Relocation Technology Is the Answer for the Fast Growing Company

Posted by Ryne Inman on Mar 7, 2017 7:54:26 AM

relocation for tech companies

Whether a company is young or old, a sudden growth spurt can be a curse and a blessing. The added strain ofexpansion can be felt across every department and area, but possibly none other than HR feels the brunt of it.

Even if you’re lucky enough to work within a bulked-up HR department, the tax of a major new hire class is immense. Between the recruiting, hiring, and onboarding of a new squadron of employees, you’ll likely have to be accelerating your relocation program into overdrive.

A relocation tech solution is the key to making sure the mobility aspect of your staff growth doesn’t grind the entire process to a halt, or break the bank.

You are likely already using software solutions to recruit and hire new employees. This segment of HR was one of the first to make the digital leap. The classified ad section of the newspaper was one of the first casualties of the internet, and you’ll be hardpressed to find anyone itching to go back to the now old-fashioned way to apply and sift through applicants.

But that is a fairly easy process, and its real-world analogue translated well into a digital space. It wasn’t until very recently that technology got to the point where digitizing automating complex tasks became available to every company.

With relocation technology, not only are you able to automate and simplify the simple tasks that would normally eat up time, but also begin to streamline and minimize the amount of strain that complex instances place on you.

From the multi-departmental dance to disperse a lump sum to bulk-enrolling new hires into a relocation program, software solutions for relocation technology offer the flexibility and scaling needed for boom times.

relocation for tech companies

Topics: Relocation Management Software, SMB

How to Strike a Balance Between Short-Term Growth and Long-Term Sustainability

Posted by Lauren Decker on Feb 9, 2017 1:44:13 PM

high growht companies

For many small and medium sized businesses, developing a relocation program is usually a reactive decision. As the company hires more people and expands geographically, the need for a more formalized relocation program arises.

However, waiting to create that relocation program until there is an acute need can be a risky endeavor.

Waiting until it’s time to relocate a significant amount of people leads to a last minute scramble of putting together a reasonable relocation package, leaving the work of administering these benefits to whichever team was feeling the most pain from the lack of a process—usually talent acquisition or HR. Over time, the burden of managing relocations will reach a breaking point, and at this time, companies choose to bring in a third party provider to help.

Instead of following this common sequence of events, you can go a different, more predictable route. This path starts by putting together a scalable relocation structure from the start, helping scale the company without encroaching on the time of recruiting and HR teams.

The top 2 things you can do to establish a relocation program that scales alongside your company are:

  1. Create a basic set of guidelines
  2. Use technology to help you administer those guidelines

Many small and mid-sized businesses fall into the trap of handling relocations in a one-off instance. While this approach may seem like it reduces the time and effort of administering relocations, it can actually lead to increased time spent managing relocations when they do come up.

Setting some basic parameters to employees will actually make it easier to communicate your company’s approach to relocation, along with helping you to benchmark relocation costs and create replicable processes that help you scale in unison with your company’s growth.

If you fear creating an overly complex relocation policy, consider utilizing direct bill benefits. Direct bill benefits means that your company pays suppliers directly for relocation services. Typically companies work with a third party to help manage the supplier network and facilitate the administration of the benefits.

Direct bill benefits allow you to control how the relocation benefits are being utilized and provide your relocating employees with financial support for moving. For example, you might choose to cover household goods shipment up to $7,000. This ensures that the funds you’re providing to your relocating employees are being used for the intended purpose. Even if this doesn’t cover the move entirely, it greatly reduces the monetary burden placed on the employee and helps connect them to trusted supplier.

This type of approach allows you to start small and administer the benefits your company can afford, but creates a structure that allows you to scale down the road. For instance, you might increase the different relocation categories you’ll cover or increase the overall budget.

Once you’ve created some general guidelines, you should consider administering these benefits through technology. Not only will your relocating employees expect (and appreciate) a solution driven by software, but it also helps you scale the administration of benefits.

By using an online solution to deliver key relocation information, educate employees about their relocation benefits, and more — you’ll be able to take the work off your internal teams. This frees them up to focus on the work that they were hired for, instead of spending numerous hours trying to figure out how best to administer relocation benefits.

As you begin to scale your company, make sure you have the foundation in place to grow your relocation program along with it.

relocation for tech companies

Topics: Relocation, SMB, February Blog

How to Avoid the Dangers of A Last-Minute Relocation Program

Posted by Lauren Decker on May 26, 2016 8:55:39 AM

shutterstock_140612287-895357-edited.jpg

We’ve all been there—the moment when we’re handed a task that’s not that important...until it is.

