April 21, 2022
Global Mobility can Bring Sustainability to a Micro-level and it’s a Win-win for Everyone!
Offering a discard and donate service to your transferring employees results in cost savings for your organization as well as contributing to save the environment for all.
Whether relocating across town or across the world, it can be an exhausting and perhaps emotional task to decide what to move. Some people arrange for a garage sale to help winnow down unwanted items, but often an employee asked to transfer by their employer has little time to coordinate a sale or even a way to offer these items to charity or a place to ultimately discard them.
Sterling Lexicon promotes the concept of “discard and donate” that provides an opportunity to work with suppliers who not only help remove items but can also help the owner(s) cull through their belongings to decide what is worth keeping. There are many upsides to this service as the home is decluttered making it more attractive to potential buyers while enhancing the employer’s sustainability goals by reducing their carbon footprint with smaller shipments. Cost savings result by decreasing the total household goods transportation expense for every employee relocation that takes advantage of the program.
Employees who utilize the service are pleased because an organizer helps sort items and manages the logistics of the discard and/or donate process; later, the employee will receive a receipt for anything donated to charity which can potentially help reduce their income tax liabilities.
It’s a win-win situation for the transferring employee though the benefits to the employer are significant, too. The discard and donate service provider typically charges a fee as a fixed percentage of the calculated cost savings of the shipment, and when looking at a smaller gross up due to a lower cost shipment, the net savings reflects a positive bottom-line impact to the corporation.
Our provider of this specialized service, Home Sweet Home, can help your company reach green goals by saving or planting trees based on the eliminated weight. Results from 2021 that contributed to lowering overall mobility costs for our clients that offer Home Sweet Home services to their relocating employees are as follows:
- ✔ Saved 33 trees while 99 new trees were planted
- ✔ Eliminated of 101,247 pounds of household goods to ship
- ✔ Reduced use of cardboard/paper by 4,050 pounds
- ✔ Saved nearly 1,620 gallons of fuel
- ✔ Average savings per move was $1,155
Discard and donate services can support Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives at a macro-level, though it's not just about the metrics, it’s also about the employee experience. Let’s hear from some of our customers about the value this Home Sweet Home service provided to them.
Other Win-win Sustainability Ideas for Global Mobility to Consider
A recent AIRINC study showed about half of the survey respondents’ Global Mobility programs have taken some steps to promote sustainability, with selecting vendors committed to sustainability being the most prominent way to build in CSR within the program. Other organizations are changing policy provisions, such as switching to a furniture allowance in lieu of a shipment or reducing the number of commuter assignments and allowing more remote/virtual assignments.
According to Worldwide ERC’s Sustainability Survey results, 90.5% of participants already have a sustainability strategy in place, and while approaches can vary by company size, the most common tactics to promote sustainability include:
- ✔ Digitizing business processes
- ✔ Promoting remote work and telecommuting
- ✔ Supporting employee activism related to sustainability
- ✔ Adopting public policy positions that promote sustainability and actions to address environmental degradation
As your organization continues on its CSR journey, Global Mobility can contribute in a number of different ways, whether at the micro-level by helping individual employees, or at macro-level, by adopting company-wide initiatives that consider the environment and social impact of your business decisions.
Leah Johnson is Sterling Lexicon’s Director, Client Solutions, and has worked in the global mobility industry for more than 20 years. She has held management positions in business development, operations, account management, and consulting, and had the opportunity to live and work in Tokyo and Hong Kong for six years. She initiated destination services in Hong Kong for a relocation management company and directed global mobility for Goldman Sachs in the APAC region. She graduated from Colgate University, earned an MBA from the University of Alabama in Huntsville, and maintains a Senior Certified Professional (SCP) certification from SHRM.