changing world

How Recruiters Can Adapt to a Changing World — and Workforce

By the nature of his job, a global mobility specialist is focused on three major aspects: the global developments that affect the various economies, governments, and institutions he deals with; the flows and currents of the current workforce and the factors that change and transform them; and the incentives and other attractive features that can empower them to recruit a quality workforce.

But the rapid evolution of technology and the stunning unexpected changes that occur today are creating challenges that some say are unprecedented, and thus require a lot of agility, adaptation, and creative thinking in order for the global mobility specialist to survive and thrive.

To show the kind of standards he has to live up to, a global mobility specialist must become an expert, and not just a professional, when it comes to globalization. At the same time, he can no longer function as a lone wolf or a trainer of international assignees, but he must be able to build a “world-class, world-ready team.”

There are other challenges that he must be aware of — and respond to — as a leader in this area. He can no longer see himself as a recruiter of foreign talent or the prime mover in sending expatriates to foreign countries.

The need to respond proactively and avoid complacency even when shocking developments break out.

Relocate Magazine says that many experts, not just global mobility specialists, were caught by surprise when the United Kingdom voted to exit out of Europe. Some were tempted to just take a wait-and-see attitude, while others took comfort in a little bit of denial. However, game-changing global events like Brexit may soon happen more frequently, and global mobility specialists should prepare themselves in terms of coping with the change. This does not mean that they can predict every sudden disruption that happens worldwide, but they can cultivate a mindset and a behavior that can take the change in stride — and more importantly, take advantage of it.

The passion and persistence in developing new skills.

As every IT professional has learned to recognize, the programming wonder code of today might be the obsolete function of tomorrow. The same holds true for almost every discipline in all industries. To cope with the rising unprecedented changes, learning must become a lifelong skill. Global mobility specialists cannot rely on their past laurels, past experience, past training, and past knowledge to create the strategies that will work for the future. They have to constantly update themselves with new information, and learn hands-on those subjects that they would have consigned to somebody else. Just a couple of examples: project management and data analytics.

As another issue of Relocate Magazine points out, the advent of artificial intelligence (AI) will eliminate a lot of jobs but will give birth to new ones. And with new tasks come new skills and abilities. Instead of taking a knee-jerk approach, for example, global mobility specialists must learn to work with the machine, instead of running away from or fighting it.

The ability to adapt with a changing workforce.

As the structure of corporations and economies change, so does the workforce. Global mobility specialists must be the first to realize that what might have worked for teams of in the past are no longer applicable in the digital world. They would have to deal with a fluid work environment where senior employees unwilling to retire are working shoulder-to-shoulder with millennials young enough to be their kids (or grandkids).

They have to be able to deal with a corporate structure that is becoming more open to a contractual gig-based talent pool. Through all these changes, the global mobility specialist must be able to see and sift through them, to separate what can work for his company, and what might pose risks and challenges. At the same time, he must be able to leverage whatever situation and structure he finds himself in to create a pipeline of sustainable quality talent.