Find a great relocation partner can be a challenge - there's always a balance between cost and service. But wait, why should you have to choose? The truth is, you shouldn't. There are many relocation partners out there and you absolutely deserve to find the best one for your business. Here are 4 key components you should be looking for in a great relocation management partner:
1. Flexibility & Choice
- Flexibility. You should be able to build flexible relo policies, as in a combination of lump sum and managed budget to meet your unique business needs and the needs of your relocating employees. If you're locked into a traditional relocation program with limited or no options, it may be time to find a new relocation partner.
- Choice. A great relo partner will let you build as many relocation policies as you need, in as many configurations as needed. They should also provide choice in suppliers, rather than only giving one option, to ensure you get the best service and price.
- Options. There should be many options available to you, from structuring relo packages to best fit your business, to combining various benefit options such as lump sum, cash bonus, managed budget, full-service and self-service.
2. Transparency & Cost Savings
- A true relocation partner will provide transparent fees & markups. You shouldn't have to question where your money is being spent, and if they have your best interests at heart (which they should), they'll have no problem providing this information upfront.
- Ability to gross-up relocation benefits. Tax gross ups are an important part of any employee relocation package. Your relocation management partner should provide the ability to gross-up some or all of your relocation benefits, or even better - allow you to choose that option as needed. This saves you time in administering the program, and (if you choose to gross up benefits) provides a much better employee relocation experience.
- Savings opportunities. Your RMC should constantly be looking for ways to save you money, such as adjusting relo policies or providing alternative supplier options. Your relocation partner should be aligned with your goals - if you have to spend more money for them to make a profit, you’re going to end up overspending.
- Fixed fees and/or capped commissions to control spend are also a great way to find cost savings and ensure you can meet your budget goals.
3. Actionable Reporting & Metrics
Your relocation partner should provide you actionable data on your relocation program. Ideally this is through access to a 24/7 portal that provides real-time analytics. At a minimum, they should provide this information on a monthly basis, and be able to provide detailed metrics on request. Key information that you should have access to in order to optimize your relocation program and budget includes:
- Total relocation spend
- Spend vs Budget - how well are you sticking to budget, what is your over/under per move and overall
- Average cost per move
- Line item expense breakdown
- Real-time Reporting
4. Excellent Customer and Employee Experience
- Access to high-quality suppliers. Your RMC should provide you with a vetted network of suppliers that your employees can use, or (if you like) allow them to choose their own within a set budget. Finding and vetting suppliers is one of the most time-intensive parts of employee relocation, so one of the biggest benefits to using a relocation management partner is having that part taken care of for you.
- Dedicated relocation consultants. Your relo partner should have a team of experts to provide the white-glove experience your employees deserve, and guide them through their move. This also reduces the administrative burden on your team, as you don't have to deal with the many questions and potential issues that come with relocation.
- Exceptional customer service/support - for both employer and employee. This is critical to any relocation program. Your RMC should make the entire relocation easier, more efficient, and less stressful for both your relocating employees AND your internal teams. Employee satisfaction is key, so if your partner isn't hyper-focused on employee satisfaction, they're probably not a great partner.
- Value-added benefits. Most RMCs will provide the basics in employee relocation, but what about resources like city and company insights, homebuying/selling assistance, and an online portal to help relocating employees manage their move? Self-service options are also extremely popular with relocating employees, so if your relocation partner offers that as well, it's a huge win.