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  • Stevens Worldwide Van Lines is a proud member of American Moving and Storage Association

    Stevens Worldwide Van Lines is a proud member of American Moving and Storage Association.

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  • Peggy Wilken: Second-Ever Female Chair of the International Association of Movers

    Stevens is pleased to announce that Vice President of Government Traffic and Claims for Stevens Worldwide Van Lines, Peg Wilken, has been elected Chair of the International Association of Movers (IAM). Wilken's election marks just the second time in the IAM's 53-year history that a woman has attained this position. In an industry typically dominated by men, Stevens is proud of Wilken and the way in which she exemplifies strong female leadership.

    “I feel it's quite an achievement, and it represents how the industry is changing to place greater value on the contributions of women,” Wilken said. “I couldn't be prouder.”

    This election is just another example of the hard work and dedication Wilken has put forth every day for Stevens over the past 33 years. Congratulations Peg…from all of us at Stevens Worldwide!

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  • Wilken Elected Chair of International Association of Movers

    SAGINAW, MI – Margaret “Peggy” Wilken, Vice President of Government Traffic and Claims for Stevens Worldwide Van Lines, has been elected Chair of the International Association of Movers (IAM), the moving and forwarding industry’s largest global trade association. The election strengthens Stevens’ ties to IAM while making Wilken only the second female chairperson in IAM’s history.

    Founded in 1962, the IAM is the world’s largest trade association for the moving and forwarding industry, with over 2000 members in more than 170 countries. The organization offers programs, resources, membership protections, and networking opportunities for its members to enhance their businesses and their brands.

    “IAM has a history of strong leadership on the board, and we’re confident Peg will continue that tradition in her new role as IAM Executive Committee Chair,” said Terry Head, IAM President. “Her deep knowledge of the industry and experience in all aspects of U.S. government logistics will serve the Association well as we work to promote the growth and success of our 2,000 members worldwide.”

    Wilken’s election to Chair bolsters Stevens’ already strong ties to the organization. Stevens has been an active member of IAM, formerly the Household Goods Forwarders Association, for decades. Wilken has served on their Board of Directors for the past six years, and has been the Vice Chair for the last two years.

    “We’re very happy to learn Peg has been elected to chair the IAM board of directors,” said Lisa Beranich, Managing Director of Stevens’ International Division. “For over thirty years, she’s handled a demanding role at Stevens with dedication and professionalism. We know this new role will expand her current contributions to IAM and help to deliver real value to the moving industry.”

    As in her previous Vice Chair role, Wilken’s new Chair position will see her heavily involved in advocacy with the federal government. “At IAM, we visit Capitol Hill at least once per year, and return as needed depending on the issues at hand,” she said. IAM has regular contact with the Department of Defense as well as the Federal Maritime Commission, the General Services Administration, the Department of Transportation, and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

    “I couldn’t be prouder,” Wilken said of her election. “I think IAM is an outstanding organization that provides a very, very powerful voice for the industry in a number of arenas, and they provide incredible networking opportunities for international moving companies. I’m humbled by the association having the confidence in me to be their leader, and I hope they continue to have that confidence that I’m doing the things that contribute to the well-being of our membership.”

    Wilken joined Stevens Worldwide Van Lines in 1981, and has been responsible for the company’s domestic government traffic since 1984. She manages all Stevens’ government moving business in the continental United States and Alaska, handling compliance, regulatory matters, and pricing and rate filing for Stevens’ work with the Department of Defense and other federal agencies.

     

    About Stevens Worldwide Van Lines

    Established in 1905 in Saginaw, Michigan, Stevens Worldwide Van Lines is a full-service moving company with nearly 150 agent locations throughout the United States. Stevens performs local moves, long-distance moves and international moves with storage operations available for all types. Stevens is a fifth-generation family-owned business and has been named a ProMover by the American Moving & Storage Association in recognition of their dedication to ethical moving practices. For more information, visit Stevens’ website at www.stevensworldwide.com.

