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Pulling up stakes to move across country -- or even to a nearby town or a new apartment -- is a complex undertaking. People in America are highly mobile, and many move at least once in their lives. Relocation specialists can help with a move -- or even handle the entire process.
On the Move
The title of relocation specialist is a synonym for other titles, such as travel specialist, corporate relocation specialist, community living specialist and resident relocation specialist. What all of these have in common is the task of moving people and their belongings to a new residence. Relocation specialists work for non-profit organizations that help people who have been evicted; elders who must or want to move from their own homes to assisted community living; corporations and government agencies that transfer their staff; and private organizations that specialize in the business of moving households.
Relocation specialists assist individuals, couples and families in the process of moving. They may be required to locate a house for a family or assist a senior in evaluating housing options. In some cases, a relocation specialist may help a senior move out of assisted living into the larger community. When a family is at risk of being evicted, she might be the intermediary with government agencies or public utilities. Corporate relocation specialists might even assist with immigration issues when an employee moves to another country.
Each Job is Different
Each relocation specialist job has specific duties or requirements. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s travel specialists, for example, must be U.S. citizens. In addition to their other duties, they administer the travel credit card program. Community living specialists collaborate with nursing homes to ensure that they meet with patients when discharge is imminent, and that must understand issues such as Medicare regulations or insurance benefits. Resident relocation specialists screen landlords and help prospective residents complete housing applications. A corporate relocation specialist with international responsibilities may need to understand the culture of a different country and even speak the language.
All Over The Map
Education and experience requirements vary according to the position. A resident relocation specialist for the Housing Authority of Portland must have a high school diploma and at least two years of college, plus three years’ experience in social work or a similar field. A community living specialist in Wisconsin should have a bachelor’s degree and at least one year of experience working with the population she will serve. USDA travel specialists need varying education at the graduate level, up to a master’s degree. Certification in this specialty is available from the Worldwide ERC Foundation for Workforce Mobility. Indeed.com reports the average annual salary for a relocation specialist was $79,000 in 2014.
- U.S. Department of Agriculture: Travel Specialist
- Wisconsin Department of Health Services: Position Description Community Living Specialists
- Home Forward: Class Title - Resident Relocation Specialist
- Indeed.com: Relocation Specialist Salary
- Sterling: Seamless International Employee Relocation Services from Sterling
Beth Greenwood is an RN and has been a writer since 2010. She specializes in medical and health topics, as well as career articles about health care professions. Greenwood holds an Associate of Science in nursing from Shasta College.
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