International HR Adviser The Leading Magazine For International HR Professionals Worldwide
Features include: China Challenges For HR - Investing In 3rd And Even 4th Tier Cities Nurturing Global Leaders • Salaries: The New World Order Data Analytics - The Art Of The Possible In International Mobility Management Global Immigration Update • Global Taxation Update Global Trends Surveys • Talent Management Advisory Panel for this issue:
Expatriate Adviser Summer
Autumn International HR Adviser
In This Issue Page 3
China Challenges For HR – Investing In 3rd And Even 4th Tier Cities Shelley Warner, Asia Pacific Access (APA)
Key Findings: From The 2012 Global Mobility Survey Conducted by Circle Research and commissioned by Santa Fe Group
Global Relocation Trends Survey 2012 – Spotlight On China Brookfield Global Relocation Services
Staying Healthy In China Dr Rebecca Small, Bupa International
Serviced Apartments Oakwood® Worldwide
Nurturing Global Leaders: Using Competency Based Assessment Techniques To Develop Employees Dr Liza Howe-Walsh & Dr Sarah Turnbull, Centre for Organisation and Development, University of Portsmouth
Salaries: The New World Order Steven Kilfedder, ECA Renumeration Services
International HR Strategy: Data Analytics - The Art Of The Possible In International Mobility Management Scott McCormick, Deloitte LLP
Talent Management: Talent Mobility Starts With Fluent Communication Armin Hopp, dp (digital publishing)
Talent Management: Case Study Anton Franckeiss, ASK Europe
Global Immigration Update Fragomen LLP
UK Immigration: A Time Of Change Nadine Goldfoot, Fragomen LLP
Taxation: Super Commuters – Calculating The Cost Andrew Bailey, BDO LLP
Global Taxation Update Andrew Bailey, BDO LLP
International HR Adviser, PO Box 921, Sutton, SM1 2WB, United Kingdom Publisher • Helen Elliott +44 (0) 20 8661 0186 • Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Publishing Director • Damian Porter +44 (0) 1737 551506 www.internationalhradviser.com In Loving Memory of Assunta Mondello While every effort has been made to ensure accuracy of information contained in this issue of “International HR Adviser”, the publishers and Directors of Inkspell Ltd cannot accept responsibility for errors or omissions. Neither the publishers of “International HR Adviser” nor any third parties who provide information for “Expatriate Adviser” magazine, shall have any responsibility for or be liable in respect of the content or the accuracy of the information so provided, or for any errors or omissions therein. “International HR Adviser” does not endorse any products, services or company listings featured in this issue.
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Summer International HR Adviser
investing in china
China Challenges For HR - Investing In 3rd And Even 4th Tier Cities While Europe slides into a worsening financial and economic morass, investment opportunities in China continue to attract European companies. A Survey, jointly conducted (in March /April this year) by the European Chamber of Commerce in China and Roland Berger Strategy Consultants, has revealed that two thirds of all 557 responding European companies were considering new investments in China. In 2009, at the heart of the GFC, only 39% of respondents held similar views. While most new investment will still be placed in the “traditional” locations in 1st Tier cities, new investments in China are increasingly moving to China’s 2nd, 3rd and even 4th Tier cities. These include cities with names unfamiliar in the West such as Wuhu, Xiangtan and Fushun (all cities with populations over two million) or provincial capitals such as Jinan, Changchun, Shenyang or Chongqing, which have already attracted major foreign investors such as M.A.N, VW, Bombardier, Michelin, Ford, Chrysler and GM. These 3rd and 4th Tier cities are attracting foreign investors because they have an established industrial base; relatively cheap labour; Chinese government investment and tax incentives; improving power and transportation infrastructure and growing regional markets. Twenty or thirty years ago, China’s 1st tier and east coast cities and its Special Economic Development Zones were where foreign investment money was primarily directed. The local
market wasn't the main attraction for foreign investors then. They were looking at the opportunity for cheap manufactured products directed at an export market. Today, the rise of the Chinese middle class, thirsty to consume, is a powerful lure to foreign investors. According to a survey quoted recently in the official English language publication, Global Times, the middle class of China’s 2nd and 3rd Tier cities is expected to increase by 200 million people between 2010 and 2020, while the population of 1st tier cities is only expected to rise by 60 million. This phenomenon will certainly attract more foreign investment to China’s new developing cities. The new Chinese middle class is spending its new found money on new housing, overseas travel but also on cars (bigger, brighter and more powerful rather than the modest cars bought by the rising western middle class in post-war Europe). Not surprisingly then, the proportion of FDI coming into China from the automotive industry has been rising. Since the mid 1990s there have been new investments in the new “developing cities” from most of the major international automotive companies, such as Fiat, Toyota, VW, BMW and Ford, while support companies manufacturing aluminium panels, spark plugs, brakes etc., have been opening in “less known” cities like Changsha, Wuhu, Hefei and Tianjin. The business opportunities are clear, but for HR these business opportunities in the 3rd and 4th tier cities with serious
challenges: how to attract adequately skilled technical and managerial staff, be they local or expat; rising salary expectations for local staff and for expats; dangerously different attitudes among blue collar workers towards health and safety requirements; different judgements on what constitutes corruption; and confronting living conditions for expatriates including less than adequate housing, no international schooling and poor medical facilities. The recruitment of adequate skilled labour and of management personnel is a long term problem, facing both Chinese companies and MNCs (multinational corporations) operating in China. In 2011, the US China Business Council (USCBC) confirmed that Human Resources remained the largest challenge for member companies operating in China. This was the 6th straight year of this issue being at or near the top of USBC’s annual survey. The specific HR issues raised by members spanned the gamut of finding, hiring and retaining suitable managerial and technical talent. The problem of retention is particularly serious at managerial level. For the employee, loyalty to a current employer has less motivational pull than the prospect of changing jobs to advance up a career ladder and increase one’s financial remuneration. This creates an open market for newly arriving investors to poach good staff from established companies and push local wage expectations higher in the process. In 2007, Booz and Company surveyed approximately 100 Chinese MBAs and found that: • 94% had been approached for another job • 55% had already changed jobs since receiving their MBAs in 2004 • 80% of those who worked for MNCs said they did not plan to stay at their current jobs for more than two additional years. Summer International HR Adviser
investing in china Like the Booz and Co/- report, while dated, the results of a 2005 McKinsey report, The Emerging Global Labour Market, are still relevant today. The results revealed that despite a very large pool of university graduates, few Chinese graduates would qualify as recruits to an MNC: the engineers had had theoretical training with little practical experience and English levels of graduates were inadequate for professional communication. The demand for managerial talent driven by new investment by Chinese companies and MNCs has expanded since the Booz and Co/- survey, but the increase in MBA graduates has not matched this demand. Not only attracting talent, but the retention of skilled managerial talent remains a serious challenge. While these problems pose a significant headache for MNCs in China’s first tier cities, they become even more intractable issues as companies move their investment inland, where there is far less home-grown talent with appropriate skills. Added to this is the overwhelming reluctance of skilled Chinese employees to move, even on shortish assignments of a couple of years, from comfortable east coast living to the less comfortable living and working conditions in China’s “developing” cities. If the employee can be enticed by a large financial incentive to take the assignment, he or she is likely to go on the assignment alone, leaving the family behind in the home city. The spouse, whether male or female, is likely to have their own career which he/she is unwilling to forego. Another disincentive to moving is education: education standards for children in the 3rd and 4th tier cities are not regarded as comparable with those in the more developed cities. Gaining admission to a local school if one comes from another city in China can also be a major obstacle, due to residency requirements. One factor MNCs consider when deciding where to place their investment is relative labour costs between cities. Average salaries in many 3rd and 4th tier cities are as much as 50% lower than in 1st and 2nd tier cities. The compulsory employer contributions to social welfare for its employees in 3rd and 4th Tier cities set as a percentage of each employee’s salary tends to be lower than that set for 1st and 2nd tier cities. Also the average salary differential between 3rd and 4th tier cities compared to 1st and 2nd tier cities further widens the cost of employer contributions to social welfare. This is because generally International HR Adviser Summer
each city only applies the set percentages of an employee’s salary up to a salary cap equivalent to three times the city’s average salary level for the previous year. Thus an employer’s contribution for all employees with salaries above the cap is limited to that applying to the cap. To illustrate this, on 2010 figures provided by Devan Shira and Associates (see below), employers in Qingdao would contribute no more than 36 % of three times RMB 2,116 for all its staff on gross salaries above RMB 6,348 per month. In contrast on 2010 figures Beijing employers would contribute 44.3% of three times RMB 4,037 for its entire staff on gross salaries above RMB 12,111 per month. (Note: US$1 = approx RMB 6.32). Another challenge for HR across China, but particularly in 3rd and 4th Tier cities where workers have been accustomed to working in the traditional State-owned sector, is attitudes to health and safety. While
the West probably took over seventy years to introduce rigorous health and safety standards in its factories, China, which started its major industrialisation programme in the 1950s, isolated from developments in the West, is only slowly catching up. Not only are regulations in the relatively early stages of evolution, they are not strictly enforced and, more critically, they have not been backed up by strong public education programmes. Training in health and safety is a significant burden and responsibility for HR operating in 3rd and 4th Tier Chinese cities. If local employment issues were not enough, HR has to confront a very different but equally challenging range of issues affecting their expat staff and their families.
Challenges for the Expats and for HR The first challenge for HR is how to persuade expats to move to a 3rd or 4th Tier
Charts comparing compulsory Social Security contributions: First-tier cities:
Several 2nd Tier cities:
And finally a selection of 3rd or 4th tier cities:
(Source: Devan Shira October 26, 2010 China Briefing, “Employment Overheads in China’s Social Security System
investing in china city and then, once they arrive, how to manage their concerns and worries so that they don’t affect employee productivity and importantly that assignments don't fail. While the situation clearly differs between cities, a snapshot of the conditions in one larger 3rd tier city will help paint the picture. Chongqing is one of the fastest growing cities in China (GDP of US$158.9billion in 2011 growing at 16.4% p.a) and, in the past two to three years has attracted large amounts of FDI from companies such as Ford, HP and BASF and many smaller support companies. Chongqing, a city of 9 million people in the urban area and another 20 million in the peri-urban and rural areas, is a port city, with the rough and tumble that that implies. Combine that with a strained political history before the Communist takeover in 1949 (Chongqing was the wartime capital of the previous Nationalist government); it experienced heavy Japanese bombing during the 2nd World War; a vicious Cultural Revolution and years of deprivation and poverty. In the space of less than ten years, however, a dark, crumbling city perched on a rocky peninsula has been thrust into the 21st century – with towering skyscrapers; sky trains; new train and metro lines; “luxury“ housing designed for wealthy Chinese and not really for expats; plus shopping for wealthy Chinese: Cartier and Tiffany and Gucci, but not really for expats. For some local Chinese, the transformation must be unsettling. For newly arrived expats, the transformation seems only skin deep and many find it very difficult to live there. Almost no English is spoken outside the 5 star hotels. Venturing out into the street you are confronted with a cacophony of car horns and loud voices speaking in an unintelligible language. To buy anything at all requires patience and an inventive use of sign language. The expat community can be counted in the hundreds. It is difficult to find clothes to suit a western taste. Restaurants don't have menus in English. Expats walking on the streets are stared at, pointed at, and sometimes laughed at, by people who have never seen a white face or blue eyes before. The hairdressers don't know how to colour hair that is not black. Conditions and customer service at even the best hospitals fall well below western standards and expectations and there is really only one established school option for western children. On top of this, the climate
is gloomy: with frequent fogs; unhealthy levels of pollution and high levels of humidity winter and summer. Despite all these difficulties, Chongqing can be a liveable and enjoyable city, with some fascinating history, some great modern artists, interesting traditional handicrafts and beautiful picnic spots in the nearby mountains. But expats need a helping hand to discover these opportunities.
