Recently on our Instagram we ran a poll, and the question was: would you relocate for a job to other country/city or not. Not surprisingly, the answer 93% of respondents chose was: IT DEPENDS.
With Covid around, moving for a job became less necessary, but with more and more companies asking their employees to go back to the office when the restriction measures stop or to work from a certain place at this moment seem to bring relocation again in vogue.
Moving, or in this case moving for a job, is counted as one of the most stressful moments in life. So before packing your bags and heading to your new address, it is not an awful idea to go through several Q&A sessions.
Is this company a good fit for me?
Since the relocation is due to a job, it is a good idea to start with this question. And the first three steps are: research, research, and then some more research. Relocating to another city, or even a country is an action that should follow gathering various information. Sometimes the website of the company will not give you the clear picture of where you are going. Or you maybe get the incomplete set of information during your interviews.
Whichever the case, invest significant amount of your time and effort to reach out to other sources of information as well. They can be both online and offline. Speaking of online resources, after searching through web channels of the company itself, go to relevant platforms where employees and leave their reviews. Although, this piece of information should not be taken for granted for various reasons, it will surely give some more insight into the company culture and general atmosphere.
Somewhat more time and perhaps resource-consuming may be getting in touch with your new co-workers. Even your interviewers may be willing to connect you with the members of the team who are working on the same project so you can get the opportunity to get to know the team even more than you had the chance during the team-fit part of the interview.
Of course, assessing is even more practical if you are allowed to start working from your current permanent address and get to know your new company and team better step by step during the onboarding process.
The people you are working with constitute at least a third of your day, so it is no wonder people prefer to work with people they like, which will eventually affect the quality of life in general.
Who will take care of the relocation costs?
When it comes to questions you should ask when the relocation is requested is the relocation assistance package that will be a part of the deal. It certainly depends from employer to employer, and although it is not likely that a smaller employer will cover all the costs – there are still items on the list that can be negotiated.
There are lots of steps where the assistance can take place: finding of the housing, moving expenses, perhaps a temporary housing if the relocating is required to take place at the earliest convenience.
No matter which of the items from the list is agreed, they should be also put in writing. And when everything is written, it is also a good idea to pay attention to the fine print in the relocation agreement as well. Some of them may contain the clause requiring to repay the expenses which are originally covered by your employer if you walk away from them under certain conditions (e.g. before a certain period of time, etc.).
Is the job market in the area generally favourable?
Let’s say it is fairly uncommon to accept the offer and seriously consider relocating and to think about walking away the moment you settle. But the onboarding process may turn out unexpectedly, the business environment fluctuates and may change. So it is a good move to take a look into the job market in the area in general. It for sure will give you a feeling of a safety net if a new area you are moving to offers the opportunity in your line of work.
For some geographic locations, you can even simplify your search by visiting websites which are created to give you plenty of details about the employers in certain areas (check out: City-Data.com).
Is the cost of living in the area acceptable for me?
Although the financial reimbursement for your expertise may be something that you worked hard to, if you do not take standard of living of an area where plan to live. Without putting everything on paper and careful calculation, you may find that you may need to change your lifestyle after the relocation. Or to sacrifice some aspects of comfortable living you are used to.
And of course, this not only about housing expense, but also other everyday bill items such as transportation, groceries, healthcare, to mention a few. Good new is there are useful online and free tools that may assist you in your calculations and comparison in order to give you a clearer picture of what to expect for that matter.
How will the relocate affect my quality of life?
Having dealt with the growth opportunities for company and yourself, and after the conditions of moving and relocating are clarified, there is also the quality of life to be considered.
This is true both in cases when the relocation package includes the family relocation and when it does not.
It is necessary to communicate all the aspects of the relocation with the family and to consider how this huge change will affect all the parties involved.
Many relocations that failed had the unhappiness of partners or the whole family in the long run. It may either be they failed to find work themselves and become bored. Or on the other hand, if they are not a part of relocation package and they stay at home, it may lead to other issues, but still the common thing is that either party may feel they are not getting what they want. If the children are involved, there are even more questions that need to be answered after the offer acceptance.
Are you ready for a fresh start?
Finally, regardless of all the preparation and taking all imaginable things into consideration, every relocation carries a certain amount of unpredictability and factors we have no control of. The relocation takes its emotional toll as well, and some say the adaptation may last up to 12 months.
Therefore, you should be brutally honest with yourself whether you are a type of person who can navigate all of that at the given point of life not as a scary experience, but as an adventure.
Business Development Manager
Njegoseva 45, 5th floor 11000 Belgrade