2008 Corporate Relocation Survey

 
Results 41: Corporate Relocation Survey - Year 2008 Results 41: Corporate Relocation Survey - Year 2008
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Responding Details

To qualify for survey participation, a respondent must have relocation responsibility and work for a company that has either relocated employees within the past two years or plans to relocate employees this year. Atlas sent invitations to participate via e-mail, and 347 respondents completed online questionnaires between January 16 and February 29.

  • Most respondents (73%) work in human resources or personnel departments for
    • service (41%)
    • manufacturing/processing (31%)
    • wholesale/retail (12%)
    • financial (9%)
    • government/military (3%)
    • and other sectors (4%)
  • Based on the number of employees, responding firms are categorized by size for analysis:
    • 46% have less than 500 salaried employees (small firms)
    • 30% have 500-4,999 salaried employees (mid-size firms)
    • 24% have 5,000+ salaried employees (large firms)
  • About half (48%) of the companies surveyed this year are international firms.


Results Highlights

Overall Outlook

U.S. Economy and Real Estate Market Issues

Roughly half (46%) of responding firms indicate the U.S. economy worsened in 2007 (only 9% had predicted worsening conditions last year), and 45% expect 2008 will yield a continued decline. Seventy-eight percent believe the U.S. real estate market worsened in 2007 and will continue to do so throughout 2008.

Even though the majority (64%) of responding firms state they performed better financially in 2007 over 2006, this is down significantly from roughly three-fourths of companies in 2005 and 2006 that indicated improved financial performances over prior years. Only 59% anticipate their overall financial performances will be better in 2008 compared to 2007, also down from roughly three-fourths of firms expressing such optimism the past two years.

Relocation Volume and Budgets

Anticipated Volumes Trend Lower, Budgets Edge Higher

The majority of firms project relocation volumes and budgets will either remain the same or increase in 2008. While the percentage that expects increases is slightly lower than in 2007 (25% vs. 29%) and remains significantly beneath 2004 and 2005 (33%), over half of firms expect relocation volumes to remain steady regardless of company size. Over a third (35%) of firms expect relocation budgets to increase in 2008, and roughly half expect relocation budgets to stay the same. Of interest are the divergent trends in relocation volumes and budgets: while volume expectations trend lower, budget expectations trend higher as more firms expect budget increases than volume increases regardless of company size.

  • As in 2006 and 2007, the majority of large firms expect relocation volumes to remain at levels seen the previous year. However, the percentage of large firms expecting increased relocation volumes continues to trend downward from levels reported in 2004 through 2007 (33% vs. 44%, 47% and 38%), although expectations remain significantly higher than in 2003 when only 19% projected increased volumes.
  • Expectations among large companies for increases in relocation budgets yield a different trend, with nearly half (46%) expecting increases over 2007, up from similar levels in 2004 through 2007 and significantly above 2003 (20%).
  • Over one-fourth (29%) of mid-size firms expect increases in relocation volume, similar to their expectations for each of the past four years, while the majority expect the numbers to remain static. However, 38% expect budgets to increase, trending upward from 2004 through 2007 levels and significantly above 2003 (15%).
Question 11: Relocation Volume
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Question 12: Relocation Budget
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External Factors

Lack of Qualified People, Real Estate Market Impact on Relocation Depends on Company Size

For the third year in a row (and regardless of company size), the top external factor impacting relocations is the "lack of qualified people locally." However, the weight of this factor varies greatly by company size. Although cited by over half of large firms for 2005 and 2006 (51% and 57%), only 39% reference it for 2007. This factor continues to carry the greatest weight for mid-size and small firms, with the percentages citing it increasing slightly over last year (59% vs. 52% and 53% vs. 49%, respectively).

  • Significantly more large firms (37%) than small (17%) or mid-size (18%) firms indicate the real estate market affected relocation volumes in 2007. Competition growth significantly impacted relocations for 37% of large firms, while considerably fewer small or mid-size firms cite this factor (13% and 17%).