What does HR need to understand when they send expatriates to 3rd and 4th Tier cities and what they can do to resolve some of the issues? HOUSING Housing prices are unrealistically high and you rarely get value for money. Construction standards in many 3rd and 4th Tier cities are not good, cheap construction materials are often used and buildings tend to deteriorate quickly. Assignees are often shocked when they learn that a building which looks 10 – 15 years old was actually
built only five years ago. After moving to their new home, the assignee cannot expect proactive support from the local realtor, let alone the landlord, when things go wrong. The concept of regular maintenance to reduce break downs is not well understood; and when repairs are done, they are often poorly done and don't last. The assignee can be confronted by a leaking toilet, an air conditioner which has broken down, a management office that doesn't speak English, a landlord who doesn't respond to requests for help and a local realtor who doesn't appreciate that they have a responsibility for after-sales service. Recommendation: Companies should seriously consider hiring a professional DSP, not a realtor, to guide the assignee to identify housing within budget, well built, well managed and well maintained. The DSP should also be charged to assist with Tenancy Management: to manage the local realtor to ensure that thorough and quality repairs and maintenance are carried out, so that pressure on the assignee (and local HR) is reduced. Summer International HR Adviser
investing in china Chongqing
Shopping facilities: Apart from the lack of English – and that means spoken English as well as signage, one of the biggest challenges facing expats in smaller 3rd and 4th Tier cities is low or no availability of familiar products and the questionable quality of the local produce. Roughly chopped raw meat sitting on a hook is difficult for most expats to face, but food safety issues in small cities may be even more of a worry. As cities develop and living standards rise, local demand for better quality food products and better service also increases. This is happening in China, but in the 3rd and 4th Tier cities only slowly. Recommendation: HR hires a professional Destination Services Provider who uses expatriate consultants who know their city and know the concerns fellow expatriates will face. They will also know the corners of the city where expat friendly bakeries and delicatessens selling organic food supplies may have opened, and which companies in Bejing or Shanghai will deliver chilled meat and special cheese orders to expatriates living inland. HR also needs to consider a reasonable level of Hardship Allowance, but even more importantly an allowance for at least quarterly visits to a large city like Beijing or Shanghai to stock up on favourite mueslis; cheeses and maybe even imported wine and chilled beef.
Transportation: Public transport systems do exist, but are crowded and confusing. The larger 2nd and 3rd Tier cities are now building subway systems, but for the non-Chinese speaker they may be difficult to navigate. Buses are even more confusing. Even in International HR Adviser Summer
modern 2nd tier cities like Suzhou the extensive route directories at every stop are only in Chinese. You can buy a Bus pass but even that is difficult if you don't speak the language. Taxis are inexpensive, but drivers haven’t been subjected to years of traffic safety programmes as we have in the West. They don't wear seat belts. Drivers often drive too fast, don't indicate when changing lanes and are ignorant of the risks that they are taking. Recommendation: If the company budget will stretch to it, provide a single assignee (or group of single assignees) or assignee and family with a dedicated car and driver who can be trained in the basics of driving and traffic safety. If the budget can’t stretch, then make sure that the assignee is given at least some basic conversational Chinese so that s/he can communicate, even if simply, with the taxi driver and ask directions on the Metro.
Medical and Health care: In most 2nd and 3rd Tier, let alone 4th Tier cities, there are no Western doctors. Unwell expatriates need to visit Outpatient clinics within Chinese hospitals. In several Chinese cities, however, International SOS or Global Doctor do have a GP or several GPs in their own clinics. International SOS has full scale international health clinics in Beijing, Nanjing, Tianjin and Tianjin TEDA (Economic Development Zone), with teams of medical and operations professionals and all the amenities that one would expect from an international-standard healthcare facility. While Global Doctor has a GP or several GPS in several 2nd, 3rd and 4th Tier cities: Shenyang, Changsha, Chengdu, Chongqing, Dongguan, Guangzhou, and Nanjing.
Elsewhere, expats need to go to the local public hospital, some of which do have doctors who speak some English. Even if English is spoken, however, and the hospital has very high–tech equipment available, the conditions in many of these hospitals are not designed to make Westerners feel comfortable. To access the “expat” wing, you probably need to walk through the public registration and waiting rooms – where dozens of anxious patients wait to be called. In some of these hospitals, hygiene standards are not up to western standards; walls and stretchers may appear dirty or stained; over worked and under-resourced staff do not have time to be warm and comforting. Doctors are used to prescribing, but not to discussing a medical condition or sharing much information about a patient’s options. This only adds to the Western patient’s anxiety. International SOS has special partnerships with a number of pre-screened hospitals nationwide, to which they can refer their members working in 3rd and 4th Tier cities. They can also recommend which doctor to see in these hospitals for specific complaints, arrange priority appointments and will medically monitor a patient’s condition, on behalf of the patient, their family and employer. They are not, however, permitted to consult in a Chinese hospital. International SOS has also helped meet the needs of member companies by opening a clinic on site at a client’s facility or factory plant and managing the staff and operations at that facility. To date, International SOS has opened such clinics in Shenyang for a global manufacturing company and in Dalian for a range of multinational clients spanning the technology, automotive and manufacturing industries. Recommendation: Where the scale of a manufacturing operation makes this cost–effective, and companies are bringing in dozens or sometimes hundreds of expatriates and local employees, the International SOS model of setting up a clinic at a client’s facility should be considered. It can make a huge difference to families and their morale. It has the added advantage of providing an on-site medical facility which can cater to illnesses and minor injuries of Chinese staff - thus reducing time loss injuries and absenteeism. HR can also work with local government health bureaus and hospitals to set up dedicated expat out and in-patient wings, properly supported, in their local hospitals.
investing in china Schooling: Some 3rd and 4th Tier cities may have an international school. Many don't. Those international schools that do exist are generally of a good standard and accredited appropriately with Western educational accreditation organisations. Recommendation: Where schools don't exist and a company is bringing in many dozens or more expatriate employees, companies can negotiate to set up their own small school, within the grounds of an existing Chinese school rather than as independent campuses. Stora Ensoe has done this in Beihai in southern China. In Changchun and Shenyang the German Government has supported the establishment of German schools to meet the educational needs of families working at the BMW and VW plants. While a moderately expensive solution, if this action can potentially increase the number of skilled expatriate staff who will take the assignment, the decision is well worth taking. Conclusion: There may need to be a change in mind set among MNCS relocating expatriates and their families to 3rd and
4th Tier cities. Several years ago, MNCs were providing generous relocation support packages to employees moving to China’s east coast, but neglecting those moving to the more difficult inland locations. Today, some support is provided, but in many cases, it tends to be minimal. While bottom line considerations need to be taken into account, what is often not adequately considered is the longer term impact on a poorly supported expat moving to a difficult location. The personal cost of a broken marriage or the huge costs to the company of a failed assignment overshadow the cost of providing to assignees support by Professional Destination Service Providers. Professional Destination Service Providers can ensure that a family not only finds the right house, but also settles in comfortably, feels confident to go out into the city and explore its potential, and always feels that there is an understanding and knowledgeable Western face to turn to. Regrettably, the “realtor - only” model has become more prevalent and MNCs looking for cheaper models are using local realtors who provide ”free “ service because they gain enough from the housing commission to offset any
cost of their very superficial orientation and Settling In. Assignees in 3rd and 4th Tier cities deserve more than that. Shelley Warner is the co-owner and co-founder of Asia Pacific Access (APA). Set up in Beijing in 1993 it was one of the earliest companies providing relocation, immigration and cross-cultural training in China. APA has offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing and coverage of another 14 2nd and 3rd Tier cities. APA’s focus is on people and its aim is to ensure that expats moving to China settle in well and enjoy the experience of living here. It regards the development of community as critical for expats assigned to difficult 3rd and 4th Tier cities. For more information contact email@example.com and see www.apachina.com
Summer International HR Adviser
Global mobility survey
Key Findings: From The 2012 Global Mobility Survey The 2012 Global Mobility Survey Report, produced from a survey of over one thousand companies’ multinational mobility programmes, containing comments from some of the Mobility industry’s leading experts, identifies the following key priorities and findings for HR and Mobility professionals.
The scale and nature of the international mobility is changing… The number of international assignments is growing In the Survey, 88% of organisations reported that the number of international assignments either stayed the same (41%) or grew (47%) in the last 12 months, and 45% anticipate growth in the coming 12 months. This is being driven by expansion of operations both within existing countries and into new markets, including explosive expansion into emerging markets. The Survey identified expanding operations within existing markets as the largest driver of assignment activity. And of those organisations that identified a growth in assignment activity, the largest proportion identified business expansion as a primary main driver: 1. Expanding operations within exist ing markets 52% 2. Expansion into new markets 49% 3. To fill local skill shortages 42%.
Emerging markets are now overtaking as the most common destinations for international assignments China takes a clear lead with 21% of organisations reporting it to be their most common relocation destination. The conditions within these countries do however, present a number of challenges that need to be overcome. It is clear that international mobility is changing, both in its scale and its nature. Organisations are expanding operations in traditional and emerging markets. These emerging markets bring commercial opportunity, but their unique conditions must be taken into consideration. Specific issues need to be addressed in the areas of International HR Adviser Summer
infrastructure, culture and sometimes security. This section looks in more detail at changes in assignment destinations and origins, which destinations pose the greatest challenge and examines the nature of these challenges. The most prevalent destinations vary dependent on where the region the organisation is based. • EMEA’s most common relocation destinations are: China (17%), US (11%) and the UK (9%). This shows the prevalence of relocation activity into markets outside of the region and true international perspective • The Americas most common relocation destinations are: China (27%), US (22%) and Singapore (8%). This shows the significance of a strong domestic US market and corporate strategies embracing opportunities in Asia • APAC’s most common relocation destinations are: China (26%), Australia (20%) and Singapore (13%). This shows the significance of transferring staff within the region
Challenging destinations The relocation destinations felt to present the greatest challenge clearly reflect the expansion into the BRIC markets. China (17%), India (12%), Russia (7%), and
Brazil (7%) take a clear lead as the most challenging locations.
New assignment types are being used Assignments of less than 12 months are the most common length of assignment for nearly a quarter of organisations (24%).
There is polarisation in the way mobility is controlled There is a split between centralised and decentralised structures: 37% of organisations control mobility centrally, 35% control it through a mixture of centrally, regionally and locally, and the remaining 28% either control it though local offices or regional hubs.
Software is now being used by the majority of organisations with 500+ relocations per year 68% of organisations authorising 500+ relocations per year are now using specialist software compared to 47% in 2011. However, some things remain constant: • Despite adoption of new assignment types, assignments of 1-3 years still remain the most common assignment length (62%) • The structure of relocation packages remains relatively unchanged • Outsourcing of a number of nonstandard HR tasks remains relatively unchanged • Cost management remains a clear priority • Compliance is perceived to be wellmanaged by the majority.
Cost Management 58% of organisations reported cost management to be a high priority (compared to 53% in 2011), and 70% of organisations expect to be more focussed on reducing mobility costs in the coming 12 months. However, in order to effectively manage costs, organisations need to be able to accurately measure costs. Only 18% of organisations reported that they accurately measure mobility costs and
global mobility survey only 22% have a specific cost reduction target. Interestingly, cost management is considered a high priority by fewer organisations in Asia, especially within China.
Compliance The Survey identified that compliance represents a significant risk for organisations. The threat of significant fines and even imprisonment in some countries is a good deterrent against non-compliance. It is therefore unsurprising that it is clearly a core priority for mobility professionals. Mobility teams are responsible for ensuring compliance with an abundance of international and domestic laws, as well as their own internal policies. This section examines where each aspect of compliance sits on their list of priorities, how well mobility professionals feel compliance is managed within their organisation, and who has overall responsibility for it.
