How Global Mobility Specialists Can Take Lead on Changes in Workplace

leadersOxford Economics’ recently published study on the “changing face” of the American workplace sent small but visible shockwaves through business organizations already hard-pressed to cope with economic and political shifts around them. One section that particularly got a lot of scrutiny was the impact of globalization on the priorities of corporate America.

The rising need for training in technology, the flexibility of the HR structure, and the implementation of measurements that can quantify the development of the workforce had significant repercussions on recruitment, quality of hires, and employee retention.

Global mobility specialists have an advantage over their more insular peers because they have a front seat view of the international arena. They would be more sensitive to issues, societal disruptions, and economic fallouts with consequences that can reverberate back to the United States. At the same time, they have a more in-depth knowledge of the strengths of the organization’s partner or allied countries, which they can turn into opportunities that just might turn the ensuing crisis around.

As an example, the study says that the current workforce is currently untrained and unprepared to skillfully use evolving technology as an effective tool in the workplace. Only 27 percent have functional access to it, and only 39 percent are sufficiently equipped to handle it. International Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), project management software, and database analysis are just a few of the new devices that the average employee would have to use as easily as his smartphone. Again, global mobility specialists might be the first to become familiar with this technology precisely because these are the platforms often used to facilitate international communications.

Another area where global mobility specialists can help their beleaguered colleagues is in helping them adjust terms of agreement such as salary rates, length of tenure, telecommunication costs, or temporary housing arrangements. To global mobility specialists who deal with foreign assignees who have to work for a specific number of years, this would be familiar territory. They are also supported by a network of professional organizations like embassies and economic chambers of commerce. Companies that directly help with a foreign assignee’s needs, such as California Corporate Housing, can even offer tips to motivate a new hire.

Finally, HR managers now have to contend with studying and analyzing tons of data  from various sources in order to measure workforce performance. Only 47 percent admit that they can draw valuable insights from the information stored in the company database. While global mobility specialists may not necessarily have the analytical skills of a data scientist or a market researcher, their international exposure has taught them how to connect the dots that link industries, population numbers, and economic statistics. From there they can draw conclusions or observations that might even be beneficial to top management.