Company: Aires, Pittsburgh, PA
Company Description: Aires is a leading provider of third-party relocation and assignment management services. Founded in 1981, the company has grown into a leading mid-sized provider in the relocation industry. Aires manages more than 28,000 employee relocations for corporate clients per year, with a focus on customized processes and flexible technology solutions.
Nomination Category: New Product & Service Categories - Software
Nomination Sub Category: New Product or Service of the Year - Software - Cloud Application/Service
Nomination Title: Aires' SpringBoard
Tell the story about this nominated product or service (up to 650 words). Describe its function, features, benefits, and performance to date:
In the relocation industry, a trend toward limited benefits/lump sum programs for lower level employees (rather than full service relocation benefits) has developed in recent years. A few years ago, small technology start-up companies began to emerge that provided an online tool for the administration of these benefits. Aires understood that there was a need for such a tool, but we did not want to rush a tool to market.
A major limitation of the tools that were brought to market was their lack of knowledge of the relocation industry. These companies based their revenue model on referral fees from providers without providing any assistance when employees had questions regarding their tool. Suppliers of relocation services (such as household goods shipment, temporary housing, rental assistance partners, etc.) were not vetted based upon quality of the service or the cost to the employee.
We created a task force to develop the best technology tool to meet this need and to identify gaps in tools currently in existence. We knew we needed to pair a user-friendly system interface with our traditional relocation industry experience. In the second quarter of 2016, Aires introduced SpringBoard, a different type of experience for assignees receiving a lump sum.
This new tool, created by working with professionals specializing in the end-user experience, ensures supplier quality by using only Aires-vetted suppliers and providing previous user ranking data. It also provides access to an Aires Relocation Specialist who can make recommendations and provide assistance if needed. In short, it combines traditional relocation benefits and supply chain management with forward looking technology.
First-time users are guided through a four-step process to gather relevant move details, select the appropriate services for their needs, provide more information for the selected services, and set individual service budgets based on average costs. Returning users can manage their services, tasks, budget and destination through the website that has now been tailored to their needs. Transferees also have 24/7 assistance available from the Aires Relocation Specialist.
From the services tab, transferees can interact with the Aires-recommended providers for their move. Providers are automatically generated based on more details or handpicked by an Aires representative when they can’t be matched automatically. Transferees can request and receive quotes, communicate via messaging with providers, select their preferred provider, and receive provider invoices all directly through Springboard. Transferees can add additional services as their needs change.
From the Tasks tab, transferees can manage their personalized task list. Tasks are generated based on move details and the services the user has selected. Transferees can edit tasks, mark tasks as complete, as well as creating their own tasks.
From the Budget tab, transferees can track their spending against their lump sum budget. Transferees can enter their expenses and attach receipts. The service budgets can be adjusted at any time as needs change throughout the relocation process. Domestic transferees can see a running total of which expenses may be tax deductible. International transferees can enter expenses in multiple currencies and can choose their preferred displayed currency.
From the Destination tab, transferees can utilize the commute calculator and Rental Property Guide. Users can browse Points of interest such as restaurants, schools and banks on an interactive map as well as read a detailed destination guide to their new city/country.
By combining a user-friendly, easily navigated experience with advanced budgeting tools, a network of trusted partners available at Aires’ preferred rates, and relocation expertise available on-demand, Aires has created a tool that has become popular with our existing client base and has rapidly expanded to new client markets.
In bullet-list form, briefly summarize up to ten (10) of the chief features and benefits of the nominated product or service.
Features and benefits of SpringBoard include:
• Dynamic services selection with automatically generated service provider options
• Personalized task list
• Interactive budgeting process to set service budgets and track actual costs vs. budgeted amounts
• Available for U.S. domestic and international relocations
• Taxability tips and automated year-end tax packet
• Available for both U.S. domestic and international relocations
• Multiple-currency for international moves
• Access to an Aires Relocation Specialist with 24/7 availability
• Access to Aires’ global network of partners Aires