CapRelo Blog

The Challenges of Developing a Core-Flex Program

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Jun 21, 2018

Group of young business people sitting in board room during meeting and discussing with paperworkDeveloping a core-flex program can be challenging, especially for organizations that are inexperienced with corporate mobility.

Determining Precisely What Benefits to Offer

The choice of benefits should be competitive – but it should also be financially viable. The included services must be representative of the company culture and the level of employer support employees can expect, while at the same time fitting within the constraints of the available budget.

Balancing Core and Flexible Benefits

Again, this needs to be competitive and realistic. Adding more services to the core component might bring in more talent, but it could also result in a larger financial investment than necessary or even possible.

Establishing Reporting and Metrics Procedures

Organizations need robust reporting and metrics procedures to keep track of the costs and success of the program. Most corporate mobility companies provide client dashboards where this data is collected and analyzed for review. Employers that wish to manage this aspect in-house will need to integrate relocation reporting and metrics into their existing HR management systems.

Ensuring Consistency of Policy Application

It's critical to be consistent in applying the core-flex policy to ensure compliance and employee satisfaction. Establishing clear rules regarding qualifying factors is a requirement to make sure all decisions to provide specific services to employees are based on data, not personal preference or guesswork.

Developing New Processes

Companies should develop new processes to assess employees' eligibility, assign the appropriate services and accurately document each case. Clear and efficient processes reduce the chances of errors and complications. HR should collaborate with the mobility manager and any other stakeholders to establish streamlined processes that facilitate the implementation and periodic reassessment of the core-flex policy.

Creating a core-flex program is a complex endeavor, and one that requires a certain amount of expertise. Yet it’s also one that can yield considerable returns in terms of employee productivity and engagement, as well as improve employer brand reputation. For many companies, it is the optimal policy to blend the employer's strategic goals with employees' unique needs, providing service benefits while containing costs.

It can be helpful to work with a corporate global mobility company that can assist in developing a comprehensive program that contains mobility expenses, while simultaneously offering a competitive set of core and flexible services.

Guide to Core-Flex Policies

Topics: core-flex policies, talent mobility, mobility package

Meet Pete Larkin, CapRelo's Own "Deputy Chief"

Posted by Barry Morris on Fri, Jun 15, 2018

Pete - Deputy Chief

At CapRelo, we value employees with a sense of mission and service, and encourage our team to pursue a greater purpose both in the workplace and outside of it. To learn more about him and is role at CapRelo, I recently sat down with VP of Global Business Development, Pete Larkin. Or perhaps we should be calling him "Deputy Chief." 

Raised in Hartford, CT by parents who both worked for the state, it's no question that Pete was raised to work hard. His resume includes 20 years as an Assistant Professor in Psychiatry at UConn, 21 years of experience in business development and former PGA caddy for Lee Trevino for good measure. Following in his father's footsteps, he has also worked 20 years as a Volunteer Firefighter in CT, earning the rank of Deputy Chief. He and his wife, a Rehab Occupational Therapist, adopted and raised two loving children from Korea as infants. His son, now 30, is living and working in L.A. as an actor and his daughter, now 26, is living and working in NY as a writer.

While much of his personal time involves Irish music, cheering for the Red Sox and reading biographies, his most rewarding pastime is training and recruiting new firefighters. And while the work Pete accomplishes at CapRelo as VP of Global Business Development is essential to forming strategic relationships with our clients, it is Pete's cultivated experience as a businessman, family man and firefighter that makes employees like Pete our biggest asset.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

Upcoming Mobility Shows and Events - June 2018

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, May 31, 2018

2018 Look for CapRelo 5

We will be attending and/or sponsoring the following upcoming events. If you’re attending, look for us and say hi, because it's a great opportunity for us to stay abreast of the latest global mobility trends, as well as develop and strengthen trusted partnerships. 

 

Greater Richmond Relocation Council 2018 Spring conference

Date: June 5

Location: Richmond Hilton Downtown, Richmond, VA

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The GRRC Spring Conference will feature a keynote address on U.S. Immigration in Uncertain Times, panel discussions, industry updates, scholarship award presentations and networking opportunities.

