Why You Should Use a Move Management Provider and What to Look For

To put it simply, move management is managing the process of moving one or more employees’ belongings from one location to another, but the process is far more complex than that. There are various different kinds of move management, different needs depending on the employee, and different considerations depending on the locations involved. There are also many unintended consequences that can arise when not paying close attention to your move management processes. Below, we share some insights to some important questions about the matter.

What, in essence, does move management encompass?

The control of an employee’s move from door to door. Component parts are controlled and broken down to save costs. Efficiencies are the key through the process. The communication with the assignee is retained by the controlling move management company, not the moving suppliers. Communication is directly from the move management company. Insurance is covered and control by the move management company.

Forwarders and carriers who demonstrate the highest degree of proficiency with the respect to country-specific import and export customs laws are selected. It is ensured that the selected network providers are fully credited and aligned with the corporate values.

Stress and time is removed from assignee and HR due to having one point of contact.

What are some of the downsides to a company deciding to orchestrate move management in-house, instead of using a provider?

The downside is your need for a moving expert to control the costs of the supplier. Also, there is a need for software to regulate the move experience and the corporate compliance.

In most cases the companies who carry do this in-house, could be biased to a certain vendor – ‘personal kickbacks”. The internal employee carrying out the function could be senior or junior to the assignee which can cause internal challenges.

Experience and day to day immersion in the industry is crucial, whether it is picking the right partners, understanding changes in protocol or simply knowing who is doing a good job and where – it is very hard for in-house teams to keep on top of this and remain independent. They also do not have the purchasing power that a move management company has, through the volumes of business that they provide partners they are able to provide significant cost savings to clients.

What are some advantages of using a move management provider?

Cost control and improved communication, and an improved assignee experience are amongst the advantages.

A move management company will aim to provide Independent, competitive, transparent service, and may be geographically positioned to understand the laws and custom requirements of the country being moved to.

A single point of contact is another advantage. Expertise and experience on each and every case, and reduced costs on the move itself along with insurance rates are also provided.

What should one look for when choosing a provider?

One should look for an experienced team with a good reputation and culture, combined with great communication skills.

The company should have a very good reputation in the specific country or countries involved in the move, and demonstrate this proficiency with service and quality evaluations, and price competitiveness. The provider should also understand the specific needs of the employee being relocated and possess the relevant accreditations.

What should I do if I’m struggling to work with my current provider?

Have a small RFP, go out to the friends in the market to gain a recommended supplier. Put a number of questions together of the key service requirements. Also put a rate matrix together based on origin and destination locations, volume based on previous moves in the last year. Better still, get the Move Management companies to provide three quotes each for door to door move and compare – it will be insightful.

Meet with the supplier and advise where they are not meeting the expectations set.
Complete an RFQ to get other suppliers to provide information as to how they would provide the service.

If this does not work out, you may need to find a new provider who suits your needs better.

Is it best to go with a global company, or one that specializes in the area I’m interested in?

It is better to build up a supplier network in each location you require and dictate which companies carry out the origin, freight services and another for the destination services.

Most move management companies would be global.

Should the company be based in my current location, or the one I’m moving to?

It can help with on the ground response, but is not necessary if you have a good supplier with a great partner network. With a single point of contact, it is not necessary to have local representation.

Insights on move management industry trends happening right now:

The current situation is that a lot of corporations are using a service provider where there is one point of contact to meet all their relocation requirements. This service is been outsourced to one service provider, or to regional service providers based on the corporation’s requirements. Corporations are vetting their service providers thoroughly, and may shop around should they be dissatisfied. Move management providers are aware that it is important to keep the needs of their clients top of mind at all times, update their accreditations if need be, and provide the best possible service within their capabilities to retain and grow their client bases.

A special thanks Ben Carter from Icon Relocation, George Holmes from Clearview Relocation, and Kim Becker from Africa Mobility Services for their insights, which we have shared with you below.


If you are looking for a move management solution, feel free to contact Relocation Africa via info@relocationafrica.com.
For information as to how else Relocation Africa can help you with your Mobility, Immigration, Research, Remuneration, and Expat Tax needs, email marketing@relocationafrica.com, or call us on +27 21 763 4240.

Sources: [1], [2]. Image sources: [1], [2].