Global Mobility: From a Strategy that Leads to Business Growth to Partner

Global mobility is finally seeing its place in the corporate sun. Many American companies have looked outward as a project or a part-time department, determining for themselves the value it brings them as the work expands. As more companies establish their foothold in other countries, it has opened up a path for recruiters to bring in overseas talent, especially if the work to be done requires skills and credentials that cannot be found among the locals.

At the same time, global mobility has often been a tried-and-tested method for an organization to test the waters — and their companies’ capabilities. For example, instead of immediately opening a fully manned office with a CEO enjoying expatriate compensation packages, global mobility has been known to send assignees in a senior-level position to temporarily work with the locals in the company’s regional office, learning their culture, behavior, and the country’s market potential firsthand.

For many years, global mobility has been recognized as a special strike force team that temporarily lends muscle and resources to the main battalion already entrenched themselves in the place of conquest. That analogy is rapidly changing, however. 

According to the latest research by Deloitte, that maverick special operations group has grown to become an indispensable unit in the army; it gives tactical information before the launch of a campaign, continues to provide intelligence and assistance to consolidate gains, and then stay to make sure that expansion happens after victory.

As Deloitte puts it, CEOs now regard global mobility as a partner that will help “advance the organization’s business interests” around the world. At the same time, they also see it as a pipeline for the next generation of leaders who, because of a more global perspective and multi-cultural training, can grow the company even more effectively into the international arena.

Learnlight points out how this paradigm change is quietly revolutionizing the current global mobility model. First, CEOs and their ROI-minded finance executives just might stop thinking of global mobility as an avenue for cost, and consider it as an asset and a bona fide investment that will bring in tangible, measurable returns. 

The payoff can come in the form of a greater market share, larger profit margins, an increase in revenues brought in per employee, and the emergence of a brighter, more agile workforce. 

HR Technologist offers the following advice on how an insightful and forward-thinking global mobility manager can capitalize on this trend:

Gain a deeper knowledge of your organization’s business goals

Read past the projected ROI and revenue share. Assess where and how your company is evolving (if it is), and how it is filling in the gaps in the market. Understand how its unique selling proposition makes it more attractive than most brands to the target audience. If this means reading up on trade journals or developing closer ties with the business development people, consider it an investment in your education.

Expand your knowledge of the dynamics that influence the regions that your company is considering for expansion

Go beyond the assessment of candidate assignees and their skill level. Study the location’s economy, political structure, and relations with other countries. No alliance or partnership is stable or permanent these days — just take a look at the coronavirus and its impact worldwide. Gain insights on how their current status or any sudden change can impact your organization’s business goals.

Finally, now that you have a clearer road map of where your company and your regions of interest are heading into, determine where you as a global mobility manager can contribute. Start with the development of an international talent pipeline that can create substantial breakthroughs in your target regional market. 

Back it up with figures, showing how the investment spent on the recruitment and training of these skilled talents can boost the financial bottom line years later. Build a case on how a multicultural team can help strengthen your organization’s presence in cities and countries where it is currently weak.

This is a trend where you as a global mobility manager can strengthen your position and enhance your career. Start thinking like a strategist. Opportunities await.