Lack of qualified local talent is the main external factor affecting small and mid-size firms. Although economic and real estate issues are cited by roughly one-fourth or less of these companies, the driving external force was finding qualified individuals to fill open positions in 2007. Large firms faced four external challenges of nearly equal weight: lack of qualified local talent (39%), real estate market issues (37%), competition growth (37%), and economic conditions (32%).

Additional Insights

  • Companies in the Midwest are more likely than those in the Northeast to indicate "economic conditions" as a factor (33% vs. 18%).
  • Manufacturing/processing firms cite the real estate market more often than service firms as impacting relocation volumes (28% vs. 17%).
  • Regional companies indicate the "lack of qualified people locally" as impacting relocation volumes more often than national or international firms (64% vs. 49% and 48%). Economic conditions and growth of competition are more likely to be cited by international companies than by regional firms (30% vs. 16% and 30% vs. 7%, respectively).
Question 15: External Factors
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Internal Factors

Company Growth Retracts

Close to half (46%) of companies cite "growth of company" as the top internal factor affecting relocations in 2007. This is significantly below the number who cited this factor 2004 through 2006 (55%, 57% and 59%) but matches 2003. However, company growth is still the top internal factor regardless of company size. Roughly a third or more of companies indicate "promotions/resignations" and "knowledge skills/transfers" in 2007 (similar to 2006). The overall impact of corporate reorganization remains similar to the past three years, significantly below 2003 (24% vs. 34%). The percentage of firms indicating "budget constraints" creeps slightly upward from 2006 (13% vs. 9%), but remains similar to the past three years and is significantly lower than in 2002 and 2003 (28% and 31%).

  • The percentages of mid-size and large firms citing "growth of company" as a driving factor of relocation volumes in 2007 decreased significantly from 2005 and 2006 levels (49% vs. 64% and 66%; 49% vs. 69% and 64%, respectively).
  • Overall, significantly fewer firms cite relocations as being impacted by facility expansion compared to 2004 through 2006 (11% vs. 20% and 19%).
  • Manufacturing/processing firms are more likely than service firms to indicate relocation volumes were impacted by: corporate reorganization (30% vs. 19%), acquisitions/mergers (23% vs. 11%), and the closing of facilities (16% vs. 4%).
  • Northeastern and Midwestern firms cite the "use of short-term assignments" more often than firms in the South and Central/Southwest (16% and 18% vs. 3% and 4%).
  • International firms cite expansion (new territories/international) as a main factor in relocation volumes significantly more often than regional or national firms (36% vs. 11% and 20%). They also cite knowledge/skills transfers (36% vs. 22% and 25%) and the use of short-term assignments (17% vs. 4% and 6%) more frequently.
Question 16: Internal Factors
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Most Frequent Destinations of Transfer

Companies relocating employees within the U.S. indicate the South was the top destination of transfer (29%) in 2007, followed closely by the Midwest (27%) (the top destination in 2006), and the Northeast (26%). However, for large companies, the top destination was the Midwest (31%).

  • Among firms relocating employees between the U.S. and another country/region, the most frequent destinations were: Asia/Pacific Rim (31%), Europe (31%) and the United Kingdom (28%).
  • Intra-country/region transfers most frequently occurred within Europe (29%), and continuing expatriate relocations typically occurred between European (44%), Asian/Pacific Rim (30%) or United Kingdom countries (24%).

 

Outsourcing

Remains at 2005-2006 Levels, Varies by Company Size

Fifty-five percent of companies outsourced relocation services during 2007, similar to 2005 and 2006 (55% and 58%) yet down from 2003 and 2004 (66% and 63%). Overall, mid-size and large companies continue to outsource a significantly greater variety of relocation services than small companies do, and small firms are still much less likely to outsource relocation services than mid-size and large firms. More than a third of large companies indicate outsourcing the relocation-related services listed in this survey.

