Corporate relocation survey sheds light on negotiation
Friday, June 15, 2012
In a survey conducted early this year, Atlas Van Lines analyzed feedback to draw conclusions about the state of corporate relocation. 2011 saw improvement in both relocation volumes and budgets, and this has enabled some to project continued growth to take place this year as well.
The 2012 survey was completed online by more than 360 corporate relocation professionals over almost a two month period. It revealed 87 percent of firms have a formal relocation policy, and that 72 percent of firms allow their employees only two weeks or less to accept an offer to relocate.
Furthermore, roughly 24 percent of companies surveyed admitted that “declining a relocation request usually hinders an employee’s career.”
Given the potential damage to one’s career, matched with the mounting pressure to make a brisk decision, some employees may feel overwhelmed when initially approached with the prospect of relocating. In order to avoid potential anxiety, it is important to be well prepared and to have research done ahead of time.
The survey also revealed the top three reasons an employee was reluctant to relocate, and at the top of the list at 71 percent was “housing and mortgage concerns,” followed by “family issues/ties” and finally “personal reasons.” This information illustrates the importance of exploring options and investigating relocation housing in relation to individual needs.
The survey found more than half of the surveyed firms offer relocating employees a temporary housing allowance, will reimburse for lease cancelation fees and will pay for preliminary trips to search for a new home at the employee’s new location.
Miriam Salpeter of U.S. News interviewed EDC Moving Systems Relocation Consultant Andrew Bridges to get a better sense of the relocation negotiation process for an employee. Bridges advises those considering a relocation to make sure to research the intended destination city to investigate everything from housing prices to schools. It is also necessary to look into a company’s relocation policy so an employee can prepare for the negotiation process.
Bridges asserts that one of the biggest areas open for negotiation with an employer is temporary housing, and he advises candidates to “be sure to mention if they need that up front.” Being aware of opportunities and potential benefits can allow employees to successfully navigate the negotiation process and can assist in alleviating any relocation reluctance that can be attributed primarily to housing concerns.