Who is responsible for Managing Compliance? Within the majority of organisations’ management of compliance is the
responsibility of the HR Department (53%) or a dedicated mobility team (27%). As you would expect, compliance with external legislation tops their list of priorities. While compliance with external legislation tops the list, the majority report all aspects of internal compliance as being either a medium or a high priority. Compliance with external and internal legislation and policy is clearly a priority. Organisations do however, perceive themselves to manage both aspects of compliance effectively. 93% of organisations report that they manage compliance quite or very well. Compliance with external legislation is, as should be expected, the more fundamental aspect of compliance. However, all aspects of compliance are considered by the majority to be a medium or high priority.
Top three areas of compliance: Survey identifies Tax Compliance as a significant concern Whilst the emphasis typically varied depending on where the programme was
being managed from, (you can compare these by country in the Survey), overall the three top compliance priorities are: • 73% Compliance with tax regulations • 69% Compliance with immigration law • 67% Compliance with employment law.
The Global Mobility Survey is the largest scale and most robust review of multinational mobility programmes available. The results are collected from 1,119 company respondents from across North America, Latin America, Europe, Middle East, Asia and the Pacific region and span the complete range of industry sectors. The Global Mobility Survey is conducted by Circle Research and commissioned by Santa Fe Group. Visit www.globalmobilitysurvey.com for more information or to request a copy of the Survey.
Summer International HR Adviser
global trends survey
Brookfield Global Relocation Services Global Relocation Trends Survey 2012 - Spotlight on China Brookfield Global Relocation Services’ (Brookfield GRS) Annual Global Relocation Trends Survey (GRTS) results over the past few years have cast a spotlight on China, a country that continues to be a critical market for many global organisations. China continues to be in the top two leading destinations for international assignments and is, since the Survey began 17 years ago, the location that presents the most challenges to assignees and their respective corporate mobility programme managers. This, in turn, is a strong and continuing indication of the need to focus on the practical challenges of assignments into China, and to be mindful of the need to ensure that the strategic value of these assignments is not compromised. Moreover, as we step into what seems to have become the ‘survey season’, the findings in the GRTS are confirmed by other industry surveys and we feel confident in predicting that China will continue to be a focus for mobility. This article will summarise and review the 2012 GRTS findings and suggest ways that companies might look at the data in order to consider changes or improvements to their own policies and programme support as they relate to assignments to China. China continues to be an important location for globally active companies, regardless of where headquartered, and as some of the world’s economies show tentative signs of improvement, it will be important for companies to make the most of markets such as China that have been relatively unaffected by recession.
Table 1 - Most Frequently Selected Locations for Expatriate Assignments
Table 2 - Emerging New Locations for International Assignments
Table 3 - Locations That Present the Greatest Assignment Difficulties for International Assignees
2012 Survey Highlights on China Most Frequently Selected Destination Locations for Expatriate Assignments China, the United States and the United Kingdom have appeared as the top international assignment destination locations in the GRTS since 2000. This year China has maintained second place in the ranking of destination locations (see Table 1) for the second year in a row. This is a shift International HR Adviser Summer
from the first place ranking it had enjoyed for many of the prior years.
Emerging Destinations When asked to identify the three countries
that were emerging as new assignment locations, 5% of respondents ranked China, Brazil and Australia as the most common new destinations, followed by India (4%) and Colombia, Russia and
global trends survey South Africa (3%) (see Table 2). Although the percentages of the companies that reported particular locations as ‘emerging’ are smaller, this appears to be a function of the larger number of destinations being reported as ‘emerging’. Also, it is logical that since China has long been considered emerging for many companies who are still operating in China, some of these may no longer consider the location to be ‘emerging’ for them.
Countries Presenting the Greatest Challenge for International Assignees When asked which three countries produced the greatest assignment difficulties for international assignees, China was cited by 16% of respondents, followed by Brazil (9%) and India (8%) (see Table 3). With one exception (when it was ranked in second place), China has always been cited as the most challenging destination for international assignees.
Countries Presenting the Greatest Challenge for Mobility Programme Managers China has been cited as the most challenging destination for mobility programme managers since the GRTS began and this year, in first place again, is cited by 14% of respondents. Brazil was cited as the second most challenging destination by 10% of respondents, followed by India (9%) and Russia (8%) (see Table 4). When we combine the results of where international assignments occur with the data reflecting the locations where the greatest challenges for assignees and mobility programme managers occur, we have a clear picture supporting the fact that China as an assignment location is both critical and complicated.
Three consistent challenges to both the Assignee and the
Mobility Programme Manager Survey participants were asked to provide anecdotal examples of some of the challenges that assignees and mobility programme managers face with international assignments into China and these are summarised in the report as verbatim comments. There are several areas specific to China that, not surprisingly, are found to be challenging to both the assignee and the mobility programme manager. The three most frequently cited: Tax, Immigration and Regulatory Environment: This category showed the most frequent citing by both groups and included concerns with tax; new social security rules; immigration process and currency issues. Organisational Issues: This category made an unexpected appearance, although the specific issues were wide ranging. Difficulties around new start-up locations and increased mobility volumes were cited. Infrastructure: The challenges and support available for assignments into 2nd and 3rd tier cities and difficulties around the availability and cost of housing were the most commonly stated concerns. Interestingly, the concerns of mobility programme managers were far fewer; only in the area of other tier cities and challenges around household goods shipments was there overlap in the concerns expressed. In all three of these categories, there is an obvious tie to some significant underlying factors that affect those moving to and managing moves to China. The regulatory environment is a work in progress and as China develops and matures its efforts in these areas, there are inevitable transition issues that cloud and confuse the true picture with regard to compliance. Organisationally, companies are required to respond very quickly to the mobility requirements that often underpin rapid business expansion. This again is the inevitable cause of challenges as HR and Mobility often
Table 4 – Locations That Present the Greatest Assignment Difficulties for Programme Managers
scramble to identify, prepare and move the talent needed for companies to succeed. Finally, the lack of infrastructure in the 2nd and 3rd tier cities is a real impediment to successful mobility and therefore to business. Just when many of these issues had become less challenging in cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, a new set of challenging destination locations has placed this issue right back on the table.
Challenges specific to the Assignee in China When we look at the challenges that are cited in the verbatim comments that are most common to the international assignee, but less frequently cited as challenging to the mobility programme manager, we get a snapshot of the concerns and adjustments required for employees assigned to China. Culture & Language: These two areas, culture and language, were cited more frequently than any other challenge to assignees in the survey findings. Providing predeparture and on-going cultural training, coaching and tools does not eliminate the cultural differences that exist between the assignee's home culture and the host Chinese culture, but it can provide the assignee, their families and business teams working together in China, the knowledge and skills to adjust more effectively to the assignment location. In turn, this enables the assignee to focus on the working environment and to become more productive. Similarly, language and communication were also cited as challenges for the assignee. Fluency in Chinese languages may be unrealistic for many employees selected for an international assignment to China, and is rarely a selection criteria for the assignment. On the other hand, it is desirable for a mobility programme to provide language training to the employee and their family. Currently, language training when needed is offered in the majority of global companies through their international assignment policies and is a benefit considered more the norm than the exception. The challenge then becomes not whether language training is offered to the assignee, but rather whether the opportunity for the training is taken. Very often, the idea of learning a foreign language is daunting and it is common for both assignees and their managers to assume that since the business language of the company is English, learning the local language is unnecessary or just a ‘nice to have.’ In fact, a significant part of cultural adaptation is being confident enough to do Summer International HR Adviser
global trends survey some basic things using the local language. For example, to use taxis, to ask how much something costs, to greet clients and colleagues in their native language, to ask for help on the street, or simply to better understand the culture by beginning to understand the basic language both spoken and written is a basic necessity. The increase of 2nd and 3rd tier cities as assignment locations makes this even more necessary owing to the fact that languages other than Mandarin and the local Chinese language are not often spoken. Typically, these kinds of efforts will be well received and appreciated and will help to create an enjoyable and positive assignment experience for both the assignee and their family. Often the assignee and the assignee’s manager are not quick to see the value of this type of learning and the opportunity is lost. Moreover, if the assignee passes up the opportunity, it may also be lost to other family members. The assignee and manager should prioritise the need for some basic language training and intercultural communication effectiveness training, understanding that a little knowledge and effort can go a long way in terms of credibility, relationship building, and independence in the host location, as well as understanding the local culture. Living Conditions and Infrastructure: While respondents commented on the subtopics in this area as separate categories, we have grouped them together in order to comment on the challenges presented to the assignee. Housing, medical services, transportation, remote locations and lack of infrastructure in 2nd and 3rd tier cities were all mentioned in the survey findings as challenges for assignees. The challenges in this category are certainly limited in terms of what can be done to "fix" them. Traditionally they have been addressed through compensation adjustments and expatriate perks, such as club membership, increased rest and relaxation trips and paid home leave trips. Today's economic scenario means a greater scrutiny of exceptional costs and this, combined with the fact that China is the leading international assignment destination means that companies and mobility programmes need to address these very real challenges with creativity. This is particularly magnified with respect to 2nd and 3rd tier locations. Today, cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou may be regarded as no longer justifying all of the additional benefits and allowances that were necessary five or so years ago, but this is not true of the 2nd International HR Adviser Summer
and 3rd tier locations where the difficulties of daily living for assignees and their families is real and ongoing. While the issues surrounding these locations are mentioned as both assignee and mobility programme manager concerns, we feel that there is a qualitative difference between those concerns, even when they appear to be about the same issue. As an example, assignees are concerned about the quality and availability of housing, whereas mobility programme managers are concerned about the cost. Since the outlook is for more companies to move into these locations, there will continue to be a need to respond to these issues based on a real appreciation of conditions and circumstances rather than the blunt instrument of cost control.
Challenges Specific to the Mobility Programme Manager Supporting Assignment in China Like the assignee, the mobility programme manager faces particular challenges specific to their role when moving assignees and their families to China. The verbatim comments by survey respondents provide a snapshot into these challenges and are revealing as much for what they say as for what they do not say. Organisational: For mobility programme managers, this challenge is clearly related to the increased activity in Asia, more intra regional assignee activity and mobility that results from the movement into new markets. It is also clear that China presents an ongoing challenge in areas not directly under the control of mobility but which nevertheless are directly connected to it and one of these is talent management. The necessity of looking outside China for talent often leads to mobility challenges related to the demographic profile of the wider talent pool. As an example, Chinese returnees and the local hiring of ‘expatriates’ who have made the decision to remain longer term in China, have led to a broader range of policy options being necessary than in many other locations; this is a challenge both to design and to implement. Regular review of policies is vital to ensure that they remain relevant and responsive to the assignee demographic profile and are aligned with business expectations regarding the quality and motivation of assignees and the associated cost. Billing and Finance: A number of diverse concerns were raised by mobility programme managers that can be said to be financially related. These ranged from billing issues to the costs associated with housing. Certainly, in China, billing and
related processes can be problematic and in particular, the issue of the tax invoice known as a Fa Piao can be a persistent difficulty. This document is required to support expense reimbursements and may be required for rental amounts in order to support the immigration / residency process. Vendors and landlords are sometimes unwilling to provide them and, because the consumer is responsible for obtaining this documentation, any problems with internal company processes related to the provision of a Fa Piao is often something that mobility has to manage, at least in part. The Chinese government has recently reformed this system which it is hoped will mitigate the problems experienced in the past. Other issues cited include difficulties associated with obtaining good cost estimates for assignments into remote locations in China. It is not clear why this should be more of an issue for remote locations but we assume that this is partly due to the possibility that less on the ground support exists that can be called upon to provide reliable cost information. Housing costs are obviously an issue in many locations and are among the most costly of all the benefits provided to assignees. In China, this concern is compounded because of the practice of commissions paid by landlords to realtors who often are operating as the Destination Service Provider (DSP). This sometimes creates the impression that there is poor incentive for providers to negotiate rents as effectively as possible. The solution here is to partner closely with providers in order to monitor the process closely and to set the expectation that properties above rental guidelines should never be shown unless there is a compelling reason that is approved by the company in advance. In all cases, the more that mobility can partner and strategise with the appropriate functional managers within their companies and with their suppliers, the better the solutions that can be devised and implemented to help minimise the impact of some of these concerns. Culture & Adjustment/Infrastructure: In these categories, the anecdotal comments from mobility programme managers are worthy of mention in that there are far fewer comments related to elements that are considered to be challenging for them than in the corresponding section on assignee challenges. There are no obvious explanations for this, but we can speculate that mobility programme managers are constrained in the support that can be provided under policy in the ‘soft’ areas of culture and language
global trends survey and are perhaps more concerned about areas that they can impact in a more concrete way. As far as infrastructure is concerned, as we have already commented, mobility programme managers are sometimes limited in their ability to mitigate many of the problems experienced with the lack of infrastructure and perhaps feel that these are adequately addressed by the provision of policy elements such as hardship allowances and cars and drivers.
