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Supplier Certification - how we pick the right suppliers | CapRelo

Posted by George Herriage on Mon, Dec 23, 2013

Business owner working on supplier certificationSupplier certification is an essential component of establishing and maintaining the overall quality of your relocation policy. It is a vital element when your company is trying to track your supplier partners’ performance, develop reasonable contract provisions, and, most importantly, protect itself and your employees against any issues that may arise in the relocation process.

After certification, you need to manage your supply chain just as diligently as your operations department manages its supply chain for products and services.

Find out more about managing your relocation supplier network in our free article.

We’ve laid out the most important aspects of supplier certification below. Following these important steps has enabled CapRelo to find quality suppliers we can trust, and should do the same for you.

1. Evaluate your needs internally & develop a comprehensive relocation policy

Before you even begin the hunt for your suppliers, your company’s leadership, in partnership with HR, needs to conduct an internal needs analysis. These are beneficial because they allow your leadership to look at your current relocation process from beginning to end to locate gaps.

At this stage, you should determine your current usage and spend during each part of the relocation process and find areas where you excel and places where you can streamline. Get a full sense of what your present and future operations will look like so you can proceed with the most knowledge.

Once you have addressed your internal needs, start developing a comprehensive sourcing strategy. While this is not a complete list of questions you need to consider, these basic questions can kickstart your strategic planning:

  • How does your company want to handle relocations?
  • What will your ideal relocation processes look like?
  • Are you going to opt for a single provider or have multiple suppliers?
  • How high or low is your ideal risk tolerance?

Answer these questions head-on and weigh every option that’s available to you. Then, use those answers to develop a strategy that will not only fit into your current operations but will also scale as you expand.

2. develop a selection and supplier certification process

Once your relocation policy is in place, turn your attention to the supplier companies that can provide relocation services. Whether your company has chosen to employ multiple suppliers or just one, you will need to create criteria you can use to vet and select them.

To do this effectively, review each of the key components of the relocation process, from selling a home to visa acquirement, and develop a set of baseline metrics necessary for successful employee relocation for each supplier. These metrics should cover measurable factors such as historical quality, performance, and financial stability of your suppliers.

One important aspect we never overlook is the competitiveness of different markets. It’s important to ask what position your potential supplier occupies in their respective market. Are they excelling, or just keeping their head above water? Will they remain competitive for only the short term, or do they have staying power? These are not always easy questions to answer, but we feel they help make the strongest, most informed decisions..

Once it’s time to start your selection process, compare the suppliers against your established baseline metrics to discover who could work within your policy. Your selection criteria should not be one-size-fits-all. Because they perform different tasks, develop a metrics system for each supplier that evaluates them fairly.

For instance, consider the difference between carriers transporting household goods vs. the services of real estate brokers who help transferees find new homes. They do entirely different things, so those differences should be reflected in your performance metrics.

RFQs and RFPs are prime opportunities to develop clear points of evaluation for both you and your suppliers. At CapRelo, we make them thorough and detailed so that both parties are clear about expectations at the outset. Here’s just a sample of what we include:

  • Detailed expectations about the opportunity
  • Product/service specifications
  • Delivery/service expectations
  • Evaluation criteria
  • Pricing structure
  • Financial terms

Ultimately, there is no must-have measurement tool list. In fact, there is no cast in stone supplier certification method at all. You can create your quality control, certification, and supply chain management benchmarks however you want. What matters most is that your measurement standards are fair, easy-to-understand, and scalable.


It is imperative that you conduct frequent performance management assessments to measure and maintain high-quality supplier services, even after you have certified your suppliers. The easiest way to do that is to evaluate the consistency of multiple relocations for all components in your supply chain. Your suppliers should be giving you and your employee quality service. If they aren’t, they’re failing to fulfill their basic requirements as a certified relocation partner.

To make sure they are hitting the brief, create or employ metrics that allow you to measure your suppliers’ performance and display your findings in easy-to-understand results. Additionally, establish an internal audit checklist to measure supplier performance. There, again, isn’t a set list of standards that you can access. You have to look at your unique policy and create assessments for each supplier. The only requirements are that your standards must be measurable, and they must make sense for your company’s agreement with its partners.

CapRelo Can Help Relocate Your Employees 

Relocating an employee is, at best, complicated. If you opt to create and execute your travel policy, you’ll have to become an expert in every field of relocation, which can be challenging.

You do have another option – rely on a professional relocation company to handle logistics. Professional relocation companies perform the essential steps, like supplier certification and supply chain management procedures, for you. Going this route saves HR time and employer money.

At CapRelo, we follow a strict set of procedures that ensures that we use the best suppliers at every stage of the relocation process. Through every step of the process, from supplier certification to KPI evaluation, we place the utmost importance on finding the right suppliers and ensuring relocation is as smooth as possible.

Whether you choose to make this a DIY project or opt to put your trust in a relocation firm, you should have a smooth, stress-free, successful relocation program. With CapRelo, you’re guaranteed one.