Learn more and register for the conference here

 

New England Relocation Association June Meeting & Mingle

Date: June 7

Location: Four Points Sheraton, Norwood, MA

Attendee: Pete Larkin

NERA's June meeting will include a presentation on immigration issues, an interactive session on negotiation and conflict resolution and a panel discussion on domestic relocation hot topics.  

Click here to register for the meeting and to learn more

 

WISCONSIN EMPLOYEE RELOCATION COUNCIL SUMMER MEETING AT MILLER PARK

Date: June 13

Location: Miller Park Stadium, Milwaukee, WI

Attendee: Christopher Bloedel

Enjoy a day at the ballpark with the WiERC. Attendees will see the Milwaukee Brewers take on the Chicago Cubs and take part in educational sessions on data analytics and the current immigration climate.

Register for the summer meeting and learn more here

 

Greater Washington Employee Relocation council Meeting

Date: June 13

Location: National Union Building, Washington, DC

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The GWERC June meeting will feature an industry/association update and a presentation by International Association of Movers Senior Vice President Chuck White.

Find out more and register here

 

Corporate Relocation council of Chicago Summer Meeting

Date: June 14

Location: Grant Thornton Tower, Chicago, IL

Attendee: Christopher Bloedel

CRC's summer meeting includes educational sessions, including a panel discussion focusing on Life Lessons through Relocation, scholarship award presentations and networking opportunities.

To register for the meeting or to learn more, click here

 

Bay Area Mobility Management Summer Meeting

Date: June 15

Location: South San Francisco Conference Center, San Francisco, CA

Attendee: Patrick Cacho

The BAMM summer meeting will highlight Simplifying the Complex, with a discussion on how to streamline the relationship between mobility, tax, immigration, payroll and equity. 

Learn more and register here

  

If you can’t attend, please be sure to follow CapRelo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

What is a Relocation Package & What Should it Include?

Posted by CapRelo on Wed, May 30, 2018

WHAT IS A RELOCATION PACKAGE?

When a company offers an employee long-term employment in a location more than 50 miles from the current work location, a company may offer a relocation package. This usually covers the employee’s reasonable moving and other work-related expenses. By offering transferees a relocation package, employers provide comprehensive financial and other types of assistance to relieve the employee and their family of the expensive burden of relocation. A well-developed relocation package not only provides peace of mind as well as incentive to accept the job offer for the transferring employee but reflects positively on the company’s reputation for attracting top talent.

relocation package helping with moving costs

 

Are Relocation Packages Common?

In years past, relocation assistance was offered almost exclusively to higher-level employees or specialized contractors. Today, with a more global economy and better-educated global workforce, the competition for the best talent is stronger than ever; consequently, smart companies are jumping on the relocation benefits bandwagon to attract and keep their best employees.

A recent survey by Atlas Van Lines reported an increase of 13 percent over a three-year period among companies offering relocation assistance. Companies are finally catching on to the fact that having a strong, attractive relocation package in place not only makes excellent business and branding sense, but has become a reality for those companies that wish to remain competitive.

Learn more about relocation packages in our free guide.

- HR PROFESSIONALS ARE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT RELOCATION-

Another recent survey by Worldwide ERC® indicated an upward trend in U.S. transfer volumes: a 4% increase in relocation for current employees and a 7% increase for new hires. And companies anticipated another increase in the next year 

- THE ROLE OF MILLENNIALS IN CORPORATE RELOCATION -

One thing that can be said for sure about this demographic group that is quickly taking over the workforce: they like to be on the go. Already having overtaken the Baby Boomers in the workforce, millennials are arguably the most technology- and travel-adept generation to ever show up on the scene.

Millennials are changing the face of workplaces around the world, as they demand work environments that not only acknowledge their contributions but also their need for flexibility and a good balance between work and private lives. In an Urban Bound study, a full 71 percent of millennials also expressed a desire to work abroad at some point in their careers – a fact that shouldn’t be lost on corporate recruiters.

