One of the traditional and still common purposes of expatriation is managing a foreign subsidiary, hence, traditional expatriate roles are to be found in senior executive levels and senior management teams. Given the responsibilities attached to these positions, and the costs of expatriation for the organization, the importance of success for such international assignments can […]
Challenges of Global Mobility: The Latest Industry Report
We have recently come to a point where many declaim the end of globalization as we have known it. Yet, amid this anti-globalization rhetoric, global businesses are clearly taking a different stance, arguing that more, not less, globally proficient talent is needed. A recent AXA World of Work Report, which surveyed 250 firms in eight […]
The Culturally Humble Expat
International assignments are costly, which is why both researchers and practitioners are in constant search for the right formula of successful expatriation. Given that international assignments are meant to be ‘bridging the gaps’, be it in terms of knowledge sharing or the transfer of other resources, good relationships and cooperation between expats and locals seem […]
How Do You Get Global Mobility to Demonstrate Its Strategic Value?
Why do I spend much of my time at the bottom looking up? This is a question I pose at the beginning of a white paper that Santa Fe Relocation Services commissioned me to write. I find the question to be quite relevant and illustrative of the shift that HR and global mobility professionals are […]
Moving Abroad? But Where to?
Have you ever considered moving abroad? If not, prepare yourself for a lot of deliberations (in case you will someday). If you already have, you probably ‘know the pain’… Indeed, relocating abroad, either permanently or temporarily, is a big decision in one’s life and there is a ton of details one needs to consider and […]
The SCARF in Global Mobility
In my last blog post I wrote about social neuroscience and the SCARF theory, which explains social behavior based on our brain principle known as ‘threat and reward response’. The theory posits that within social interactions our experience is influenced either by perceived threat or reward in one or several of five domains: status, certainty, […]
Latest Research: Expatriates as Newcomers Abroad
I believe that at the heart of every entry process, be it a new employee’s entry into an organization, a student’s entry into a new class, or an immigrant’s entry abroad, is a need for adjustment of the newcomer. In other words, whenever there is a change in environment, a need for fitting in arises. […]
Host Country Nationals: You’d Better Get Them on Board
Expatriation is all about expatriates, right? Probably you already sensed the undertone of this question. Naturally, the success of an international assignment is not only about the actual assignee, as there are many other parties involved, starting from the spouse and finishing with the relocation support professionals. However, it is also true that inspite of […]
Corporate Volunteering Initiatives: What are the Benefits for Global Companies?
The globalization of business goes hand in hand with global mobility. Indeed, global mobility of employees is necessary to expand a company abroad, to establish partnerships with foreign companies, and generally, to sustain the international status of a company. As such, there are many different goals international assignments might aim to fulfill, which is why […]
Dual-Career Challenges: What Can Companies Do?
A few weeks ago, when reviewing the latest stats from industry surveys on expatriates, I noted that there is a slowly emerging shift towards younger and less attached expatriates. Yet, the average profile of an expatriate still remains quite traditional, including a dominance of male employees, who are married or have a partner. Given this […]
Assignments FROM Developing Locations: Part 2
As promised in my previous post, today I would like to continue with the topic of challenges raised by assignments from developing locations. In my last entry, I discussed issues such as compensation, family concerns and cultural barriers. However, as indicated by the relevant survey from Brookfield Global Relocation Services (BGRS) this list of challenges […]
Assignments FROM Developing Locations: Latest Survey Results
Lately a lot is being said and written about the growing trend of sending international assignees to developing and emerging countries. In fact, emerging markets have remained a hot topic in the current year, and mobility specialists and relocation managers continue to point to the many challenges in developing destinations: Security issues, appropriateness of compensation packages, […]
Spotlight expatriate taxes: The case of ‘accidental expatriates’
The 2011 HSBC expatriates report shows that 71% of expatriates have experienced more complex finances since relocating abroad, with taxation issues possibly being one of the highlights. Although expatriate tax management generally follows the two main approaches several unexpected challenges still arise. Take a look at the case of ‘accidental expatriates’.
How to balance the biggest relocation challenges
Given the current economically challenging times, the notion of costs being the number one concern of international assignments is to be expected. However, apart from this finding, the Cartus 2012 Biggest Challenges survey points to a number of other key challenges and suggests that relocation managers are in constant strive for balancing these competing issues.
A closer step towards understanding ROI: Introduction of a recent framework
Several empirical and theoretical researches continuously report on the lack of knowledge and understanding within the field of assessing value of international assignments. A recent article by Australian scholars McNulty and De Cieri (2011) contribute to our limited knowledge by presenting a framework of expatriate ROI from the perspective of long-term assignments.
Expat partner roles identified
A recent expatriate study by Finnish scholars Mäkelä, Känsälä and Suutari (2011) looked into the partner roles of expatriates and identified six different types, namely “supporting”, “ﬂexible”, “determining”, “restricting”, “instrumental”, and “equal partner” roles.