War for talent enters new stage as
relocation expectations change
BDO has published the 2017 edition of its global mobility report, Perceptions of employee mobility in a climate of change. A joint project between BDO and the Canadian Employment Relocation Council (CERC) this year’s report acknowledges a greater demand for an internationally mobile workforce than at any time in history. New data shows that unique needs and desires beyond remuneration are influencing employees’ acceptance of relocation offers.
Historically, the main concern for employers has been the cost of moving an employee abroad, with issues ranging from reconciling tax and payroll issues to compensation incentives and assignment structuring. Carried out from the employee’s point of view, BDO’s report is unique in that it helps employers better understand the thoughts and feelings of current and potential employees who are looking into career opportunities that require relocation. The survey may help alleviate some employer concerns and encourage the right employee to make the move.
When this survey was first fielded five years ago, employees were clearly more willing to consider relocation than they are today. While job security and family concerns continue to be the most important factors, new data shows that unique needs and desires beyond remuneration have emerged that must be satisfied before employees will consider relocation. Even after such incentives are offered, employees show a reduced readiness to relocate, compared to data from this report’s 2012 edition.
The report further highlights that factors beyond employers’ control, such as government policy – specifically relating to health care, immigration and social security - have come to play a bigger role than before in professionals’ decision to relocate. The USA continues to be the top choice for relocation, though significantly less employees want to relocate to the US compared to 2012. This might signal a new trend.
Job security and, specifically, repatriation and guaranteed employment upon return continue to be the most important incentives for talent to consider international assignments. They are followed closely by incentives that directly address family concerns and skills training.
The survey was carried out from February to March 2017, involving 20 countries and approximately 14,500 respondents in the following countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Great Britain, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, the Netherlands, Turkey and the USA.