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International Employee Relocation Benefits Go Beyond Logistics
When relocating employees within a country, the major needs typically include moving personal belongings, finding a home to live in, and traveling to the new destination. Of course, there may still be some additional benefits needed like home-finding or temporary housing, but for the most part, domestic relocation benefits are tied to logistics— getting your employee from Point A to Point B.
Employees who are relocating internationally will also need help managing the cost of getting from origin to destination, especially with the introduction of visas and customs. However, international relocations typically need even more assistance with settling into the new location than domestic moves.
After the actual moving portion of relocation is over, there is still a lot of support an expat may need. Assimilating to a new culture is one of the most difficult challenges employees face when relocating to a city abroad. Even if the employee is familiar with the country’s language, they can face challenges when it comes adjusting to day to day life and navigating essential activities like setting up a bank account, finding a school, or identifying healthcare providers.
If your employee or their family fails to assimilate to their new location, it can be a very costly mistake for your company. For this reason, offering employees assistance from a destination service provider has become a common practice in international employee relocation policies. Destination Service Providers are third parties who specialize in helping employees assimilate to their new location. These companies can help deliver a broad range of services to your relocation employees, including but not limited to home finding, area tour, school search, utility setup, and bank account setup.
Benefit Communication Is Personalized During International Employee Relocation
Relocating to any location is a big decision—for both the employee and his or her company. The decision to relocate internationally has even greater impacts on the individual and the company due to cost and other reasons mentioned above. As a result, many companies choose to personalize the relocation benefits offered to international employees and communicate these benefits in a letter of assignment.
What’s a letter of assignment, you ask?
A letter of assignment is a relocation document that usually includes the length of the international assignment, the relocation benefits available to the employee, and any monetary caps. Utilizing a letter of assignment allows the company to decide which relocation benefits are applicable to the individual. This helps the employer control costs while ensuring the employee receives benefits relevant to their needs.
Companies are typically more hands-on with other aspects of benefit communication as well. For example, most companies offer expatriates a tax briefing. During the tax briefing (usually administered by the company’s tax provider), employees are educated about how the move will affect their taxes, along with the potential impact any tax assistance provided by the company will have as well.
These are just a few of the nuances between domestic and international employee relocations. To treat the two exactly the same would be a major mistake for your company and your relocating employees. Gaining a strong understanding of these differences will help you and your team make educated decisions about how to build your program and support your relocating employees in the best way possible.
International & Domestic Relocation: UrbanBound Has You Covered
If you want to make sure that international or domestic employee relocation goes according to plan, you can benefit from using UrbanBound’s employee relocation software and services, which are designed to streamline the relocation process. With UrbanBound, employees can review, make use of, and track all relocation benefits, giving them the support they need for a smooth transition to their new location. Contact us today to get started on implementing this software for your business today, and start simplifying the relocation process today, whether you want to relocate employees internationally or nationally.