[Video] A Year of UrbanBound in 2016

Posted by Aria Solar on Jan 18, 2017 9:48:04 AM

UrbanBound employeesPassion and excitement are two things certainly not lost on the UrbanBound team. And year after year, we continue to infuse that energy into our product—from engineers who build our software's framework, all the way to the people marketing and selling it around the world.

Our company was built on the concept that the collaborative work of many will overpower the work of just one—and it wins every single time. Co-founder and CEO Michael Krasman explains,

"Building a team is a crucial step of the process because simply put: it’s impossible to build a company by yourself. Keep in mind, the first wave of employees you attract to work at your startup will make or break your company, and the passion that you have for the problem you’re trying to solve needs to be contagious. Make sure to bring people on board that are as passionate as you are."

Luckily for you, we recorded most of that passion in 2016. Check out our past year at UrbanBound HQ:


We are so grateful to everyone who was a part of the past 12 months, and we look forward to working with even more of you, in even bigger ways, over the next 12. We continue to learn and grow together, both as a team and with the rest of you in the software and relocation space, and we're excited to see what the future has in store.

In the words of our Co-founder Jeff Ellman,

"To both effectively scale a business and solve a problem within an industry, you need to foster a team of thoughtful, creative and motivated individuals to help make your vision a reality and create brilliant solutions for your customers. That is what really makes a great company and creates a sustainable competitive advantage."

We wouldn't have any of it without the support from our clients, partners, and friends. Thanks for a great year.

work at urbanbound

Topics: UB News, Company Culture, January Blog

Data and Tech Are Useless Without Core Values

Posted by Ryne Inman on Jan 10, 2017 9:08:06 AM

Building company core values

Tech and data analysis are changing the relocation industry rapidly. We have more control and insight andoverseeing a relocation program is simpler than ever before.

Whether you’re scaling an internship program, aiming to increase your campus hire groups, or simply just expanding your talent search to find the best and brightest regardless of their location, relocating employees is an accessible goal.Even with increased ease of use, there are still several points along the way that can tie any professional up in knots. One common offender in this area: vision.  The same reasons driving your health, PTO, and other benefits should be apparent in your relocation program.

One common problem with implementing tech is that it often becomes about the tech itself and not the goals it is meant to help achieve. Technology is a means to an end, not the end itself. You can have all the tech and data in the world, but it is meaningless without direction and willful use toward a goal.

Diversion from core values often happens quietly and gradually. While you may one day suddenly realize that your department or program are far off their intended course, it did not happen overnight. A major shift like relocation software makes it all too easy to drift away from the motivations that anchored your department’s action.

Staying on track and helping contribute to your department’s and company’s guiding principles and high-level goals takes constant monitoring. Asking one simple question can help you maintain proper course, even as the look and feel of your daily work shifts drastically:

What is the purpose of our relocation program?

Most HR and benefits administration departments have a similar answer to this: To show our commitment to the happiness and success of employees and to help attract the best and brightest talent to our company.

Tech and software can easily meld into this ideal by making it simpler to achieve, and at greater scale. Your company may have other core values and goals, from controlling cost to offering excellent administration and service of benefits.

Tech solutions can enhance these as well. Throughout your search, selection, and implementation, it’s crucial to remember that this is a tool to help achieve those goals, not a new goal in itself.

trends in relocation

Topics: Technology, Company Culture

3 Millennial Weaknesses You Can Turn Into Strengths

Posted by Lauren Decker on Jul 28, 2016 10:44:04 AM

Impatient. Entitled. Tech obsessed.Turn Millennial Weaknesses into Strengths

These are just a few of phrases associated with Millennials in the workplace. Now that Millennials are the largest generation in the U.S. workforce, companies are striving to understand these weaknesses and, more importantly, to overcome them.

When Millennials first entered the workforce, companies focused on setting proper expectations to help them adapt to the business world. Over the years, companies have learned that not all the negativity surrounding Millennials is merited and that this young population brings their own unique set of strengths to the table.

However, many businesses and managers have also found that some of those perceived weaknesses ring true.

Each generation has their own inherent set of strengths and weaknesses. Research published by EY found that Baby Boomers are great team players, but are less adaptable than other generations.  On the other hand, members of Generation X are extremely adaptable, yet lack an “executive presence”.