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  • Visit Stevens Worldwide Van Lines at the Atlanta Driver Recruitment Event

    Learn. Explore. Connect. This is what you can expect to be doing for FREE when you attend any one of the Atlanta Driver Recruitment Events. As a driver or a carrier this is a job fair that is designed especially for YOU.

    The takes place at the Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday, January 18th. Admission for all drivers and their families is free. This event not only encourages drivers to engage face to face for interviews with carriers, but also to experience the Application and Resume Seminars to learn additional information on what carriers are looking for and want.

    Jim Van Haaren, a Stevens Worldwide Van Lines recruiter, is looking to talk with you at the Stevens Worldwide booth regarding his available opportunities to earn BIG Money with Stevens. You can become an interstate employee driver, a HHG owner operator, or shuttle driver with paid training provided (if you have no current household goods experience). Stop by the Stevens booth to register to win your part of $500 to be given away in five $100 drawings all day Saturday.

    Jim will also be showcasing the Stevens Tractor Lease/Purchase Program which provides completely refurbished, warranted, and low mileage 09',10', 11' T2000 and T700 Kenworth models.

    Families are encouraged to attend the Atlanta Driver Recruitment Event and register for the raffle and door prizes, which are available just for showing up! Take advantage of raceway concessions, networking opportunities, plenty of available truck parking, and more than 40 carriers including Stevens Worldwide Van Lines that have open driving positions NOW! To learn more about driving for Stevens, watch our video here!      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHJEGolh4y8

    Be part of more than 2000 drivers attending this event. Attend popular seminars on topics such as driver recruiting, driver retention concepts, driver marketing strategies, best practice discussions, peer networking, and more!

    For more information about the event and opportunities at Stevens Worldwide Van Lines, call or email Jim Van Haaren, Cell: 989-395-1809, Office: 800-76503836 Ext. 407 or jim.vanhaaren@stevensworldwide.com. See you there! 

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  • The American Moving & Storage Association

    In today's blog about the 10 important things to consider when getting a moving quote, we will be discussing the importance of the American Moving & Storage Association. Before you hire a moving company to carry out your move, you should always check to see if they are a member of the A.M.S.A. This is another simple but important step toward making sure your move is handled with the utmost quality and care.

    The American Moving & Storage Association was established in 1936 as a non-profit trade association and it consists of more than 4,000 local and out-of-state movers. It is our recommendation that you only hire a mover that is an A.M.S.A. member, in an effort to avoid dealing with disreputable moving companies. There are a couple of different ways you can check to see if your mover is A.M.S.A. certified. Most companies who are A.M.S.A. members will have a badge posted on their website indicating their membership. The most fool-proof way to check their status however, is to visit the A.M.S.A. website and view their list of ProMovers.

    The A.M.S.A. puts all of its members through a secure screening process at either the state or federal level, and they coordinate with the Better Business Bureau as well. The A.M.S.A. also has its own code of ethics that each member is sworn in under, to ensure they operate in a professional manner. For all of its interstate members, the A.M.S.A has a secondary membership program and they are subject to annual background checks. You can rest assured that if the mover you are in contact with is A.M.S.A. certified, that they are safe, reliable and will go the extra mile to meet all of your moving and storage needs.

    Simply put, the A.M.S.A. can act as a safety net of sorts for you and your family while you plan your next move. Of course you should still conduct your own research when hiring a mover, but by choosing a mover that is an A.M.S.A. member, you eliminate a lot of the big questions about experience, performance and fair business practices. For more information about the American Moving & Storage Association or to look up any of their members, visit moving.org today.

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  • Always Get a Binding Estimate

    When you begin doing research and planning for your upcoming move, one thing you learn is that not all moving estimates are created equal. To make an informed decision you should be aware that there are actually different types of estimates, known as “binding” and “non-binding”. The distinction can be significant and may end up greatly affecting the final bill at the end of your move. We briefly touched on this topic in our previous blog about always reviewing your moving quote, and we're going to do a further comparison here as well. To ensure you get the most cost-friendly estimate possible, you should always request a “binding” or “not-to-exceed” moving quote.

