Nothing drags down an international assignment, and makes an assignee completely unhappy, more than realizing that their housing budget is totally inadequate for the new destination. Now, of course, while it’s obvious that everyone would like to live in the most exclusive area of town, in a delightful and beautiful property – we know that this is not always possible. That said, there are steps you can take to make sure that a valued employee will not end up frustrated with their housing situation in the new destination.
1. Go Local! – Speak with the your local DSP (Destination Service Provider) before the assignment to check on budgets. If, for example, the assignee has a €1.000 budget, but at least €1.400 is needed to meet their requirements – can a budget increase be approved?
2. More Support in Place of a Higher Budget – If a higher budget cannot be authorized for policy reasons, maybe some additional settling in services can be given, to offset any disappointment regarding the housing budget.
3. Honesty is The Best Policy! – If no budget increase is possible, this should be clearly communicated to the assignee upfront – explaining that instead of two bedrooms in a central location, they may have to consider two bedrooms in a less centrally located area, or a one bedroom in their favorite area. This upfront approach will be appreciated by most people and will give them a better understanding of what awaits them.
Understandably, companies are trying to save costs, however low budgets that result in an assignee being unhappy can really affect their performance and general contentedness about having accepted the new assignment.
The key to success is open dialogue and using the vital knowledge of your trusted local partner who will guide you in the right direction.