  • Small companies who outsource were just as likely to outsource the contract of a household goods carrier as real estate sales/marketing services in 2007 (22% vs. 20%). Small-firm outsourcing remains similar to last year across categories, maintaining increases established in 2006 over 2005 or increasing further (orientation tours is the exception matching 2005 at 9%).
  • Slightly fewer mid-size firms indicate outsourcing in 2007 than in 2006 (62% vs. 67%); however, overall outsourcing levels across categories are similar to 2006. Of note are moderate increases in outsourcing counseling about the planning and details of relocation and shipment monitoring, coupled with moderate decreases in outsourcing real estate sales/marketing and real estate purchase services.
  • The majority of large firms indicate outsourcing in 2007 (83%) similar to the past five years. Large-firm outsourcing remains similar to last year across categories, with moderate increases seen in the outsourcing of real estate purchases, employee claims preparation assistance and supplementary services.

Additional Insights:

  • International firms are much more likely than regional firms to outsource relocation services (61% vs. 45%).
  • About half of both manufacturing/processing and service firms outsource relocation services (53% and 50%, respectively). However, manufacturing/processing firms are more likely to outsource real estate purchases (39% vs. 22%), family transportation and accommodation arrangements (38% vs. 26%), tax gross-up assistance (27% vs. 12%), claims preparation assistance (26% vs. 15%), and supplementary services (21% vs. 8%).
  • Between regions of the U.S. overall outsourcing levels are similar. However, companies in the Northeast and West are more likely to outsource orientation tours than are Midwestern and Central/Southwestern firms (37% and 33% vs. 21% and 13%, respectively).
Questions 23: Outsourcing
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Relocation Reimbursement/Payment

Transferees and New Hires: Full Reimbursement and Lump Sum Payment Increases

Full reimbursement as a potential offering to transferees or new hires rebounds from the significant drop in 2006 and 2007 to higher levels closer to 2003 through 2005. However, for both transferees and new hires, significantly more companies are utilizing lump sum payments as well (44% vs. 32% for transferees, 49% vs. 31% for new hires compared to last year). The percentages of firms offering lump sum payments to transferees and new hires are the highest in six years. Partial reimbursement for new hires remains lower than the high level seen in 2006 (41% vs. 47%), but the percentage of companies using this option for transferees is the highest in six years (37%).

The majority of firms still have full reimbursement of moving expenses as an option for transferees. While in 2006 and 2007 slightly more firms offered partial reimbursement than full reimbursement to new hires, the pendulum shifts again in 2008 with more firms offering full rather than partial reimbursement to this group, although the impact appears moderated by the increased percentages offering lump sum payments as well.

  • Across all size firms, the percentages offering lump sum payments has increased substantially from levels seen in the past five years for both transferees and new hires.
  • Primarily, small firms are driving the notable increase in full reimbursement offerings to transferees; percentages of mid-size and large firms offering full reimbursement to this group are up slightly but similar to last year. For new hires, in addition to small firms, significantly more large companies are offering full reimbursement to these relocating employees.
  • This year, mid-size firms are more likely than small firms to offer partial reimbursement to either transferees or new hires.
  • Mid-size firms show the least discrimination in the use of reimbursement methods: close to half or more indicate each type (full, lump sum or partial) as a potential offering for both transferees and new hires.

Additional Insights:

  • International firms are more likely than regional firms to offer full reimbursement of relocation expenses to transferees (68% vs. 48%); national firms share a similar likelihood with international firms (63%) to offer this type of reimbursement.
  • The majority of both manufacturing/processing and service firms (64% and 56%) offer full reimbursement to transferees, followed by lump sum payments (45% and 43%) and partial reimbursement (34% and 39%). Roughly half of firms in both sectors offer full reimbursement (51% and 49%) or lump sum payments (48% and 52%) to new hires, followed closely by partial reimbursement (42% and 41%).
  • Over half of Northeastern and Midwestern firms (52% and 51%) offer lump sum payments to transferees; more than a third of firms in other regions do so.
  • Nearly two-thirds of firms in every region offer full reimbursement to transferees and over half offer full reimbursement to new hires.

