Companies need relocation policies that work for them and their employees. There exists no "one-size-fits-all" relocation policy that works for every employer in every industry. Successful companies design relocation programs that fit their need to recruit and retain talent, meet or beat their competition and fit their relocation budgets.
However, there are common objectives companies target during every relocation. These typical goals are shared by most—if not all—employers when designing relocation programs.
Employer Primary Goals and Objectives
Controlling relocation program costs.
Consistently one of the main company objectives, organizations must carefully walk a “tightrope” to offer competitive relocation programs while minimizing the cost. For example, loss on sale of home benefits can be expensive. Establishing reasonable reimbursement caps help transferees, while controlling employer cost.
Offering relocation policy features that are attractive to talent.
Some popular features change over time, while others remain staples for both companies and employees. Combining the two types of features in a winning program is a consistent goal of companies in all industries.
Reducing the reimbursement risk with new hires.
Employers always face some risk when hiring new employees at every level. This risk escalates if new hires also are immediate transferees, needing to access the corporate relocation program. Trusted resource Worldwide ERC® reports that 86 percent of companies mandate that newly hired employees sign relocation payback agreements should they leave the company voluntarily within a stated time period, typically one or two years after the relocation.
Offering a relocation program that is “smooth” for HR personnel and transferees.
Relocation policies that feature manageable administration components for HR staff are always company objectives. Transferees also appreciate programs that are complete and well-managed to help their relocation be a problem-free and successful experience.
Minimizing lost productivity from transferees during and immediately after relocation.
Relocated employees sometimes suffer from “move-lag,” which reduces their productivity. Similar to the learning curves needed by new hires, transferees, weary from the taxing responsibilities of moving, sometimes are unproductive right after relocation until they get settled and become more familiar with their new office and peer group. Employer objectives include minimizing this common downtime factor.
These are typically the primary objectives of companies in designing their relocation programs. While it’s impossible to identify and design a program that addresses every unexpected problem or issue that can arise during a major move, writing a relocation policy that addresses these major goals is imperative.
Whether you administer or use a third-party professional relocation firm to manage your program, your company’s relocation policy should address these vital objectives to ensure you are offering a cost-controlled, competitive relocation policy that helps you attract and retain the best personnel. The companies that design relocation programs that get and keep the best talent available tend to be successful over the short- and long-term.