consider before a group move. Typically, easily quantifiable, up-front corporate relocation expenses are foremost in the minds of management and HR staff. Rarely is the cost of losing key talent considered. 

Find out everything you need to know for an effective, low-stress relocation in our Low-Stress Relocation Guide.

Here are just a few of the added corporate relocation expenses you may face if your key talent refuses to make the group move:

  • Potential loss of intellectual property and human assets

  • Cost of key talent going to a competitor if a non-compete clause was not signed

  • Bad public relations if high-profile company leaders leave

  • Loss of company morale during and following the move when a company already in a state of flux loses well-respected personnel

Tangible Corporate Relocation Costs of Losing Key Executives

In addition to severance pay that has the potential to equal up to a year's salary for a top executive, there are other tangible costs associated with losing company leaders. These costs won't be considered part of your corporate relocation expenses because they'll be incurred after the company has settled into the new location. But if you are unable to keep the desired staff on board, you will find that these hidden expenses will add up. Even worse, these hidden costs are not tax deductible like some corporate relocation expenses.

  • The costs of hiring and training new employees, which can equal up to five times the amount of an executive's salary

  • Loss of productivity during ramp-up time with new employees

  • Potential corporate relocation expenses if you need to look outside your new region for talent

If your company is planning a group move, wouldn't you rather have your top performers make the move with you? 

Download The Low-Stress  Relocation Guide

Topics: talent retention, Home Selling and Purchase Assistance, Corporate Relocation Costs, corporate relocation program, talent management

Relocation is a Key Factor in Making Millennial Employees Happy

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Dec 17, 2015

Millennials' Rising Expectations

staff-resized-600.jpgMillennial workers, defined as those born after 1980, are graduating from college and ready to take on the world – literally. According to a Pew Research study, millennials are expected to comprise 37 percent of the workforce in the U.S., which will grow as Boomers retire. Because they have grown up with digital media, the world of the millennials is wider than that of their parents. Consequently, they have developed a global mindset that is reflected in their choice of career paths as well as the need for balance in work and personal life.

Learn more about developing relocation policies in our free guide.

Unlike their grandparents or even parents, most millennials see career travel as a given, seldom staying in one job for more than two or three years, especially if few opportunities exist for relocation and career growth. On the other hand, millennials also value personal growth, balance and meaningful work in addition to career advancement. To successfully manage workers of this generation requires an understanding of what millennials need and want.

Millennials Often Delay Marriage While Establishing Careers

Millennials are more likely than their parents or older siblings to delay marriage and family to establish themselves in a career first, one which preferably includes travel and all of its career-supporting, culturally enriching benefits. Lack of family and other external "baggage" often gives them the freedom to pick and choose plum assignments without worries about spousal employment, quality school availability or other concerns and restrictions often experienced by employees with families. Once millennials do marry and settle down, however, they insist on a work environment that allows a balance of work and family.

Until recently, relocation was usually considered an "earned right" reserved for higher-ranking executives. Millennials believe that organizations intent on keeping their loyalty should offer them the chance to experience other locations and cultures as part of their employment experience.

What Do Millennials Want at Work?

A characteristic of millennials is authenticity in their work as well as personal lives, reports a Bentley University study, with most refusing to compromise values. This includes a willingness to leave companies whose work demands restrict their ability to live an authentic life aligned with their values, including a healthier balance of work and leisure than that experienced by their parents. Pew Research Center studies confirm that many millennials preferred fulfilling careers, where they are valued and enjoy what they do, to high salaries. (Benefits, however, did rank highest in millennials' corporate "wish lists.")

Far from rejecting the corporate world, over 72 percent of millennials surveyed in the Bentley study would enjoy working with a large company; 48 percent of responders also reported that they want to be loyal and would prefer to work for no more than two companies over the course of their careers. The good news is that companies offering great benefits, including travel as well as flexibility, balance and purposeful work should find it easier to keep their millennial workers productive and happy.

