At this year’s WERC meeting in Atlanta, GA, I listened to the opening speaker, Mike Walsh, describe how the world is rapidly changing around us every day – how we live, how we communicate, how we entertain, and how we gather information. Everything is literally at our fingertips! How fast you can get it largely depends on your search experience. Heck, my kids communicate with me by texting me from upstairs to find out what’s for dinner. My reply, come down and see for yourself! As he continued talking, I started to day dream slightly and think back to a few months earlier when I took my oldest daughter, Brooke on a college search trip across Texas. We visited the University of Texas in Austin, and one of the coolest places I remembered from my time attending school there is their library, which is in the shape of the state of Texas if you were looking down on it from above, in a helicopter or nowadays a drone. When you first entered, there used to be a grand room full of library cards based on the Dewey Decimal System. Each row of cabinets were made of hand rubbed oak, and glistened under the lighting like fine furniture. It took a whole semester just to figure out how to navigate this vast system of card cabinets. Fast forward years later, we found that this great room had been replaced by a computer lab. There were no rows of fine cabinetry anymore. All replaced by a computer.

Once I came back to reality, I keyed in on Mike’s comments about how the way we work is changing on a daily basis. The Millennial generation and the newest generation yet to be named has not experienced a world without smart phones and social media networks, where information is shared almost immediately. This new generation is shaping the way we will deliver our relocation services today, and in the future.  According to Mike, the next big shifts in business will be shaped by the Cloud enabled, artificial intelligence moderated, and data driven experiences that our kids enjoy daily.

After his presentation was over, I spent the rest of the day thinking about how we have already begun the journey down the path towards our new delivery model. Client dashboards now provide a real time update on the status of an entire program – all driven by the latest data analytics collected through our software. The next wave of change will be driven by leveraging predictive analytics. An example of predictive analytics might look like this: X percentage of employees leave the company after repatriating from an assignment. Using predictive analytics, a company may find by relocating employees with a specific skillset or demographic, they can increase the percentage of employees who stay with the company, and use the knowledge they gain from their assignment to the betterment of the company.

In addition to the increase use of data analytics, self service tools continue to increase in use. Transferees have the choice of self-service versus traditional one to one service delivery. Almost everything you can imagine in the relocation process can be accomplished through a smart phone. Like I said – almost everything. There is still not a solution available  that provides a reassuring voice on the other end of a phone line, reassuring a spouse that their kids will eventually make new friends in the new location, or that the new country they are moving to will accept them with open arms. Until then, we will continue to re-invent and re-design the ways we deliver our services in effort to enhance service quality, drive efficiencies and reduce our clients' cost exposure.

What do you imagine relocation service delivery will look like in the next five years or decade? 

This article was posted on following categories: Relocation Trends