As more organizations look to move headquarters or offices from suburbs to metro cities, they also need to consider how they can retain talent because turnover increases with relocations. In today’s tight labor market, it’s especially important companies do all they can to retain their key players. Below are benefits companies relocating should consider offering to employees.
Transit Benefits: Relocation will likely disrupt the way an employee commutes to work, whether it’s a change in how they get to work (driving, public transportation, etc.) or a difference in cost. Relocation benefits can include a program for employees to save pre-taxed dollars to be used toward the cost of public transportation, discounts for the cost of public transportation passes, benefits involving ride share services, a free company shuttle service, offering gas allowance and even providing a company car.
Childcare Benefits: For staff with children, relocation can be a big inconvenience. Working parents may need to put their child in daycare for longer, find alternative care-giving arrangements, or have to enroll children in summer camps or after-school programs. Employers can help by offering employee assistance programs that connect working parents with qualified caregivers and help them pay for that care through a dependent care savings accounts. Employers can even go as far as having back-up childcare available or on-site daycare programs.
Relocation Assistance: If an employee has to move as a result of the company relocation, employers can offer a variety of benefits to assist employees. To help eliminate the stress associated with moving, employers can offer services that connect employees with realtors to help sell and buy their homes, find qualified movers, or even connect them with newcomers groups in new areas. Employers can also cover or contribute towards the cost of moving to limit employee’s personal expenses associated with relocation, some companies even giving employees time off before and after a move to allow them time to get situated. Other benefits associated with relocation assistance can be helping an employee’s spouse find a new job, reimbursing an employee for trips home if they are relocating without their family, temporary housing, covering the difference in the short sale of a house, among other things.
Remote Work and Flextime: Relocation can cause major changes to an employee’s schedule, especially for working parents. Flextime gives the employee just that – flexibility should anything come up. For instance, if the new office is further away and parents have a short window of drop-off times to get their kids to school, flex time allows them to not have to worry about being late to the office. Remote work and flextime can help employees find better work-life balance and is understanding of their already limited time, which can be further compromised by relocation.
Relocation is hard on employees, so the more employers can do to alleviate any associated stress, the better chance they have in retaining talent.
Bill Gimbel is the President of LaSalle Benefits, a technology-enabled corporate benefits firm. Bill has been in the employee benefits and insurance space for over 25 years, having worked with companies in virtually every industry, as well as people in the C-suite, human resources and finance.