Singles-Friendly Workplace
Relocation Assistance


Smoothing the relocation process for employees

By Jim Litten
Inside Indiana Business
July 13, 2005

A column published today by Inside Indiana business focuses on the need for businesses to be aware of the diversity of family and household relationships of employees when they design a relocation assistance program. 

Jim Litten, a relocation assistance specialist observes that people are moving more frequently than ever before and companies are working to help not only their employees, but all members of the family transition to new locations.

According to the Guide for Managing the Mobile Workforce (Employee Relocation Council, 2003), “The diversification of the relocation population is bringing a change in policy. Providing resources for a wide range of personal and professional needs is critical for employers who want to attract and retain valuable employees while remaining competitive.”

Litten notes that demographic changes are driving this policy change. No longer is it a male in his late 30’s, married with children. But there are more females and single parents in addition to non-traditional families, including unmarried and same sex partners, relocating.

In some cases employees move voluntarily. In others, an employer requires the relocation. Regardless of how it comes about, employers need to make the move as easy as possible for their employees.

“It is important for employers to smooth the transition for both employees and their families in the relocation process,” said Sandy Warstler, senior vice president, Relocation Services, F.C. Tucker Company. “If the employee is distracted with making arrangements and finding his or her way around a new city, productivity and morale go down – resulting in a negative impact on the company.”

Though most employers do not have the staff or the expertise to make the transition smooth, there are professionals who can help. From helping employees sell their homes to finding the grocery store in their new city, a relocation expert is an invaluable resource.

As an employer what should you look for? First, you should determine how much you can afford to help with the move. Will it simply be covering the expenses or can you assist a spouse with finding a new job, offer elder care to those accompanying the employee, and other services? Then, you should speak with a variety of firms that specialize in relocation services.

When considering a company to assist with the relocation, you should look for the following services:

· Home sale – making physical improvements to home, pricing the home, strategizing how to market the home.
· Home purchase – finding a real estate company familiar with the market, determining the best location for the employee based on their needs.
· Counseling – information for children, spouse employment assistance, financial/mortgage pre-approval, transportation services.
· Rental assistance – community orientation tour, comprehensive rental search program, temporary living assistance.
· Local knowledge and expertise.
· Cost of living and housing studies.
· Mortgage application assistance.
· Concierge services for buyers.
· Moving and storage assistance.
· Community profiles.

This is just a sampling of the services a professional company can provide. A good company should provide services a la carte – allowing employers to tailor programs to fit their needs and budgets.

“Local real estate associates can help with many of these items and are an invaluable resource that should be a part of the process,” continued Sandy. “Using a real estate company with a good relocation department brings everything under one roof and makes it easier for a company to manage the employee’s relocation.”

Throughout the relocation process it is important to keep the employee and his/her family’s needs top of mind. After all, you are asking employees to uproot their entire lives for your company. And at the end of the move, you want an employee who is happy and whose family is happy. Using a relocation company to assist is crucial to a positive outcome for everyone involved.

Jim Litten is president of the F.C. Tucker Company. Tucker Relocation Services Department has 13 dedicated staff to assist with your company’s relocation needs. Additionally, Tucker’s sales associates are trained specialists in representing buyers and sellers with the relocation process. Tucker’s Relocation Services Department, through its affiliation with RELO® can assist individuals relocating to virtually any community in the U.S. or abroad, with services including comprehensive destination orientation programs, real estate assistance, spouse employment aid, mortgage assistance, household goods move management and more. Their affiliation also enables F.C. Tucker to manage corporate employee relocation accounts. Contact F.C. Tucker Co. at 1-800-999-8768, or



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