- Relocation Packages and the Modern Workforce -

Relocation packages are increasingly becoming used not only as a way to keep in-house talent happy in the event of a transfer, but as an effective recruiting tool – particularly for globe-trotting millennials, who often relish the chance to travel and broaden their business and personal horizons. If companies find that they’re losing talent, especially as part of a transfer process, then a review of their relocation policies and strategies may be in order to keep up with the changing faces of the modern workforce.

searching for relocation package information

  

Components of the Average Relocation Package

The average job relocation package will include the following features. Please note that this is a more subjective, than objective, list. Depending on the industry and their competition’s relocation packages, employers can tailor their programs to offer the most competitive and attractive packages to attract and retain top talent. Many organizations either designate an in-house relocation manager to help oversee the move from beginning to end or, increasingly, turn this complex job over to a professional relocation management company. 

Successful assignments and transfers depend on competitive, comprehensive relocation packages. These should be compliant with IRS regulations, and should also align with the organization's goals and objectives. Regardless of the type and number of relocation package components, those that meet the needs of both the employer and employee will be most effective. Oftentimes, these components can be negotiated. But what are some of the features common to the average job relocation package?

Find more relocation package examples and features in our free guide.

  • Full pack and/or unpack services. The employee's household goods are packed by a moving company, saving the employee time and stress. After arriving at the new destination and home, moving company personnel unpack the household goods.
  • Quality moving company service with reasonable insurance coverage. Some moving companies are known for quality moves, some are not. Since moving charges are usually based on total weight, insurance for damaged or lost goods should be equal to your goods’ value.

  • Home sale or lease-breaking penalty assistance. Home sale help can come in a variety of ways, from company-sponsored reimbursement for money lost on quick home sales, professional marketing help to accelerate the timing of sales to the employer buying the home. Renters can expect employers to pay contractual penalties for early lease termination.

  • House-hunting trip, minimum one. Standard relocation programs commonly include at least one, preferably two, company-paid house hunting trips of short duration to give the transferee and family opportunities to find new homes. House-hunting expenses incurred in looking for a new home: transportation, lodging, meals and in some cases, childcare so the kids can stay home (and out of the way) while the parents can house-hunt in peace. (According to the Illinois-based search firm Witt Kiefer, companies are increasingly encouraging families with younger children to leave them home, and reimbursing them for the expense, while looking for a new house.)

  • Temporary housing. Standard relocations include at least 30 days of temporary housing for transferees.

  • Transportation, including auto moving, to the final destination. Most relocation packages include reimbursement for transporting your transferee and his/her family to the new location. If the transferee can travel by auto, reimbursing for mileage expenses is common. Should the move require plane or train transportation, standard packages often include reimbursing the cost of moving the transferee’s vehicle(s).

  • Miscellaneous expenses. As usual the “miscellaneous” category can encompass a lot of small costs. These can include driver’s license fees, pet registration and licenses, cleaning services at the new home, utility hook-ups and other move-related expenses. To keep this category cost controlled, identify or cap most eligible costs.

These are commonly included features of standard relocation packages, which we outline in our guideDepending on your industry and facility locations, there may be more features in the typical relocation package.

Popular features in a standard relocation program may also include:

  • temporary living expenses when transferees must meet hard deadlines to move
  • storage costs for household goods before employees can move into new homes
  • spousal employment assistance in the new location
  • childcare costs and elder help for transferees caring for elderly parents.
  • school location assistance for school-age children
  • a loss-on-sale allowance in the event your present home sells for less than its purchase price (not uncommon since the Great Recession)
  • trips home for those in longer-term temporary housing, usually limited to one every 30 days

Your typical relocation package may or may not include some or all of the noted features. However, in all cases, you should regularly compare your package with those of your competition. If your program is significantly deficient in some area, make senior management aware of the discrepancy, advising them to consider upgrades to keep your standard package equal to your competition’s packages.

