Ute, the Relocation Manager with Personal Experience
Ute is Woburn International’s Relocation Manager whose role is to help people from all over the world settle into their new lives in New Zealand. She is well placed to do this, having relocated herself, three times.
Originally from Germany, Ute lived in Washington, USA for two years in the late 1980s and moved to Wellington, New Zealand in 1997. This experience has been invaluable as she is able to put herself in the shoes of new migrants.
Moving to New Zealand
One of Ute’s first jobs in New Zealand was working as a qualified domestic and international travel consultant for Air New Zealand. After gaining a degree in Human Resource Management from Victoria University she worked for some years for a large international oil and gas company based in Wellington. As head of their HR department, Ute was sent to Tunisia where she worked for three years managing the relocation of their expats.
New Country, New Language, New Culture
While based in Tunisia, Ute understood firsthand the implications of settling into a non-native speaking country. While she had already experienced the challenges of relocating so far from home to New Zealand, she did have the advantage of speaking the English language. In contrast, the local languages in Tunisia were Arabic and French.
Ute’s role was to manage the expatriation and repatriation of all expats which included supervising their immigration requirements and shipments, finding homes, helping them and their families settle in, getting their children into schools and manage cultural programmes. She was also responsible for the full property management of all rental accommodation for more than 60 expats together with her local Tunisian team.
A few years after returning to New Zealand, Ute was looking for a change and made the move from the oil and gas industry, joining the Woburn team in 2022.
Ute was no stranger to Woburn International. She had worked closely with their team since 2001 in her previous role of HR Manager.
As Relocation Manager now based in New Plymouth, Ute manages all relocations, along with our team of relocation consultants located in different parts of New Zealand.
People come to New Zealand from all over the world and encounter different issues and language problems. No two relocations are the same, as everyone faces unique challenges. Ute enjoys the variety of her job and meeting so many people from many different cultures, helping them to feel at ease about relocating to a new country.
Ute feels, most of the time what companies forget is the partner of a migrant (who might not be working when they arrive in New Zealand). They are often not taken care of enough and most of the unsuccessful stories are because the person who is not working becomes unhappy and wants to leave. She stresses the importance of a great relocation service and ensuring that the requirements of everyone in the family are met in the process. Ute loves to help people make the shift from feeling anxious to feeling genuinely excited about relocating to New Zealand, minimising their stress of moving countries and helping to settle them in and make them feel at home.