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Welcome to our Blog

Our blog lets us share with you current news and views from the world of HR and Global Mobility which we hope you will find interesting, informative and even entertaining. Along with our own thoughts and opinions we will bring you external articles and updates on items we think may matter to you.

We hope you enjoy reading our blog.

06
Apr
2018
Take a Break!
Despite a plethora of research into work-life balance and working hours, UK workers are still bad at taking breaks. Worrying trends are emerging, reflecting the…
27
Mar
2018
Packing for Your Global Assignment
Most assignees choose to use our professional packing service. It’s quicker, safer and far smoother. These tips will help your arrival at your new home…
12
Mar
2018
7 Tips for Relocating Overseas
An international assignment is exciting. Here are our top seven tips for ensuring that your relocation overseas is a success...
20
Feb
2018
5 Features of Your Ideal International Relocation Partner
Organising international relocations doesn't have to be complicated. In fact, choosing the right relocation partner can ensure that assignees’ moves are completed smoothly and with…
09
Feb
2018
Managing International Relocation: The HR Perspective
As the fallout of Brexit starts to become clearer, an increasing number of HR professionals are managing international relocations.
26
Jan
2018
3 Global Mobility Trends
Today’s International Relocation policies need to recognise three trends in order to provide best practice…
03
Jan
2018
Relocating Overseas… With Your Pet
If you have pets, you’ll know that they are definitely part of your family. So what happens if your employer offers you an international relocation?
15
Dec
2017
Ten Christmas Travel Tips
All too often, stressful journeys create a bad start to the holidays. Here are ten simple steps to help enjoy a smooth journey and arrive…
12
Dec
2017
Our Global Relocation Survey Says…
Customer feedback is extremely important to the team at BTR International. Referrals and recommendations are the lifeblood of our business and first impressions count.
28
Nov
2017
Easy Relocations
Any move can be stressful, especially when you are relocating to a new country. Working with the right partners can minimise this stress.
Take a Break!

Take a Break!

Despite a plethora of research into work-life balance and working hours, UK workers are still bad at taking breaks. Worrying trends are emerging, reflecting the fact that many employees in the UK are working continuously throughout the day… and into the evening.
New research involving 2051 office workers shows that breaks are not taken seriously enough – or in many cases, not at all.

Workfront reports that four trends illustrate concern about employees:

1. Only 20% office workers take 45-60 minutes for their lunch break. 57% take up to 30 minutes – or have no break at all.

2. Delaying calls of nature – 52% participants had delayed visiting the toilet during the last week… to meet a work deadline.

3. 77% workers log into work outside of usual business hours – 47% do this daily.

4. A maximum of 40% of employees’ time is focussed on their main duties thanks to distracting emails, phone calls and meetings.

Addressing these patterns will increase productivity, motivation and satisfaction. Workfront suggests four ways to take control and win back time:

1. Protect prime time – when are you at your best… first thing, late afternoon? Protect this prime time to do the work which is most urgent and important. Book uninterrupted time within your diary – and make sure that your colleagues know about this. Stick to it! (22% participants thought that this idea would improve their productivity.)

2. Schedule set times to respond to emails – 40% workers said that excessive emails affect their productivity. Resist answering emails continuously throughout the day.

3. Agree communication expectations – guidelines regarding expected response times, use of ‘reply all’ and ‘cc’ features plus handling urgent communication. This will enable you to set personal boundaries around emails and messages.

4. Project management software will streamline and prioritise communication regarding the projects you’re working on.

“It can be difficult to make time for a break when you’re very busy,” says Louise Chilcott, Business Development Executive at BTR International. “Our team works tirelessly to ensure that international relocations take place as smoothly as possible.

“This often means working with partners and colleagues across the world, which may involve different customs requirements, cultures and time zones.

“This means that our team must be focussed and flexible at all times. We find that lots of small breaks help concentration and efficiency. Above all, they contribute to efficient international relocations.”

