Taking a Global View of Talent Mobility

How businesses are building tomorrow's talent pipeline through a global perspective. 

A guest blog post from David Perring, Chief Insights Officer, Fosway

Finding and retaining top talent is one of the top concerns for HR teams in 2023

Developed nations are facing a worker shortage. The convergence of post-Covid demand, an ageing workforce, and a surge in demand for transformative skills is causing huge   challenges for businesses in all sectors, seniorities, roles and skill sets. 

According to the latest research from the CIPD, two in every five employersScreenshot 2023-07-28 at 11.34.23 AM have hard-to-fill vacancies. The availability of talent with the right skills is at the heart of this. In our own Fosway's HR Realities Survey, 69% cite the availability of skills as a major challenge for their business.

This places the availability of talent as HR's number one strategic challenge, but there are few quick fixes. To solve this problem, most organisations focus on creating a great workplace. Their first action is to retain talent with a compelling employee experience. One that will help employees stay and attract the talent essential to building the organisations they need to be tomorrow.

Few are truly delivering on their employee experience promise

But, only 17% would describe their employee experience as 'irresistible', and only around half would rate their employee experience as 'good'. So, despite the intent, there is still work to do.

That work is already in play. Many organisations have looked at enhancing their employee experience to make them the employer of choice. As the chart below shows, they have been accelerating the opportunities for flexible working (57%), building their reputation as a great place to work (54%), being more proactive in career progression (49%) and personal development (48%), and for international organisations seeking to expand international career opportunities (25%). 

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Fosway HR Realities Research 2022

Flexible, remote and location-agnostic working provides an edge in the war for talent

A core theme is that a more location-agnostic approach, whether in remote working or relocation, is central to how organisations seek to attract and retain the best people. They think beyond borders and embrace global mobility as a key differentiator in the war for talent and skills.

Especially as taking a more location-agnostic approach can:

  1. Expand the talent pool in the talent acquisition phase
  2. Improve the employee experience for existing employees, many of whom now want and expect more work location flexibility
  3. Develop international expertise through regional assignments and relocations
  4. Open new sources for skills and innovation
  5. Increase hiring diversity from previously under-represented groups.

Being borderless comes with risks

Taking a more global or borderless view of the workforce does not come without risks. Adopting flexibility for 'local' work location can expose individuals and organisations to compliance risks with immigration and new tax implications. 

For international relocations, issuing visas, work permits, handling immigration and trading entity requirements and restrictions on travel, as well as pay and expense management and ultimately, the total costs of a long- or short-term assignment are complex. They can be intensely demanding and costly to administer without the appropriate support, technology and partnering. 

Core HR systems don't provide the complete answer to flexible working and global mobility

This is not a problem that Core HR systems have ever looked to solve. The compliance challenges around global logistics are too narrow a use case for HCM providers to invest in building that functionality, and the insight around taxation and immigration are too specialist and reliant on legalities outside of the software for anyone other than specialist providers to embrace which is precisely why specialist solution providers covering Global Talent Mobility have emerged. To provide all the transparency of corporate policy, taxation rules and immigration that enables the flexible working that top talent now demands. All wrapped with the peace of mind that, whatever border your people are working across or in, your people or your organisation won't end up with an unexpected tax bill or deportation because someone inadvertently exceeded their right to stay.

It's time to open-up mobility

Now you might think this is only an issue for international organisations. But in a globalised world, all organisations must consider their policies and manage the risks. During the pandemic, 28% of employees worked across their home state or country border, but only 1 in 3 declared that to HR. Now after the pandemic, the risks are not going away. Over 90% of employees say they should be able to work from wherever they want to if they get their work done.

So, the location issue is something that all companies need to set clear expectations and proactively manage - not by locking down mobility – but by providing transparency and support for global and remote working at scale.

To come full circle

The challenges of talent availability are here and won by those who can keep and attract talent. Being able to put your hand on your heart and say you are an enabler of global working within the rules; to offer a freedom of choice about where your work – is just the sort of personalisation that can underpin an irresistible employee experience. It's what can differentiate your organisation as an employer of choice for ambitious, energised and skilled top talent. And that ambition is more straightforward to deliver than ever with the automation and intelligence available in specialist global mobility software.

About Fosway

Fosway Group is Europe's #1 HR Industry Analyst focused on Next Gen HR, Talent and Learning. Founded in 1996, we are known for our unique European research, our independence and our integrity. And just like the Roman road we draw our name from, you'll find that we're unusually direct. We don't have a vested interest in your supplier or consulting choices. So, whether you're looking for independent research, specific advice or a critical friend to cut through the market hype, we can tell you what you need to know to succeed.

Talk to us today on +44 (0) 207 917 1870 or via info@fosway.com, or visit us at www.fosway.com

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