Relocation Won’t Be The Same Going Forward. Here’s Why. 03.11.2022 | Jennifer Connell

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Over the course of the pandemic, working from the comfort (and chaos) of home, we all adjusted, adapted and embraced new routines and habits: fervent decluttering (a la Marie Kondo), prioritizing self-care, obsessively trying to keep a sourdough starter alive…

As we shift into a post-pandemic “normal,” we’re thinking about which of these changes and habits will truly stick. Perhaps some trends brought value, while others may be best left in 2020.

The same applies to the world of mobility! Trends that arose during the pandemic — some of which we initially assumed to be temporary provisions and processes — are sticking in response to the needs of the modern workforce, and a non-traditional approach to mobility is emerging.

In our recent webinar, we explored the concept of modern mobility and the key themes that define this non-traditional approach to managing a mobile workforce:

1) Meeting the Demands of Digitization
Companies that didn’t already have an online presence pre-pandemic scrambled to carve out a space, embracing e-commerce platforms and other digital solutions to allow consumers to engage with their products and services through the web. But as digitization and AI become a critical part of many businesses’ growth strategies, the importance of new technology skill sets will be amplified. Businesses will need an agile workforce strategy to bring in new talent, as well as provide opportunities for existing talent to up-skill or re-skill in line with these tech-forward approaches.

2) Non-Traditional Assignments
As the intent of mobility pivots from fulfilling the needs of the business to developing their talent, mobility programs will start to look a little less… traditional. Expect to see a rise in blended mobility types, including business travel, commuters, rotations and employee-initiated relocations to meet the demand for skilled talent. But as companies embrace a variety of program types, they open themselves up to compliance and logistical hurdles. Leadership within these organizations should lean on their mobility teams to help develop solutions that will balance the need to develop, retain and attract talent while streamlining administrative processes.

3) Revisiting Global Domestic Policies
With travel restrictions, COVID-related shut-downs and increasing compliance concerns limiting international mobility, global domestic activity has spiked. This has spurred a renewed focus upon developing more consistency in Global Domestic Mobility Policies; creating one set of global guidelines with local country and city-specific nuances. The urgency to balance consistency and flexibility of support and benefits for domestic moves is building as organizations clamor to attract candidates from an ever-shrinking pool of talent. Go here to learn more about key considerations for a future-proof Global Domestic Policy.

4) D&I and ESG
At the heart of the more modern approach to workforce mobility will be an enhanced focus on being better citizens to the planet, and each other. Sustainability and diversity goals will no longer be an afterthought in policy design, but rather an integral component of each stage of mobility program planning. The upside? Purpose-led organizations and brands who dare to be bold in their commitments to environmental and social governance succeed in winning the hearts and minds of key talent. We’re watching this space closely to see what diversity, inclusion, and sustainability trends arise over 2022, particularly as organizations aim to reverse the impacts of The Great Resignation.

To dive a little deeper into the key trends we can expect to see this year in the fast-paced world of workforce mobility, watch the full recording of our webinar: Mobility 2022 and Beyond: Predictions, Forecasts and Looming Challenges.

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Written by Jennifer Connell


Jennifer Connell, SCRP, SGMS-T, is Vice President of Weichert’s Advisory Services group. She has over 25 years of experience in the workforce mobility and employee benefits industries and is a recipient of Worldwide ERC’s Distinguished Service Award. She has spoken on workforce mobility topics at industry conferences throughout North America and written for mobility- and HR-themed blogs and magazines worldwide.

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