Conclusion: Linking Relocation Challenges to Relocation Strategies for China
Table 5 - Locations with the Highest Rates of Assignment Failure
Table 6 - Factors Leading to Assignment Failure
Locations with High Rates of Assignment Failure As we have seen, China is positioned in the 2012 GRTS as the second most frequent assignment destination, the leading emerging location for international assignments and the most challenging assignment location for both assignees and mobility programme managers. Perhaps not surprisingly, it is also the leading location for assignment failure (see Table 5). When asked which three locations had the highest rate of assignment failure, China was ranked first, identified by 19% of respondents, followed by both India and Singapore, tied at 7%. However, it is important to remember that a high rate of assignment failure is perhaps naturally associated with those that have large international assignee populations. When we connect the China-specific assignee and mobility challenges highlighted in this article with the fact that the causes of assignment failure are most often linked to spouse dissatisfaction and family issues, as well as job related difficulties that result in assignees leaving the company (see Table 6), this creates a clear blue print for the areas of support required for a company's Chinabound assignees and their families.
Factors Leading to Assignment Failure When asked to rank the factors that were most responsible for assignment failure, 19% of respondents cited employees resigning to go to work for another company. This was a new question and the responses dislodged spouse/partner dissatisfaction (17%) from its previous repeated top spot. In third place was other family concerns (11%). Respondents also ranked job does not meet expectations, inability to adapt and inadequate job performance,
all at 10%. In the verbatim comments, family reasons… culture shock… difficult environment… cultural reasons… recruited by other companies… large population ..... standard of living for Western assignees .... distance from home.... were all quoted as reasons for assignment failure. Very often, international assignment support and programme management focus on the logistical side of relocation, that is, getting a willing candidate and often his/her family and their goods from point A to point B to fill an assignment need. Traditionally the focus has been far less on the strategic aspects of mobility. The Brookfield GRS 2012 Global Relocation Trends Survey continues to identify China as a critical business location. This means that assignment failures have the potential to directly affect the financial success of a company’s China operations and perhaps as a result, the success of the entire business.
In their responses to survey questions and in their verbatim comments, Global Relocation Trends Survey participants have clearly prioritised the particular challenges impacting assignment and programme management success in China. We believe that from these findings, organisations have an opportunity to identify potentially difficult areas for their own assignee families and mobility programme managers and to use this information to be better prepared to focus on the right strategies for more effectively meeting China's challenges. Gill Aldred Sr. Director, Consulting Services, Brookfield GRS, T (44) 20 7920 3814 Gill.Aldred@ brookfieldgrs.com Summer International HR Adviser
Staying Healthy In China Dr Rebecca Small, Medical Director at Bupa International, explores some key health challenges for an expatriate living in China. The world's most populous country, hosting over 1.3 billion people, China is a vibrant and bustling country that is truly unique to experience. In my role, I have come across many people who have relocated to China. Many of these people face similar health challenges to other expats around the world, while a combination of others can be specific to this distinct country. China has experienced rapid economic growth in recent decades and, although affected by the economic downturn like the rest of the globe, it holds its place as the world's second-largest economy. There has been a huge rise in industrialisation and mass migration to the cities to help achieve this status and this has brought along with it the problem of environmental damage and pollution. According to the World Health Organization, 20 of the world’s 30 most polluted cities are in China and air quality, especially in cities, has declined to such an extent that environmental health issues are now a growing concern. Infections that affect their airways, such as bronchitis and pneumonia, are on the rise and expats can also be affected. My advice to your expatriates living in China is to check their local weather forecast and air quality index (from reputable sources) on a daily basis and plan their activities accordingly. When the air quality is poor, they should try to stay indoors as much as they can. If they have to go outside, they should choose times of the day when the air pollution is lighter, ideally first thing in the morning. However, I appreciate that this will not always be easy to do, so most importantly, they should respond to their body’s symptoms. For example, if they feel tired or are having trouble breathing, stay indoors, rest and (if they have a pre-existing health condition) take any medicines their doctor has prescribed for them. Environmental issues also affect China’s vulnerability to malaria, due to changes in land use and water resource management. Although a national malaria control programme launched back in 1955 was successful, China still faces major issues in the border areas of the country’s tropical south, and in central China with 74 million people in International HR Adviser Summer
2007 living in high-risk areas. Even if they live outside of affected areas, they should bear this in mind if they plan to travel in China. Primarily, it’s important to take measures to prevent being bitten by mosquitoes. For example, they should wear clothing that covers their skin so that it is not exposed, such as shirts with long sleeves or long dresses. Repellent can also help to keep mosquitoes at bay as well as mosquito coils and electric vapour mats. They might also like to use a mosquito net to protect themself. These nets are often pre-treated with an insecticide called permethrin. They could also use permethrin on their curtains and hang them in windows or doorways to repel mosquitoes. Antimalarial medicines are also available but resistance is a challenge in China. They should ask their doctor which type will work best for the regions they plan to visit. Also, be aware that counterfeit medicines are a concern in China so they should always buy their medicines from a reputable pharmacist – their doctor should be able to give them a list in their local area. While some diseases are rising with China’s growth, others, such as hepatitis B and rabies, have been a persistent issue and remain a threat to expats and locals alike. Hepatitis B causes 260,000 deaths a year in China and around eight percent of the population are carriers of the virus. One can get infected through contact with blood, unprotected sex and shared needles. To a large degree, jobs and lifestyle choices can affect the risk of getting the disease. It’s vital to practise safe sex but to also consider hepatitis B if they are a healthcare worker in China due to the potential transmission through needle-stick injuries. My advice, no matter what country one works or lives in, take extreme care, and always use single-use or sterilised needles. Rabies is widespread in China and has the second highest incidence in the world. It is therefore important to be careful around animals, including cats and dogs, to prevent getting bitten or scratched. One should not touch or feed any animals, as even those that look like healthy pets can have rabies or other diseases. One should be especially careful if one has children and supervise them around animals. If anyone is bitten or scratched, wash the wound well with soap and water and see a doctor straight away.
Access to healthcare facilities will largely depend on where one lives. Cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong are internationally recognised as having a high standard of healthcare. However, outside of major cities, standards can vary and health facilities can be limited. Healthcare services in China are either public (governmentowned) or private. Both offer high standards of medical care, but may differ in service levels, such as waiting times, or the services they offer, for example, the type of facilities available. Most expats living in China tend to use private healthcare facilities as these provide quality services and access to health professionals who speak a range of major languages, which can be invaluable in a time of crisis. However, expats can also use public healthcare facilities but they will need to pay directly for any treatment. The cost of healthcare in China is relatively high compared to other countries around the world. International private medical insurance (IPMI) is not mandatory for expats but I recommend that you consider having it or alternatively, self-pay for public and private healthcare. Overall, living and working in China has great advantages. To keep your expatriates healthy, take sensible precautions and seek advice if you are in doubt. This will be sure to put them in the best possible position to enjoy all that China has to offer. Dr Rebecca Small is medical director at Bupa International. Rebecca trained as a GP in New Zealand, and joined Bupa in 2003. During her time at Bupa, she was seconded to the Healthcare Commission, the regulator for private and public sector healthcare providers, to develop clinical performance indicators for private sector hospitals. At Bupa, she is responsible for medical policy, including assessing new drugs and treatments, as well as leading a pioneering quality assurance programme for hospitals around the world. For more information about Bupa International, visit www.bupa-intl.com
Modernising Perception Of Serviced Apartments Serviced apartments are enjoying a surge in demand in Asia due to an increase in corporate travel arising from international mobility and new business opportunities. Ironically, this trend occurs simultaneously with cost-cutting measures resulting from the global financial crisis which forced companies to reduce expatriate family relocation packages and instead, resort to extended stay business travel lasting one to six months. Serviced apartments make the perfect accommodations under such circumstances. They are the ideal alternative to hotels, especially in Asia where traditional corporate housing and extended stay hotels are not common and the other usual options for expatriates would be condominiums or rented houses, both of which entail additional costs such as housekeeping, maintenance, security, and perhaps furnishing. The outlook for the serviced apartments industry is indeed very optimistic as it grows in popularity and acceptance. At the same time, the concept has yet to reach maturity because of traditional misconceptions or lack of awareness in certain markets. After all, it has only been in the last 30 years that serviced apartments have become a viable option and at the early stage, they were not as sophisticated as hotels. For example, when Oakwood Premier Coex Center Seoul opened in 2002, there was not a proper Korean word for the term serviced apartments; the closest was the equivalent of a condo-hotel (which are different in that its units are sold off individually). In India, the concept is only a little more than seven years old, when Hyatt and Marriott introduced their serviced apartment brands to the market. Hangzhou in China still calls them Hotel Apartments, emphasising their similarity to hotels and the prestige attached to the association. Even just as recently as 2009 the market was not convinced of all the advantages that serviced apartments offered over hotels. This was because hotels were offering a multitude of add-ons to clients who were staying one week or more (the period by which they define long-stays) and clients did not feel the need to look International HR Adviserâ€‚ Summerâ€‚
Oakwood Premier Guangzhou, China
for alternative sources of accommodation. But through a series of simultaneous mass and client-oriented education initiatives highlighting the benefits of serviced apartments, they were able to provide an excellent proposition that convinced the corporate sector to expand their mindset and patronise the industry. Clients have been quite happy with their decision and
today, many serviced apartments consistently outperform their hotel competitors, comprising major brands, in their cities. The good news is, the industry is fast evolving and the increase in demand has led to a better understanding of their nature. International brands have helped elevate perception through quality products comparable to upscale hotels.
Oakwood Premier Pune, India
Serviced Apartments Oakwood Premier Coex Center Seoul, Korea (Penthouse)
Properties with the appropriate licenses have also educated consumers about the availability of serviced apartments for overnight or weekend stays. This enables them to develop the leisure market, which has experienced an increase in patronage
especially with the rise in domestic tourism. Local families love a weekend holiday without spending hours driving out of the city and serviced apartments often provide the best option, providing flexibility in terms of space, dining (they can
cook in the apartment or order-in) and entertainment (they can borrow books and dvd’s from the residents’ lounge) - all resulting in added value and cost savings, while providing a range of recreational facilities like a pool, spa and fitness centre which all combine for a fulfilling and enjoyable break for a day or two. Sales and Marketing efforts from the major players in the industry have significantly enhanced perception and patronage of Serviced Apartments in Asia. This is evident in the move by several major hotel players adding extended-stay products and services to their own portfolio to take advantage of the market growth. Oakwood®, an Oakwood® Worldwide brand, is the leading global provider of corporate housing and serviced apartments with a presence in over 55 countries. For more information, visit oakwood.com or contact: +44 (0)20 7749 4460 (phone), EMEA@ OAKWOOD.COM (email).
