Corporate Relocation Services Affect Retention, Study Says

Moving, possibly one of life’s most stressful experiences, can be even more painful when uprooting to a new location for employment reasons.

For your company’s new hires — many faced with an inherent angst of moving despite packing up for greener pastures — the right relocation company can give your new hire peace of mind in your organization or serious doubts.

According to a new J.D. Power and Associates study, a transferee’s experience with a corporate relocation company may affect their attitude and satisfaction regarding their employer.

If it’s a relatively smooth move, the experience will bolster an employee’s morale and company loyalty. But since employers select the relocation company a transferee must use, the inaugural study finds that a negative moving experience erodes an employee’s perception of the employer’s concern for employee well-being.

“Although corporations often approach selection of a relocation company as a primarily cost-based decision, the quality and reliability of services varies greatly among the individual companies ranked in the study,” said Michael Drago, senior account manager at J.D. Power.

He adds that with turnover among transferees averaging 15% per year, corporations may be able to boost employee retention among their transferees by increasing satisfaction with the relocation process.

In its “2007 Corporate Relocation Transferee Satisfaction” study, J.D. Power cited seven factors that can boost company loyalty among new hires:

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  1. Assistance in selecting a new neighborhood.
  2. Moving coordinator. The survey shows that satisfaction with the moving coordinator, a transferee’s main contact with the relocation company, has the greatest effect of any factor on overall satisfaction.
  3. Non-moving related services. This includes services such as finance, insurance, and spousal assistance.
  4. Packing services.
  5. Purchasing of new residence.
  6. Selling of prior residence.
  7. Transportation of belongings.

A recent CareerBuilder.com survey that quizzed workers and companies on relocation practices showed that, presumably due to the talent shortage, 14% of employers are more willing to pay to relocate new employees from another area to their company’s location this year compared to last year.

That’s why Drago thinks “integrating the voice of the transferee during the selection of a relocation company” might optimize the ROI on the overall high cost of relocation.

In its study, J.D. Power noted that GMAC Global Relocation ranks highest in satisfying relocated employees with corporate relocation services. In the study of 986 transferees who used a corporate relocation service in the past 18 months, the company earned an overall satisfaction index score of 774 on a 1,000-point scale.

Coming in second place, Prudential Real Estate earned a score of 767 and performs well in the areas of purchasing of new residence; packing services; and transportation of belongings.

Elaine Rigoli has nearly 15 years of experience managing content and community for various B2B and consumer websites. Elaine has written thousands of business and technology articles and has been quoted in The Wall Street Journal and eWeek, among other publications.

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1 Comment on “Corporate Relocation Services Affect Retention, Study Says

  1. This study is a great reminder that we as top line relocation companies are here to help you as a corporation. Reviewing your relocation program annually can help not only to save money but to let you know what companies are working and what companies are not and why. Setting standards that the relocation company has to reach can help define the reviewing and makes things easier when a change is needed. Also having a relocation policy that is “true” to the company is key with a payback statement. Let us help you with your recruiting and retention while at the same time taking the stress off of you. Shannon.

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