2009 Relocation Forecast Lower Than Expected

That’s the conclusion reported last week by Atlas Van Lines. According to their annual Corporate Relocation Survey, companies are cutting their relocation budgets as well as the number of people being relocated, and expect that trend to continue at least through 2009.

“More than half (52 percent) predict that they will decrease the number of employees they move in 2009, and 48 percent predict relocation budgets will be cut again, as well. These percentages are more than double those seen in the past five years and represent the gloomiest outlook since 1975, when 38 percent of companies predicted lower relocation volumes than the previous year.”

Also noted: “Fewer employees are willing to accept a relocation. Roughly two-thirds (65 percent) of respondents had employees refuse relocation requests last year, up from 56 percent in 2007.”

There is quite an interesting standoff forming between employees not wanting to relocate and employers who have to move employees in order to keep their businesses profitable. It almost reminds me of those disgruntled and entrenched unions in Ohio auto factories, just without the picket lines and scabs. The other interesting consequence is that real estate doesn’t get sold because no one is moving! That’s not good news for anyone in my industry…