When it comes to current global moving trends, it is difficult to speculate about where we are going and what the future holds. That’s because we are living a life interrupted by COVID-19, and it has drastically impacted every aspect of our lives, not just in the U.S., but throughout the world.
Yes, there is a lot of talk about the “new normal,” and we are already seeing widespread changes across the board, but one thing is for certain, and that’s that we are living in uncertain times. So, we recognize that this is very much a fluid situation, and we’ve already witnessed the goalpost getting moved several times. That is merely a natural reflection of the unpredictability of the crisis caused by the pandemic.
When you add in the fact that 2020 is an election year in the U.S., uncertainly tends to deepen. Historically, election years are a time when people have been known to sit on the fence before making a big move, and it is equally a critical part of the consideration process for companies in terms of relocating employees. Taking a wait and see approach is often the most sensible way to go.
As we delve into some of the notable global moving trends, we have to strongly take into consideration both the pandemic and the election, as well as the general fears associated with economic uncertainty.
So, while moving overseas can be a very complex undertaking during the best of times, it has been even more challenging this year. But our hope is that we will start to see some sense of a return to normalcy in 2021. And, as things begin to turn around, we fully expect an improved outlook that will continue to point us in a more positive direction.
Let’s have a look at some of the more significant global moving trends.
1. Remote Workforce:
As a matter of necessity, more people are working from home than ever before. This has changed the work environment dramatically, as we have learned to lean more heavily on technology to keep businesses operational, and to keep employees on the payroll.
However, one of the side effects of a largely remote workforce, is that many companies have hit the pause button on relocating their employees, both domestically and internationally. This is due both to the huge expense of relocating an employee to another country, especially during leaner times, but also because of the many travel restrictions and new regulations that have made moving to certain locations a considerable challenge or even impossible. Again, this remains a fluid situation.
Although all indications are that this is a temporary situation in many cases, it may represent more of a permanent trend, at least for now. We just have to keep our eyes on the changes being made to travel restrictions, and the reopening of borders for various countries. And, as international relocation begins to pick back up, we expect that moves will likely be on a priority basis.
2. Digital Transformation
Companies have also implemented digital transformation strategies in order to leverage technology for meeting the demands of a largely remote workforce. A good example of this is the trend away from collaborative in-person office environments, to more secluded, personal spaces. That has led to the rise of companies bringing their employees together virtually via video chat platforms, such as Zoom, Skype, and Microsoft Teams.
There are many companies that have successfully mastered the work from home business model, which has led them to even take it a step further by offering this as a permanent arrangement for a large portion of their workforce. This has caused some companies to change their policies to enable their employees to work from home, thus dramatically changing their work culture. This too might impact the volume of global moves in the future for many companies.
3. International Shipping Delays:
The possibility of international shipping delays is something that we first reported to our customers back in February. This also means that a longer lead time is needed when shipping goods internationally. While we always strive to avoid delays as much as possible across the board, this is the result of stricter restrictions due to the pandemic crisis.
So, while we might be unable to prevent these delays, it’s important to manage the expectations of our customers and keep them informed of new developments as they arise.
4. More People Considering International Moves
It might be worth mentioning that ever since the pandemic hit the U.S., that more people seem to be using their downtime to at least research this popular topic: “How to move out of the U.S.” And while moving to another country might be difficult at the moment, people are still taking this time to look at their options.
According to a recent article published by MoveHub entitled, “The Best Countries to Move to in 2021: Where to Go Once the Coronavirus Crisis is Over,” these countries top the list:
- New Zealand
What Can We Expect as We Move Into 2021?
Generally speaking, as more travel restrictions begin to lift, and the business economy continues to improve, we anticipate that there will be an uptick in international moves. In many cases, this will be buoyed by the pent-up demand of companies that have had to put their international relocation programs on hold.
So, as the situation continues to change and improve, you can count on Daryl Flood to keep you updated. All in all, we are very optimistic about 2021 and beyond.
Please contact us any time, and we will get you moving!