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Welcome to our Blog

Our blog lets us share with you current news and views from the world of HR and Global Mobility which we hope you will find interesting, informative and even entertaining. Along with our own thoughts and opinions we will bring you external articles and updates on items we think may matter to you.

We hope you enjoy reading our blog.

20
Sep
2016
The Shape of International Relocations: 2016
A new Corporate Relocation Survey reveals how international relocations looked in 2016…
10
Aug
2016
Obstacles to Global Mobility
Mercer has released the results of its latest Worldwide Survey of International Assignment Policies and Practices.
11
Jul
2016
International Relocation Post-Brexit
Last month’s shock EU Referendum result means that Britain will leave the European Union.
23
Jun
2016
The Future of Talent Mobility
Spread across a variety of sectors and locations, 163 participants engaged with this year’s Global Mobility Trends report from Brookfield. They have one feature in…
21
May
2016
Relocating? Know The Best Cities for Expats
Relocation isn't the same as emigration – however the results give a good indication of how relocating to these cities would feel to international assignees.
06
May
2016
The European Debate & Talent Mobility
How will the result of the European Referendum on June 23rd influence your relocation activities?
26
Apr
2016
Preparing for international relocation? Have fun!
Moving overseas for an international assignment is a big step; an exciting opportunity.
09
Mar
2016
St George’s Charity Golf Day – 28th April 2016
BTR International is pleased to let you know about a golf match for a very special charity...
10
Feb
2016
What’s Driving Global Talent Mobility?
A new report highlights increasingly diverse types of international assignments. It also shows the current business needs that are driving global talent mobility.
28
Jan
2016
More Women Like Global Assignments
Research shows that an increasing number of women are choosing assignments abroad as a way of fast-tracking their careers.
The Shape of International Relocations: 2016

The Shape of International Relocations: 2016

A new Corporate Relocation Survey reveals how international relocations looked in 2016…
The findings issued by Atlas, show the current shape of global mobility plus how this compares to last year. 445 decision makers participated, with results based upon the first quarter of 2016.

This information is split into three key areas:

1. Duration
During 2016, the average length of an international assignment varied between:

• Less than one year – 25%
• One – three years – 48%
• Three years or longer – 27%

Shorter durations are becoming more popular, with only half the number of larger firms using this length of assignment compared with small and medium-sized firms.

Conversely, longer periods are far more popular with larger companies. 25% of moves during the survey period were permanent.

2. Destination
Most international relocations were to posts within:

• Canada - 34%
• Asia - 29%
• United States – 26%
• UK - 23%
• Western Europe - 22%
• Eastern Europe – 22%

3. Relocation Policy
It is encouraging to see that relocation support offered by smaller companies has reached its highest level yet, (this survey began in 1998).

In particular, increases have been noted in:

• Making allowances for children to attend certain schools
Cultural and language support
• Storage allowances
• Leave entitlement when relocating abroad

Medium and large sized companies are offering relocation at a similar level to previous years.

“Companies have seen that supporting assignees and their families during international relocations improves productivity and motivation,” explains Kevin Wieczorek, Sales and Marketing Director of BTR International. “In particular, it is great to see that many more smaller companies are developing practical, helpful relocation policies.”

If you would like to discuss your company’s relocation without obligation, contact Kevin. Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call him on +44 (0) 1582 495495.



Image courtesy of jscreationzs at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Obstacles to Global Mobility

Obstacles to Global Mobility

Mercer has released the results of its latest Worldwide Survey of International Assignment Policies and Practices.
This research analyses answers from 831 participants. It addresses the most critical policy and practice elements of international assignments. These include the reasons why global mobility sometimes fails.

The report compares the responses given in 2012 with the results from 2015. In all the results shown below, participants could give multiple answers.

