The Relo Rundown


5 Things You Need to Know
About “Driving” Destination Services Programs

In this month’s Mobility Matters podcast, we sat down to chat with Janelle Gerber, Destination Program Manager, and Jonell McWilliams, a Houston-based Destination Consultant, as well as our Destination Consultants across the country to discuss how to “Drive” Destination Service programs to success.

Here are the: 5 Things You Need to Know About…
Driving DS Programs.

What does “Driving” a program mean?

Providing a high level of engagement with the assignee from program inception through a successful conclusion of services is the goal. Required ‘touchpoints’ (Intro Email, Follow-up Email after the first face to face appointment and the Closing Email) provide structure for key communication. A strong Consultant anticipates the needs of the assignee and pro-actively pursues the assignee via email, phone or text with key information related to their program services. First and foremost, the Consultant stays involved by offering ‘value added’ support by scheduling tasks for timely completion, being responsive and offering solutions to challenges encountered.

How do Destination Consultants avoid a program from “stalling” ?

Using persistence with communication techniques is often needed with ‘reluctant’ or ‘unresponsive’ assignees. When the initial correspondence goes ‘unanswered’ by the assignee, the Consultant needs to follow up within several days with a second email. Use of the ‘High Importance’ option in Outlook can be an attention grabber. The Program Manager partners with the Authorizer for a united front to ‘sell the services’ offered by IOR. Use this team approach to nudge the assignee to respond to your emails and follow-up steps.

Why are some assignees reluctant to work with the Destination Consultant?

Domestic assignees and millennials can present challenges due to a sense of independence/autonomy and feeling they can achieve the goals faster on their own. Seeking the input of co-workers combined with the internet is typical and often contributes to an unresponsive assignee. The Destination Consultant must ‘sell’ the benefit of using their services; they are the local market expert with a developed network in all the service areas, especially the rental market. By partnering with the Consultant and tapping into these resources, the assignee increases the odds of finding their rental faster, resulting in financial savings and greater client satisfaction.

How critical is the Needs Analysis?

The Needs Analysis is extremely important to the success of the program. It enables the Destination Consultant to become fully prepared by learning specific needs of the assignee and family. What are the ages of the children? What is the name of the family pet? What types of activities are they interested in? This level of detail, in addition to the budget and neighborhood preferences, are key to ensure a successful program delivery and positive assignee experience.

What can the authorizers do?

Authorizers can work in partnership with their Destination Services Provider to ensure the assignee is being responsive to the Destination Consultant. Authorizers have on-going communication with the assignee and describe the value that Destination Consultants bring to the program.