While it can be true that the higher the level of an employee’s status within an organization, the more comprehensive and inclusive the job relocation package will be, more savvy companies are offering to underwrite relocation costs even for newer employees as a means of attracting and keeping their top talent. Each company has its own benefit structure and policies vary, so potential transferees need to understand from the outset what is and isn't included (but could be negotiable) to secure the best deal on job relocation packages.

what the average relocation package includes

 

What Kinds of Relocation Packages are Available?

There are almost as many types of relocation packages as there are employees needing the assistance and the companies that hire them. The company’s financial resources and situation, the length of employment, as well as whether the employee is a homeowner or renter also play roles in determining the size and coverage offered in a relocation package.

A core or typical relocation package usually covers the costs of moving and storing furnishings and other household goods, along with help selling an existing home and costs incurred house hunting, temporary housing if necessary and all travel costs by the employee and family to the new location.

Find out more about relocating employees with families in our free article.

Besides the coverage itself, there are a number of ways to administer the package:

  • Direct billing: The transferring company hires and directly pays for a moving company as well as costs involved in selling a current home and all other services needed to help relocate the employee and family.
  • Lump sum: A set amount of money is given directly to the employee to pay for moving and related expenses. For tax purposes, the government considers this as income and therefore taxable, so to offset tax liabilities, companies often reimburse for those in the form of a gross-up (link to gross-up blog post), which frees the full amount of cash for the move. Another possible drawback is that it may be difficult to correctly estimate the total costs up front, due to unexpected out-of-pocket expenditures. If a mover’s initial estimate is lower than the actual costs, for example, the employee may have to dig into their own pockets to cover the difference.
  • Reimbursement: The employee pays for everything up from and is reimbursed by the company after the move. This requires careful record keeping by the employee, including tracking all receipts for expenses. Additionally, employers will likely set a limit above which they will not reimburse.
  • Third-party (outsourced) relocation: In this scenario, all logistics related to moving, including real estate or rental expenses are outsourced to a third party that coordinates a comprehensive array of services. Some of these may include marketing and sale of an existing residence, spousal employment assistance, storage of household goods, if necessary, and rental assistance.
  • Expatriation assistance: This is additional relocation assistance used by multinational companies for employees relocating outside the country, beyond the typical moving and transport of household goods and real estate help. Covered benefits may include overseas trips to search for suitable housing and assistance with obtaining spousal work visas, finding and selecting schools for employees’ children and finding the way around a city in a foreign country. Language and cultural assimilation instruction offered through a relocation package serve to help the employees’ comfort zone and confidence by adjusting to the new culture and its customs.

Offering employees choices in relocation packages provides incentives for current and prospective employees to remain and pursue careers within a company. With competition among companies for top talent, offering attractive relocation packages is a win-win for both companies and employees.

the different types of relocation packages

 

WHO GETS A RELOCATION PACKAGE?

While it is becoming more common for new, junior-level employees to also be offered relocation opportunities, typically the higher the employee’s rank within the organization, the more extensive the covered expenses of a relocation package. A recent graduate just starting their career may have only the basic expenses of moving, while a vice president will often have additional services covered, such as child care while house hunting, as well as airfare and car rentals, lodging and meals for the employee and his/her spouse.

 

HOW ARE EXPENSES COVERED?

Assistance may consist of lump sum cash payments toward expenses, direct billing by the company for all moving expenses or reimbursement after up-front payment by the employee.

Relocation is an area where job candidates and new hires may have a bit more ground to negotiate, as it usually costs much less to move an employee than to pay a higher salary. In fact, a Worldwide ERC survey from 2015 reported that companies spent an average of $71,803 in 2014 to move newly hired homeowners and $23,766 to move newly hired renters.

 

Relocation Packages are good for both sides

Most companies want to save as much money as possible in the course of job transfers while still ensuring that the employees and their families are comfortable and ready to get to work as soon as they arrive in the new location. When used a recruiting tool, a strong relocation package can make a difference in attracting the best job candidates – a critical factor in remaining competitive in a global job market.

relocation packages help transferees

 Editor's note: This post was originally published on February 11, 2014, and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

 

Topics: relocation management services, corporate relocation program, standard relocation package, employee relocation

Build Bonus Incentives into Your Executive Mobility Policy

Posted by Amy Mergler on Wed, May 23, 2018

Businessman pressing business type of modern buttons with virtual backgroundA 2017 corporate relocation survey reported that nine out of ten firms that offer incentives in addition to the standard inclusions of a relocation package are far more successful in convincing an employee to relocate than those who don't. 