Top obstacles to global mobility

2012 results:
1. Cost - 69%
2. Dual career/family-related issues – 64%
3. Career management issues – 45%
4. Lack of package attractiveness – 42%
5. Hardship/remoteness of locations – 41%

2015 scores:
1. Dual career/family-related issues – 37%
2. Cost - 35%
3. Hardship/remoteness of locations – 25%
4. Career management issues – 23%
5. Lack of package attractiveness – 18%

All the barriers reduced in significance in 2015 compared with 2012, with ‘cost’ no longer topping the table. This suggests that organisations have increased efficiencies in global relocation, from operational issues through to assignee support.

Why international assignments fail:

Reasons in 2012:

1. Difficulty adjusting to host country – 64%
2. Poor candidate selection – 58%
3. Spouse/partner unhappiness – 58%
4. Poor job performance – 52%

Causes in 2015:
1. Poor candidate selection – 44%
2. Difficulty adjusting to host country – 41%
3. Spouse/partner unhappiness – 41%
4. Poor job performance – 41%

Again, all reasons stated for the failure of international assignments have reduced in significance. In line with the results for global mobility obstacles, the support offered assignees’ partners/families has improved. As a result, this factor is less likely to prevent and/or fail international assignments.

“It is good to see that barriers to international assignments are becoming less significant,” says Kevin Wieczorek, Sales and Marketing Director of BTR International. “Successful global mobility depends upon a combination of effective relocation policies and thorough support packages for assignees and their families. The results show that more organisations are achieving this blend.”

If you would like to discuss your company’s relocation practises, contact Kevin for an informal discussion. Email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call him on +44 (0) 1582 495 495.


Image courtesy of rajcreationzs at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

International Relocation Post-Brexit

International Relocation Post-Brexit

Last month’s shock EU Referendum result means that Britain will leave the European Union.
The Independent reports that as many as one in five businesses surveyed by the Institute of Directors are considering moving some of their operations outside the UK. Many firms are looking for a ‘new London’ and weighing up whether they should stay in London… or move on.

In May this year, BTR International conducted a survey to discover how the outcome of the European referendum would affect talent mobility. The majority of companies involved stated that a Brexit vote would affect their relocation activities. Responses included:

“It will make it harder and decrease our preparedness to do so.”

“Presumably it will affect immigration both into the UK for EU nationals and into the EU for UK nationals which will have a big impact on businesses.”

As the dust is settling after the outcome, what are the main outcomes for international relocation?

1. Movement of Labour
This is one of the biggest areas affecting European assignments. Many global companies see assignments within Europe as ‘local’. If Britain withdraws from free movement of labour, extra legislation may be involved with creating new assignments.

But – it will take at least two years for Britain to leave the European Union – by which time many current assignments are scheduled to have finished. It is important to note that the recent Brexit decision is unlikely to affect most existing European projects.

2. Currency Markets
Since 24th June, the pound has dropped in value against most other currencies, significantly against the Euro and the Dollar. This will affect the ongoing cost of the assignment in Europe.

3. Reassurance
Concerns over residency and EU workers’ rights may be unsettling for UK workers who are currently on assignment abroad. Similarly, people working on assignments within the UK may have concerns over whether they are able to stay within their current location. Reassurance and support for employees and their families is important.

4. Business Relocation
The international relocation of entire operations rather than purely assignees is a distinct possibility. Many organisations are considering whether to remain UK-based. This is especially true within financial and technology sectors. HSBC, Morgan Stanley and Vodaphone are all actively investigating relocating thousands of staff out of Britain. However – this may change as a clear vision of future opportunities emerges.

5. Communicate!
The political situation and action for Brexit are emerging slowly. “Everyone involved in international relocation should be prepared to listen, consider options and make agile business decisions which look after the needs of the business and the assignees,” says Kevin Wieczorek, Sales and Marketing Director of BTR International.


