I realise that this Harvard Business Review article is very American but I feel that employees in the UK and Europe share the same thoughts on relocation. Pre-2008, we used to relocate a lot of leaders to successfully fill senior roles we were being retained to appoint by our clients. Since the economic crash we very rarely even have the discussion with our clients. No matter how good or bad our client's office location is, the world of work and the need to be located right next to your office has changed immeasurably. On one hand the crash has almost removed the appetite for relocation as employees put their family's happiness and welfare before their own careers but on the other, is there really an absolute need for your senior leaders to live within commuting distance of your office. Depending on the role, how many days per week will your leaders spend in the office anyway? Certainly in the case of customer facing ones, very little and so location becomes a small deal.
We see far more people willing to rent accomodation close to their HQ's or increasing their daily commute and employers are happy to provide the flexibility they need. This open approach has certainly made it far easier to attract outstanding talent instead of limiting who can and will relocate to come and work for you.
If setting up a new company or opening a new HQ it is certainly worth doing your research to see if there are any hotpots for the skills and experience that your company needs. For example aerospace tends be where airbus or other OEM's have manufacturing sites, logistics around the main transport networks and tech in the major cities.
As cities compete for Amazon’s second headquarters, many flexed their tax incentive packages and real estate options in hopes of luring the tech giant to select their city. It’s tempting to think the right financial perks is all it takes for a company to successfully expand to a new city. In fact, success requires a solid base of nearby talent — or the ability to entice skilled workers to relocate for new job opportunities. The reality is that most job seekers don’t want to move. Most apply to jobs close to home, with government data showing the urge to move is only declining. So when a company opens a new location, it must expect to draw mostly from the local labor force.