As in the past five years, the majority of firms report that carrier transportation expenses are "paid directly by the company" regardless of company size for either transferees or new hires. However, small firms continue to be more likely than large or mid-size firms to have moving expenses paid by the employee and reimbursed.

  • Manufacturing/processing firms are more likely than service firms to pay transportation expenses directly for transferees (87% vs. 73%) and new hires (85% vs. 68%), although the majority of both firm types follow this process for relocating employees.
  • International and national firms are more likely than regional firms to pay transportation expenses directly for new hires (82% vs. 63%). Regional firms are more likely than national or international firms to require new hires to pay and then reimburse them (44% vs. 23% and 21%).
Question 27: Relocation reimbursement/Payment
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Cost Coverage

The majority (87%) of all companies reimburse or pay for some relocation costs for transferees or new hires, similar to the past three years. Overall, coverage of most core relocation expenses (i.e. moving unlimited weight, one automobile, etc.) remains similar to last year, with most categories increasing slightly. However, the percentages of firms offering full packing/unpacking services dips slightly. Across company size, most categories of expenses see increases in the percentages of firms offering to reimburse/pay for these services for transferees or new hires.

Half or more of companies indicate they reimburse/pay to:

  • Pack all items (75%, similar to the past five years except for 2004 (85%)).
  • Move an automobile (69%, similar to the past five years).
  • Move exercise equipment (61%, similar to last year and progressively increasing over the past two).
  • Move recreation and lawn equipment (50%, significantly increasing over the last three years: 39%, 36%, and 42%).

The overall percentages of companies offering "non-core" relocation benefits (i.e. picking up belongings from a secondary residence, moving a boat, etc.) to transferees or new hires slightly increase compared to last year. However, significantly more firms indicate a willingness to: move a second automobile (49% vs. 37%), offer extended storage (35% vs. 27%), move statuary/paintings/antiques (43% vs. 27%), move recreation and lawn equipment (50% vs. 39%), and carry items down from the attic (47% vs. 38%).

In comparing what transferees and new hires are offered, interesting differences appear by company size. Small companies are more generous to new hires, likely because a significantly higher average percentage of their relocations involve new hires (49%) than transferees (29%). Mid-size company offerings to new hires versus transferees are more similar, likely because the average percentages of new hire/transferee relocations are more similar (49% new hires, 40% transferees). Large company offerings to new hires and transferees are more similar as well, even though transferees comprise a greater average percent of relocations (38% new hires, 56% transferees). 

Additional Insights:

  • Manufacturing/processing firms are more likely than service firms to offer the following to transferees or new hires:
    - To pack all items (83% vs. 63%)
    - To move exercise equipment (70% vs. 52%)
    - To unpack all items (60% vs. 36%)
    - To move recreation and lawn equipment (56% vs. 42%)
    - To move a second automobile (52% vs. 38%)
    - To offer permanent/extended storage (44% vs. 30%)
  • Companies in the West are the most likely to reimburse/pay for moving a second automobile (63%), whereas companies in the South are the least likely (43%); half or more of firms in other regions do so for transferees or new hires.
  • Western and Northeastern firms are more likely to pay for the relocation of pets (47% and 42%) than are firms in the Midwest, South, and Central/Southwest (24%, 22% and 21%).
Question 29: Cost Coverage
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Specialized Assistance for Homeowners/Renters

The majority of firms offer specialized relocation assistance for employees who are either homeowners or renters. For the first time this year, comparisons between offerings to transferees versus new hires are possible. Overall, reimbursement is slightly more generous for the relocating homeowner transferee than to the new hire, regardless of company size, for nearly every type of assistance category. Mid-size and large firms are more likely to offer homeowner-specific assistance to both new hire and transferee homeowners, although the majority of firms offer it regardless of company size.

Compared to last year, the percentages of firms offering each type of homeowner assistance increased slightly overall, except for home sale cost and home purchase cost reimbursement/payment (driven by slightly fewer small and mid-size firms indicating they offer these types of assistance).

