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Outsourcing

Three in four companies outsourced relocation services last year, returning to historically high ranges of 2014-2016 (73%-77%) and similar to the past four years and 2011 peak (72%). Outsourcing continues for the overwhelming majority of large firms (upper mid-range historically) and in the high range for mid-size firms.

Usage among small firms rebounds near historical highs in 2015-2016 (59% vs. 63%-65%), after falling to roughly half (49%) in 2017. It remains far above the previous 12-year average of roughly one third. Large firms continue to outsource to a greater extent and with more services than do mid-size or small firms.

Even with more firms outsourcing overall in 2018, the use of most individual service categories is similar to 2017, and retain slight decreases compared to 2016. Remaining markedly below 2016 levels are real estate purchase (28% vs. 36%) and real estate sales/marketing (30% vs. 39%). Overall, most service categories remain below historical highs, falling between historical lows and mid-ranges. The management of service provider GDPR/data privacy compliance is new: one in every ten firms outsources this function; for large firms, the ratio is nearly one in five. Companies appear extremely strategic, using external expertise only where it is most cost effective, as evidenced by high overall outsourcing but not across categories.

 
Question 43
Services outsourced to a relocation service, HRO or brokerage firm in 2018
Chart Q43
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Question 43-2
Services outsourced to a relocation service, HRO or brokerage firm in 2018
Chart Q43-2
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INTERNATIONAL

Similar to the previous five years, far more firms relocating employees internationally outsourced in 2018 than did overall (84% vs. 74%). International outsourcing remains at historic highs, but with great variation across service categories. It is used heavily by firms of all sizes, although large firms outsource a greater variety of services than mid-size and small firms do.

After charting decreases last year, international outsourcing in 2018 remained the same or increased across most service categories. However, it remained below 2016 levels and in the mid to lower ranges historically for most categories. Far below 2016 levels are: contract of household goods carrier (30% vs. 44%), destination services/orientation tours (30% vs. 43%), and arrangement of family’s temporary accommodations (30% vs. 42%). The management of service provider GDPR/data privacy compliance is new: roughly one in every five firms outsources this; among large firms, the number is one in four.

Among companies that outsourced relocation services domestically in 2018, those that also outsourced internationally (94%) remains similar to 2014’s historical high (98%). For the fifth straight year, firms that outsource domestic services and relocate internationally almost universally outsource services abroad. Large firms continue to be the most active for outsourcing internationally: around a third or more did so across almost all survey categories.

 
Question 46-j
International services outsourced to a relocation service, HRO or brokerage firm in 2018
Chart Q46-j
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Question 46-j2
International services outsourced to a relocation service, HRO or brokerage firm in 2018
Chart Q46-j2
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