Gen Z and the Moving Experience
Moving is scary. As of this blog post, I have moved a whopping two times, and both moves were into tiny, one-bedroom dormitory rooms. As such, it is safe to say I do not have the most experience when it comes to personal relocation. However, even with vast personal experience, moving is a stressful and intimidating time in any person’s life.
In honor of National Intern Day, I wanted to share my insights on moving from a Gen Z perspective. As I am currently in the process of moving into a house for my junior year, this blog post is the perfect opportunity for me to connect the knowledge I have gained from this internship to real life moving experience, as well as the present and future role of technology in relocation.
Gen Z and Smartphones: Attached at the Hip Hand
My generation, to no surprise, uses their smartphones extensively. I couldn’t tell you the last time I was without my phone. Technology is important to Gen Z and it will continue to have a pivotal role in the relocation industry. In this day and age, almost every stage of a move relies on technology for efficiency and accuracy. Technology is used for a variety of activities related to moving ranging anywhere from organizing the transportation of household goods to searching local neighborhoods to find the perfect home. Transferees can contact service suppliers, research their new neighborhood, or budget their expenses. The use of technology will only increase as Gen Z grows into adulthood and becomes homeowners, and a new market for consumer relocation technology will emerge.
Movin’ on out…and up
As I enter into my junior year of college, I am moving up in the world and will be moving into an off-campus house in a gated community —that is, the house has a gate in front of it—with three other friends. All four of us live multiple states away from each other, and only one of us lives close to our school. Far distances make coordinating a move difficult. Thankfully, we are able to discuss our plans and any issues we encounter over a text messaging group chat on our phones. We can organize who is responsible for moving each item on our list into the new house, all without needing to meet face-to-face or call each other one at a time. Without this basic technology for communication, our move would shift from difficult to borderline impossible.
Although there are easy ways to communicate, finding an accessible, all-purpose moving support platform, outside of corporate relocation, is difficult. Sure, there are a few mobile applications for planning moves, but none have the same capabilities that exist in platforms used by corporations. Relocation technology makes coordinating and completing a move less stressful, and it should be created at a consumer level.
Blending Freedom and Flexibility to Meet the Needs of Gen Z
Freedom and flexibility are two of the most valued attributes of my generation. When possible, we prefer to complete tasks digitally and with a personalized process. As part of my internship this summer, I completed competitive research into digital technology and how it has to potential to give the transferee the power to manage every aspect of their move. Combining that flexibility with digital technology, preferably in the form of a mobile application, creates an attractive solution for members of Gen Z. Even though my upcoming move will be simpler than a full blown, permanent relocation, the opportunity to incorporate technology into a consumer, non-company supported move still exists.
But as the social experiences of a consumer changes, so do their expectations for a corporate relocation. Members of Gen Z use smartphones for everything from ordering an Uber to receiving up to the second updates on anything they care about. As such, they will expect their relocation experience to include the same technology. In order to succeed, relocation programs must offer the same automation, engagement, and choice that the Gen Z generation has access to every day. These programs should include self-serve options, real time support, and the ability to customize each and every part of the relocation process. As the demographics of the workforce continue to shift, updates to mobility programs must be made to reflect the change in transferee expectations.
On National Intern Day, as I reflect back on my internship, I am happy to say that during my time with Cartus I have worked with a number of incredible people and have learned a great deal about global marketing and mobility. Cartus is always working to create new, innovative technology, and to improve the employee experience, and I am excited to see what we launch in the coming months!