Contact Kevin if you would like an informal chat about your relocation policy and practices in light of the Brexit vote. Email via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call him on +44 (0) 1582 495 495.
The Future of Talent Mobility

The Future of Talent Mobility

Spread across a variety of sectors and locations, 163 participants engaged with this year’s Global Mobility Trends report from Brookfield. They have one feature in common: they all operate a global assignment programme.
Destinations
Again, the United States and China dominate the list of top and emerging destinations for international assignments. It’s interesting to note that Singapore is also in the top five countries for both lists. Mexico is the fifth most popular emerging destination, with the top five places being:

• China
• United States
• Singapore
• United Arab Emirates
• Mexico

Talent Gap
The results show that the majority of companies communicate that accepting an international assignment would be good for an employee’s career. But – just 23% have a policy in place that sets out this progression:

• 61% participants communicate the importance of assignments to employees’ careers
• 41% of those organisations surveyed actively use mobility policies to recruit external candidates
• 23% have a specific process that incorporates career planning from assignment acceptance

Role of the Global Mobility Function

Participants showed that the role of global mobility varies greatly, from being proactively involved with the wider talent agenda to passive advice provision and operationally-focused:

• 10% are aligned with wider talent agenda (such as workforce planning and people effectiveness)
• 44% are advice-based, supporting stakeholders throughout the company
• 46% are employee-based, providing optimum support to international assignees

It appears that there is a huge opportunity for the global mobility function to have more direct impact upon the shape and success of companies’ talent goals.

Challenges
As regulatory requirements become increasingly stringent across many countries, compliance and risk management is stated as the biggest challenge within assignment management. Participants gave their top challenges as:

1. Compliance/risk management
2. Containing mobility costs
3. Assignee and family adjustments
4. Mobility programme administration

“These results are not surprising,“ says Kevin Wieczorek, Sales and Marketing Director of BTR International. “The destinations within the results are similar to the requirements of our clients.

“The two challenges that an experienced relocation partner can help with are containing costs and supporting assignees and their families. It’s s shame that they are seen as big challenges as much can be done to avoid these issues.

“Careful costing an tailored support should be an integral part of all companies’ relocation policies as they have a huge impact upon the success of the assignment – for the organisation and the individuals involved.”

If you manage or coordinate international relocations for your company, contact Kevin for an informal discussion.

A quick discussion can be insightful and offer ideas for positive change. Email Kevin via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call him on +44 (0)1582 495 495.



Image courtesy of Cooldesign at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Relocating? Know The Best Cities for Expats

Relocating? Know The Best Cities for Expats

Relocation isn't the same as emigration – however the results give a good indication of how relocating to these cities would feel to international assignees.
Every year, Mercer researches the best places for UK expats to move to.

The winner of the 2016 survey? Vienna. Again.

For seven years in a row, the Austrian capital has secured top spot for overall quality of living. The achievement is particularly significant when you notice that most major international capitals didn’t achieve a place in the top 20. Notable by their absence is New York, London (39), Paris (37), Hong Kong and Dubai.

In fact, Western Europe dominates the top ten best cities for expats:

1. Vienna, Austria
2. Zurich, Switzerland
3. Auckland, New Zealand
4. Munich, Germany
5. Vancouver, Canada
6. Dusseldorf, Germany
7. Frankfurt, Germany
8. Geneva, Switzerland
9. Copenhagen, Denmark
10. Sydney, Australia

“Despite recent security issues, social unrest and concern about the region’s economic outlook, European cities continue to offer some of the world’s highest quality of living,” Mercer says.

How Does This Survey Influence Corporate Relocations?

“As companies expand globally, assignees relocate to many different locations,” says Kevin Wieczorek, Sales & Marketing Director of BTR International. “The features that are benchmarked within the Mercer survey, such as lifestyle, cost of living and accommodation should be important elements within a relocation policy.

“Ensuring that assignees and their families enjoy the relevant support during their move abroad ensures success on a personal and business level.

“Importantly different countries have varying requirements regarding visas and transportation of assignees’ good. We look after every details to ensure that each relocation is as stress-free as possible.”

To find out more contact Kevin via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0)1582 495495.



Image courtesy of Sheelamohan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The European Debate & Talent Mobility

The European Debate & Talent Mobility

How will the result of the European Referendum on June 23rd influence your relocation activities?
There is much debate about whether Britain should stay in the European Union or leave it.

BTR International is keen to understand how the outcome of this historic decision may affect relocation requirements.