Some popular incentives among employees—and those that may be most likely to win over an employee who is having a hard time deciding—include the following:

Extended Temporary Housing benefits

While reimbursement for temporary housing is a standard inclusion of most mobility packages, being able to extend those benefits if employees have difficulty locating a permanent home can make a big difference in their decision.

Monetary Bonuses

Monetary bonuses continue to be attractive to executives when making a decision to relocate. Because the bonus is considered taxable income, a tax gross up is necessary to ensure the executive receives the full bonus amount.

Cost of Living Adjustments

Executives relocating from one area of the country to another, or from one country to another, may find their salary isn’t sufficient to cover the cost of living in the new location. Typically this is offset by a separate compensation package and not a relocation benefit, but in some cases, it may be included in the latter.

A comprehensive mobility program is critical to recruit and retain executive talent. If your program includes provisions for bonus incentives, it may encourage more executives to accept a relocation or transfer offer.

Download Our Executive Mobility Guide

Topics: executive relocation package, executive mobility program, bonus incentives

Address Real Estate Concerns in Your Executive Mobility Program

Posted by Amy Mergler on Tue, May 15, 2018

sold_home2-resized-600-2A comprehensive talent mobility program is essential to recruit and retain top executive talent. Offering a competitive mobility package is one way to attract and keep the best talent on your executive team.

Addressing concerns about selling a current home and purchasing a new home in your mobility program may play a large part in an executive’s decision to accept a relocation offer. Consider the following for your executive mobility program:

Guaranteed Buyout Program

A Guaranteed Buyout (GBO) program involves providing a buyout offer after a home has been on the market for a certain length of time. This gives your employees the assurance that they can confidently purchase a new home without the constant worry of whether their old home will sell.

Buyer Value Option Program

A Buyer Value Option (BVO) program offers similar advantages to a GBO once an outside buyer has been identified. This option often focuses on providing employees with sufficient marketing support to sell their homes.

Home Sale Bonus Incentives

A home sale bonus incentive involves providing an additional bonus for employees who sell their homes within a certain period of time. These bonuses – also known as quick sale bonuses – provide employees with motivation to sell their homes more quickly and relocate without having their attention, focus and efforts diverted by their former properties.

Loss on Sale Provisions

A loss on sale provision involves reimbursing employees for a loss incurred due to the sale price of their home. This helps assuage employees’ fear about losing money on a home sale.

Home Staging Assistance

Provide access to a third party company to stage your employees’ homes for sale to improve the chances for them to sell quickly.

New Location Orientation & House Hunting Trips

Conduct research on area neighborhoods, schools, child care, typical commute times, medical services, places of worship, etc., and provide that information to help your employees become familiar with the new location and assist them during paid house hunting trips.

Home Finding Assistance

Look for and provide access to real estate professionals in the area who have relocation experience. These professionals will be best suited to manage the time constraints of your employees’ house hunting trips to maximize the use of their available time.

Download Our Executive Mobility Guide

 

Topics: talent retention, executive relocation package, talent acquisition, talent mobility, executive mobility program, mobility package

Upcoming Mobility Shows and Events - May 2018

Posted by Amy Mergler on Fri, May 04, 2018

 

Look for CapRelo at these Upcoming Events

We will be attending and/or sponsoring the following upcoming events. If you’re attending, look for us and say hi, because it's a great opportunity for us to stay abreast of the latest global mobility trends, as well as develop and strengthen trusted partnerships. 

 

Institute for Supply Management 2018 Conference

Date: May 6-9

Location: Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center, Nashville, TN

Attendees: Christopher Bloedel & Pete Larkin

More than 2,500 global supply chain and procurement professionals will be attending the ISM's annual conference. The conference includes networking opportunities, educational breakout sessions in six learning tracks, signature sessions featuring speakers from Fortune 500 companies and keynote addresses from Arianna Huffington, Gen. Keith Alexander, John Brennan and John Rossman.