How to Manage Your Relocation Supplier Network 

Topics: Service Level Agreement, Supply Chain Management, employee relocation concerns

Supply Chain Management - Carrier Selection

Posted by George Herriage on Tue, Dec 03, 2013

When selecting van lines, or agents thereof, you should evaluate a number of top carriers to create a network of primary and secondary choices. Whether you self-administer or use a third-party relocation firm for your employee transfers and new hires, your company should be comfortable with the preferred group of moving van organizations.

Carrier Selection

Toy Truck FleetYour relocation policy no doubt provides for the moving and transportation of employees’ furniture and personal property. While it would be easier on you if all moving carriers were equal, they are not.

Use care when comparing and selecting carriers, as many are attached to national networks. Remember, selecting a carrier with a strong regional or national network means that you will work with their other affiliates at some point.

When analyzing carriers within these networks, you should also evaluate their network partners. Do they produce the same quality results as the carrier you prefer? If you question network partners’ quality control or any facet of their service menu, be sure you receive answers that sufficiently increase your comfort level.

Supply Chain Management of Carriers

Use a supply chain approach to evaluate carriers and relocation companies. You should be comfortable with the following factors, at a minimum.

  • The carriers’ financial stability.
    Be sure any recommended carriers are in strong financial condition, since a carrier in economic distress could pose serious problems to your relocation policy. Their D&B rating is a great place to start.

  • Check out the carriers’ safety record by visiting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
    Your transferees should not have to agonize over the safety of their household goods and personal property. This is more than just an expression of empathy. Their transport safety problems will become your problems.

  • Verify that carriers have acceptable insurance coverage.
    This evaluation step is critical. Many carriers carry only minimal insurance coverage, vastly insufficient to cover most normal volume of household goods, or any valuable personal property. Still other carriers have insurance coverage in amounts that even cover property damage disasters.

  • If transport timeliness is vital for your company, examine their on-time delivery record.
    When you expect your transferee to report for work at the new location, you expect close to immediate productivity. Delayed household goods deliveries generate concern, apprehension and uncertainty, which could impact your transferees’ short term performance.

  • Relocation company supply chain integrity.
    If you outsource this function, your relocation management company must have a high-quality, reliable, and robust selection of preferred carriers.  Using a top relocation management company saves your company money and you administrative work.

Relocating employees can be simple or complex. It is important that you take all steps to ensure that your supply chain or your relocation company’s supply chain includes reliable carriers to safely transport transferees’ household goods. Should they cause accidental property damage, despite their efforts involving care, you need to know you—and they—are protected with sufficient valuation coverage.

Once you ensure your carriers or your relocation company’s carriers meet these criteria, you and your transferees will be more confident about avoiding transport problems. It’s worth your extra effort to evaluate carriers and relocation companies with a supply chain approach.

Free Article:  A Guide to Developing  Relocation Policies


Topics: Service Level Agreement, Supply Chain Management, employee relocation concerns

Effective Business Performance Measurements for Your Corporate Relocation

Posted by Mickey Williams on Tue, Jan 17, 2012

06012015_meeting_sq.jpgIf you're in the process of selecting a corporate relocation firm to manage your company's corporate relocation policy, you may have a lot of doubts:

  • How will I know the corporate relocation management company is acting in my best interests?
  • What can I expect from a corporate relocation firm?
  • How will I know if the company is fulfilling its agreements?
  • How can I get the best value for my money when I hire a corporate relocation management company?

It all starts with an effective SLA (Service Level Agreement) and the right KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) to ensure you're paying for the relocation management services you need and getting the high-quality services you paid for.

Learn more about developing relocation policies with our free guide.

Defining KPI and SLA

If these terms are unfamiliar to you—or you've heard of them but aren't sure what they mean, let's first define them. Many experienced businesspeople get these common business performance measurement terms confused.

Service Level Agreement

An SLA is a formal, negotiated agreement, typically part of the contract, that defines the exact services a supplier will offer to a client. More detailed than a Scope of Work, an SLA sets clear expectations for the client, which the service provider must fulfill.


KPI metrics are used to determine whether or not the supplier or service provider is fulfilling the SLA. KPIs take many forms, but the client and supplier must agree on how performance will be measured. This is accomplished by the client establishing clear, quantifiable goals and expectations (outlined in the SLA.) If a service provider is having any difficulties fulfilling the SLA for any reason, he should bring it to the attention of the client immediately. To preserve the relationship, the two parties should work together to find the deficiencies and see what should be done so the supplier can meet the SLA.

Let's look at an SLA for a very specific type of relocation: a group move. Many of the aspects of an SLA will be the same for individual relocations as with a group move, but because a group move takes place on a large scale, an SLA becomes even more important.

Some factors that may be measured based on an SLA with a corporate relocation firm for a group move are:

  • Number of key employees retained
  • Number of non-essential personnel successfully and fairly terminated
  • Remaining within budget for the move
  • Completing employee moves and corporate moves within the time frame specified
  • Relocated employees satisfaction of the moving process, based on surveys and other metrics, following the move

If your corporate relocation firm does not have KPI metrics established or a relocation process that is clearly measurable through solid facts, budget figures, retention statistics and employee surveys, you may want to consider another firm.

The best relocation firms will not only have KPI metrics in place, but will review the relocation process after every move to make refinements. 

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Topics: KPI, Service Level Agreement, relocation management services, relocation management company

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