New Survey from Cartus Shows Employee Relocation Trends are Changing Shape
DANBURY, Conn., (August 24, 2017) – The U.S. workforce is changing and, with it, so are the ways in which employees are being relocated for companies across the United States. Cartus Corporation, a leading provider of global relocation services, recently released its 2017 Domestic U.S. Relocation Policy and Practices Survey results, a report that examines the responses of 141 mobility managers representing more than 10 million employees. While the overall survey explores trends in how companies are supporting home sale for transferring employees, responding to a growing rental population, and developing intern programs, the primary finding is the identification of a changing pattern in employee relocation, in which an increasing demand for flexibility is translating into different types of work transfers.
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What’s Driving U.S. Relocation Programs?
U.S. relocation programs have always been a reflection of the larger business and economic picture. As companies seek to make sure they have the right people in the right places to meet organizational goals, they have traditionally been balancing demands for cost effectiveness with the need to recruit, retain, and develop their talent. Today, companies are adding a third element to the juggling act: employees’ growing expectations for a positive experience that translates into greater engagement and productivity. That combination of demands is leading to a new catalyst trend: the push for more flexibility in how employees move for work, and what kinds of support they are provided.
Juggling Act: Balancing the Challenges Driving U.S. Relocation
- Cost: 65 percent of survey respondents cited cost as a significant challenge facing their companies’ relocation programs today – up 13 percentage points in the last eight years.
- Talent Management: 52 percent of respondents said that talent shortages had increased somewhat, or significantly; this leads to “talent pressure” and a need to overcome those shortages.
- Employee Engagement: With the stagnation of salaries in U.S. corporations, there is a need to ensure that all aspects of the workplace provide a positive experience for employees. This has been cited consistently among Cartus clients of all sizes as a rising issue.
These pressures are leading to a need for more flexibility, as evidenced by the 78% percent of survey respondents who stated that changing employee needs or expectations were driving the need for flexibility. In the domestic U.S. relocation arena, this has resulted in offering more flexibility in policies, as well as a growth in short-term assignments and other temporary transfer forms for ongoing business needs. In fact, 75 percent of responding companies cited utilizing these short-term assignments to provide knowledge or skills transfer or training, while 72 percent use them to address specific project work.
As managers of U.S. relocation programs continue to explore ways to meet their companies’ changing needs, it is likely that the need to balance a superior employee experience, cost control, and talent development will drive a continued focus on flexible approaches. How companies choose to meet this pressure will always depend on their organization’s move patterns, culture, and demographics.
If you are responsible for your company’s domestic relocation program, we encourage you to review a copy of Cartus’ 2017 Domestic U.S. Relocation Policy and Practices Survey findings for more information on trends, challenges and policy approaches.
Mark Sonders, Cartus senior vice president
“The traditional pattern used to be that companies would move employees on sequential, multi-year moves from one place to another, with everyone expecting basically the same sort of support. While those permanent moves are still prominent in companies’ approaches to relocation, an increasingly complex set of demands is driving companies to come up with more flexible approaches.”
“Short-term and temporary assignments have always been a part of the U.S. relocation experience. Their use now is a reflection of companies’ needs to build more flexibility into how they handle employee relocation, while balancing demands for cost control, talent development, and the employee experience. Changing demographics – including the advent of millenials and employees who are working well into their later years – and continuing cost control pressures, means companies need new approaches and new technologies to deliver customized support for employees moving for their jobs.”
For more than 60 years, Cartus has provided trusted guidance to organizations of all types and sizes that require global relocation solutions. Providing the full spectrum of relocation services, including language and intercultural training, Cartus serves more than half of the Fortune 50 and has moved employees into and out of 185 countries. Cartus is part of Realogy Holdings Corp. (NYSE: RLGY), a global leader in real estate franchising and provider of real estate brokerage, relocation and settlement services. To find out how our greater experience, reach, and hands-on guidance can help your company, visit www.cartus.com; read our blog; or click www.realogy.com for more information.
Alison Sedney at 203.205.3739
LisaMarie DeSanto at 203.205.8544