Talent Management: Engagement Article

 

 

Topics: talent retention, employee engagement, talent management, millennials

How to Attract and Retain Female Executives In the High Tech Industry

Posted by Shirien Elamawy on Tue, Jun 09, 2015

leader-resized-600.jpgAround the globe, employers are becoming aware that the low participation rate of women in the high tech industry has a negative impact on business. According to Sharon Florentine in her CIO article, “6 Ways to Attract and Retain Female IT Talent,” research shows that actively recruiting, retaining and advancing more women is good for a company’s bottom line. And when women are in leadership positions, turnover is reduced, the overall performance of the organization is enhanced and a strong leadership pipeline is established.

Learn key ways to increase employee retention in our free article.

Also, since the high tech industry is overwhelmingly male-dominated, companies are missing out on a significant pool of quality talent. Especially in a labor market where employers are concerned about a talent gap in professions such as engineering, companies can’t realistically afford to not foster female talent. However, statistics indicate a lack of success when it comes to retaining women: a Harvard Business Review report led by Sylvia Ann Hewlett shows that 41 percent of highly qualified STEM workers are female, yet more than 50 percent of them leave the field in their mid to late thirties.

What Employers Can Do

According to the Kelly Services article, “Attracting and Retaining Women in the High Tech Industry,” some of the reasons women leave the IT industry include a lack of female colleagues and role models, as well as distinctly inferior treatment such as lower salaries and fewer advancement opportunities when compared to their male peers. It’s only logical, therefore, that addressing these issues would make for more attractive work environments for women. Employers should consider taking the following measures:

  • Diversity training aimed at promoting understanding, tolerance and equal treatment between male and female workers. This training should include both management and employees and be geared to eliminating gender bias.

  • Offering equal salaries. According to David Louie in the ABC7News article, “Silicon Valley Job Growth Exposes Increasing Gender Gap,” men in tech earn up to 61 percent more than their female counterparts. Obviously, offering women equal remuneration will form an important incentive.

  • Offering clear career paths for women. Employers should clarify how women can advance within the company from the start of the recruitment process.

  • Providing paid maternity leave, as well as flexible work arrangements. Many women leave the high tech industry due to a lack of support for motherhood. Creating work environments where they can fulfill both their roles as mothers and as professionals will likely help retain them beyond their mid to late thirties.

  • Actively encourage female role models. Inviting senior female employees to speak to and mentor younger ones provides clear role models who prove women can succeed in the high tech field. At the same time, recruiting female students in the same manner can encourage more women to study STEM subjects and enter the field of high tech.

  • Provide relocation support geared specifically toward women. Women who need to relocate for their jobs may require tailored support to help them and their families acclimate to the new environment. From cultural training for a female employee relocating to a more traditional society to support in locating schools and childcare, relocation companies can provide superior relocation experiences that help employers retain their top female talent.

Attracting and retaining women in the high tech industry is an ongoing endeavor. But by understanding what women want and where companies fall short, employers can effectively adapt their talent management strategies to foster and support top female talent.

 Talent Management: Engagement Article

 

Topics: talent retention, attracting new hires, talent management

The Difficulty of Engaging and Retaining Employees Globally

Posted by Jim Retzer on Tue, Mar 31, 2015

23percentofworkersplantoleaveinfographiccopy

A 2015 financial article titled “Global organizations face looming crisis in engagement and retention of employees, according to Deloitte survey” states that 87 percent of business and HR leaders agree a lack of employee engagement is their primary concern.

What’s more, while the percentage of leaders who stated engagement was very important doubled from 26 to 50 percent from last year, an overwhelming 60 percent said they didn’t have specific processes to measure and enhance employee engagement.

Learn more about key ways to increase employee engagement in our free article.