If you would like to discuss your organisation’s international relocation policy or your assignees’ requirements, contact Louise via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0)1582 495495.
Packing for Your Global Assignment

Packing for Your Global Assignment

Most assignees choose to use our professional packing service. It’s quicker, safer and far smoother. These tips will help your arrival at your new home abroad to go smoothly...
1. Lighten the Load
Make sure that you are only taking items that you truly need or want. Other items can be stored or even sold.

2. Labels

Your packing partner will label the boxes so that you know which boxes belong to which room. But – make sure that you know where the essentials are – and that these boxes are marked accordingly. For example, which box labeled as ‘bedroom 1’ contains the bedding you’ll need for your first night?

3. List it
An inventory list helps to know exactly what goes where when you arrive at your destination. It prevents the time and stress involved with opening the boxes and then directing your support team. Talk to your move manager about this. They should be happy to help.

4. Liability Cover
A team of trained experts packs your boxes. But - you still need peace of mind that, should the unthinkable happen, any damages are covered by your relocation partner’s liability policy. “It’s very rare, but incidents do happen occasionally,” says Louise Chilcott, Business Development Executive at BTR International. “We have one of the consistently lowest claims rates in the industry – but we always ensure that sufficient cover is in place.”

5. Life’s Essentials
The most important box to have available immediately upon arrival is your box of essentials: kettle, tea bags, toilet rolls – maybe a bottle of wine for your new fridge! Having these items to hand exactly when you need them will help arrival day to go smoothly.

As well as packing, there are other elements to consider when it comes to an international relocation. These include storage, transportation and customs documentation. “We do everything we can to ensure that every move is completed smoothly, with minimal stress,” adds Louise. “Every assignee and manager has a single point of contact; their own dedicated account manager. We coordinate and manage every stage of the move, keeping everyone involved fully informed.”

To find out more, contact Louise via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call her on +44 (0) 1582 495 495.
7 Tips for Relocating Overseas

7 Tips for Relocating Overseas

An international assignment is exciting. Here are our top seven tips for ensuring that your relocation overseas is a success...
1. Visit first – if you can see your new location before you move, it will help you enormously. Make the most of internet research too. The more you learn about the culture and infrastructure before you move, the easier it is to be prepared.

2. Prepare your paperwork – this should be part of your relocation package. Many countries require visas for working there even if they are not needed for holidaying to that location.

3. Healthcare – from jabs to insurance, what is healthcare like in your new location? Will you need injections before you travel? You should receive sound advice from your relocation partner. Knowing where your local, English-speaking medical centre is located offers huge reassurance.

4. Travel with technology – making sure that your tablet, laptop or smartphone has GSM and/or Wi-Fi access in your new location is essential. This means that you can access online information, make Skype calls and find your way around immediately.

5. Join the conversation
– most places have a strong expat community. Find local blogs and forums for useful tips and contacts in your new location. But – don’t let this stop you from mixing with the locals too. You’ll feel ‘at home’ much quicker.

6. Learn the lifestyle – many new countries have different customs, dress codes, cultural attitudes compared with your native ones. Looking into how local society works will save awkward moments once you’ve arrived.

7. Learn the language – feedback from international assignees shows that this is the fastest way to feel a sense of belonging and community in your new location.


“An international assignment is an exciting challenge, “says Louise Chilcott, Business Development Executive at BTR International.

“You need to be fully prepared for your new lifestyle as well as the physical move involved. Professional relocation support allows you to settle in and enjoy your new role and surroundings as quickly as possible.”

If you would like to discuss any of the above points, please contact Louise via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0)1582 495495.
5 Features of Your Ideal International Relocation Partner

5 Features of Your Ideal International Relocation Partner

Organising international relocations doesn't have to be complicated. In fact, choosing the right relocation partner can ensure that assignees’ moves are completed smoothly and with minimal stress.
How do you choose your international relocation partner? Here are five essential features to look for:

1. Proven Expertise
The FAIMplus is the ultimate accreditation in the international moving services sector. BTR International is proud to have achieved this prestigious standard and has maintained it for many years. We know first-hand how stringent the application and audit process is. FIDIFAIM’s ‘plus’ accreditation shows that your relocation partner has provided qualified evidence that they are truly excellent at managing and implementing international moves. Credentials are important.