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nurturing global leaders
Nurturing Global Leaders: Using Competency Based Assessment Techniques To Develop Employees To achieve success in the global marketplace organisations need to operate effectively across borders and manage positive cross-cultural relationships. Selecting and developing individuals that are able to manage themselves and their relationships with others from different cultures is imperative. Organisations therefore need to be able to identify the skills and traits necessary for their employees to manage in culturally diverse environments and develop an individual’s global competencies. Nurturing global leaders has become a strategic priority for many global organisations that see the development of global competencies amongst their workforce as a key to sustainable competitive advantage. This article discusses the importance of identifying and developing individual employee’s global competencies as part of a wider global leadership programme. In particular we look at the use of psychometric assessment techniques to diagnose an individual's global competencies and more specifically the personal competencies that collectively determine the global effectiveness of an individual. We outline the three key areas that are assessed; Perception Management; Relationship Management and SelfManagement. We also outline the development opportunities that such assessment provides, and consider the experiential and reflective learning that is commonly used to develop global leadership competencies. In addition we look at the wider use of such assessment tools in the selection of individuals for expatriate assignments and for the wider selection of new employees by organisations wishing to recruit individuals with existing global competencies.
appreciation of working with others from different cultural backgrounds. Children born into families with bi-lingual parents or from different countries for example, are exposed to different languages and cultures from an early age. A good example of the influence of such early inter-cultural experiences is the Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Nissan Motor Co. Ltd, Carlos Ghosn*, who was born in Brazil but moved with his Lebanese parents to Lebanon and later studied in France. His language capabilities were strengthened from these experiences as he is fluent in French, Arabic, English, Portuguese and more recently Japanese. Many experts hold him up as an example of what competencies a global leader should possess and much interest surrounds his diverse cultural experiences in early life. Undoubtedly such early international experiences have enhanced the capacity for cultural understanding, but the question remains are global leaders born or nurtured? Our current work in this field and our experience with a number of organisations has identified that whilst not everyone shares the same opportunities for global exposure at an early age, global competencies can be developed.
Identifying Global Competencies Before any development can occur however,
we need to have a thorough understanding of individual’s current global competencies. One way to assist an organisation to identify current global competencies of their employees is the use of a psychometric assessment tool such as the Global Competence Inventory (GCI). As experts qualified to use this tool we recommend that organisations use such an assessment as part of their global leadership development programme to identify existing strengths and areas for individual development. Our work both in the UK and the Middle East uses the assessment tool to gain a greater understanding of individual employees' existing global competencies and to highlight specific developmental needs. Not only does the assessment enable diagnostic assessment, it also provides valuable metrics to assist organisations in the evaluation of programmes and informs the design of future programmes.
Measuring Global Competencies The GCI measures an individual’s personal competencies in 3 domains: Perception Management, Relationship Management and Self-Management. Collectively these domains enable an organisation to predict how an individual is likely to perform their work in a different culture or within a culturally diverse team environment.
What makes a Global Leader? Firstly it is worth considering what we mean by a ‘global leader’ and how one is made. Academics have identified a number of personality and behavioural traits that contribute towards global leadership. Furthermore, research in this field has identified that intercultural experiences in both early and later life contribute to a better Summer International HR Adviser
nurturing global leaders Taking each domain in turn provides a more detailed understanding of the tool itself and enables us to consider what specific qualities enable an individual to work effectively in diverse cultural settings. The first domain evaluates Perception Management and identifies how employees perceive the world around them. More importantly this recognises their attitude and behaviour towards working with people from different cultures. In particular the tool measures 5 dimensions: • Non-judgmentalness - not rushing to judge others or situations • Inquisitiveness - desire to explore new situations • Tolerance of ambiguity - how we manage uncertainty • Cosmopolitanism - interest in global issues • Interest flexibility - embracing new interests. The next domain Relationship Management assesses an employee’s ability to interact and manage interpersonal relationships in a cross-cultural context. Specifically this domain measures how well an individual is interested in forming and developing relationships with others from different cultural backgrounds. The dimensions include: • Relationship interest - awareness and interest in people from other cultures • Interpersonal engagement - desire to engage with people from different cultures • Emotional sensitivity - ability to empathise with other people • Self-awareness - understanding your own values • Social flexibility - adapting behaviour to fit in. The final domain explores Self- Management which explores how you adapt to your global work environment whilst also maintaining a clear sense of self- identity. • Optimism - positive outlook • Self-confidence – belief in your own ability • Self-identity - your ability to uphold your own beliefs and values • Emotional Resilience - how your deal with setbacks • Non-stress tendency - your ability to remain calm when facing stressful situations • Stress Management - your coping mechanism to deal with stress. The information generated from the assessment provides a full report of an individual’s global competencies highlighting their current strengths and opportunities for further development. In particular the assessment provides the International HR Adviser Summer
basis to implement individualised career planning for the global workforce.
University of Portsmouth Female Leadership Programmes We are currently using the tools in the UK and a number of Middle East countries to develop female global leaders of the future in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) fields, providing opportunities to address the current lack of women in these professions. As well as utilising the GCI assessment, workshops are run for employee’s to provide additional support to develop global competencies. This is facilitated with one-to-one coaching sessions to bridge the gap between current and future performance. The individual feedback and one-to-one coaching is a valuable part of the assessment process as it provides an opportunity for individuals to explore their areas of strength and identify any areas that could be developed further. These individual sessions then enable the organisation to evaluate the collective developmental needs of their employees and devise a programme for Global Leadership Development.
Developing Global Leaders The life cycle diagram above highlights the overall process we use to develop effective global leadership programmes. In the first instance current competencies are identified utilising an assessment. It is important as with any development programme to provide the necessary supporting activities that form the overall HR strategy. Therefore we assess on-going support provided to the individual. These will include a range of approaches such as
executive coaching, mentoring and action learning, facilitated by a range of experiential and reflective practice. As with any employee, engagement activities it is essential to review and evaluate the outcomes for the individual.
Expatriate Assignment Selection In addition to the global development programmes being undertaken, one area that global organisations are increasingly using such assessments is in the selection of expatriates. It is particularly important to identify employees that exhibit knowledge and empathy of other cultures, as well as managing inter-cultural communications if they are to succeed as an expat. It is essential to understand in advance of any assignment how well the expatriate is likely to adjust to a new culture and develop meaningful business relationships. Expatriation remains a key strategy in the internationalisation of operations. Developing business in overseas territories to expand current markets as well as transfer knowledge to overseas staff relies upon successful international assignments. Whilst the use of expensive long term expatriation has seen a decline, mainly due to cost, the use of expatriates overall shows no signs of reducing. Therefore, when a costly expatriation is considered, it is essential to ensure the individual is the best possible candidate for the assignment both technically as well as culturally.
Selection As well as for expatriate selection, we are also now increasingly seeing such global competency assessment tools used by many global organisations as part of their wider resourcing strategy and used as part
nurturing global leaders of their selection process for new employees. This reflects the growing significance being attributed to the development of a global workforce and the value attributed to hiring individuals that already have the qualities to perform in the workplace in environments outside their own cultures.
Summary Global organisations are placing increasing emphasis on the development of global management skills and effective intercultural behaviour amongst employees. The ability to recruit, select and develop employees to operate effectively in increasingly diverse and challenging global environments is a focus for many organisations. Many organisations are using psychometric assessment tools to assist them in the identification of global competencies of individual employees. Those that are successful in identifying the qualities that are necessary amongst employees and are able to develop the personal competencies to manage in and amongst different cultures will gain competitive advantage in the global marketplace. It seems that nurturing global leaders is no longer a ‘nice to’ but a prerequisite for global success. *http://edition.cnn.com/2008/BUSINESS/06/11/ghosn.profile/#cnnSTCText
D r. Liza Howe-Walsh Liza HoweWalsh is a Senior Lecturer and an Associate of the Centre for Organisation Research and Development (CORD) at The University of Portsmouth. Liza has extensive international HR management and consultancy experience, with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP as a Global Mobility Solutions Manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa. She has been developing senior management and executives in global leadership for over a decade internationally. She is a leading authority on international HR management and practice and has researched the area of repatriation and International HR Management extensively. Her main research interests include expatriation and global leadership development. Liza is currently working with early career female scientists to aid individual development plans in the UK and Middle East. Email: Liza.firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Sa r a h Turnbull Sarah Turnbull is a Senior Lecturer and an Associate of the Centre for Organisation Research and Development (CORD) at The University of Portsmouth. Sarah has extensive experience working in the Middle East including: Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Syria, and lived in the United Arab Emirates for 8 years. Sarah is currently working with early career female scientists in the UK and Middle East to develop global leadership competencies using a psychometric instrument that enables organisations to assess effective HR policies and practices for the selection, development, training and reintegration of globally mobile personnel. Sarah’s research seeks to highlight the barriers to women working within the Sciences and develop strategies for the individual and organisation to enhance career development opportunities. For further information please contact: email@example.com
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Current Positions AvAilAble Global Mobility Consultant Cambridgeshire £25-30k international Assignment Consultant London £30-38k international Assignment senior Manager Netherlands - (salary negotiable) relocation business Development Manager London £45-50k relocation Account Manager London £26-£32k Client services Manager Dallas $55-60k Please contact reDReCRuit on + 44 (0) 1621 840 600 for further details on these positions and many more!
Autumn InternatIonal Hr advIser
The New World Order Dynamic growth in Asia and South America means that local salaries can now be far higher than the Western salaries, causing new challenges to managers moving people into and out of these locations. Steven Kilfedder, Manager of ECAâ€™s Remuneration Services, looks at the new paradigm. The demand for skilled and experienced senior managers has long outstripped supply in many less developed countries leading to very high salaries for these positions, often considerably higher than their peers in developed countries. A good example of this new world order is Brazil where local staff receive higher total net cash pay than their expatriate colleagues at senior levels but lower than the expatriate average at more junior levels (see Graph 1). The red dotted line shows that local staff in executive level positions earn around USD 75,000 net more than the average expatriate before local accommodation costs are deducted. This may cause issues for assignees in Brazil but this article will look at the effects of these high salaries on sending assignees abroad from these high salary countries.
Brazil salaries High local salaries, combined with relatively low living costs, mean that Brazilian workers enjoy a very high standard of living. To maintain that standard and provide the incentive needed to move an executive out of Brazil will mean that assignment salaries will be very expensive. Consequently, a senior executive on an average Brazilian salary sent to France on a typical build-up package would be earning well over twice as much as other expatriates in the same country as well as double what their French peers earn at the same level of seniority. This, in itself, is a challenge, but a junior manager from Brazil with a salary calculated using the same methodology would be paid in line with the expatriate average in France, and therefore costs are far more reasonable. This difference is typical in a developing economy because of the large disparity in the home levels of pay for executives at different levels, caused by the considerable war for talent for more senior staff. So the problem is multi-tiered: while in Europe and the US the salary multiple
Source: ECA Internationalâ€™s MyExpatriate Market Pay reports/Towers Watson
between a junior manager and executive positions is around 3 or less, in Brazil it is 5.5. Other South American countries, such as Colombia, Chile and Mexico, are subject to the same challenges. Several Asian countries are soon likely to reach a similar position with a high degree of salary inequality and particularly high salaries at senior level. Local salary inflation in India and China already outstrips increases in Europe or North America, and local salaries will quickly catch up and possibly overtake western levels. And thanks to their lower living costs at home, workers enjoy a very high standard of living which needs to be equalled when creating a package with sufficient incentive to move.
