Give Your People What They Want: The Power of Flexible Relocation Programs 01.23.2023 | Ellie Sullivan

The world of personalization is rapidly advancing in everything from a personalized ordering experience at Starbucks (with 66+ coffee varieties) to completely customized 3D-printed shoes and insoles for customers. As the concept of “having it your way” transcends from option to expectation, demand for flexible relocation programs has increased dramatically.  In fact, more than 70% of companies want to add more flexibility to their programs.

Always in the hot pursuit of the next mobility trend, we’ve been tracking interest in flexible programs for quite some time. And sure enough, nearly all the new policies we created in 2022 included flexible options.

The Value of Choice

Choice is powerful, especially when it comes to curating a best-fit employee experience. The flexibility of choice programs empowers employees to choose the benefits that best meet the needs of their unique situation, and it enables employers to appeal to a broader demographic (which we know is a critical component to fostering a diverse, inclusive mobility program). Instead of dealing with endless exceptions to policy, with choice programs, mobility managers can default to “yes” by allowing employees to select what’s most important to them.

Digging Deeper into Choice Programs

Despite their popularity, there was little definitive research in the mobility space into how these programs worked, why they were adopted, and what lessons “early adopters” could share with the next generation.  As a result, Weichert launched a Pulse Survey to gather insights about these emerging programs.  Here’s a snapshot of what we uncovered:

Among the 60+ companies responding, 35% incorporate some degree of “choice” in their relocation or assignment programs.

More importantly, 76% rated them excellent or very good, and no companies identified their choice program as fair or poor.

That’s a powerful statement – one that is not frequently made regarding conventional programs – and shows us that modern choice programs are proving to be wildly successful in meeting the needs of today’s mobile workforce and the goals of those who manage them!

Let’s face it, relocation is a lot more complicated than customizing (even the most intricate) Starbucks order. As a result, companies in our study leverage a wide variety of resources to help employees make well-informed choices. An equal number of respondents depend on the mobility provider and policy documents to support the employee.

We were glad to reveal this best practice because that was the basis for how we designed GoFlex (our proprietary flexible solution tool in Weichert Go). Our vision: to empower choice with a self-service tool to ensure we deliver “mobility their way”. Through the mobile app, the employee can initiate services, select suppliers, schedule appointments, electronically sign documents, and much, much more – with their Counselor always within arm’s reach to help along the way. That way they are in control, but never alone.

For a closer look at these research results, click here to view A Pathway to More Flexibility in Relocation Policies and request a demo of GoFlex today.  As for my next Starbucks order, I’ll take a Grande skinny Caramel Macchiato, hold the vanilla syrup and make it a double shot. Extra whip, please.

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Written by Ellie Sullivan


Ellie Sullivan, SCRP, SGMS-T, has over 30 years of experience overseeing critical mobility advisory initiatives, including policy benchmarking, proprietary research and tracking global trends and best practices. She is also the creator of our proprietary Optimization Lab format, which brings together Weichert SMEs and client stakeholders for day-long workshops to analyze current program challenges, identify solutions and create a road map to the ideal future state.

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