2. Independent Network
A truly independent partner will have its own network of contacts across the world. They’ll choose the organisations that will best suit your requirements. Free of the pressures and chains of using partner organisations, an independent relocation partner will offer you truly impartial advice.

3. Customer Service
We know that clients can choose between a myriad of potential partners. In our recent ‘Compare the Relocation Market’ blog, we stated that most clients look for alternative suppliers as soon as their satisfaction rate falls to 80% or less. “We are extremely proud of the consistently excellent customer service that we offer,” says Louise Chilcott, Global Move and Relocation specialist from BTR International. “We work hard to achieve our score of 98% customer satisfaction across all of our contracts, long term and new.”

4. Comprehensive Liability
Working with expert movers minimised the risks to your assignees’ property. It’s good to know that, should the rare accident happen, your relocation partner’s liability cover is adequate and robust.

5. Rapport
Understand why your relocation partner stands out from the crowd – what makes them different and better than your other options? Above all, can you work together? Will you have a single, consistent contact point and 24/7 assistance?

“Choosing your international relocation partner is a big decision,” says Louise “A credible organisation will be pleased to provide you with the details you need to answer your queries and provide evidence of their work. Transparency and trust are key ingredients within every BTR contract.”

To find out more, contact Louise for an informal discussion without obligation. Email her via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0)1582 495 495.
Managing International Relocation: The HR Perspective

Managing International Relocation: The HR Perspective

As the fallout of Brexit starts to become clearer, an increasing number of HR professionals are managing international relocations.
Working with an international move partner brings experience, proven expertise and a network of contacts to an organisation’s global mobility programme. However, there are still important issues for HR managers to consider beyond the physical relocation.

“As any HR professional knows, the essence of good employment relations is consultation, consultation, consultation. Even where the law does not require consultation it rarely does any harm,” employment barrister Jeffry Jupp told Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development. “This is particularly the case where an employer is considering relocating all or part of its business abroad.”

Jupp highlights the three key issues that HR managers should consider when all or part of a business relocates to a new country:

1. Contracts

Some employment contracts include an international mobility clause. In these cases, employers can legally enforce relocation provided that they are acting reasonably. This would include giving employees sufficient time to organize their affairs prior to relocating, for example. In addition, a reasonable compensation scheme and relocation package should be available to employees.

Jupp explains: “If employees refuse to relocate then their contracts can be terminated on notice and any claims for unfair dismissal defended on the grounds that the dismissals were for some other substantial reason. Provided the mobility clauses are enforceable and there has been proper consultation with the employees, such dismissals are likely to be held to be fair.”

2. Redundancy

If no international mobility clause exists and an employee refuses to relocate, then redundancy may be involved. This is the case when the location of an entire element of the business operation is changing or if the demand for particular work is reducing, for example. The consultation period involved will vary according to the number of employees affected by the redundancy situation.

3. TUPE

If the employer is to change – to a different subsidiary company, for example – then there will have to be a TUPE consideration. This applies when an enforceable international mobility clause exists. Jupp says: “Under TUPE, employees have the right to object to a transfer but if they do so they will not generally be treated as having been dismissed.”

He adds: “However, if the transfer involves a substantial change to the employees’ working conditions that is to their material detriment, they are entitled to resign and claim constructive dismissal. There is a real risk that relocation to a different country may, depending on the precise circumstances, amount to such a change to working conditions.”

Louise Chilcott, Global Move and Relocation specialist of BTR International says: “We manage and co-ordinate the physical moves, enabling HR managers to concentrate upon the contractual and business element of relocations. We support our clients to ensure that every move is as stress-free as possible.”

