Relocation Insights


4 Ways to Help Your Relocation Program Enter Its Sustainability Era

Sustainability is an important topic with many dimensions to consider. It involves developing and measuring carefully planned strategies for programs, products, goals, company culture, and even internal talent. When looking at broader talent strategy, mobility programs have a supporting role in this story. In this blog, we share some ways you can tailor your program to make sure it’s ready to be part of your organization’s sustainability era.

While a singular contributor to achieving broader sustainability goals, one element of sustainability in corporate relocation is mitigating environmental impact. Mobility programs can consider some of the following, which can help meet the specific goal of lowering the carbon footprint: 

1: Sustainability in Household Goods Management

A clear household goods management policy creates opportunity to advance the reduction of your company’s carbon footprint:  
  • Partnering with discard and donate programs which give employees a chance to “Marie Kondo their belongings,” and bring the joy-sparking items with them, while donating or discarding the rest prior to their move. This reduces the overall weight of the household goods move, saves packing materials and fuel, and lowers carbon emissions, while also resulting in cost savings. 
  • Utilizing local food waste reduction programs, such as Move for Hunger, that support closing the hunger gap worldwide. Similar to discard and donate programs, employees donate their unopened, non-perishable food items instead of moving them. This results in weight savings and a positive impact on emissions, cost, and fuel. For many common pantry items, such as canned goods, the cost to replace the items at the destination is typically cheaper than shipping the items. 
  • Encouraging employees to take advantage of virtual home surveys, if available, rather than onsite, which eliminates the surveyor’s travel requirements. Virtual surveys carry the added benefit of flexibility, allowing the household goods company to schedule the survey around the relocating employee’s busy schedule.

2: Sustainable Temporary Housing

Housing accommodations can play a part in sustainable goal considerations as well, by: 
  • Encouraging temporary living facilities in host and destination locations that have higher walkability scores, which enables alternative modes of transportation like walking or public transportation to employees.
  • Selecting corporate housing buildings that are LEED certified or offer energy efficient appliances and smart features (lighting, utilities, security, etc.). 

3: Traveling Sustainably

Exploring the structure of travel options within your mobility policies, including elements like: 
  • Exploring the opportunity to lengthen a trip or stay by combining a business trip with home finding to offset travel requirements.
  • Selecting and booking travel flights based on carbon emissions impact rather than flight duration or cost efficiency.
  • Allowing the selection of electric vehicles and/or providing incentives for ride share options for ground-based travel. 

4: Supply Chain Sustainability

Partnering with a relocation management company (RMC) with a robust supply chain that has transparent sustainability practices can play a key role in the success of your program by:
  • Creating opportunities to pursue expanded engagement with your partners for distinct, shared sustainability strategies. 
  • Determining whether your RMC participates in a third-party sustainability practice or produces an annual sustainability report. 
  • Encouraging supplier partners to participate in independent, trusted third-party sustainability evaluations, such as EcoVadis or other similar platforms.
  • Developing carbon emissions offsetting goals in areas where reductions are challenging or not available at the time.
  • Providing education to relocating employees during the onboarding process regarding sustainability benefits provided by your supplier partners and how these services align with your sustainability goals 
  • Vetting your supplier partners to ensure they can support your sustainable mobility program goals. Ask questions, such as:
    • Does your organization have an established plan or policy to reduce your impact on the environment? Please describe.
    • Describe your efforts to promote sustainability within your worldwide supplier network.
    • How can your company assist us in achieving our sustainability goals?

Cornerstone Can Help You Establish an Era of Sustainability

When it comes to sustainability in your relocation program, the path forward is unique for each organization, and developing a scalable and measurable approach is an ongoing process. For more information, or to have a discussion on how your mobility program can be optimized to meet your sustainability goals, contact your Cornerstone representative or request a courtesy consultation with one of our experts.

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