Relocation can sometimes fall into this same trap. If your company isn’t currently hiring new employees from outside your local area, or doesn’t have multiple offices to transfer employees between, then having a relocation program in place probably isn’t at the top of your priority list.

However, when left unattended, some of these “non-urgent” tasks can become a high priority quickly, and possibly end up taking more of your time than they would have if you had completed the work ahead of time. Relocation also falls into this category. Without proper planning, relocations can become an enormous task with enormous impacts—for both you and your company.

Let’s say you are tasked with handling the first relocation at the company. This person is relocating from San Francisco to Los Angeles. They are a campus who is going to drive their belongings. They have simply requested some financial assistance to cover their enroute expenses. To keep things easy, you’ve decided to just provide them with a lump sum of money.

As you grow your campus recruiting program, you’ve decided to expand recruitment and are now relocating a few hires a year from across the country. Your latest group of campus hires are coming from New York, Dallas, Chicago, and San Francisco. These campus hires need more help moving their belongings and have expressed need for more funds than originally allotted because their distance is longer. You’ve decided to provide them with a larger lump sum to cover their household goods expenses, but you are also allowing them to book travel through your internal department.

Fast forward a few years, you are now relocating various positions across your company. You are offering lump sums to cover expenses, travel is booked through internal teams, and all questions from relocating employees are coming to you. Your relocation program is now supporting several relocations, you feel like you need more resources to support company moves, and on top of all that your manager has just asked you to reduce relocation costs as part of a larger company initiative to control spending.

Yikes.

This isn’t a situation anyone wants to be in, but unfortunately, it’s an easy trap to fall into. As soon as your start offering ad hoc relocation benefits, it can be a slippery slope to a program where you’re unclear of what your spending is or what type of experience your relocating employees are receiving compared to others in your industry.

As you can see, the impacts of not having a solid relocation program in place before you start relocating employees affects more than just that first relocation. It can actually affect all your subsequent relocations as well.

However, this can be avoided if you’re willing to put in a little upfront work to properly build out your relocation policies. It can be difficult to anticipate your needs 2, 5, and 10 years out, but there are some tactics you can use to help you provide appropriate benefits for your initial relocations and beyond.

First of all, start early.

Creating a relocation policy is key, even if you’re just relocating a few employees a year.  If you’re not ready to draft a detailed policy, start with guidelines that state who is eligible for relocation benefits and what those benefits include.

Putting this in writing helps set proper expectations for internal stakeholders and your employees. It also ensures that your relocation program is equitable to employees. If you don’t put these guidelines in writing, it’s easy to give employees ad hoc benefits that may or may not be equitable.

Second, consider including direct bill benefits in your relocation policy or guidelines.

Direct bill benefits are scalable, provide a proven process for employees, and help you take advantage of tax savings via IRS guidelines. Utilizing direct bill benefits means that your company, usually with help from a third party who specializes in this process, pays suppliers directly for employee relocation services.

Companies often allow employees to choose which relocation categories (shipment of household goods, final travel, temporary housing, etc.) can be booked via direct bill and provides a cap for the total amount. This allows the employees to choose how they want to use their benefits, while also helping you contain costs. As you start to scale your relocation program, you can set different caps for different populations or tiers.

Lastly, make sure you get buy-in from all relevant stakeholders.

Setting expectations internally can be just as important as setting expectations with your relocating employees. In addition to your HR team, be sure to talk to your payroll team. Some relocation expenses are considered taxable, so you’ll want to make sure your payroll team has a plan for how to handle any tax implications. If you want to instate a repayment agreement, you may want to also reach out to your legal team to help you draft or approve the agreement.

Depending on how your company uses relocation, you should also familiarize employees who are helping administer the relocation policy. For example, if you typically relocate new hires, you may want to talk to your recruiting team and make sure they understand the relocation program you’ve put in place.

With some proper preparation, you can avoid the pitfalls of creating a relocation program on the fly. Putting together a program “last minute” or right before a move will undoubtedly results in unwanted consequences for you and your relocating employees. Consider leveraging these tips to make sure your team is prepped and ready to go for your next influx of relocations! 

relocation for the smb

Topics: Relocation Policy, SMB, Relocation Taxes

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