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College Grads and Relocation

When I was a senior at the University of Delaware, springtime meant a lot of different things. Finding and applying for jobs topped that list. Colleges and universities are getting ready to close out the 2017 spring semester and college grads and relograduation is right around the corner for students all over the country, which means that thousands of young adults are getting ready to enter the workforce.  If you are planning to recruit new grads, it’s a good idea to consider relocation benefits. Even a little help for a recent grad can go a long way and I believe that providing relocation assistance will give companies a recruitment advantage.

That said, make sure that the entry-level relocation policy is not too rich. You don’t need to be excessive, but you should be on par with other companies fighting for the same talent. A comprehensive look at what will be most beneficial for your specific base will help you define the most meaningful benefits for your graduates. Below are some questions to consider:

Are you recruiting talent from the same school? If this is the case, it’s important to make sure that your policy is consistent as your new hires will be likely to talk to one another about the relocation benefits being offered. We also suggest organizing a “meet and greet” for them so that they know people in the new location. Relocating to a new place is hard, so it’s beneficial for everyone if they can support one another.

Are you hiring any grads that are studying on international visa? Schools tell their international students to look to their employers for help understanding immigration regulations. Thus, if you are hiring students from another country, or even a student in the U.S. on a student visa, you should provide immigration assistance. Also, you will need be realistic about timing as the immigration process can take three to four months (good thing we’re talking about this now!).

What are their current living accommodations? Some grads may be living at home, while others will be leaving an apartment. This could impact your housing and moving benefits because grads who live at home won’t have as much to move as someone with their own apartment. They also won’t have a lease to break. To meet varied needs, many college grad relocation policies offer a lump sum of money intended for moving expenses (although spending it is at the discretion of the employee).  Some companies do provide extra money to cover additional expenses including travel and a rental deposit. If you are moving a new grad that currently has a lease, you may also want to consider some lease break assistance.

Can you get an idea of how much “stuff” will have to be moved? Summer season is the busiest time of year for moving companies, and small shipments are the hardest to move. Knowing this in advance will help you manage expectations with your transferee. If you do have a direct billing arrangement with a mover, or you provide moving services through a relocation company, you may want give them a heads up (if you can) on the number of small shipments you expect. They may be able to present some solutions, especially if your grads are all coming from the same area.

Typically, there are two major challenges to be prepared for when moving this group: lack of moving knowledge, which can lead to waste and angst (I can relate to this one – my first move as a graduate included ripped plastic bags and a giant mess overall); and small shipments which are difficult to move in the summer. To address these challenges, provide some education about moving basics, including how to reduce moving costs, how to work with a mover and items that should not be moved. Managing expectations is also critical with this group, so relocation managers should set aside some time to discuss the policy at the time of hiring.  Your relocation services company will also provide support, as well as informational materials that can smooth the process for everyone involved.

Happy hiring!

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