China salaries The speed at which the landscape is
changing can be seen in China. In 2007 local salaries were only half those of expatriates at senior levels but as the 2011 figures in Graph 2 on the next page show, local salaries have now almost caught up. The graph also shows the large disparity between pay levels of locals (shown by the red line). In China the difference between salaries at the top and bottom of this range is a factor of 5.3 while in India the gap is 6.3. Because of these large disparities, the huge cost of moving senior assignees may mean that the mobility required to transfer skills is difficult (or at least very expensive) to achieve, but making the salary policy leaner would penalise junior assignees since they are not currently unreasonably paid by comparison with the local and expatriate market in developed countries. Summerâ€‚ International HR Adviser
Salaries for expatriates from developed countries to be paid many times more than local staff at the same seniority. This has been largely accepted as it was the price that had to be paid to get the skills and experience where it is needed, why should it be any different for assignees from traditionally less developed economies? The days of a one-size-fits-all assignment policy have gone. Increasingly flexibility is built into assignment programmes and these will be tested as some developing country salaries get higher. As the old world order is changing so rapidly, education of stakeholders about the realities international pay differentials is increasingly necessary or they will not be able to deal with these issues as they arise.
Source: ECA International’s MyExpatriate Market Pay reports/Towers Watson
So what, if anything, can or should be done to deal with the issues raised by this reversal in the old salary order and its effects on expatriation from highly paid developing countries to expensive western countries?
Solutions • Change the cost of living index used. In the example from earlier, where a Brazilian executive is moving to France on a typical build up but it is reasonable to assume that very senior staff in Brazil have more international tastes and buy international products and services. For this reason it is reasonable to use a cost-effective international cost of living index which assumes international spending habits. If this is used, the salary of the Brazilian assignee in France, while still higher than the expatriate upper-quartile, is more comparable to other assignees and the expatriate International HR Adviser Summer
retains their home buying power • Another way to constrain very high salaries is to apply a maximum spendable. Once people earn a certain amount it is likely that most of the ‘extra’ will go to savings or luxuries rather than increased spending on day to day goods which is normally protected with a cost of living allowance • Promote the intangible benefits of the assignment to their career and also the lifestyle benefits of living in rich developed cities. It would also help to manage expectations of the assignee and host business unit in terms of salary so that neither side has unrealistic expectations of what is possible • Look at expatriating staff earlier in their career when the salaries are more similar between home and host countries • The last option is simply to accept the new world order. It is still common in many developing countries
Steven Kilfedder is Manager of ECA International’s Remuneration Services. He joined ECA in 2008 after completing his Masters degree in International Studies from University of Sydney. After his undergraduate joint degree in Economics and Geography from University College London, Steven moved abroad to teach English as a second language in the Czech Republic. He also taught ESL and business skills courses for the British Council in Azerbaijan, Myanmar and Vietnam. On first joining ECA, Steven worked in the Location Ratings team, analysing the relative quality of life for expatriates in many of the countries he had recently lived and worked in. He then moved to the Remuneration department where he has been heavily involved in the expansion and redevelopment of the MyExpatriate Market Pay report.
International HR Strategy
Data Analytics - The Art Of The Possible In International Mobility Management Scott McCormick of Deloitte LLP explores how to harness the data in your mobility programme and use it to effectively guide international mobility strategy, cost control and the holy grail of Return on Investment. For a data analytics practitioner, data is the solution, not the problem. But obtaining the data in the first place is typically the greatest problem facing organisations whether they have analytics on the agenda or not. Often, availability of data within an international mobility programme is poor, usually because the data is spread across disparate sources, can be unreliable and, critically, there tends to be no medium through which to interpret, understand, and importantly, communicate that data back to the business. Within most organisations there has been a patchy attempt to harness core HR and Financials data through business intelligence systems, typically sitting on top of a data warehouse drawn from enterprise solutions such as SAP or Peoplesoft. These business intelligence repositories tend to be useful when a mobility, HR or other professional wishes to understand the answer to a discrete question or simple reporting requirement. This reporting-style functionality also exists in the main enterprise mobility platforms, in which some statistical analysis is available on assignment demographics, cost profiles and, typically, vendor KPIs. Critically, however, organisations should understand that access to data in itself and the limited ability to report on it is only a very early step on the Analytics maturity curve. This curve is not unique to international mobility departments, indeed it exists enterprise-wide for most organisations. For mobility professionals, it can be summarised as above. For most organisations, a current state analysis would place them somewhere in either stage 1 or on the transition to stage 2 in relation to international mobility. In the rest of this article, we explore how organisations can leverage data analytics to deliver incremental value to the mobility programme and, importantly, the wider business. International HR Adviser Summer
Figure 1: Deloitte Data Analytics Maturity Curve
Core disciplines – Hypothesis Analysis & Data Visualisation In analytics terms, beyond international mobility, most value is gained through two complementary data analytics disciplines: Hypothesis Analysis - The art of using data to prove, disprove or inform a specific question or statement, for example, “the business’ perception is that we do not manage assignment repatriation well, and that the ROI on assignments is unclear”. Whether one agrees with the statement, few organisations set about to scientifically track and report on the data which would provide an informed basis of opinion back to the business. It may well be that the statement is untrue and therefore the international mobility function may sell itself short to the business. Alternatively, the statement may be true, but the opportunity is not taken to gather the data which would help the business understand how best to effect change in managing the mobile population in future. To set about proving or informing a hypothesis, there are usually 5 key stages in the analytical workplan: • Challenge – challenge the hypothesis: does the business already have an opinion of the answer to the question? What is driving the need for analysis? • Source the data – “easier said than done” might be the reaction of most seasoned professionals. However, with modern data mining and search techniques, organisations should not be afraid of harvesting
valuable data from internal systems • Clean the data – it is worthless to draw strategic conclusions from data which is flawed, skewed or inaccurate. Again, interpretative techniques exist to root out poor data, highlight corrections and allow accurate data to shine through to the business from which to draw accurate conclusions • Analyse and visualise – potentially hundreds of thousands of lines of raw data across multiple sources and time periods are impossible to draw conclusions from. Humans react best to visual stimuli, therefore leading edge analytics techniques seek to present conclusions in a very visual, interactive way. Business leaders are today most likely tablet users – why not allow them to interact and “touch” their data in their own time? • The “So What?” stage – data analytics is only useful in so far that it informs action. Mobility professionals therefore should use their analytics suite to focus on 3 principal outputs from the analysis: • We can strategically change what we are doing because analytics informs of us what we can realistically change • Analytics actively pushes us in a direction which would be difficult to see without its intervention and insight • Our analytics strategy predicts future trends and allows us to be ahead of the game. The second analytics discipline, having applied data analytics to your hypotheses,
International HR Strategy is to visualise the data and insights and make these freely available right across the business - “democratising” your data. Visualisation - The art of visualising data is threefold: • Making abstract and disconnected data feel real to the end user • Democratising access to the data and allowing it be interactive, real-time and insightful • Allowing a user to predict what will happen next and therefore to inform, rather than react to, business strategy. Typically the output of a visualisation project is to link organisational and external data to a very visual, immersive dashboard which is then made freely available to those stakeholders who would find value in the insights shown. For a mobility programme, this may mean presenting a live view of vendor KPIs, costs, risks and, ultimately, predictive insights into the programme to help drive change.
Applying Data Analytics to the mobility programme – the Deloitte approach The Deloitte approach to Data Analytics in international mobility unites both Hypothesis and Visualisation disciplines to drive 3 main areas of value for international mobility functions: • International Mobility Strategy Data analytics allows an international mobility function to view all key demographics, live policy segmentation and key trends on a live and historic basis. Pushing the envelope, analytics predicts where best to invest in mobile talent, highlight underperforming sectors or assignee groups and model future global talent deployment. • Cost & Risk Control - Data analytics provides up to the minute cost profiling, early warning capability on both tax and cost risks, whilst enabling vendor KPIs to be shared openly and accurately. As an example – instead of viewing short term mobility only through the lens of unmanageable risk, we have developed a multi-lens visual dashboard of shortterm mobility which allows a mobility department not only to manage tax and immigration alerts but permits positive value creation through informed procurement strategies around travel and subsistence costs. • The Holy Grail - Return on Investment Much has been written on whether Return on Investment is a viable strategic aim of
international mobility departments. The consensus in written material appears to be that ROI is in the “too difficult” category for international mobility given the very diverse character of international assignments and their sponsoring businesses. The focus, however, on a single financial measure of ROI or other ROI index may be misguided and inevitably therefore prone to failure. Using data analytics techniques developed by us, it is instead possible to visualise and share with the business an interactive dashboard of key positive and negative indicators along a balanced scorecard approach, which, taken together, are likely to influence directional ROI from a mobility perspective for a particular assignee / assignee group / policy segment / country combination or business unit. As an example, it is helpful to be able to compare postrepatriation attrition rates between business units to help underperforming business units understand what can be done to improve their relative performance to peers. Using information and data in this way allows mobility functions to take a strategic advisory role with the business in disseminating and encouraging best practice, backed up by confident use of data analytics to enrich the conversation. In this way, ROI using data analytics becomes a holistic balanced scorecard approach to improving the impact of international assignments rather than a focus on a single financial metric. Scott McCormick is a Director in Deloitte LLP’s Global Employer Services business, with a specific focus on helping organisations to manage, and gain insights into, the data in their international mobility and reward programmes. International Mobility is just one strand of Deloitte’s wider approach to Workforce Analytics, itself part of Deloitte’s global focus on Data Analytics across all business functions & industries. If you would like to understand how Deloitte’s approach to Data Analytics could unlock value in your international mobility programme, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or on +44 (0) 207 007 0151.
You are cordially invited to The 2013 Corporate Relocation Conference & Exhibition Monday 4th February 2013 at Hotel Russell, Russell Square, Bloomsbury, London This successful one-day event is aimed at International HR professionals whose role is to manage their company’s or organisations Global Mobility. There are six free seminars and over 40 exhibitors, so please do put the date in your diary, and if you would like further information please email helen@ internationalhradviser.com
International HR Adviser This event is organised and sponsored by International HR Adviser
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Talent Mobility Starts With Fluent Communication In today’s fast-paced dynamic global workforce, the importance of strong cross-border communication skills is becoming more crucial to businesses wishing to succeed in an international arena. Organisations are realising that there is a distinct link between a skilled workforce, efficiency and profitability. Communications skills’ training is therefore becoming a vital component of strengthening organisational talent and mobility management. From communicating via phone and emails, to drafting letters and negotiating deals, every aspect of the business process across borders has to be dealt with accurately and misunderstandings must be avoided at all costs. Failure to adopt language learning means organisations run the risk of not only losing considerable business, but neglecting the talent development and potential of staff. The challenge now is how organisations can adopt a consistent, long-term solution to develop strong communication skills for staff, which can be transferrable across borders.
The move towards the cloud Talent management has been a crucial part of organisations’ human resources strategies well before the digital age. However, in today’s global business space and the rise in enterprise resource solutions, companies have greater opportunity to work across borders, using all systems available within the ‘cloud’ of consolidated training and talent management systems. In the past year alone, the talent management market has rapidly become commoditised and big vendors have already moved towards the cloud. For instance, in December 2011, SAP announced its takeover of SuccessFactors with Salesforce following, buying social performance management software company Rypple. Early this year Oracle announced its takeover of recruitment software provider Taleo, who again acquired Learn.com, giving it a powerhouse set of products for human resources and talent management. In this environment, the ‘perfect blend’ of combining virtual classrooms, mobile learning and e-learning is revolutionising International HR Adviser Summer
the way in which organisations approach communication training and development. With the ‘perfect blend’ approach, companies can combine self-based learning, assignment tasks and classes, which can be attended virtually or over the phone. These learning tools can then be customised to suit staff learning needs and levels of skill - and companies should encourage staff to use and develop their skills in ways that are both motivating and compatible with the demands of the workplace. In fast growing economies such as China, we are seeing an increased popularity of the perfect blend, which allows a fascinating virtual portal into the foreign language environment. Face-to-face classroom teaching is still widely used and students are gaining a good command of foreign languages in terms of grammar and literacy. However, most teachers within the country are native Chinese speakers, so the accent in which the foreign language is taught is in many instances insufficient for effective global business communication. Add to this a relatively closed media environment with little media access to international television and popular culture, and the result is no opportunity to achieve the correct pronunciation in the foreign language desired. This can be particularly problematic in the current digital communication streams such as Skype or other VoiP providers, where it can be hard to understand incorrect pronunciation. The future promises more widespread adoption of the perfect blend as more businesses are recognising communication development as integral to a long term talent management scheme. Speexx Languages and Business Audit, which questioned 103 L&D managers, HR managers and Business education staff across the globe, revealed that 71 per cent of organisations will be delivering more blended learning content within the next two years. The way global workforces are trained is also expected to change by 2014. Meanwhile the study predicts classroom training will dramatically fall to only 17 per cent and one out of five organisations expects that ‘social and informal learning’ will play a greater role in staff development.
