What is Relocation Assistance and What Does it Involve?

What is Relocation Assistance and What Does it Involve?

As an employer, it is very important that you know what relocation assistance is and what it will actually cost you.  The major expenses to hire an employee include job advertising, recruiting, employee bonuses, and yes, relocations in some cases.

So, what do most major companies offer in the way of relocation assistance?  Check out this quick list.  While it is certainly not a comprehensive list, it is a good base.

  • Storage and shipping
  • Temporary housing
  • House-hunting trips
  • Lease-breaking costs
  • Tax assistance
  • Post relocation salary supplement
  • Security deposit refunds
  • Loss protection
  • Spousal re-employment assistance
  • Childcare
  • Moving expenses
  • Miscellaneous costs

Today, relocation costs can seem to be even higher than before.  Because of this, cost containment has played a detrimental role in the disbursement and reimbursement of relocation expenses for new and transferring employees.

Here are some basic ideas that employers need to keep in mind when designing a relocation assistance plan:

  • Moving and Storage – Most employees expect to be reimbursed for moving and/or storing their essential personal effects.  Negotiations will come down to whether or not the company will pay for moving the family sailboat, for example.
  • Transportation – Employees will want the employer to pay for travel expenses to get to the new residence.  Whether or not the family can travel in first class instead of coach will be discussed in negotiations.
  • House-Hunting – At least one trip to the new area should be covered to allow the employee to house hunt.
  • Temporary Living Expenses – This is a pretty common factor, and the employer usually will pay for a certain amount of time and a location that fits within a certain budget.

Jon Huser