We appreciate your time, (you will need no more than a few minutes for three questions). Your answers will remain anonymous.

Thank you for your help.

Take part here>
Preparing for international relocation? Have fun!

Preparing for international relocation? Have fun!

Moving overseas for an international assignment is a big step; an exciting opportunity.
Many blogs – including our own – will tell you that a successful move depends upon lots of research. The more you know about the country and area you’ll be living and working in, the quicker you’ll feel at home in your new environment.

But – this necessary research can be fun!

Preparing for your move abroad can be enjoyable as well as helpful, suggests Expat Child. Here are six fun ways to look into what life in your new culture will bring:

1. Cook
Before you move, buy a recipe book that focuses on the country that you’re moving to. It’s far easier to find one in your own language before you arrive at your destination. This is a great chance to explore the taste and smells of your new culture. You’ll also get to know the key ingredients and will know what to ask for when you are shopping in your destination.

2. Read

Books set in your new country are an amazing source of local knowledge. If you’re a history fan, you can enjoy learning the heritage of your location through fiction. Books can also highlight the sightseeing opportunities for you.

3. Film Nights

Similar to reading, watching films or television programmes set in your destination help to bring it to life, this time with great visual impact. This research any also help with the learning the language.

4. It’s Good to Talk
Speaking with people who already live in your new country – or who have visited – will help enormously. They’ll offer a wealth of tips and advice. You could join an online form, which will also help to combat the isolation you may feel when you first arrive. One example is the Expat Chat Forum.

5. Laugh
Seek out the more light-hearted guides to see the fun side of where you’ll be living.

6. Involve the Family
The kids will love to be involved with finding out interesting details about a new country… national dish, indigenous animals, most popular sport, national dish etc. Tap into their energy!

“Preparation is key for a successful international relocation’” explains Kevin Wieczorek, Sales & Marketing Director of BTR International. “Companies’ relocation policies often involve support with moving and lifestyle.

“Getting involved with doing your own research is fun – and importantly, it helps you to get to know your new country. Undoubtedly, this reduces the time needed to settle in your new home.”

To find out more about how BTR International can help your international assignees, contact Kevin via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0)1582 495495.
St George’s Charity Golf Day – 28th April 2016

St George’s Charity Golf Day – 28th April 2016

BTR International is pleased to let you know about a golf match for a very special charity...
St George’s Community Children’s Project

The project is a registered charity (reg.no. 802017) with over 30 years’ experience of promoting the mental, physical and spiritual well-being of children, offering high quality childcare 51 weeks of the year.

The charity provides assisted places for children of families in crisis, allowing the children to develop social skills and to:

• Learn through play in a safe and happy environment
• To have at least one cooked meal a day

This enables their parents to have some valuable respite time in which to address their difficulties. This in turn prepares the children for school and helps to break that cycle of deprivation.

St George’s Charity Golf Day - Thursday 28 April 2016

This year St George’s Community Children’s Project is once again hosting a charity golf day at Lamberhurst Golf Club on Thursday 28 April from 10am.

Why not put a team together and join in?

All money raised will help the charity’s Assisted Places scheme, enabling disadvantaged children to benefit from a nursery education.

You will enjoy providing coffee and bacon rolls at 10am, followed by 18 holes of golf and a 3 course dinner with prize giving, all for just £70 a head!

To reserve your places please request a booking form and return it to Karen Collins with payment by 7 April 2016.

If you would like to play, but don’t have a four please let Karen know and she will find you the perfect team.

Lastly, if anyone would like to sponsor a ‘nearest the pin’ competitions or to donate an item for the auction/raffle on the day, contact Karen.

Karen Collins can be reached via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or on 01892 543982.

Enjoy!
What’s Driving Global Talent Mobility?

What’s Driving Global Talent Mobility?