For a no-obligation discussion about your organisation’s relocation policy and plans, contact Louise by emailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or calling her on +44 (0) 1582 495495.
Relocating Overseas… With Your Pet

Relocating Overseas… With Your Pet

If you have pets, you’ll know that they are definitely part of your family. So what happens if your employer offers you an international relocation?
In many cases, it is absolutely ok to take your pet with you. Different countries have their own requirements, however you should find that your pets could relocate with you.

4 Tips for Moving Abroad With Your Pets:

1. Check the requirements of your destination country before travelling

2. Your pet’s health

You will need to obtain a health certificate for your pet, approved up to ten days prior to travelling. Also, please consider the age, disposition and general health of your animal prior to deciding to ship him/her abroad. In addition, how will; the living conditions in your new destination compare to what your animal is used to?

3. Shipping your pet

To ensure that your pet endures minimal stress whilst travelling overseas you should:

• Buy a suitable carrier
• Get your per used to the carrier before travelling – from sleeping and feeding to taking them on short journeys. This ensures that the crate that they travel in is familiar and confortable to them.
• Access to water is essential, so fix a bottle securely to the crate and ensure that your pet is used to drinking from it before he/she travels.
• Provide adequate food (usual brand) and feeding instructions with the carrier. Plus, if you are transporting your dog, provide a collar and lead so that they can walked between flights or during delays prior to boarding.
• Mark your crate with your destination and contact details plus your pet’s name.

4. Returning home

Art the end of your internal assignment, you must meet UK border control requirements when return home with your pet. These include making sure that your pet:

• has been microchipped
• has a pet passport or third-country official veterinary certificate
• has been vaccinated against rabies - it will also need a blood test if you’re travelling from an ‘unlisted country’
• has a tapeworm treatment, (dogs only).

Your pet may be put into quarantine for up to 4 months if you don’t follow these rules - or refused entry if you travelled by sea. You’re responsible for any fees or charges.

“Many assignees want to take their pets with them when they relocate overseas,” says Louise Chilcott, Global Move Specialist at BTR International. “It’s important that every detail to taken care of to ensure that animals are looked after properly during transit and reunited with their owners safely.”

If you would like to know more about what is involved with taking your pet with you to your planned location, contact Suzanne for an informal discussion. Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call her on +44 (0) 1582 495495.



Image by Mister GC. at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Ten Christmas Travel Tips

Ten Christmas Travel Tips

All too often, stressful journeys create a bad start to the holidays. Here are ten simple steps to help enjoy a smooth journey and arrive with your festive spirit in tact!
The festive season involves many traditions. For many people this includes travelling to see family and friends... or even an exotic holiday. Whatever your travel plans are this Christmas, bear in mind these helpful travel tips:

1. Avoid the peak travel dates – you’ll save money as well as avoid the crowds.

2. Check your baggage allowance along with your shopping list – taking your Christmas shopping on your flight can create extra fees if you exceed your weight allowance. In fact, the allowance often changes over the Christmas period. If you’re travelling to see relatives or friends, how about ordering online with your destination as the delivery address? (Remember to allow time to wrap presents when you get there!)

3. Avoid excesses before your flight. There is little tolerance of inebriated behaviour – at airports and on flights. Make sure that you are allowed on the aircraft!

4. Allow extra time for parking – this is a busy time… there will be even more fellow travellers around than usual. Even better – can a friend or a taxi give you a lift to the airport?

5. Allow some extra time for booking in.

6. Allow even more extra time – so that when something doesn't go to plan, you deal with it in your stride. Delays happen!

7. Do not wrap presents before your flight – security personnel will need access to all items.

8. If you’re driving, remember to check the car before travelling – we know it but we don’t always do it!

9. Stay connected – there are lots of travel apps that will keep you fully informed about everything from real-time updates on delays to the time you’ll spend in airport security, cheapest petrol prices to the cleanest toilets along your route.