These numbers are disturbing, especially when you consider that employees are most companies’ primary resource. A lack of engagement signals a lack of motivation and retention, resulting in reduced productivity, costly turnover and the inability to successfully and continuously expand business operations. ­

Moreover, according to Achieve Global’s report “Worldwide Trends in Employee Retention – How to keep your best employees in any market,” talent mobility is on the rise. In the United States alone, 23 percent of workers plan to leave their current jobs within the next 12 months. This level of attrition is concerning, especially since replacing employees is a lengthy, costly process.

And though many companies are streamlining their recruitment processes in order to minimize recruitment and return to productivity time, these types of measures can’t be effective without addressing the lack of employee engagement.

Obviously, for companies looking to enhance engagement and retention, it’s key to understand employees’ motivations for remaining satisfied with their jobs and their companies.

And this is where some interesting facts become clear. According to Towers Watson’s research, the factors that influence engagement include leadership’s sincere interest in employees’ wellbeing, a healthy work-life balance, flexible work arrangements and reasonable workloads. In other words, employees who feel supported by their companies’ leaders and whose jobs allow them a reasonable work-life balance are far more likely to be engaged than those who don’t.

Other factors that influence retention include a good understanding of a company’s goals and how a job contributes to those goals; a company’s public image; and empowerment (i.e. that management actively seeks out employees’ opinions in decisions that affect them).

When it comes to attracting, engaging and retaining top talent, employers around the world are advised to adapt their talent management strategies to better meet their employees’ expectations. Without taking this all-important step, employees are far more likely to look elsewhere when their job experience isn’t as good as expected.

Adjusting talent management strategies can involve a number of steps, including providing more transparency about the company, creating more flexible work arrangements and facilitating a more collaborative work environment.

Another aspect of enhancing engagement involves providing the best relocation experience possible for relocating employees. When talent feels supported by their companies during the demanding and often stressful time surrounding a relocation, they’re more likely to settle into their new positions smoothly. And that in turn greatly enhances the chances of them being engaged for the long term.

Of course, enhancing engagement and retention isn’t a process that happens overnight. By continuously staying abreast of talent trends and assessing why employees leave their companies, employers can gain the insights necessary to adapt their strategies to better engage and retain top talent.

Talent Management: Engagement Article

 

Topics: employee retention, talent retention, employee engagement, talent management

Information You’ll Need Before Writing an Employee Relocation Letter

Posted by Rick Bruce on Tue, Jan 08, 2013

pen-and-paper.jpgIf you want to write an effective employee relocation letter that invigorates your employee about their new position and makes the transition easier on everyone involved, there are certain key pieces of information you should have first.

Fortunately, you don't need a three-ring binder or thick stacks of information in order to write this letter. Everything you need to write an effective employee relocation letter should be readily available to you. You'll just need to collect, or have someone collect, some key bits of information.

Learn how to write an employee referral letter in our free article.

Before you write your letter, you should make sure you:

1. Know Your Employee

What should be the very first consideration of every employee relocation letter is instead often an afterthought--when it's even a thought at all! Typically, most of these letters are most concerned with employee relocation assistance, the different responsibilities or conditions of the employee's job in the new location, and maybe a bit of a pep-talk as an add-on.

While the employee relocation is being done for the good of your business, it's still your employee who should come first in the relocation letter. That's why it's important to mention the benefits of the relocation, as they apply to the individual employee, as soon as you can in your letter.

(The very first thing you should do, however, is remind him or her of the conversation that recently took place about his or her relocation. This letter should never be the first your employee hears of the move!)

These few minutes of consideration can pay off big in the long run: every bit of individualized attention you give your relocating employee now will make a bigger impact than it would under more normal circumstances. This translates into increased loyalty and productivity for your company.