For homeowners, around half or more firms offer the following to transferees or new hires:

  • Temporary housing allowance (73%)
  • Homefinding trips (71%)
  • Storage (56%)
  • Reimburse/pay for home sale costs (50%)
  • Reimburse/pay for home purchase costs (48%)

The percentages of firms offering the different types of renter-specific assistance are closely aligned by company size, whether for transferees or new hires. Overall, offerings for renting transferees and new hires are similar. However, slightly more firms offer lease cancellation reimbursement or storage to transferees than new hires, across company size. Mid-size and large firms are more likely to offer renter assistance specific to the needs of both types of relocating employees, although the majority of all size firms offer some assistance.

Overall, the percentages of firms offering each type of renter-specific assistance stay the same or decrease from last year, except that slightly more firms are offering storage, homefinding trips, and allowing the application of a temporary living allowance toward rent.

For renters, more than half of firms offer the following to transferees or new hires:

  • Temporary housing allowance (67%)
  • Homefinding trips (64%)
  • Reimburse/pay for lease cancellation (55%)
  • Storage (52%)

Manufacturing/processing firms are more likely than service firms to offer specialized assistance to homeowners (89% vs. 73%) and renters (92% vs. 76%). International firms are more likely to offer homeowner assistance than regional or national firms (90% vs. 70% and 80%) and both international and national firms are more likely than regional firms to offer renter assistance (88% and 87% vs. 72%).

 

Trailing Spouse/Partner Assistance

Employment Assistance Increases, Reported Impact of Spouse Employment on Relocation Decreases

Significantly more companies than last year offer employment assistance to the spouse or partner of the relocating employee (42% vs. 33%), matching the highest levels reported in the past five years. This increase is being driven by significantly more mid-size firms (41%) and slightly more large firms (54%) offering this assistance than last year (18% and 45%, respectively).

  • Large firms are more likely than small firms to offer employment assistance to a relocating employee's spouse/partner (54% vs. 36%).
  • Most small firms that offer employment assistance provide networking assistance (83%); they provide this type of assistance more often than mid-size or large firms (47% and 48%). Small firms are also more likely than mid-size or large firms to find employment outside the company for an employee's spouse/partner (26% vs. 9%).
  • Large firms are more likely than mid-size firms to offer: resume preparation assistance (52% vs. 28%), outplacement/career services from an outside firm (57% vs. 28%), and interviewing skills training (36% vs. 9%) for a relocating employee's spouse/partner.
  • Within companies who offer employment assistance, these services are utilized in at least one out of five relocations or more, regardless of company size.

Along with the increase in spouse/partner employment assistance offered over last year, significantly fewer companies indicate a spouse's/partner's employment status almost always or frequently affects an employee's relocation (39% vs. 52%). Last year, the impact of this factor reached the highest level in six years across company size; it now returns to levels comparable to 2003 through 2006.

  • Manufacturing/processing firm relocations are more likely than service firm relocations to be impacted by spouse/partner employment status (50% vs. 37% "almost always" or "frequently").

 

Employees Declining Relocations

Increases Driven by Small & Large Firms Experiencing Declined Relocations

While the majority of firms who experienced declined relocations in 2007 indicate about the same number occurred as in 2006, the percentage of firms indicating an increase more than doubled (16% vs. 7%) and is the highest in six years. Overall, this increase is due to significantly more small firms (15% vs. 6%) and more than a four-fold increase in large firms (25% vs. 6%) experiencing more declined relocations than in the previous year. For both small and large firms, these are also the highest levels seen in six years.

Housing/Mortgage Issues Increase, Family Issues/Ties Decrease Significantly

While the majority of firms (62%) indicate family issues/ties as a reason for declined relocations in 2007, the percentage of firms citing this as a main factor has dropped dramatically from last year (84%) and is at the lowest level in six years. This remarkable drop is seen across company size and corresponds to a dramatic rise in housing/mortgage concerns. Overall, 50% of companies who had employees decline relocation last year state that housing/mortgage concerns was a reason cited, a significant jump from only 30% the year before. A 20%+ increase occurs universally across company size for this factor.

