Making Employee Relocation Easier

Making Employee Relocation Easier

Whether you oversee employee relocations or if you have ever moved yourself, you know just how overwhelming the whole process can be.  The employees are any company’s most important assets, so it is important that relocation be done in such a way to reduce stress and remain as non-invasive as possible.  So, how can you make employee relocation easier?


The best way to make employee relocations easier on everyone is to have a good strategy.  Attracting, and holding on to, a high quality employee is a necessary element of any business’ success.  Unfortunately, some HR managers tend to forget this.  A strong relocation strategy will include sufficient support services, benefits, and assistance.  The objective should be to get the employee relocated in the most cost-efficient and expeditious manner possible.

Overall, relocation has a significant negative impact on productivity.  In most cases, employees going through relocation spend about 10 hours per week on issues pertaining to the move plus an additional 9 hours at home.  The HR department should work to minimize this impact and make the employee more productive during this time.

Obviously, there are no two companies out there that have identical relocation needs and all corporate policies vary.  Policies are driven by various factors ranging from employee need and corporate culture to the marketplace and budgets.  Additionally, relocation programs may be offered in tiers, depending on the type of employee and how far the move is.

Regardless of whether the employee relocation program is handled in-house by HR staff or outsourced to a relocation expert, there are some factors that every relocation program should cover.  If not, then relocation definitely is not being made easier for anyone involved.  Those factors include:

  • Sale of the employee’s home
  • Mortgage assistance
  • Neighborhood information and research
  • Rental assistance and support
  • Home purchase assistance and support
  • Temporary housing solutions
  • Household goods move management
  • Home inspection assistance and support

While these factors are not required for every employee undergoing a relocation, these issues should be addressed.  Top tier and higher-level employee relocation packages and programs may also include things like:

  • Home buyout programs
  • Expense management and tax assistance and support
  • Lump sum calculations and payouts
  • Spousal and family assistance and support
  • Group move management

Handling employee relocation programs in-house can be a challenge, especially for smaller companies not used to such tasks.  There are actually tax benefits associated with using a third-party relocation expert to move your employees, so many smaller companies opt for this.  It just depends on the needs of both the employee and the business.

The main goal is to provide the most appropriate and effective relocation services for the employee – whether he or she is moving across town, to another city, or even overseas.  Understanding this is the first step to organizing and developing an appropriate relocation strategy for your business.  In the long run, it will save a lot of time and money.

Jon Huser