Consistent delivery, integrated adoption of a unified system Delivery of an integrated, unified talent management system that is consistent across the board, is the key to achieving both short term and long term talent mobility goals within an organisation. No longer can one section of an organisation operate in a silo. One unified language learning system, where all staff can log on wherever, whenever, is becoming an increasingly vital component of multinational organisations’ entire talent management strategy. A standardised, consistent approach is also essential to accurately measure the outcome of every component of talent management and development. One of the major things companies get wrong is the perceived language skills of their workforce. Most companies assume language skills are much higher, however, when the unified tests are conducted there is a large gap between the assumed skill level, and the actual level of communications skills. Once the standardised system is in place, the measurability of skills becomes far more accurate, and the results more visible. One seamless, standardised blended learning system can be an invaluable solution to managing business continuity and can unlock enormous potential for an organisation’s talent succession strategy and workforce mobility. With a streamlined, blended learning approach, management will be able to identify the current profile of employees within the organisation, identify their language skills and determine the potential successors for different job roles. This can then be matched to where vacancies might occur, address which areas suffer from a scarcity of talent and provide solutions to job roles that tend to be difficult to fill across the board. For example, a skilled employee with a solid grasp of English working with a subsidiary in Hong Kong, may be transferred to fill a temporary or long term skill gap in a UK subsidiary.
Social and informal training The future trend in social media and mobile learning technology means exciting potential to create a more agile and dynamic learning culture. In China for
talent management example, tablets are rapidly growing in popularity, which means students may no longer be tied to one particular learning space. This has the potential to change everything we currently perceive as how and when learning can be achieved. The 2011 Towards Maturity Benchmark Survey entitled ‘Boosting Business Agility’, indicates organisations certainly want technology to encourage interaction and many have already been experimenting with different forms of social media for some time now, with some tools starting to become established. The survey revealed 46 per cent of organisations questioned are using communities of practice to connect like-minded people together, while 54 per cent are harnessing existing enterprise-wide information platforms to provide a point of focus for sharing. Despite social and informal learning becoming the way forward, it is important to not lose sight of the fact that communication skills training and development is a long term commitment, unlike short term skills such as compliance training. Unless we adopt real technical standards for social and mobile learning that involve a consistent communication process, the
potential of harnessing its benefits will be greatly underutilised. The key to success is to integrate new technology, social and informal learning as part of the perfect blend, adding to the learning space and enhancing the deliverability and quality of current content.
Communication keeps business flowing The evolution of talent management is rapid and organisations need to keep on top of the changes to meet the demands and expectations of the global workplace. While automation and streamlining of business processes is essential, it is important not to lose sight of businesses as consisting of people with individual skills and talent that needs to be nurtured and developed. Blended language learning incorporated as part of a long term talent management strategy is the lifeblood of an organisation, transforming staff member’s communication skills, improving skill mobility and helping the business flourish. How to transform staff soft skills and improve skill mobility: • Reality check: test the skill level within
your organisation, identify weaknesses and strengths. Do not make assumptions on skill level; implement accurate assessments that can be measured across the board • Adoption: Integrate a consistent, streamlined solution. Customise your approach to meet your short term and long-term business goals • Gap analysis: ensure you identify the gaps between the actual and required skill sets within the organisation. Identify career opportunities and skills gaps • Develop a strategy to close those gaps through talent mobility and succession planning. Armin Hopp is the Founder and President of dp. dp (digital publishing), is the provider of award-winning online corporate language training Speexx, which offers practical business courses in five languages. The company operates in over 80 countries, with a worldwide network of 1,200+ coaches and has delivered award-winning results for more than 7 million users worldwide. www.speexx.com
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Talent managment - CASE STUDY
Strategies For Assessing Talent: How To Spot ‘A Good Thing’ Identifying rising talents is not as straightforward as you might assume. The difficulty quite possibly begins with the word itself, or at least its definition. From the outset, we should be clear that we are talking about a hybrid of skill, knowledge, behaviour, judgment and application that can be developed and enhanced, and not something that – in the manner of a silver-spoon or a halo – we believe someone was born with. In the arena of talent assessment, we are talking about the selected quota, not a mythical chosen few. That caveat aside, assessing talent is not a simple matter of applying criteria. In recruitment or selection for development or promotion, there is also a context of not just the present but the future of the organisation undertaking the assessment. Hiring a world-beating sales team will do little for an organisation that needs product developers or strategists. Much like a gardener selecting plants, you must understand your soil and climate as well as the range of flora that you can choose from. Two mainstream TV shows that are, in their different ways, essentially about ‘talent-spotting’ highlight how the success rate can be lower than hoped for. Think, for example, of the low retention rate that Lord Sugar has experienced with his series The Apprentice despite what is effectively a prolonged, televised assessment centre with specialist observers/advisers. Whatever the arguments about the programme’s role as a vehicle for promoting business, its hit rate in recruitment and retention is strikingly low. Perhaps it is overly optimistic in its expectations that the successful candidates can hit the ground running? Think also of The X Factor, which – unlike The Apprentice – makes great play of the in-series coaching and mentoring, and provides fearsome levels of marketing and financial backing after the ‘win’. While the sheer publicity around the final guarantees one major hit single, few artists have sustained successful careers. Leona Lewis may be an international star, but many other winners have seen their second or third single stall a long way short of the Top 100. (If you want to bet International HR Adviser Summer
on the series, put your money on the runners-up: an investment in Olly Murs, JLS or Rebecca Ferguson would have handsomely out-performed a tenner on Steve Brookstein.) Applicants’ willingness to ‘play the industry game’ on a long term basis is a hard element to identify at the time, but remains crucial. ‘Switching on the Christmas Lights in Coalville’ might make a compelling title for a blues ballad, but it has less magic as a CV entry. Remember, however, that neither Sugar nor Cowell depend crucially on the success of the talents they are identifying and promoting: Cowell’s wealth comes primarily from owning the programme format, not the success of its winners (or losers). Lord Sugar donates his BBC fee to Great Ormond Street Hospital. By contrast, most organisations assessing talent are making investment decisions about their own futures: hiring or developing the next generation, or preparing their business for new challenges by ensuring the necessary skills are in place. In business, Talent Managers are not there to build a career on the talents of others: indeed, they are there to strengthen the hand that they must hope will continue to feed them. Nor, however, should they be merely talent scouts: the best performing teams are built, not hired. There is a basic initial difficulty in finding the right person – not so much ‘knowing a good thing when we see it’, as knowing whether what we are seeing is or isn’t ‘a good thing’. Assessing talent and potential is not the same as assessing performance: like leadership itself, future potential – in any role – is not just about skills or knowledge, but a cross-section of engagement, aspiration, hunger for learning and development, and a willingness to adopt new approaches and change behaviours. Robust criteria and methodologies are needed to first identify potential, followed by strategies to enable fledgling talents to fly. The global business of assessing talent and potential goes beyond simply assessing current levels of performance. When we interpret and analyse the past, we view it with the privilege of hindsight: explanations and prevailing circumstances can (at least in an ideal world) be rationalised. But, much like viewing a cash flow forecast or a photograph
album of the early stages of a romance, the past – and even the present - is not necessarily a guide to the future. Given that talent development programmes – or any learning intervention – are grounded in the belief or expectation that interventions can enhance both talent and its application, it should not surprise us that the trajectory of talent is not merely fatalistic. Even if we believe that talent is born rather than acquired, we still tend to believe it can be developed, directed and managed. The key word here is ‘potential’: to assess talent is to identify those people who will succeed at higher levels and rise successfully to meet future challenges. This requires that we assess more than skills or knowledge, or the role they have played in underpinning past performance and achievement. (It is important to note that supervisors and managers have the clearest view of performance, but aren’t necessarily the best judges of potential.) The assessment of potential must also address less readily quantifiable aspects that include engagement, aspiration, agility and individual willingness to identify and address development challenges, adopt new approaches and change behaviours. That list of factors should not suggest that they can be assessed in isolation from each other - the development of individual talent, its successful application and its relationship to organisational or team performance, is shaped by a complex interplay. Ability trumps all, of course, but the desire for a position of authority and responsibility is not a reliable indicator of someone’s ability to fulfil it. This inability to accurately discern our own capacity – and, by implication, the impact of our decisions and desires on others – points to another key element in fruitful talent development: self-awareness. The arcs of our working lives are inextricably linked with our relationships and interactions: without a sensibility that recognises individual differences and preferences, assesses the impact of our own behaviours and style on others and guides us to adapt our approach accordingly, we might still rise through the ranks. But we are likely to travel less far, and both us and others may be more bruised by the experience.
Talent managment - CASE STUDY This is, however, also a lesson for organisations. While our last point concerned individual behavioural style and preferences, a similar compatibility around personality, organisational needs and cultural alignment must be reached. With neither individuals nor companies can it safely be assumed that things will simply evolve in the right way. Developing and realising talent’s potential requires effort, and not merely on the part of the talented: those responsible for managing and implementing the developing and realising process must also apply themselves diligently. Just like genius, to which it is too often erroneously compared, talent requires a high proportion of perspiration to inspiration - and those responsible for the optimisation of the talented must be prepared at the very least to break into the occasional glow. Taking care of talent in isolation is no guarantee. To develop the most capable people with the greatest potential to appropriately fill the requirements of the roles of the future, we must consider talent management in parallel with capabilities, job design and succession planning as well as assessment centre design and performance management practices. Unpicking the fabric of
the organisation will not strengthen it. One challenge for some organisations is that diagnostic tools to support assessment one widely used example is the 9 Box Talent Map - can become the focus of their attention rather than acting as an aid to focusing on the real agenda. If a diagnostic tool’s checklist is becoming a cart that is leading the horse, there are several steps the organisation can take: ensure tools are enslaved to the business strategy and resulting talent strategy, not vice versa; regularly review how far any tools remain fit for purpose; the talent strategy - and the tools associated with it - must be reviewed whenever the business strategy changes; always take time to identify what any tool can not measure. The things we can quantify most readily are not necessarily the things we most need to weigh in balance. Successful talent management strategies need to review and, where necessary, challenge other organisational practices. From ASK’s global work and research in learning transfer and application, for example, we are aware that organisations typically focus their greatest energy and attention on the design and delivery of learning interventions, while paying little attention
to three aspects that play an equally crucial role in developing key talent: • Selecting candidates on the basis of learner characteristics • Ensuring that the workplace environment creates opportunities for new skills and behaviours to be practised • Ensuring that leaders, culture, peer groups and line managers actively support learners in applying their learning and development. For both individuals and talent managers, there is - levity aside - more than a little wisdom in Mae West’s famous quip that, “It’s not what you’ve got, it’s what you do with it.” They might wish to note that Ms West also found time to observe that, “An ounce of performance is worth pounds of promises”, “Anything worth doing is worth doing slowly”, and, “I believe that it's better to be looked over than it is to be overlooked.” Whether you believe her to have been talented or not, Ms West’s seven decade career in the entertainment business suggests she also found the time to take her own advice. Anton Franckeiss Managing Director, ASK Europe
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Global Immigration Update
Global Immigration Update Spain Government Suspends EU Registration Certificates in Barcelona Pending Implementation of Strict New Residence Law (May 8, 2012) Spain is suspending the issuance of European Union registration certificates in Barcelona pending the implementation of a new law that will toughen EU registration requirements. EU nationals seeking to reside in Barcelona will be granted provisional registration certificates that will allow them to obtain a foreigner identification number (NIE) and complete social security formalities, but will not confer long-term residence rights. Similar measures are expected to be put in place throughout Spain in the near future. EU nationals will continue to have the unrestricted right to work and reside in Spain. The suspension of EU registration certificates and any additional changes as a result of the new law will affect only the procedural formalities EU nationals complete when relocating to Spain. The Spanish registration process for EU nationals will likely remain fluid until the government implements the new law.