For large firms, mirroring some of the main external factors impacting relocation volumes cited (i.e. economic conditions, real estate market), 69% indicate employees cited the cost of living in the new location and 63% indicated housing/mortgage concerns for declining relocation. The cost of living in the new location is cited significantly more often by large than mid-size or small firms (69% vs. 38%), and surpasses family issues/ties (63%) by employees at large firms. Even though small and mid-size firms appear less affected by the larger economic and real estate challenges, these factors appear to be affecting employees financially, making some less willing to relocate than in past years.

Additional insights:

  • Significantly more manufacturing/processing firms than service firms experienced increases in declined relocations in 2007 (22% vs. 9%).
  • International and national firms are more likely than regional firms to have had relocations declined (67% and 57% vs. 31%). International firms are more likely than regional firms to have had an employee cite housing/mortgage concerns as a reason for declining relocation (56% vs. 30%), and almost half of national firms (49%) indicate an employee cited this reason when declining relocation.
Question 39a: Declining Relocation
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International Relocation Volume

Increases in Short-Term Assignments in 2007, Majority Expect Volumes to Remain Unchanged

About half (49%) of responding companies transfer employees between countries. Close to a third of these firms indicate the number of employees they relocated internationally increased in 2007 compared to the previous year. Significantly more large firms than small firms saw increases in international relocation volume (40% vs. 19%).

  • Twenty-eight percent of companies expect increases in international relocation volume in 2008.
  • Over half of companies, regardless of size, expect 2008 international relocation volumes to remain unchanged from 2007.
  • Slightly more small firms expect increases in international relocation in 2008 versus 2006 and 2007 (26% vs. 19% and 18%). Although similar to last year, the percentage of large firms expecting increases remains lower than in 2006 (34% vs. 43%).

Although the majority of all size firms indicate the duration of a typical international assignment is greater than 12 months but less than three years, nearly one in five indicates the typical assignment is 12 months or less, revealing a progressively increasing trend in short-term/temporary relocations. In 2006 and 2007, small firms were more likely than mid-size or large firms to indicate durations of 12 months or less, but now all size firms share a similar likelihood for international assignments of less than a year to be the norm.

  • Estimations of the approximate percentage of short-term/temporary international relocations increased overall across company size in 2007.
  • Nearly two-thirds or more of all firms (regardless of size) expect 2008 temporary international assignment volumes to remain unchanged from the levels seen in 2007 over 2006. Expectations of mid-size and large firms are similar to last year overall, but a significantly greater percentage of small firms expect decreases (19% vs. 3%) in temporary assignments compared to last year.
Question 45c: International Outsourcing
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Question 45b: International Relocation Volume
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International Outsourcing

Overall Level Stabilizes; More Small Firms, Fewer Mid-Size Firms Outsourcing

A similar percentage of firms overall indicate outsourcing international relocation services in 2007 (63%) to 2004 through 2006 (58%, 62% and 66%). Nearly half (49%) of small firms that relocate internationally now indicate outsourcing relocation services, revealing a progressive increase in small firm outsourcing over the past four years and at significantly greater levels than in 2004 and 2005 (28% and 23%). The percentage of mid-size firms that outsource shows a progressive decline over the past two years (59% vs. 64% and 75%). However, the majority of both mid-size and large firms outsource international relocation services. Similar to the past three years, 77% of large firms outsourced international relocation services; roughly half or more outsourced visa and immigration services, arrangement of temporary accommodations, destination services/orientation tours, securing rental property, and intercultural/language training.

