Is Relocating For Work Worth It? 10 Things To Consider

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Is Relocating For Work Worth It? 10 Things To Consider

By Sarah Knofler | October 21, 2019

You received a job offer. Not only is it a great opportunity, but it’s paying more than your current salary. The only thing left to consider is that the opportunity is halfway around the country – or world. Are you ready to make the move? Should you move for a job?

Before you answer these, here are 10 questions you should ask yourself to determine if you should consider the offer:

1. Who will pay relocation costs?

At the most basic level, the company you’re relocating for should have a relocation policy in place. It protects the employer and should make you feel more comfortable about uprooting your life too. This will outline how relocation costs will be covered or offset and if it will be a lump sum or direct bill method. There may be different policies depending on if it’s a short- or long-term relocation and whether it’s domestic or international.

2. Will my salary increase, or will my money go further?

It’s unlikely you’re considering a big move for a job if it isn’t offering you more money or greater opportunities. But, what you really should be looking at is your salary relative to the cost of living. CNN Money has a user-friendly calculator that will take your current salary and location and determine a comparable salary based on cost of living in the new prospective city.

3. What does the future of the company look like?

There are a couple angles you should research when determining where you think the company will be in the next five to 10 years. First, pull market research on the industry in which the company operates. The United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics reports on employment by industry, including changes in the past decade and projections for the next decade. Then, if the company is public, dig into its financials to gain an understanding of its viability. You should also consider the company’s position in the market, relative to competitors. You don’t want to make a move for a business that might not make it into the next year.

4. Is there an opportunity to move up in the company?

If you don’t know this already, you should ask your recruiter about the company’s hierarchy and opportunity for advancement if this organization is new to you. Don’t be shy; after all, you’re considering relocating for the business. If you’re an employee already, you should have a feel for how people are promoted from within the organization. To relocate, you may want to see a whole new potential career path unveiled; you certainly don’t want to see a dead end.

5. Will the new job be satisfying?

Understanding your future career opportunity is important, but don’t forget to look at the now as well. You want to make sure the current job you’re being brought in to do is just as satisfying and engaging as the one you’re striving to move into in the future. Conduct informational interviews with people who are already doing the job you’re moving for, so you can decide if you’ll like it.

6. Do I think I’ll have a good relationship with my new boss?

A Gallup study found about half of the adults surveyed left a job “to get away from their manager,” so it’s safe to say your boss can make or break your job satisfaction. Don’t be afraid to spend time with your new potential manager during the interview process to get to know him or her better and ask questions that will lend some insight into their leadership approach.

7. What is my comfort level with change?

You know yourself better than anyone else. Reflect on how the idea of not only adjusting to a new job but also moving to a new location will feel. Everything changing at once may overwhelm some people; others thrive on it. Additionally, if you have a spouse and/or children, think about how it will affect them.

8. Will my spouse find a job in our new location?

According to Atlas Van Lines Annual Corporate Relocation Survey Results, 55 percent of employees who declined relocation offers did so because of a spouse’s employment. Be mindful of your spouse’s career opportunities as well as their overall wellbeing in the new location.

9. Will my children be happy at our new location?

Consider your children’s ability to adapt to new situations before making a move. You should research the quality of education they’ll have access to and think about where in their schooling journey they’re at: Are they making the jump from elementary to middle school anyway, or do they have one year left in high school?

10. What is my backup plan if the new gig doesn’t work out?

This is a question people often overlook because they’re excited about the prospect of a new job in a new location. If the move doesn’t work out, will you be able to relocate back to your prior location, and will the company help you do so? Would your former job (or something comparable) be available to go back to, or are there other roles you could consider? While you may not be able to have every possible scenario mapped out, having a couple of options to fall back on will help put your mind at ease.

Set aside some time for research and reflection before moving for a job. Going through the exercise of answering these questions will give you a foundation for deciding what’s best for you. If you do your homework, you’ll be making a move – or staying put – with confidence.


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About the Author
Sarah Knofler

Sarah Croy is a Talent Acquisition and Learning & Development specialist for GQR and Wynden Stark, executing her operations out of Austin, TX.

Sarah’s primary area of focus is on acquiring and developing GQR’s internal talent as well as helping to drive a strong work culture.

She began her career at a generalist talent acquisition firm, recruiting on behalf of engineering clients in the Portland area. She has since shifted her focus to internal training.

Sarah graduated from the University of Portland studying English Literature, German Studies and History. While at University, she studied abroad numerous times and held positions in teaching, sales and editing. After graduating, Sarah taught English in Austria for a year.

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