If each generation comes with their own challenges, why such a focus on Millennials?

In addition to the fact that Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. workforce, they are also the youngest. This group will be in the workforce for a long time to come, moving from individual contributors to managers and later executives. Understanding and addressing Millennial weaknesses now can help set your company up for success in the long run as this population continues to grow in their careers.

With more insight into the Millennial mindset, companies are better equipped to not only overcome poor traits, but even turn them into strengths.

1. Lack of Loyalty

The average Millennial will work at four different companies in their first 10 years out of college. As a result, companies are facing new challenges when it comes to attracting, training, and retaining talent. Now more than ever, businesses have to figure out how to balance their investment in the development of Millennial employees against the threat of those same employees leaving before showing return for the company.

The first step to combatting this perceived lack of loyalty is to understand what is driving Millennials to take a position at another company. Many Millennials who are looking to leave their current company feel neglected or unchallenged. In a study by Deloitte, researchers found that 71% of Millennials who expect to leave in the next two years are unhappy with how their leadership skills are being developed.

By finding opportunities to help develop Millennials within your company, you can reduce the risk that those employees will wander to greener pastures. Exploring ways to engage Millennials is various aspects of the business can be beneficial for both employees and your company.

Domestic or global rotational programs, for instance, can be mutually beneficial for both your employees and your business. Companies find that employees who experience different cultures and business functions become more effective leaders. Plus, Millennials will feel valued and challenged by taking on new work.

Whether it’s taking on new projects in their current role, providing a formal mentorship program, or offering them a chance to rotate through other business functions and locations, the investment can help you attract new hires who are looking for those opportunities and retain current employees.

2. Constant Need for Reassurance

Millennials are known for wanting constant feedback. It's not just any feedback they're looking for — it's positive reassurance. As a result, managers are faced with learning to adjust the frequency and delivery of feedback they provide to employees.

For starters, delivering constant feedback isn’t as easy as one might think. It requires a conscious effort from managers to proactively identify areas for improvement and find a free moment to share this advice. Finding and acting on development opportunities can be a time-consuming endeavor for managers who are already strapped for time.

When managers who take the time to deliver constant feedback are met with sensitivity to criticism, it can leave them feeling frustrated and unsure of how to meet the needs of this seemingly “high maintenance” group of employees.

While it can be challenging, this constant desire for reassurance and feedback can open the door to coaching opportunities. For you and your company, this means you can not only impart knowledge on employees, but also help develop them into more effective employees and future leaders for the company.

As a manager, this may require you to alter your approach to delivering feedback. If you’re used to giving feedback in formal reviews, you’ll probably need to increase frequency. Sharing advice and feedback throughout the day can also help make it feel less like criticism. As Millennials grow in their career, they will need to become more comfortable receiving and acting on negative feedback, but tailoring your approach to accommodate some of their needs can help you get better results and even increase loyalty.

3. Poor communication skills

Millennials are notorious for lacking face-to-face communication skills. It’s not that Millennials don’t communicate at all, it’s that they communicate very differently than other generations. They are more skilled at communicating via technology, not to mention more comfortable. However, these online interactions don’t translate well to in-person communication, sometimes leading to confusion and conflict in the workplace.

When in comes to communication, consider meeting your Millennials half way. Recognize their communication weaknesses (in-person conversations) and take advantage of their communication strengths (online interactions).  

Start with setting clear expectations regarding verbal communication. Clear expectations regarding communication will help reduce confusion with managers and co-workers. If you are managing a Millennial, know that they may need some extra coaching before they become adept communicators.

Take advantage of the fact that Millennials are always connected by utilizing online communication tools to facilitate internal conversations. Corresponding online won’t replace in-person communication, but it can help employees get quick answers to questions, raise urgent issues, and connect remote employees. The online communication that Millennials love can actually help create efficiency in the workplace and even reduce the number of meetings at your company.

With Millennials continuing to join and impact the workforce, we can no longer think of these traits associated with them as inherent, unavoidable weaknesses. Understanding the reasons behind negative behavior and using that information adapt your approach to Millennials will help you make a positive impact your business. 

communication with millennials

Topics: Millennials & Gen Z, Company Culture

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