Not be a Debbie Downer, but we may need to think differently about long term relocation benefits as it’s unlikely that the housing market will rebound soon. Sure, there have been some signs of improvement, but the reality is that high unemployment, tight credit, foreclosures and shadow inventory are going to stand in the way of real growth for the next few years. But, that doesn’t mean we can, or should, stick our heads in the sand. Corporations still have a need to relocate talent and if we don’t change our way of thinking about relocation benefits, employees may not agree to relocate.
Not long ago a client asked me to explain the state of the relocation industry for the past 10 years so that she could have a better understanding of what her transferees – some of which have moved several times in the past decade – are going through. It’s an interesting, and loaded, question. So much has happened in the past decade that HR managers, employees and relocation partners are all suffering from an extreme case of whiplash.
It’s funny, but not in a ‘ha-ha’ sort of way. Whoever coined the phrase “cash is king” may have unknowingly perpetuated the notion that Money always leads to happiness. Or that Money is at least a cure-all, possibly the end-all and be-all, and maybe even the answer to all of life’s questions, great and small. The comical part is that this notion, coupled with a modicum of personal insecurities, lack of responsibility, financial deficiency and one-upmanship has led our economy into this downward spiral. But, in a glass-half-full sort of way, I think this is a good thing. We’re back to basics.