This posting season, families can expect to see changes from how they interact with their relocation advisor to how they receive advances to cover relocation costs, thanks to the new relocation service delivery model rolled out by the Canadian Armed Forces.
Launched on Dec. 1, 2017, one of the major changes under the new relocation model is that Brookfield advisors will no longer be stationed at bases across the country. Instead, all agents are now at one centralized location, in Ottawa, and can be contacted via telephone or video chat.
“The impetus for all this was basically it’s problematic sometimes to get spouses and families on the base. So, the whole idea was to get off base and into the living rooms of all the members so the program could be much more accessible to all the family,” commented Sullivan.
In fact, families will now receive a bulk of their information through an online, secure, self-service portal. The portal will provide estimates for expenses, tasks, financial information and directories on third-party service providers.
The online portal will also provide CAF members with a calendar to schedule tasks and set reminders.
“So, if you’re going on an HHT that you’re gong to take on the first of June, it’s going to remind you that you should book some flights and plan your trip in the beginning of May,” explained Sullivan.
In case members and families need immediate assistance, they can phone the centralized contact centre, which will be open on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.
The other major portion of the new relocation program is that members will now be given a “cash card,” a reloadable, declining, balance card instead of receiving advances straight to a member’s bank account. The cards will be used to pay for everything from meals to hotels to appraisers to lawyers and will be accepted everywhere Visa is.
Although this new program has not been piloted, the military has assured its members, and wider military community, that it had been in touch with the Army, Navy and Air Force prior to the launch to troubleshoot any potential problems before the program went live.
For a more in-depth look at the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF)’ new relocation program subscribe now for our Winter 2018 issue.