Avoiding Employee Turnover after a Relocation by Chris Finckel

4 Apr 2015

Employee turnover is a major cost for corporations. The average turnover rate in the United States is 24% according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. While there are multiple reasons for employee turnover, one thing is for certain; turnover is more likely for relocated employees than ones fully embedded in the community. This fact makes retaining employees, during the relocation process, critical as a cost saving factor in the corporate plan. In addition, employees who are relocated are often strategically key to the organization.  Therefore retaining these strategically critical employees during the relocation process takes on an entirely new level of importance.

The prime factor in retaining any employee is the employee’s happiness with their job and the organization. Obviously this goes for regular and relocated employees. Listen to your employees, are they happy at work and at home? When deciding who to relocate, things become much easier when relocating employees who are happy at their jobs and happy with the organization. Today’s employees expect a good work/life balance: management that collaborates and coaches instead of demands; a focus on results instead of rule-based work; a sense of personal meaning; and last–but far from least– has access to the best tools and technology to work with. An employee who is satisfied in these maxims is far less likely to become an employee turnover statistic.

The old way of retaining employees after the relocation process was with the threat of having to pay back the relocation package costs should the employee leave the organization after being moved. While this tactic does have merit, it is far from ideal.  The best practice to prevent employee turnover during the relocation process is to be proactive in the employee’s happiness rather than managing with threats of having to pay back the relocation package.