Leaving your comfort zone and moving to another place is exciting, frightening and overwhelming all at the same time. Whether it’s for personal reasons or work related, relocating demands time, effort, proper planning, and a lot of courage.
There is so much to think about when shifting countries for a role, no matter how positive the experience will be. So, what exactly should you be considering?
1. Ask your employer about relocation benefitsWhen moving for a specific employer, it’s always a good idea to check with your benefits coordinator regarding relocation services. Many large employers have relationships with relocation companies that offer great financial benefits, such as covering moving expenses and closing costs.
2. Check out your (potential) new homeAs soon as you know you'll be moving, start surfing the web and looking at community profiles local to your new employer. Perhaps one of the most important factors in your decision will be understanding the local economy and housing market, or what schools are available if you have children. You may be excited about landing a new job with a higher salary, but if the local economy is significantly more expensive than the one you're coming from, you may find yourself further behind financially rather than ahead.
3. Plan to make a few preview tripsIt will take some time for you to gain familiarity with a new area, so plan a few preview trips to help you get comfortable there. You may be assessing various towns or neighbourhoods, so do some comparison shopping. Often, big businesses will provide a recce trip, to help you and your family make a sound decision.
4. Determine what you can live withThe commute to work may be a breeze from the northern suburbs but horrible from the south. You may prefer a bedroom community to the city life. If you have children, the school systems are always critical to your decision. This is a process that will more than likely take some time to work through.
5. Make your travel arrangementsAs soon as you know your move date, book any flights to coordinate with the dates of your move. If pets will be moving with you, be sure to make arrangements for them and understand the airline's policy and what travel containers will be required. It is also important to decide what necessary items you will want to keep with you and what you can send with the moving company. Keep in mind the number of changes of clothes and the weather where you are heading, and make sure you keep prescriptions and closing paperwork with you.
6. Get your work in orderSure, you might be moving to another role in another city or country, but you’re still at the same company. This means you want to leave your current role on the best note possible. Tie up any loose ends, complete outstanding projects as much as you can, and assist with any handover wherever possible.
7. Consider the future of the company (and your own goals)There’s no point in upheaving your whole life if a) the business isn’t doing well and your relocation is a last ditch effort to fix things, or b) the new job pays well, but it’s not quite in the career direction you had hoped. Moving for work can seem exciting, but it has to be worth it in the long run.
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