A new report highlights increasingly diverse types of international assignments. It also shows the current business needs that are driving global talent mobility.
The Mercer survey shows the reasons behind recruitment for international assignments:

• 47% to ‘provide specific technical skills not available locally’
• 43% to ensure ‘know-how transfer’
• 41% to provide ‘specific managerial skills’
• 41% to facilitate ‘career management and leadership development’
• 40% to fulfil ‘specific project needs’

These requirements are, in turn, driving the types of global assignments available. Recruitment for short-term international assignments expected to be most popular during 2016:

• 56% multi-national companies will increase recruitment for short-term assignments
• 54% envisage using permanent transfers
• 50% anticipate an increase in developmental training assignments
• 44% expect an increase in the traditional long-term assignments

“Companies are using a more varied range of assignments in order to respond to evolving business needs and changing patterns in the global workforce,” said Rob Thissen, consultant in Mercer’s mobility business, based in Dubai.

“The increased diversification of assignment types adds complexity which can result in potential compliance and policy challenges for HR and mobility directors.”

This variety of assignment types means that companies must ensure that they have a robust yet flexible relocation policy that supports each of these options. Mercer’s report confirms this – 64% multi-national companies have multiple international assignment policies.

Organisations must embrace the need for global talent mobility and ensure that they have the policies in place to support the needs of the organisation and the individuals involved.

“One policy is unlikely to fit all, and such an approach can lead to inadequate compensation which again can make it difficult to attract and retain talent.

“Implementing fit-for-purpose policies, to suit both different assignees and assignments, can be a highly efficient cost-saving initiative for most global mobility functions,” said Thissen.

Will your organisation’s relocation policy cope with the changes forecast for global mobility in 2016?


BTR International offers tailored support to ensure that your plans and policies for international relocation are as effective and efficient as possible.

Together, we can ensure that every move is as stress-free as possible.

To find out about our relocation consultation service, call us on +44 (0)1582 495495 or email Kevin Wieczorek, Sales & Marketing Director via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Image courtesy of rajcreationzs at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
More Women Like Global Assignments

More Women Like Global Assignments

Research shows that an increasing number of women are choosing assignments abroad as a way of fast-tracking their careers.
Results also show that more women are working overseas within management positions.

Internations – the global expat networking organisation – found that 17.8% of the British women that it surveyed were working in management positions abroad during 2015. That’s a 4% increase compared with the 2014 result.

International assignments are still dominated by men. Research from Cigna Global Health Benefits highlighted the largest group of people who work outside of their home county… 81% are male, middle aged and have a family. But – there is a growing number of assignees who are female.

Yelena Mackay wrote “Moving Without Shaking”, a book aimed at women who want to achieve a successful expat life. Mackay says: “Back in the Eighties a typical expat was a male taking his wife and children with him. These days it’s single women under 30 or sometimes those taking their boyfriend with them.

“I think this is one of the best ways to advance women’s careers. It gives so many new options – you start learning languages, being more culturally flexible and less afraid of taking chances.

“You have to get out of your comfort zone. Once you have gone away and pursued these new opportunities then you have the chance to come back home and have a more exciting international role if you want.”

Data from Internations shows that most female international assignees are single, and that fewer than 40% have children. Many young professional women see foreign assignments as part of their career development.

Courtney Ellis-Jones of the Forum for Expatriate Management says that women should have a more balanced view of working overseas. She say: “Being an expatriate is often seen as glamorous to those who have not experienced the life, but it can often be frustrating, difficult and lonely. People who succeed in international assignments demonstrate to the business they are able to problem-solve and overcome barriers to success.

“The positives are vast, both professionally and personally. The chance to experience a new culture is a rich and rewarding one. Broadening your horizons to the way people work and interact develops a more passionate and sympathetic employee, which leads to better management."

BTR International moves assignees between different countries across the globe. Kevin Wieczorek, Sales & Marketing Director of BTR International says: “We have notices that an increasing number of women are taking international roles. We appreciate that moving abroad offers exciting opportunities and challenges. Our range of support is tailored to the individual, the organisation and the country involved so that international relocations are as stress-free as possible.”

If you would like to discuss how your employees are supported with their international assignments, contact Kevin via .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or call +44 (0) 1582 495495.