5 Relocation Program Fails

Okay, so your relocation program doesn’t really stink. But we bet it could use some improvement. Chances are, you think so, too—or you wouldn’t be reading this, would you?

Even if your relocation program is, say, a bit ripe, you’re not alone. With everything else going on over the last few years, some employers have neglected to update their programs.

But here’s the thing. The world has changed—and you need to, too. From technological advances to the Great Resignation, it’s a whole new ball game. Employees have new priorities; employers have new challenges. If your goal is to attract, retain, and relocate prime talent (and whose isn’t?), you need to dazzle them with wow-worthy relocation benefits.

But what exactly makes your current relocation program so weak? Checkout our top five relocation fails, see what rings a bell—and learn how to fix it.

Fail #1: Your “Relocation Program” Is Really Just an Allowance     

If you simply give your employees a relocation allowance—either through a lump sum policy or reimbursement arrangement—and make them do all the legwork, that’s a flashing neon fail.

Not only are you sending the message that you don’t care about them, you’re ensuring that at least some of them will have a disastrous moving experience. Not a great way to start a new gig! But planning a relocation is complex, time-consuming and massively stressful.

The solution: give your employees expert relocation support. Guidance. Resources. Access to savvy relocation specialists. Keep your lump sum plan, but add support services—or better yet, upgrade to a managed budget plan. Don’t let them go it alone.

Fail #2: You’re in the Stone Age, Tech-wise

Chances are, your relocating employees are smart, tech-savvy professionals. When it comes to employee benefits, they expect top-of-the-line everything, served up online and available on demand.

But if you’re still using an old-school relocation company—or trying to manage your program inhouse—then your use of technology is limited to…what? Emailing documents back and forth?

Welcome to 2023, where tech-based relocation companies like UrbanBound allow employees to plan and manage first-class relocations online. Relocation software puts a world of guidance, information and shortcuts at employees’ fingertips, speeding and easing the process from A-Z.

Plus, thanks to the cost efficiencies of modern technology, switching to a tech-based provider may cut your relocation costs by up to 66%. Now that doesn’t stink, does it?


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Fail #3: Your Provider Network Is a Joke 

Chances are, you’ve never asked how your relocation company’s provider network came to be. But here’s why you should.

Under an ideal arrangement, relocation companies will:

  1. Vet their providers and keep a close eye on their performance
  2. Cut competitive deals with providers, saving you money
  3. Offer a range of providers with different specialties—moving companies, real estate agents, lenders, etc.—to meet various employee needs

However, some relocation companies aren’t focused on providing a quality experience to employees or saving employers money. Rather, their priority is making money, by tacking commissions—aka markups—onto their providers’ fees.

So, don’t let the last laugh be on you. Insist on transparency. Ditch the markups.


Fail #4: You Keep Employees in the Dark

A recruiter’s job is to sell candidates on the job—your location, not so much.

Worse yet, traditional relocation companies aren’t really equipped to give relocating employees the granular information they crave about their new city—from identifying the best neighborhoods and schools to offering newbies the inside scoop on commuting, etc.

But modern, tech-based providers can, all via one easy-to-access hub. For example, in addition to providing extensive, validated hyperlocal information, UrbanBound’s platform includes a section of tips and insights from coworkers that give new arrivals the inside track, so they acclimate faster.


Fail #5: You’re Kind of in the Dark, Too 

If you’re relocating employees the old-fashioned way, you probably don’t have a good day-to-day sense of how your current relocations are progressing or how much you’ve spent year-to-date.

Another benefit of a software-based relocation program is that it tallies your spend in real-time, provides status updates on-demand—and even asks relocating employees to rate their experience after the fact.

This comprehensive reporting allows you to better manage your budget and continually find ways to improve your offerings.

All this means you’ll always be on top of your relocation program—and it will never stink again!

Human Resources Today