As more companies send employees abroad on a wide range of assignments, to an ever expanding number of home/host country combinations, they need to consider how best to achieve a higher score on their "expat-o-meters!" What is an "expat-o-meter," you ask? I'm thinking it's a gauge, of sorts that measures distinct areas of a mobility program. I'm also thinking all mobility professionals would want one for their program, and they would measure (and try to achieve):
- higher ROI's on expatriate assignments
- an elevated expat (and family) experience
- and greater retention of repatriated talent
Are you effectively measuring the success of your expat program? If so, what tool(s) are you using to measure that success? Any recent initiatives that have sprung from your dashboards and stakeholder feedback?
With economies and businesses doing well, we are seeing increases in international mobility that are driven by new initiatives and a desire to develop existing talent. According to a new research report published by Finaccord, the total number of expatriates worldwide amounted to around 66.2 million in 2017 growing at a compound annual rate of 5.8% since 2013, given that there were around 52.8 million expatriates in that year. By 2021, Finaccord forecasts that the number will reach around 87.5 million.
According to this article in Employee Benefit Adviser, there are a number of things that employers can do to better prepare and manage expat assignments. The six mentioned in the article are:
- Listen, communicate and engage before the assignment begins
- Start the benefits conversation early
- Leverage your partners (RMC's, immigration, tax, insurers etc.) for educating your employee
- Engage spouses and partners in addition to your employee
- Ensure that your partners are in a position to assist where your employee is assigned
- Make it clear to your expat who to contact if help is needed
We wholeheartedly agree with these suggestions, and with a future that presents changing demographics for assignees, an expectation that the percentage of female expats will increase, and more acceptance and support of employees that identify as LGBTQ, there is much more to consider than ever before.
And, since many around the world have headed back to school, we might also suggest you learn more about:
In a globalized world, sometimes there’s no substitute for sending a high-performing employee who knows the intricacies of the business to help open a new office, course-correct a team that needs assistance, or offer up a highly specialized skill set. Placing this very important employee population at the center of the benefits delivery experience helps to ensure a positive benefits experience for globally mobile employees. This can result in employee satisfaction that will have long-term ROI implications.