Companies have offered relocation assistance as an incentive to prospective employees for years. However, relocating a new employee can be costly, and asking your employer to foot the bill is an art that requires subtle care. Here’s a list of five things to keep in mind when requesting a relocation package from a prospective employer.
1. Bring it Up Early
It’s best to bring up the possibility of relocation assistance early in the hiring process. Employers who don’t offer relocation packages won’t hesitate to inform you when asked. If you know you’ll need help, however, set those expectations as soon as you can so you don’t waste anyone’s time.
2. Do Some Research
Conduct research beforehand on the amount of assistance you need. An employer is much more likely to provide relocation if you come armed with the details of what is necessary. Be prepared to answer questions about logistics, like how much it costs to move, and timing, such as when you plan to arrive. Also, you can check out job review websites to see what employees say about benefits and compensation during the hiring process.
3. Leverage Your Credentials
If a company does offer a relocation package, it’s a good idea to weigh your options. Some companies offer the same package to all employees, but you may work in a specialized field in which specific professionals are hard to find. Are there any particular certifications or types of expertise you bring to the table that few people have? If so, you may be able to use this as leverage for negotiating a better package structure.
4. Repackage the Package
You can sometimes receive a relocation package by rearranging and restructuring other benefits. For example, you can ask for a slight bump in salary to cover moving costs, offer to waive specific benefits, or re-title the package itself as a signing bonus. This tradeoff in benefits could save the company money, in the long run, further enticing them to assist. Always speak in terms of the company’s interest instead of yours.
5. Ask for a Lump Sum Payment
Organizations can aid in the form of a lump sum payment, reimburse expenses, or allow nationwide moving companies to handle the relocation process. Some employers require you to repay your lump sum package if you leave the company before a certain amount of time, typically two years. Therefore, if you ask for a lump sum payment, you can stipulate repayment to lessen the risk of loss to your employer and provide assurance you’ll stick around.
The Bottom Line
Negotiating a corporate relocation package doesn’t have to be scary. The market favors job seekers right now, so you’re in an excellent position to use this information to your benefit. By taking advantage of these five tips, you can make a smoother transition to your new job and concentrate better on completing the hiring process.