Come see us at Booth #239! Click here if you'd like to schedule a meeting with CapRelo during the event.

Learn more and register for the conference here

 

WORLDWIDE ERC AMERICAS MOBILITY CONFERENCE 2018

Date: May 16-18

Location: Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center, Dallas, TX

Attendees: Patrick Cacho, Dan Keating & Scott Williamson

The WERC Americas Mobility Conference is the largest global mobility meeting in the Americas and brings together industry leaders for an innovative educational and networking experience, with more than 30 education and development sessions and opportunities to earn certification credits. Business strategist and change expert, Peter Sheahan, will headline as the opening keynote speaker. 

Come see us at Booth #303! Click here if you'd like to schedule a meeting with CapRelo during the event.

Register for the conference and learn more here

 

Forum for Expatriate Management New York
Chapter Meeting

Date: May 17

Location: KPMG, New York, NY

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The FEM NYC chapter meeting will feature a "speed learning" style, industry expert panel discussion on topics including Brexit, diversity, talent management, tax updates and technology.

Click here to find out more and to register

 

World at Work 2018 Total Rewards Conference & Exhibition

Date: May 21-23

Location: Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center, Dallas, TX

Attendees: Pete Larkin & Scott Williamson

The World at Work 2018 Total Rewards Conference brings together more than 1,200 total rewards professionals focused on compensation, sales compensation, executive compensation, benefits, work-life effectiveness plan design and management. It will feature more than 90 educational sessions, tech/demo sessions and networking opportunities.  

Come see us at Booth #735! Click here if you'd like to schedule a meeting with CapRelo during the event.

Register for the conference and learn more here

 

Forum for Expatriate Management Americas Global Mobility Summit

Date: May 23-24

Location: Loews Coronado Bay Resort, San Diego, CA

Attendees: Patrick Cacho & Dan Keating

Global mobility professionals, industry experts and HR specialists will come together at the FEM Americas Global Mobility Summit for interactive workshops, roundtable and panel discussions and case study presentations. This year's event will feature new Mobility Masterclasses presented by senior global mobility leaders.  

Come see us at Booth #A5! Click here if you'd like to schedule a meeting with CapRelo during the event.

To register for the summit or to learn more, click here

 

Greater Pittsburgh Relocation Council Meeting

Date: May 24

Location: PNC, Pittsburgh, PA

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The Greater Pittsburgh Relocation Council meeting will focus on Considering Cultural Differences when Relocating. 

Learn more and register here

  

If you can’t attend, please be sure to follow CapRelo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

CapRelo Named HRO Today Baker's Dozen Top Global Relocation Company in 2018... Again!

Posted by CapRelo on Fri, Apr 27, 2018

2018-Bakers Dozen

For a baker in medieval England, there were laws relative to the cost of wheat used to make the bread they sold. Bakers could be subject to various punishment if they sold the bread for more than what is was worth. The widely known term ‘baker’s dozen’, of 13 instead of the usual 12, originated when bakers would throw in an extra loaf of bread when selling a dozen for the fear of coming up short. 

As a provider of services to clients who rely on CapRelo to ease the mobility process for employees and their families, we never want to come up short. It’s why we are driven to give more than what is expected—just like bakers with that 13th loaf!

It’s rewarding when those with whom you do business rank you as the best at what you do. Such is the case when HRO Today again named us at the top of a list of global relocation companies with the annual HRO Today’s Baker’s Dozen Award. 

Every year, HRO Today rates companies based on three subcategories: quality of service, deal size and breadth of services. While the feedback is anonymous, it comes solely from the buyers of relocation services. These are the people for which we wake up every day and come to work. I am honored to announce we have been rated fourth Overall and second for Quality of Service.   

Our dedicated team helps to empower employers make the best decisions that drive their global talent. We listen to the needs of global HR teams to find ways to better connect with their cultures and help solve challenges. I’m very proud of our team on this important achievement. 

Would you like to learn more about custom relocation solutions? Leave a comment below or give us a call!

