35% of employees would like to work abroad, with 25% of professionals feeling that their career prospects have improved due to international assignments.
But – 70% businesses think that global mobility is underperforming or needs significant investment.
So how can HR teams make sure that global relocations are as stress-free as possible, encouraging quick, optimum productivity?
Here are our top three tips for global relocation success, based upon over 20 years’ experience of international relocations:
Both the HR team and individual assignees need to understand the process involved. Communication is vital. Assignees often have concerns about the move even though they are looking forward to their new role and lifestyle.Organisations should develop a relocation policy that everyone involved is aware of and refers to.
Assignees should be able to visit their envisaged location ahead of the move – ‘fear of the unknown’ causes anxiety. (See our recent blog – ‘Five Concerns About Relocating Abroad‘.)
Early communication with your relocation partner will give individuals an opportunity to discuss their requirements and concerns. This lifestyle overview will help with providing the right orientation and addressing key issues such as housing, transport and schools.
What is the biggest fear amongst internal assignees? Isolation.‘Live like a local’ advises Noelle Know of The Wall Street Journal. “Don’t go from the office and back to your corporate housing. Learn the language, make friends in the country and adapt to local norms. Showing teams on the ground you respect and understand their culture is highly valued.”
Essential to early integration is language tuition and cross-cultural training. Expat Explorer confirms that not being able to speak the language is one of the largest barriers to settling into a new country: “Learn the language and see how things open up for you.”
Relocation should offer support before, during and after the move for both the assignees and their families.The family’s failure to settle in their new location is the most common reason that international assignees leave early. Relocation policies should include ‘investigative’ trips to a new location before the move, plus opportunities to visit home during the year.
“Understanding the moving process will help ease the transition, however it’s the support available during those initial weeks in a new country which will be crucial to the long term success of the relocation” explains Kevin Wieczorek, Sales & Marketing Director of BTR International.
Global talent mobility is growing fast. To make sure that your international relocation policy is as effective and successful as possible, contact Kevin via firstname.lastname@example.org or via +44 (0) 1582 495495.
(Sources: Hydrogen Group, International HR Adviser, Talent Management)
Image courtesy of rajcreationzs at FreeDigitalPhotos.net