OMNI Conference, 2018 – A Summary

The annual OMNI conference took place in Palm Beach, Florida from 19-22 March 2018. The OMNI conference is open to all OMNI members and provides a forum for the owners and CEOs of the world’s leading mobility companies to share experiences and learn from each other.

The conference had its focus firmly on the future with a close look at innovations in the auditing processes used by corporations to verify charges; the increasing importance of compliance in the market today and the experiences of OMNI member companies as they use the Dow Jones Risk and Compliance service to provide confidence for their clients; and the ways in which technology can be used more effectively to capitalise on the growing ‘lump sum’ market.

The business sessions included an interview with Mark Olsen, the CEO of Parsifal Corporation, a company that helps its clients obtain high quality moving and relocation services, and protect the pricing and performance with specialist auditing. Conducted by Nigel Saunders (Nuss International, Australia) the revealing interview explored the value of auditing services (both to the client company and the suppliers); the handling of weight anomalies; the development of technology and the ways in which it is used by auditors; and Mark’s vision for the future and how it will affect his customers and their suppliers.

Justin Taylor, the managing director of Graphitas, a leading digital marketing company in the UK, made a welcome return to the OMNI conference having made a big impression last year with his advice on the use of technology as a promotional tool. This year he explained how Facebook can be used as an effective and economic way to reach customers by focusing your audience.

Joleen Lauffer, Executive Vice President of Aires in Pittsburgh, provided an insight into the growth of lump sum relocation allowances for employees and why it is becoming increasingly popular with some companies. Joleen explained the methods used to calculate the sums paid to employees of different levels of seniority and demonstrated her company’s ‘Springboard’ app that helps Aires’ lump sum customers budget for an overseas move and manage the process. In closing, Joleen speculated on how technology is changing and will continue to change the ways in which relocation services are provided.

OMNI awarded its annual tonnage awards with Graebel once again winning the Platinum award for the top booker worldwide. On receiving the award on behalf of his company, Dale Collins emphasised the importance of the Dow Jones compliance service in today’s corporate mobility market, congratulated OMNI on making the use of the system compulsory for all OMNI members, and encouraged its extensive use throughout the network as a way of providing the best possible security for corporate customers.

JK Moving Services of Virginia, USA was accepted as a new Probationer member of OMNI. Walter Laffitte (Canal Moving & Logistics Corp., Panama) replaced Willy Toedtli on the board of directors and, after serving for two years as OMNI President, Keith Meader (Asian Tigers Mobility, Thailand) stood down with Salvatore Ferrante (Crown Worldwide Moving & Storage, USA) taking over the honorary role.