6 Ways to Keep Employees Happy During a Corporate Relocation

Tips on how employers can retain talent by ensuring employees feel happy and appreciated during a corporate relocation.

There are many different reasons a business may relocate or move some of its staff. They may be upgrading, seeking better facilities, or expanding, for example. Corporate relocations often are necessary for a business.

Whatever the reason, relocations can be stressful for employees. Issues such as adjusting to the new environment and finding housing can significantly impact employees and make them feel alienated.

Leaving their colleagues and families also can cause loneliness and anxiety. And relocations can cause financial strain due to logistical plans. These effects hamper productivity and job satisfaction.

Let’s explore some tips to help employees feel happy and appreciated during a corporate relocation—and make them want to stay with their employer.

The Importance of Employee Well-Being

Relocating employees, whether short term or permanent, can affect an employee’s well-being, which also affects productivity. Therefore, it’s essential that employers enhance the overall well-being of employees during relocations.

Poor well-being impacts productivity, engagement, and job satisfaction. With millions of U.S. employees quitting their jobs in 2022, enhancing employee well-being helps ensure retention of top talent.

Employees’ well-being and mental health during relocation should be a top priority to reduce stress and anxiety. Unhappy employees leave their jobs and are often absent. Unfortunately, absenteeism and the recruitment of new employees can be expensive for your organization.

On the flip side, happy employees also become more innovative as they are motivated. And happy employees equal satisfied clients, which improves business outcomes.

Additionally, prioritizing employee well-being sends a powerful message that you appreciate them and fosters loyalty. A business that cares for its employees’ well-being attracts top talent and retains existing employees.

Steps to Maintain Employee Happiness During Relocation

When planning an office move that requires relocation of employees, it’s vital that you make the process as comfortable as possible. After all, your employees are relocating at your behest, so you have to keep them happy during relocation. Here is how you do it:

1. Prepare and communicate in advance

If you are planning any relocations that involve your employees, it’s imperative that you communicate with them in advance. Abruptly announcing relocation plans can cause panic and concern.

Prior communication plans are the key to a smooth relocation. First, whenever possible, give employees at least six months of notice before the relocation to help them plan and deal with the new changes.

Have an open and transparent dialogue to enhance the long-term employer-employee relationship.

Engage them in the relocation plans and ask for their opinions to make them feel like part of the team. Communication also will help manage employee expectations regarding the logistics and potential challenges, reducing frustrations.

Preparing employees for relocation also involves telling them when and how to pack. Consider giving them off days to help with the preparation. This will decrease the pressure of relocating.

Early preparation and communication help keep employees calm and enthusiastic about the move.

2. Offer relocation support services.

Packing, moving, and then unpacking is no fun for anybody, and it can add to the pressure of corporate relocating. However, you can streamline the relocation process for your employees by offering relocation assistance.

Relocation assistants not only help with moving but also help with house hunting. Navigating real estate in a new environment can be difficult and cause anxiety. Such assistants also can help employees settle in and look for schools and spouse jobs. The relocation services also can offer a package of selling or renting the employee’s current home and offer them peace of mind.

Outsourcing a relocation support team for your employees removes the burden of moving. The relocation support also helps them navigate and quickly adapt to new environments.

3. Provide a healthy work-life balance.

Adjusting during corporate relocation is tough and affects work-life balance, resulting in burnout. According to a study, 49 percent of employees who quit their jobs cited a work-life imbalance.

Providing a healthy work-life balance is beneficial to your employees. Consider offering flexible working hours during the transitional phase.

One of the lessons COVID-19 taught the work industry is that remote work can be practical. Allow your relocating employees the option to work remotely for better results.

Flexible working hours help employees handle personal matters, settle into their new surroundings, and manage logistics.

A healthy work-life balance demonstrates that you care about your employees and creates a happier work environment.

4. Ensure family and community integration.

Relocating an employee often may mean their family also moves with them. Unfortunately, one of the most overlooked consequences of corporate relocation is its effect on an employee’s family.

Most families struggle with challenges such as looking for new schools and adapting to the new environment. Relocation also means the employee’s partner must change their job and career opportunities. Such concerns for their family can take a toll on an employee and affect productivity.

In a highly competitive job market, it’s crucial to minimize relocation-related stress. Therefore, seek ways to ensure an employee’s family is integrated into the new community so they don’t feel alienated. Consider offering resources to look for new jobs and schools.

To ensure a smooth transition, offer support for finding local amenities such as hospitals and community centers.

5. Ensure clear and ongoing communication.

How important is communication? According to statistics, 86 percent of workers link workplace failures to poor communication.

Even after informing employees about relocation plans, ensure you keep them updated. Relocations can cause anxiety among employees, especially without clear communication.
Keep your employees updated about the procedures, changes, and progress to minimize stress. To make the plans easier, ensure your staff are informed at all stages using channels accessible to everyone.

Hold regular face-to-face meetings and answer their questions while addressing their concerns. You also can update your employees through e-mail notifications, press releases, newsletters, and posters in high-traffic areas.

Utilize the company’s portal for Website notifications, as it’s an effective tool for communication. Include important information such as relocation dates and the new address in your communication.

6. Encourage feedback and adaptation.

Encouraging employee feedback regarding corporate relocation has several benefits. When you allow employees to provide suggestions about relocations, they feel more engaged in the decision-making process.

To ensure feedback and adaptation during corporate relocation, establish clear communication channels with employees and actively seek feedback.

To effectively get suggestions, conduct surveys to find areas that may require improvement. Focus groups are another excellent and cost-effective way to collect insightful suggestions. After getting employee suggestions, be willing to amend where necessary.

The Bottom Line

Corporate relocations can be challenging for employees, and employers must prioritize their well-being. By implementing the tips above, relocation can be smooth, and employees can enjoy the transition.

The importance of communication cannot be overemphasized. Whether it’s in advance or during updates, employees are much happier with transparency.

Outsourcing relocating support services also goes a long way to ensuring employee comfort. And a healthy work-life balance ensures that stress levels are in check by preventing burnout. Last but not least, including an employee’s family in the relocation plans is a great way of making them happier.

Nancy Zafrani
Nancy Zafrani is the general manager of Oz Moving & Storage. A day-one employee of Oz, she has 30 years of experience in the moving industry. As a lifetime New Yorker, Zafrani also has lots of experience dealing with small apartments and organizing.