How do I make my job relocation run smoothly?
Making the decision to relocate is a massive life change and it doesn’t just affect you – your friends and family will all need to adapt to accommodate the new situation.
The reasons for wanting to move elsewhere are numerous. Maybe you’re sick of the city and need some fresh air and countryside. Maybe you’ve had troubles in other areas of your life and need a new start. You could find that the type of job you’re after simply isn’t available locally. Alternatively, it could be your company who is instigating the move.
Whatever your reasons, the methods for ensuring you relocation runs smoothly are the same.
Deciding where to go
If the move is your idea rather than your company’s, then the kind of place you end up is going to be the biggest decision to make.
If you have a network of people in another area it’s always going to make for an easier transition. They will be able to advise on things like the best places to live, local schools and transport. They may even be able to help you land a new job.
For those of you who have no idea where you want to go, think long and hard about what’s important to you. Do you want to stay in the UK? Do you prefer to have all the amenities and entertainment on your doorstep? Would you prefer a quieter detached lifestyle? How close do you want to be to your family? Nobody can tell you what’s the perfect location for you – it’s something you’ll just know is right.
Carefully researching the various areas open to you before taking the plunge increases your chances of a successful move. Make sure this study is balanced and subjective - a fantastic summer fortnight in Devon is not the same as a rainy February there.
On top of the obvious features like schools, housing and leisure, it’s worth looking at which political party has been voted into the local government – it gives you a great insight into the general mindset of people in an area.
Beware of ‘grass is always greener’ syndrome. If you’re dissatisfied with where you are now, try to be rational about why this is. There may be many factors feeding your dissatisfaction, and not just the horrendous commute. If these issues are likely to reoccur wherever you are and whatever job you do, maybe you should try resolving these before eloping
You’re highly advised to sort out your work situation in a new location before making a move. Renting or buying a property without the long-term guarantee of income could put you in a very difficult position. If you think that employers will only consider you if you’re living locally, reassure them in your cover letter that your intentions are to move once a position has been secured.
Moving with your employer
Sometimes change is forced on us by our employer heading to pastures new. You’re likely to be given a couple of weeks to decide whether you want to move with them so use this time wisely to make an informed decision. Apply all the same principles as you would if you were choosing to move voluntarily, and don’t feel under massive pressure to move simply to keep your job. If the move is going to cost you too much in terms of the things you consider important – your friends or your kids’ schools for example – then it’s time to start looking for a new job.
If you do decide to move with your employer, check out what financial support is going to be available to you to cover the great expense of moving. This can include help with removal costs, higher mortgage payments, temporary lodging costs or even a bridging loan while you sell your current home. Talk to your company’s HR team and make sure you know all the angles before you make your final commitment.
Settling in to your new surroundings
It’s always tough building up new social networks from scratch, but use your imagination and look for ways to get involved with your new neighbours and the community. Sports and social clubs are good places to start where you’ll come across many like-minded people. If you have children, you’ll generally meet other parents through school activities.
Your new colleagues are an obvious group of people to get involved in social activities with, but be careful not to come across as too needy before you’ve integrated into the team. If you’re moving with a partner, you can cast the net further by trying to get to know their new colleagues as well.