Topics: HRO Today, Baker's Dozen

Global Compensation Services (Part 3)

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Apr 05, 2018

FormsA global mobility program can offer significant value to a company, not only because of the business opportunities it presents, but also because it helps to attract and retain quality talent. However, to remain in compliance with the rules and regulations of various countries, a well-run global mobility program needs accurate, timely administration and bookkeeping. Working with a global compensation services provider offers companies a cost-effective way to gain access to the expertise, manpower and resources needed to maintain centralized, organized payroll and tax reporting.

Today is the last post in our series of posts about the services offered by global compensation services providers. Keep checking back to learn more.

Global Statement of Earnings (GSOE)

The global statement of earnings (GSOE) provides a comprehensive, detailed overview of what was paid to (or on behalf of) each assignee. It is sent to the tax provider for ease of preparation of tax returns. In addition, it’s used as a data source for shadow payroll. The GSOE is reconciled to the U.S. Box 1 Form W-2 at year’s end.

The GSOE is critical to accurate reporting. It ensures that the company is in compliance both at home and in the host country, as well as that all taxes are properly recorded for reporting purposes. Furthermore, it makes sure assignees are paying taxes as needed and enables the employer to provide assignees with tax return preparation assistance, which can be an important benefit.

Shadow Payroll

Shadow payroll, also referred to as “ghost payroll,” reports compensation that is paid to an assignee from another country. Running a shadow payroll concurrently in the host location simplifies income and tax reporting and facilitates compliance efforts.

Compensation reporting can be complex, because the various components of an assignee’s total compensation may originate from different locations. The base salary and any bonuses are usually paid from the assignee’s country of origin, but many assignment-related costs such as housing allowances, dependents’ allowances and taxes are paid from the host country. Keeping records in both countries ensures timely and accurate reporting. For this reason, compensation services providers send shadow payroll reports that show all payments made to the host location and/or the company’s tax provider. They also send an “add to earnings” file to the payroll department in the home country for the payments made in the host location. This ensures that there’s a full and accurate report of all costs associated with an assignment in each location.

Balance Sheet Updates

Balance sheet updates are adjustments to the initial balance sheet that was created at the beginning of the assignment and affixed to the letter of assignment. Balance sheet updates can be performed during an assignment for a number of reasons, such as a change in salary or family size. They’re also required at regular intervals to revise the cost of living adjustment (COLA) as needed. Compensation service providers work with the company’s data provider to obtain updated COLA indexes and exchange rates.

Tax Equalization

The fundamental principle of tax equalization is that the assignee will not suffer financial hardship nor experience a financial windfall as a result of the tax consequences of a global assignment. Tax equalization plays an important role in helping employees make a balanced decision about accepting an global assignment. Without it, an employee might not want to go to Sweden, where the income tax rate is currently more than 57 percent, while others could be lining up for assignments in countries with low tax rates like Saudi Arabia.

During the tax equalization process, the company’s tax provider calculates what the assignee’s tax liability would have been in his or her own country for non-assignment compensation. That means that base pay is taken into account, but things like cost of living allowance, education allowance, relocation costs and other similar costs are not included in the calculation. The resulting sum indicates whether the assignee’s compensation needs to be adjusted up or down, and the tax provider prepares a settlement accordingly. Consequently, the compensation services provider processes the payment. If the employee owes the employer money, the compensation services provider will collect it and send the company the relevant reports.

Year-End Reporting

Year-end reporting involves the collection of all payroll and tax reports for all assignees, as well as the subsequent filing with all relevant national and state entities. A compensation services provider coordinates the tax eligibility list with the company and its tax provider. Throughout the year, it also provides preliminary reports to the tax provider to make sure any safe harbor (estimated tax) payments are being made. When all compensation data is collected, the GSOE is sent to the tax provider. This can be done in the currency of the home country, host country or the country where the company is headquartered.

