How Can You Help Protect Your Lump Sum Relocating Employees?
- Encourage them to ask the right questions
According to Kevin Murphy, Vice President and General Manager of northAmerican® Van Lines, these are the key questions all employees should ask a potential moving company:
A. ESTIMATE PROCESS: Does the mover conduct an in-home survey or video survey of belongings before providing a guaranteed price? (Professional movers insist on an accurate method to best define the scope of work and surveys are required by law. Physical in-home surveying has traditionally been the best method, followed by newer video technology, to accurately determine the cost of a move.)
B. TRAINING: Has the moving crew been trained on the correct way to pack boxes and load a trailer to minimize damage? Do they follow industry-established guidelines to protect your home, as well as your prized possessions?
C. TECHNOLOGY: Does the mover use technology to accurately communicate special needs to the driver and electronically verify that every item loaded has been delivered? Does the company use electronic routing to maximize efficiency and reduce delivery time?
D. QUALITY STANDARDS: Does the mover employ quality standards for vehicles and personnel? Does it conduct background checks on drivers and crews? Are its storage facilities secure, clean and climate controlled? Does the mover use an unbiased third-party company to survey customers post-move and use that truthful data to improve performance? What is the mover’s Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating? Is the mover a “Pro Mover”, which means they have been certified by the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA)?
2. Consider a Preferred Partner Program
Preferred Partner Programs are a great way to assist employees who are using a lump sum in making sound purchasing decisions for their move. These programs connect employees with their firm’s relocation service provider through an online portal or a toll-free number that connects them to the company’s relocation moving partner. When this is offered to employees, they no longer get just a self-service lump sum package but instead receive a “managed or limited support” lump sum. Preferred Partner Programs allow companies to work with their relocation service provider to develop a list of preferred moving companies and vendors for other moving-related services that their relocating employees may require. This ensures employees are given pre-approved vendors so that they only have professional, legitimate moving companies from which to choose.
3. Point them to Moving.org for certified movers
The American Moving and Storage Association's (AMSA) website (the foremost professional association for movers) offers a search feature where consumers can search and compare moving companies that are AMSA certified ProMovers. AMSA’s stringent standards for certification make selecting a moving company using this tool a safe bet that your employees will be hiring a truly professional moving company.
4. Use Google Maps street view
As mentioned previously, often times rogue movers show up with rented trucks instead of professional moving trucks that have their company name on them. One way to verify a potential moving company is to look up their address on Google Maps using street view. If it’s a professional moving company, there should be trucks on the property. If you don’t see any trucks, employees may want to steer clear.
A lump sum program can be a useful and convenient method to compensate your relocating employees, but as with all things, it has its disadvantages. Employees are more exposed to possible risks as general consumers in the marketplace seeking moving services, and the rise of rogue movers makes wise purchasing decisions more important than ever. Avoiding rogue movers benefits both employees and companies, as professional movers will get employees’ belongings to their new location honestly, on time, and in one piece, thereby avoiding lost human capital hours. Encourage your employees to ask the right questions of prospective moving companies, hire certified movers, research moving companies on Google maps, and watch for rogue mover red flags. These steps will help guide them to a safe and successful move. In addition, adding a Preferred Partner Program where employees can be directed toward pre-approved, vetted providers is a wonderful way to offer more support to your relocating employees utilizing a lump sum.
Learn more about how today’s companies are applying lump sum benefits for their relocating employees, the different types of lump sum programs, the benefits and challenges of a lump sum, and more by visiting our guides page and downloading our Ultimate Guide to Lump Sum Benefits.