    The difference between binding and non-binding estimates is fairly self-explanatory. For a binding estimate, the mover will carry out a walk-through of your home, taking note of everything that is to be moved and estimating the total weight of all of your goods and equipment Once that is complete, the mover will give you a written price estimate based on the assumed weight. Since it is a binding estimate, the mover can only charge you up to that specified amount, regardless of what the actual weight of your move ends up being. It should be noted however, that if the actual weight of your move is lower than the estimate, you are still obligated to pay the previously agreed upon total. There are some exceptions where you may pay more than the binding estimate, such as requesting any additional services from the company such as purchasing packing materials or if you have any goods being moved that require special equipment. The total may also change if you add any items to your move after the initial estimate. A non-binding estimate is essentially the opposite, and the moving company is not bound in any way by the initial dollar amount given. Your final bill will not be given until after your belongings are actually weighed, and you may end up paying more or less than the original estimate. Also, take note that both types of estimates should be given in writing and should clearly detail everything you are being charged for.

    The advantages of the binding estimate are obvious, as you know the upper limit of what your move will cost you and the price cannot fluctuate. While the chance of possibly paying less with a non-binding estimate may be attractive, the last thing you would want is for the pendulum to swing the other way and end up having to pay more than you want to. Play it safe and be informed. Always go with a binding estimate when you consider getting a moving quote.

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  • Ask For References

    When you are applying for a job, one of the things you must have if you hope to get hired is a solid list of references. If an employer is going to hire you they want to make sure you are worth the investment. This same principle is true when considering which moving company to choose for your next move. In today's blog about what to consider when getting a moving quote, we will be discussing why it is important to obtain a mover's references and what kinds of questions you should be asking to ensure you make an informed decision.

    When trying to find references for a particular moving company, online reviews are the most convenient, but word-of-mouth testimony can be even more valuable, especially if the person or company you speak to is located in your area. If the company is nationwide this will give you a feel for what their customer service is like on a more localized level. For any online reviews that you reference, be sure they are as up-to-date as possible. Sometimes companies that had sterling reputations a couple of years ago may have gone down hill for any number of reasons, such as change in management.

    There are plenty of questions you should ask while seeking out references, whether you are looking online, in person or both. Were the movers timely and efficient? How accurate was the company's initial moving estimate? Does the company offer binding or non-binding estimates? In regards to your personal belongings, did the movers handle everything with care? How was the staff? Were they helpful and courteous or were they rude and incompetent? As referenced in past blogs, you should also ask for and verify the mover's D.O.T. number to ensure they operate in a safe and legal manner, and to see if the company plans on bringing in any sub-contractors. Also, when reading online reviews be thorough and take everything with a grain of salt, as some companies have taken to hiring content writers to create positive reviews, regardless of actual performance.

    Remember that when you request a moving quote you are essentially beginning an interview process. You are the employer and you assume all of the risk, so asking for or seeking out references is essential if you want your move to be successful.

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  • Know the Difference Between "Internet Movers" and an Actual Moving Company

    In today's blog about all of the important things to consider when getting a moving quote, we will be discussing the prospect of getting an estimate from an “Internet Mover”. To clarify, an “Internet Mover” is not really a moving company. More often than not, an “Internet Mover” is actually a lead-generation sales company. If you have ever seen Glengarry Glen Ross then you probably know that in the world of marketing and sales, generating consumer interest through leads is paramount. However, when it comes to getting your moving quote, you need to be careful about which companies you are talking to.

    Simply put, you should never get your moving quote from an “Internet Mover”. Lead-generation companies usually sell their leads to anywhere from 8-10 moving companies, making your decision all the more difficult. Customers searching for a moving company online are often drawn to lead-generation companies because they rank highly with search engines and run ads for free quotes. Free always sounds nice, but moving quotes are always free and you cannot get an accurate moving estimate from a website alone.

