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EuRA 2022 Conference Trends & Takeaways

From concerns around the shortage of temporary accommodations to a growing need for flexibility when locating destination homes, Altair Global’s Simon Scott, Vice President of Destination Services, discusses the hot topics raised in this year’s EuRA conference.

Earlier in June, the European Relocation Association (EuRA) held its conference in Seville, Spain. This was the first time its members from around the world had been able to come together for three years and, unsurprisingly (given how much the world has changed in that time), there were a multitude of topics which were at the top of everyone’s agenda.

“If You Sleep ON It, You Won’t Sleep IN It”

The lack of rental property was the number one topic for everyone. The number of cities around the world where this seems to be the primary problem is growing. From what started as an issue in a few European cities—particularly Dublin, London, Amsterdam, and Berlin—has now grown to an ever-increasing list beyond just Europe, including cities in North America and Asia. Destination Service Providers (DSPs) are finding short-term fixes to tackle some of these issues, with apartment and house shares being one example, but the real concern is that there is no long-term solution in sight.

Much of the discussion centered on communicating the need for flexibility (in terms of budgets), locations, and compromising on what customers will accept in a place to live. In addition, there was a focus on how the tightening of housing markets has changed the nature of a home search, with more time spent on research and developing relationships with landlords and real estate agents and less time spent on viewing properties. In many markets now, filling a day with viewings is simply not possible. More likely is two half-days but the recommendation is to select one on the first half-day.

Issues Even Before Finding a Home

An additional concern raised at the conference was the shortage of temporary accommodation. Demand has increased significantly, and some providers have been a little less flexible given that it has become easier to fill their properties. Meeting client and customer expectations in terms of locations and types of property has been harder to achieve.

Finding Staff

The challenge of recruiting new team members is one experienced by most companies and DSPs are not immune to this. Much of the discussion was around finding, hiring, and retaining staff, with some interesting takes on ways to approach this. What was surprising was just how many countries are being impacted by this squeeze on resources. Even a country such as India has real challenges in its largest cities, with competition for talent reaching such levels that DSPs struggle to find the right staff for their businesses. Staff shortages are also having knock-on effects elsewhere, creating delays in visa applications, local government registrations, and temporary accommodation bookings.

EuRA 22 Simon Pull Quote

My Takeaway

Destination service providers have traditionally been a resourceful group, always focused on getting the job done. But, undoubtedly, these challenges provide a real test that impacts all parties involved with the relocation of employees globally, and only time will tell whether these are short term or will permanently become part of the process.

Simon Scott Speaker image


Simon Scott

Vice President, Finance & Pricing

As Vice President, Finance and Pricing for the EMEA region, Simon supports Altair Global’s business objectives with projects designed to improve efficiency and ensure our clients continue to benefit from the best suppliers supporting globally mobile employees. His responsibilities include finance, pricing, and supply chain management.

Published On: June 22, 2022

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