2. Know Your Employee's New Duties, Responsibilities, or Changed Position

If your employee's responsibilities or job function will change at all, these changes should be detailed in the relocation letter. You'll need information concerning:

  • The employee's new position or title
  • New or added duties and responsibilities
  • Duties the employee will no longer be responsible for
  • New salary or increased benefits, if applicable

3. Know Your Employee Relocation Package

Your employee relocation letter should also outline the assistance package your employee will be provided with. This should include:

  • Assistance directly provided or paid for by you, the employer
  • Information on how to submit claims for reimbursement
  • Information concerning housing assistance in the new location
  • Offers for employee home sale assistance in the current location

Of course, you don't have to put this package together yourself. You can (and probably should) save money in the long run, while investing in your employee's productivity, by hiring out a managed solution by an experienced employee relocation company.

How to Write an Employee Relocation Letter

 

Topics: talent retention, Home Selling and Purchase Assistance, relocating employees, writing relocation offer letter, talent management

Three Myths about the Relocation Process

Posted by George Herriage on Mon, Feb 13, 2012

Even if they've been through the relocation process with employees many times, your HR staff and management team may have misconceptions about the relocation process. Here are three common myths -- and the real truth about the relocation process.

Download our Free White Paper: Ways to Increase Employee Engagement


Myth #1: Every employee relocation is different, so there's no way to set standards or benchmarks for best practices.

Truth: While every employee relocation differs slightly -- because every situation and every employee is different -- putting best practices for your relocation process in place assures all employees will be treated fairly and will minimize financial loss for your company due to surprise expenses. An effective, stress free relocation process should have best practices in place with plenty of room for customization based on the relocating employee's needs.

Myth #2: Employees will get back to work quickly even if they face headaches and stress during the relocation process -- after all, it's their job.

Truth: In an ideal world, employees would be wholeheartedly committed to their work even during the process of moving, selling their home, and possibly even commuting far away from their families. But the fact is, the sooner you can get employees back into a normal routine, in a home they can call their own, the quicker they will return to full productivity. A stress free relocation process can help.

Myth #3: Members of your HR staff can handle the entire relocation process themselves -- you don't need to hire a relocation management company to help.

Truth: Hiring a relocation management company to help your HR staff and relocating employees through the relocation process ensures greater productivity, keeps costs down, and results in better employee retention.

Topics: relocation packages, talent retention, Home Selling and Purchase Assistance, talent management

Company Relocation: Do Tax Benefits Make it Worth It?

Posted by Nicole Overholt on Tue, Jul 05, 2011

When Peoria, Illinois-based Caterpillar threatened to move from the state due to income tax increases, it sparked a flurry of debate over corporate relocation and relocation tax incentives for companies.

The threat actually hurt stock prices of the heavy equipment manufacturer, as well as reducing company morale and productivity. While Caterpillar CEO stressed to Illinois governor Pat Quinn that he prefers to stay in the state, the damage was done.

Free All-Inclusive Guide  Relocation and U.S Taxes

Factors to Consider Prior to Company Relocation
At CapRelo, we'd be the last people to tell anyone that corporate relocation is a bad idea, but we would like to emphasize some of the factors you should consider before deciding if it's the right decision for your company.

  1. Can you recruit new talent in your new location? Choosing the right area is one of the key factors in whether or not a company will be successful in recruiting new talent after relocation. Shop carefully, and think about the types of people you need to help your company operate optimally.
  2. Will you be able to retain most of your top talent? Again, it's all about location, location, location. No matter how desirable your corporate relocation package, if you're not relocating to a place your employees want to live, you won't retain them.
  3. Will the tax incentives offset some or all of the corporate relocation costs? When you factor in all the real and hidden costs of relocation, do the tax incentives still sound as appealing? Are tax benefits long term (such as lower corporate taxes) or one-time bonuses?

If you decide that company relocation will pay off, CapRelo can help you create a low-stress relocation experience through our trademarked “Low-Stress Relocation Process.” Contact us to learn more.


 
 
 

Topics: talent retention, tax impact of relocation, corporate relocation program, talent management

New Call-to-action

Subscribe to Email Updates

Posts by Topic

see all