  • While more small firms outsourced international services in 2007 than in the past four years, slightly fewer small firms outsourced international relocation planning/details counseling, securing rental property, destination services/orientation tours and intercultural/language training than in 2006.
  • In 2007, smaller percentages of mid-size and large firms outsourced international real estate services than in the previous year. Among all firms, the percentage outsourcing international real estate drops from roughly one-fourth of firms in 2003 through 2006 to just 16%.
  • While fewer mid-size firms outsourced international services in 2007, the majority of individual outsourcing categories remain similar to 2006 levels. Progressive declines appear over the past three years in the outsourcing of international relocation program management, real estate services, securing rental property and relocation planning/details counseling.
  • Significantly fewer large firms outsourced international real estate services last year than in 2005 and 2006 (17% vs. 34% and 32%); significantly more outsourced the counseling about company policy for international relocations than in 2006 (40% vs. 21%), the highest percentage in five years. The percentage of large firms outsourcing the management of international relocation programs is also the highest in five years (38%).
  • The percentage of firms outsourcing securing rental property internationally is at the lowest level in five years (32%), significantly below the highest level reported for 2003 (43%). The percentage of firms that outsourced counseling about the planning and details of international relocation remains significantly lower than in 2003 (22% vs. 36%), as in the past three years. The outsourcing of international relocation company policy counseling rebounds from a progressive decline over the past three years to near the highest level reported in 2003 (26% vs. 28%).
  • Most international relocation-related services continue to be outsourced by a fifth or more of all companies who relocate employees internationally.

Among companies that outsourced relocation services domestically, the percentage that did so internationally in 2007 remained similar to 2005 and 2006 (80% vs. 79% and 80%), maintaining increases over 2004 (70%). This year large firms are much more likely than either small or mid-size firms to outsource international relocation services, and small and mid-size firms share a similar likelihood to outsource internationally overall. However, between small and mid-size firms who outsource internationally, mid-size firms outsource a greater number and variety of services than small firms.

 

International vs. Domestic Policy

Additional Considerations Lessening; International Employment Assistance for Spouses/Partners Stable

Most firms (79%) continue to indicate there are differences between their domestic and international relocation policies; however, the overall amount of considerations appears to be declining. Nearly every policy consideration category experiences a decline in the number of firms offering it to internationally relocating employees over last year. Dramatically fewer firms offer additional tax considerations (53% vs. 69%), provide allowances for children to attend certain schools (42% vs. 56%), and offer additional leave time (30% vs. 50%). The only categories experiencing increases of more than a single percent are increased permanent storage allowances (41% vs. 37%) and higher rental housing allowances (42% vs. 38%).

  • Large firms remain more likely to offer additional considerations than small firms. While the percentages for most individual policy considerations stay nearly the same or increase over last year, dramatically fewer large firms offer additional leave time (40% vs. 62%), significantly below levels in 2003 through 2006 (60%+) as well. However, significantly more large firms offer higher rental housing allowances for internationally relocating employees (58% vs. 42%), the highest percentage in six years.
  • Fewer mid-size companies are offering additional considerations for internationally relocating employees. The largest drops in offerings are: additional tax considerations (42% vs. 62% or more firms in 2003 through 2007), allowances for children to attend specific schools (36% vs. 51% or more firms in 2003 through 2007), and additional leave time (14% vs. 42% or more firms in 2004 through 2007).
  • The biggest decreases in specific policy considerations being offered by small firms are in allowances for children to attend certain schools (13% vs. 40% and 36% in 2006 and 2007) and extended per diem charges (15% vs. 28% in 2007); most other policy consideration categories remain similar to last year.
  • Manufacturing/processing firms are more likely than service firms to offer additional policy considerations for internationally relocating employees (86% vs. 69%).

Forty-two percent of companies offer employment assistance to spouses or partners relocating internationally, similar to 2007 (46%) and maintaining increases established over 2003 through 2006 (27%, 22%, 24% and 33% respectively). While fewer small firms than last year offer such assistance (26% vs. 42%), the substantial increase over 2006 in mid-size firms offering this assistance is mostly maintained (41% vs. 29%). More than half (55%) of large firms offer this assistance, significantly greater than in 2003 through 2005 (34%, 24% and 28%) and increasing over 2006 and 2007 levels (45% and 47%). The most popular form of spousal/partner assistance for mid-size and small firms is paying for a work visa (14% and 13%), while most large firms pay for a work visa (26%) or provide resume preparation assistance (26%), followed by outplacement/career services from an outside firm (22%) or providing interviewing skills training (22%).