    Finding a mover from a lead-generation company can be a problem when it comes to privacy and may end up being a waste of your time. As previously stated, these companies sell their leads to anywhere from 8-10 moving companies. This means that once you give the website your personal contact information, all of those moving companies have that information as well. This opens the door to unwanted spam and may put you in contact with suspect moving companies. You have no control over which companies get your information or when/if these companies may contact you. This is problematic because you're not able to research these companies until after they've already contacted you, and it is not unheard of for illegally operating movers to buy leads from these sites. The pitfalls there are obvious.

    Planning a move is a stressful undertaking as it is, so be sure that when you request a moving quote that you are talking to the actual mover, and not a lead-generation sales company. Do your own research and contact the company directly to avoid any privacy issues, and to ensure you are getting a quality a mover. It is time well spent to make sure your move is handled with professionalism and care.

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  • Understanding Your Moving Quote

    Getting a moving quote is the first important step towards making your move as easy and stress-free as possible. As we have discussed in previous blogs, there are many important steps that should be taken when getting a moving estimate, such as always getting an in-house quote, requesting your mover's D.O.T. number, and being informed about sub-contractors. In today's blog, the topic is quite simple. Always review your moving quote(s) in detail to assure you understand all of the charges.

    There are a number of factors that can determine the final dollar amount of your moving estimate. Companies can charge based on the total number of rooms being moved, or strictly look at how many goods and/or pieces of equipment are being relocated, and use the total weight or volume of said goods to arrive at an estimate. There are other charges to take note of as well, such as any storage or cleaning charges, or if the moving company charges for moving boxes. All of these charges can fluctuate depending on what type of estimate you agree to.

    There are three basic kinds of moving estimates that consumers should be aware of, as the type of estimate you receive could greatly affect the amount you actually pay. The first kind of estimate is the Binding Not-To-Exceed estimate, which stipulates that should your final weight exceed that which was found in your initial appointment, you still only pay for the previously agreed upon total. The second type of estimate is the Binding estimate, which basically means you and the mover agree upon a price before the move, and you pay that price regardless of what the actual weight ends up being. The last kind of estimate is the Non-Binding estimate, which states you will pay based on whatever the actual weight of the move was. It can go up or down from the original estimate.

    This is why it is important to review your moving quote before proceeding with your move. You need to be aware of and understand everything you will be charged for, and you need to be sure you are getting the type of estimate that is the most beneficial and cost-effective. Moving is a big enough project, so getting what you pay for, and avoiding unnecessary fees is a simple but important step towards making sure your move is less hectic.

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  • Sub-Contracting

    We've all heard the saying “Two is company, but three is a crowd." Normally an idiom such as this refers to personal relationships, but it is applicable in the business world as well: Specifically the moving and storage business. In today's blog we will be discussing sub-contractors and how they can affect your upcoming move.

    When you are getting a moving quote, it is important to ask the moving company if they sub-contract any of their jobs to another mover. When a sub-contractor is brought in to perform all or part of a move, it can complicate the whole process. Bringing in a third party is not an inherently bad idea, but it certainly can increase the chances of a communication breakdown, making your move more stressful than it needs to be.

    If your moving company is planning on using a sub-contractor, then there are a few important questions you should ask before moving forward. Firstly, why is the use of the sub-contractor necessary? What is the sub-contractor offering that the initial moving company isn't? Most importantly, do the answers to these first two questions carry enough weight to justify another company being brought in? Secondly, as noted in our blog post about D.O.T. numbers, do your research to obtain the sub-contractors registration information. Your moving company should be able to provide this information for you, but doing your own search doesn't hurt. Lastly, while doing your research you should inquire about any insurance offered by both the moving company and the sub-contractor. Should something go wrong during your move, you don't want to be left with damaged goods and an uninsured sub-contractor.

    For any relocation to be successful, you need to trust the people handling your move. To avoid any unforeseen complications, it is best to only trust sub-contractors who are associated with national van lines. Most of these companies will have badges on their websites noting that they are “an agent for” a particular van line, such as Stevens Worldwide. Getting a moving quote sounds like a simple enough task, but to be certain you are getting the highest quality service and protection during your move, these simple steps can help make your move a seamless one.

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