10. Relax! This is the start of your holiday… get ready to enjoy Christmas!

Wishing you a happy festive season from everyone at BTR International.
Our Global Relocation Survey Says…

Our Global Relocation Survey Says…

Customer feedback is extremely important to the team at BTR International. Referrals and recommendations are the lifeblood of our business and first impressions count.
Earlier this year, we commissioned an independent agency to speak with our clients. What matters the most when it comes to planning and implementing international relocations? How do organisations choose their relocation partners?

Importantly, all the feedback we received was anonymous. We offered our agency a list of clients – all of whom had been contacted to explain our research initiative and ask for their participation. Speaking to someone outside of BTR International and knowing that their feedback was strictly anonymous meant that clients could be totally open and honest.

A summary of the key results is below:

3 most important features of global mobility support:
1. Service standards – BTR International has a 98% customer satisfaction score
2. Recommended – most of our work comes from referrals and recommendations
3. Value for money – not price alone, but what is provided for the cost involved

Understandable, people want to have confidence in their global mobility support provider– and prefer to work with a company which has been recommended.

Quote: “Customer service – your girls are excellent.”

3 big benefits of working with BTR International:
1. Speed of response
2. Keeping in touch
3. Organisational skills

A consistent theme through the research calls was how much clients are impressed with the responsiveness of the BTR team. Actions are carried out promptly and feedback offered.
They appreciate regular communication and feel that BTR is helpful and well organised. This helps clients to feel reassured that their global mobility is being handled expertly and efficiently.

Quotes:
“Your speed of response is great.”
“Your extraordinary support and quick answers.”
“There’s no doubt that you are one of our leading suppliers.”
“You are well co-ordinated with good follow up contact.”
“You always go the extra mile.”
“You take the stress from us alleviated problems such as bank accounts, National Insurance numbers – it’s great to have one point of contact for all this.”
“Everything is very easy.”


It was important to gain a neutral view of how BTR International is performing. We nervously awaited the results… and were delighted with our clients’ views about the service we offer. Our next goal? To maintain this valued level of service and attention to detail for every single global move.

Are you involved with international relocations for your company?

Discover how BTR International may be able to help you make your relocations as stress-free as possible.

Contact our Global Move and Relocation Specialist Louise Chilcott for a no-obligation chat about how BTR International can help your organisation. You can reach Louise via  .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0) 1582 495495.
Easy Relocations

Easy Relocations

Any move can be stressful, especially when you are relocating to a new country. Working with the right partners can minimise this stress.
‘The devil is in the detail’ – it’s a popular saying and it’s absolutely right. From research to choosing your new home, to physically arriving in your new location… working with accredited, experienced people will dramatically reduce the stress involved with your move.

A successful relocation – global or domestic – will involve professional support for:

1. Research
Moving to a new country is exciting yet can be a little daunting too. It’s important to research your new location. Be aware of housing options – where and what type – as well as schools (if necessary), transport links and local amenities.

We’re all individuals – and will have our own priorities and requirements for where we live. Find out if your relocation package includes orientation services and help with settling in. This support can make your transition into a new community much smoother and happier.

2. Finding Your New Home
Many international assignees start their relocation in temporary accommodation whilst they settle into their new country, defining what they are looking for from their new home. This step helps to make your initial move easier, however you may need to move again within your new location.

3. Your Physical Move
Moving abroad, you need a removals partner who will support you with a true ‘door to door’ service. Choose an accredited company that has experience of global relocations. They’ll have the contacts and knowledge to ensure that your physical move – from your personal belongings to valuable items and your family pets – will be completed reliably and with minimum anxiety.

“We make sure that moving is as stress-free as possible,” says Louise Chilcott, Business Development Executive at BTR International. “We provide a move plan which meets the needs of the organisation and the assignee. Plus – you will have as dedicated account manager for easy, direct communication throughout your move.”

In summary
These three points can make all the difference to the ease of any move but especially an international relocation.

Talk to BTR about the countries involved with your organisation’s international assignments. We’ve been successfully moving corporate assignees and their families worldwide since 1983. We have a proven track record for providing excellent services and have a network of reliable contacts across the globe.

Contact Louise via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0) 1582 495495.