International Talent Mobility Can Give Employees An Edge

Who hasn’t wondered if global talent mobility is stagnating, or going backward? After so many restrictions, new policies, and changes worldwide, even we who are in this business thought about it at some point.

The reality is different, a new way of working has emerged and with-it new objectives, changing patterns, and the evolution of HR teams and talent in general. Now mobility is managed differently under the concept of REMOTE AND HYBRID.


Evolution of mobility

Now mobility is not a long-term assignment. Mobility has been divided into several types:

– Short assignments (less than one year).
– Business secondments.
– Permanent” secondments under local conditions
– Reliance on locally recruited foreigners.
– International telecommuting
– Virtual assignments for employees who cannot relocate abroad.

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All these forms are here to stay, many companies will continue to offer some of these forms because the advantages and results are proving satisfactory after trial and error forced by the situation.

Employee-driven mobility has overtaken company-sponsored relocation

While companies have been driving a large portion of international assignments for many years, individuals are increasingly willing to market globally or move for personal lifestyle reasons. Organizations used to facilitate self-requested moves only in selected cases and on a limited budget, but the balance is increasingly tipping in favor of employees. Low unemployment, the “Great Resignation” and the war for skilled talent are driving renewed interest in attraction and retention, and companies are more actively supporting these requests for retention purposes. The whole “work from anywhere” discussion is driven more by employees requesting international remote work than by company-driven virtual assignments.


Shifting goals

The priority for companies with the new modalities is to develop new workforces, retain qualified staff, and hire and upgrade skills.

For emerging and fast-growing markets, the need for highly skilled talent has expanded and multinational companies have faced talent shortages in different fields, which is why global sourcing is a priority for companies that want to replenish or expand talent pools.

Global mobility also enables the development of international managers with global skills, and this leads to an increase in relocations from and between emerging markets.

Global mobility now involves integrating the different types of mobility and managing the workforce so that they are integrated into cross-functional teams and their expertise can be fully utilized.

This vision of integrated mobility does not apply to all companies or all sectors, but in the technology sector, managing a distributed workforce is a reality, connecting cultural diversity and border-crossing work.


The new culture

While all departments and positions have had to adapt to the new ways of working, the human resources department has a great responsibility because, in addition to implementing remote work, they must now create new policies and compliances around cross-border remote work.

The challenge lies in overcoming barriers to international remote work concerning company culture and inclusion. Flexibility may benefit some employees, but not others, it requires a lot of commitment and accountability for employees, especially those who are used to keeping office hours.

Adapting communication processes is another challenge for remote positions and requires a change in the mindset of managers, but also of employees.

For those who do not adapt 100% to remote work, there is the option of a hybrid approach, some days from home and others from the office, a scheme that companies should offer.

In terms of compensation, companies are driven by those in the home country as they make it easier to move from one country to another.