Summer is definitely peak season in the relocation industry. There are many reasons for this but typical factors include families with children wanting to get them settled into a new school at the start of a new term to minimise disruption, quieter periods for many other industries, new graduates taking up new positions and a more active housing market in summer months.
In fact, around 2/3rds of all relocations annually are handled by relocation companies during the May-September period.
To avoid some of the risks of peak season affecting your relocation programme we’ve put together some useful advice on preparing for peak season relocations
Relocation Company Top tips for preparing for peak season relocations
1) Be ready for the additional challenges of peak season and manage the expectations of your transferee.
Arranging Accommodation – with an increasingly active housing market in summer month’s competition for property – both long term and short term – is at its height. Consider arranging a relocation company to provide your employees with a temporary accommodation services in your relocation policy to quickly secure short term housing and/or a home search services to assist your transferees in arranging longer term accommodation. A relocation company will have expert local knowledge, great relationships with estate agents and are experienced negotiators to give your transferee the best chance of securing their desired accommodation and reduce the stress of the process.
Securing School Places – for transferees relocating with children an additional concern will be finding a school that meets the needs and desires of the family but also securing a place. With a new term starting at the end of the summer period places can be in high demand. Consider including education assistance in your relocation package and working with specialist relocation company providing education support services who can use their expertise and local inside knowledge to make sure the process runs quickly and smoothly to give your transferee the best chance of securing a place at the right school for their child.
Household Goods Removals Availability – with 2/3 of all moves occurring in the summer peak season removal companies are in high demand, especially given the increasingly strict regulations regarding driver qualifications and working hours pinching resources even tighter. Plan early and where you can, encourage your transferee to be flexible. More on that below….
2) Plan your relocations early
Try to forecast your relocation requirements
Having a rough idea of what relocations you have coming up mean you can give your service providers a heads up on what you’ll need from them. You don’t need to make any commitments or discuss firm plans, but if conversations are open and both parties can get an idea of potential requirements your relocation company may be able to plan ahead or even hold back some resources for your transferees so that there are no issues when the initiation comes through. If your relocation company provides you with management information concerning previous relocations ask them to work with you to try and identify any trends, are you expecting a similar pattern this year or does something in your organisations strategy mean your requirements might be different?
Start the relocation process as soon as possible
Even if you don’t have a move date there is no reason not to start the relocation process. If you can let your relocation company know as soon as a new relocation has been agreed so that any leg work in preparing for a relocation can begin, for example starting to research properties and drawing up shortlists, completing preliminary immigration paperwork, undertaking orientation tours or language training, getting a pre-move household goods survey done and quotation agreed and get any appropriate paperwork moving so that when pack date is known all you need to do is confirm the date. Any early preparation means less of a rush for the transferee and their family once details have been finalised.
3) Consider flexible options
When it comes to some relocation services, Household goods being a great example, be ready (and encourage your transferee) to be flexible wherever possible. Whilst your relocation service providers will do their utmost to meet your required dates and times peak season can make this difficult, so any flexibility you have can help to avoid disappointment.
Being flexible with transport options for household goods removals can also help meet requirements where resources are limited. Could a small airfreight consignment sent ahead of the rest of your transferee’s belongings help them get moving quickly and have the essentials on hand on arrival? Can a combination of short term storage and temporary accommodation provide a solution rather than let lack of resources delay an entire move? Work closely with your relocation company to discuss any alternative solutions to helping keep your relocation programme running smoothly and your transferees happy.
4) Have a backup plan
It never hurts to have a plan B that you can quickly put into place should something not work out as you expect. If your normal service providers can’t meet the urgent needs of an important transferee then is there anyone else who can help you? An approved secondary suppliers list of pre-vetted and tested companies who you are comfortable working with can give you peace of mind that your transferee is in still in safe hands and a lack of resources due to peak season won’t impact their successful relocation.
If you would like to discuss your plans for the summer peak season or would like to find out more about Bournes Relocation Solutions and how we can contribute to your successful transferee relocations then please get in touch!