Workers Find Relocation Option Attractive but Reject Pay Adjustment

The COVID-related shift to remote work has caused many to consider relocating to reduce cost of living, experience a change of scenery or improve their living conditions. In recent studies conducted by Robert Half, more than half of workers said they would consider moving to a different city if their company offered long-term remote arrangements. In the accompanying employer survey, 50% of respondents reported their organization has allowed current staff to relocate temporarily, and another 38% noted their employer is supportive of permanent moves.

However, workers and employers often disagree on salary. Seventy five percent (75%) of workers would not be willing to take a pay cut in their current job if they were to move. Most Human Resource managers, however, indicated that salary of relocating current staff would be tied to work location, determining salary by the company’s office location (74%) or the employee’s new location (23%). Three percent have not yet decided.

In 2020, Facebook and Twitter decided to reduce base salary for employees who relocated outside of the San Francisco Bay area. Other high-tech companies based in the Bay area stated that they would not adjust pay, fearing the loss of high demand tech professionals.

The high-tech space in the San Francisco Bay area, dependent upon access to some of the most in-demand skills, will serve as a great test case, but it is too soon to measure the impact of pay adjustments for relocated workers. As employers consider localizing pay according to where the staff is based, nextSource suggests that companies consider the impact the decision may have on attrition rates as individuals with highly sought-after professional skills may elect to relocate while also seeking a competitive position.