 

The Value of Global Compensation Services

 

Topics: global mobility, compensation services, compensation and benefits, global assignments, global compensation services

Upcoming Mobility Shows and Events - April 2018

Posted by Amy Mergler on Fri, Mar 30, 2018

 

Look for CapRelo at these Upcoming Events

We will be attending and/or sponsoring the following upcoming events. If you’re attending, look for us and say hi, because it's a great opportunity for us to stay abreast of the latest global mobility trends, as well as develop and strengthen trusted partnerships. 

 

Southern California Relocation Council Lunch & Learn Spring Program

Date: April 5

Location: Wilshire Loft, Los Angeles, CA

Attendee: Patrick Cacho

The SCRC Spring Program will feature an interactive "Ask the Experts" panel discussion with talent mobility representatives from Adidas, Square, Allergan and Blizzard Entertainment. 

Learn more and register for the program here

 

Midwest Relocation Conference 2018

Date: April 10-11

Location: The Sheraton Westport, St. Louis, MO

Attendee: Christopher Bloedel

The 2018 Midwest Relocation Conference will include corporate and peer-to-peer roundtable discussions, keynote addresses and educational sessions on domestic and global topics for all levels of mobility professionals.

Click here to find out more about the conference and to register

 

Global Business News Global HR Business

Date: April 11

Location: ROAM Buckhead, Atlanta, GA

Attendee: Scott Williamson

The Global Business News event will include presentations on achieving ROI with mobile talent, employer branding, talent and mobility life cycle, tax law changes and their implications on global mobility and more.

Register for the event and learn more here

 

Tennessee Relocation Council 2018 Spring meeting

Date: April 12

Location: Nissan Stadium, Nashville, TN

Attendee: Christopher Bloedel and Robert Brizuela

The TRC's spring meeting features a corporate roundtable, an introduction to DISC Assessment, the second annual TRC Knowledge Hop and a keynote address on vendor partner relationships.

To register for the meeting or to learn more, click here

 

Arizona Relocation Alliance 2018 Annual Conference

Date: April 19

Location: Marriott Courtyard Salt River, Scottsdale, AZ

Attendee: Patrick Cacho

The ARA's annual conference's educational sessions will include a corporate panel on General Data Protection Regulation moderated by CapRelo's Patrick Cacho. The conference will conclude with a networking happy hour and silent auction to support the Melonhead Foundation, an organization that provides for the needs of children with cancer and their families. 

Learn more and register for the conference here

 

North Texas Relocation Professionals April Breakfast Panel Meeting

Date: April 19

Location: Omni Frisco Hotel at the Star, Frisco, TX

Attendee: Scott Williamson and Rick Bruce

The NTRP panel meeting will discuss "A Relocation View from the RMC Lens" and will feature CapRelo's Rick Bruce as a special guest panel member.

To find out more and register, click here

 

Rocky Mountain Relocation council 2018 Spring Conference

Date: April 24

Location: Arvada Center for the Arts & Humanities, Arvada, CO

Attendee: Patrick Cacho

The RMRC will host its first full-day event, featuring a keynote address by motivational speaker Brad Montgomery, who will discuss how fulfillment in the workplace translates to bottom-line increases in profits and employee satisfaction.

Click here to learn more and register.

 

Forum for Expatriate Management Dallas/Fort Worth Chapter Meeting

Date: April 24

Location: CapRelo Dallas Office, Dallas, TX

Attendee: Scott Williamson

Details for the FEM Dallas/Fort Worth chapter meeting are not yet available. Please check back, as information will be added when it becomes available.

 

New Jersey Relocation Council Spring Conference

Date: April 26

Location: Galloping Hill Golf Course, Kenilworth, NJ

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The NJRC spring conference will focus on what's new and what's next in global mobility with presentations on key industry trends and changes, diversity and inclusivity and tax reform.

To register, click here.

 

Pacific Northwest RELOCATION COUNCIL 2018 SPRING Meeting

Date: April 26

Location: Museum of Flight, Seattle, WA

Attendee: Patrick Cacho

The PNwRC spring meeting includes networking activities, an industry update and a session on lessons from 2017 and what it means for 2018.

Register and find out more about the meeting here.

 

If you can’t attend, please be sure to follow CapRelo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

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