Slovak Republic Increased Recruitment Period for Local Hires, New Time Limits on Intracompany Transferees (May 9, 2012) The Slovak government has increased the recruitment period for employers seeking to hire foreign nationals locally and is limiting the maximum stay of intracompany transferees to the period the employer specifies in its assignment letter. These new requirements are part of the government’s effort to boost employment among Slovak workers. Extended Labour Market Tests and Increased Scrutiny for Local Hires The labour market test required for local hires has been expanded to 30 days, from 15 days. An employer sponsoring a foreign national for direct hire must apply to a local labour office, which then runs a 30-day search to verify that there are no Slovak citizens available to fill the proposed position. If no Slovak workers are
found, the employer can then submit a work permit application. Local labour offices are expected to increase their scrutiny of labour market test results and work permit applications. New Time Limits for Intracompany Transferees When sponsoring intracompany transferees, employers must now state the full time period the transferee is expected to work in Slovak Republic in the assignment letter included with the work permit application. No work permit extensions will be permitted beyond this timeframe. Previously, employers could extend a transferee’s work permit in two-year increments regardless of the period of stay specified in the assignment letter. To retain a transferee beyond the stated timeframe, the transferee must be converted to local hire status. These applications will be subject to all of the standard requirements for local hire work permits, including the newly extended labour market test.
Mexico Government Introduces Burdensome Visa Renewal Procedures in Mexico City (May 10, 2012) The Mexican National Immigration Institute (INM) recently implemented strict new procedures for visa renewals in Mexico City, effective immediately. Foreign nationals extending visas there will be assigned an interview appointment time approximately 15 days after they file a renewal application. They can no longer schedule their own interview appointments. The five to ten minute appointments are now scheduled during a limited timeframe on weekday afternoons. The new procedures are likely to lengthen the renewal process to 15 to 20 business days. The principal foreign national and any family members must attend the appointment together. During the appointment, they will be issued their renewed work and residence visas. Foreign nationals who arrive late or miss an appointment can reschedule for the following day. Missing two consecutive appointments will reportedly result in fines and cancellation of the applicant’s immigration documents, though
these sanctions have not been officially announced. The INM implemented the new procedures after an increase in missed and re-scheduled renewal appointments in Mexico City. The INM is not expected to change renewal procedures anywhere else in Mexico at this time.
Thailand Board of Investment Launches Online Portal for Work Permit Applications (May 11, 2012) The Board of Investment of Thailand (BOI) is implementing a new online portal, known as the e-Expert System, for the filing of work permit and visa applications. The new system will be mandatory for BOI certified employers filing initial and renewal applications. There are no changes to the standard work authorisation application process for non-BOI certified companies. Effective immediately, BOI certified companies with less than ten foreign employees are required to register for the system and start using it to file applications. BOI certified companies with ten or more foreign employees must register and use the system by October 1, 2012. BOI certified companies are those engaged in approved priority projects in accordance with the BOI’s investment promotion policies. The BOI expects that its new system will facilitate the approval of applications through electronic file sharing with the immigration and labour departments.
Russia New Language and Civics Test Requirements to be Imposed for Certain Work Permit Applicants (May 11, 2012) Russia will begin requiring work permit applicants to pass a Russian language, history and civics exam, beginning in November 2012. The new requirement was announced in a presidential decree signed on May 7, 2012. Details of how the exam requirement will be administered are unavailable at this time. Foreign nationals using the Highly Qualified Specialist Programme to work in Russia will be exempt from the new requirement. Summer International HR Adviser
Global Immigration Update Because representative offices of foreign companies cannot sponsor foreign workers under the Highly Qualified Specialist Programme, the new policy is expected to affect them greatly. All standard work permit applications submitted by representative offices will require successful completion of the new language and civics test beginning in November 2012. Fragomen worked closely with VISTA Foreign Business Support (Moscow) to prepare this alert.
Germany Germany Expands Immigration Options for Highly Skilled Workers, Entrepreneurs and Students (May 11, 2012) The German government is poised to enact legislation that will introduce a German version of the EU Blue Card, eliminate the minimum investment and job creation threshold for the entrepreneur visa programme, and expand the work rights of non-EU students and recent graduates. The legislation cleared a final vote today and is expected to take effect in August 2012. The legislative reforms are being enacted to comply with recent European Union regulations. It was also drafted based on recommendations from the National Regulatory Control Council, an agency that assists the federal government in reducing administrative burdens and improving regulations. The Council conducted a series of surveys in 2011, during which several German state governments, regional alien offices, and private companies provided input on how to improve the country’s immigration system. Germany’s Version of the Blue Card The Blue Card will provide expedited application processing for highly skilled, non-European Union nationals seeking to live and work in Germany. To obtain a Blue Card, a non-EU national must be sponsored by an employer in Germany. To qualify, an applicant must hold a university degree, have a confirmed job offer or valid work contract with the sponsoring employer, and earn a minimum annual salary, which will be subject to change each year. German labour authorities will have the administrative authority to expand access to Blue Cards to applicants with work experience that is the equivalent of a university degree. International HR Adviser Summer
The minimum salary will be set initially at €44,800 for standard applicants and €34,944 for those who will work in a shortage occupation. Employers sponsoring applicants who will work in a shortage occupation and earn less than €44,800 will be required to obtain the consent of local labour authorities, though applicants who hold a degree from a German university will be exempt from the consent requirement. The Blue Card programme’s specified minimum salary threshold will allow for better planning by employers, compared to the fluctuating salary requirements for standard work permits, which require foreign workers to be paid the same wage as a comparable German worker. Though the Blue Card is only available for local hires, some employers may choose to move intracompany transferees to local contracts and apply for Blue Cards, even for short-term assignments to take advantage of this benefit. After residing in Germany for 18 months, cardholders will be able to enter other EU countries visa-free and apply for a Blue Card under local rules. A Blue Card holder will be permitted to apply for German permanent residence after contributing to Germany’s pension fund for 21 months and meeting other requirements. Typically, a foreign national must reside and work in Germany for five years before he or she can apply for permanent residence. The spouse of a Blue Card holder will qualify for a dependent permit without having to meet German language requirements. The spouse will also be entitled to work incident to status, without the need to apply for employment authorisation. The Blue Card programme will replace the current permanent residence programme for executives and highly qualified specialists. Currently, these workers can apply directly for permanent residence rather than a standard work permit, provided they earn more than €67,200 annually. When the new law is implemented, executives and specialists will be required to apply for a Blue Card, which will not be subject to the higher salary threshold. Permanent residency may still be an option in very limited cases for those with the highest qualifications, at the discretion of immigration authorities. Elimination of Investment Threshold for Entrepreneur Visa Programme The law will expand access to the
entrepreneur visa programme to attract a wider range of foreign businesspersons and encourage start-ups. Foreign entrepreneurs will no longer be required to invest at least €250,000 in their German venture or create at least five new jobs to qualify for status. Rather, adjudicators will consider the quality and sustainability of an applicant’s business idea. Foreign graduates of German universities will qualify for entrepreneur visas if they can demonstrate their business idea is connected to the subject of their degree. Entrepreneur visas will continue to be subject to the discretion of adjudicators. Expanded Work Rights for Non-EU Students and Recent Graduates Non-EU nationals studying full-time at a German university will be entitled to work for up to 120 full days or 240 half days per calendar year. Currently, nonEU students are limited to 90 full days or 180 half days of work per year. Recent non-EU graduates of a German university will be able to obtain jobseeker residence permits for a maximum stay of 18 months, up from 12 months. Recent graduates use this time to find a full-time employer willing to sponsor them for an employment-based residence permit. Recent graduates will also be given the unrestricted right to work during this period. Currently, they are limited to 90 full days or 180 half days of work during the 12-month stay.
India New Tax Documentation Required for Visa Extensions in Pune (May 31, 2012) Foreign nationals applying to extend an employment visa at the Pune Foreigners’ Registration Office (FRO) must now submit their most recently updated Form 26 AS, a consolidated tax statement issued by the Indian Income Tax authorities and available online to each individual based on their Tax Identification Number or Permanent Account Number (PAN). The Form details the employer tax deductions or collections from an employee’s salary, as well as any advance tax deposits made on behalf of the employee. Foreign nationals must also attach their employer's individual tax payment receipts to the Form 26 AS. Those who have spent a fiscal year in India must submit their employer's Form 16, which is issued by the employer at the end of
Global Immigration Update each fiscal year. Additionally, if a foreign national has completed a fiscal year in India but has passed the mandatory cutoff date for filing tax returns (July 31), he or she must provide documentary evidence he or she complied with tax return filing obligations. Foreign nationals who are exempt from Indian taxes are required to submit an official declaration of their tax exemption from Indian Income Tax authorities. The Pune FRO will no longer accept a certificate of a foreign national’s tax-exempt status on an employer's letterhead. In the past, the Pune FRO accepted consolidated tax payment receipts accompanied by a statement on company letterhead detailing monthly tax deductions, in lieu of the formal tax documents. Going forward, failure to submit the new documentation may result in the denial of future applications to extend a foreign national’s stay in India.
Norway Public Sector Workers Strike Suspends Immigration Processing (June 1, 2012) A strike by Norway’s main public sector labour union has led to a suspension of all immigration processing. Norwegian immigration authorities are not accepting or adjudicating work permit or visa applications at this time. Currently, there is no indication how long the strike will last. Even after the strike ends, lengthy processing delays are expected for employers and their foreign workers, due to application backlogs that will develop during the strike.
Turkey Employers Face Increase in Social Security Audits (June 4, 2012) Over the past few months, Turkey’s Social Security Institute has been conducting more frequent employer audits to determine whether foreign workers are being registered on the employer’s Social Security payroll list in accordance with government regulations. Employers must register each foreign employee with Social Security within 30 days of a work permit approval date, with very limited exceptions. Employers who register late may be subject to fines. They must notify the work permit directorate of any late registration. In light of the increased audits, employers
should be diligent in completing registration formalities on time. Employers who foresee that they will be unable to complete registration within the 30-day period should contact their immigration service provider as soon they are aware of the issue. In limited circumstances, there may be alternative registration options that could help avoid fines for late registration.
Denmark New Biometric Residence Card Requires In-Person Registration (June 5, 2012) On Ma y 2 0 , 2 0 1 2 , t h e Da n i s h government began issuing new biometric residence and work permit cards to non-European nationals age 18 or older, replacing the traditional cards previously in use. Foreign nationals applying for an initial or renewed permit must submit biometrics for authentication in person. Within 14 days of submitting a work and residence permit application, the applicant must schedule a biometric authentication appointment online. If the foreign national is applying from abroad, the appointment will be at the nearest Danish consular post in the applicant’s home country. Renewal applicants’ appointments are held at a Danish police station or, if in Copenhagen, directly to the Danish Immigration Authority. Applicants must bring a printout of the online system’s confirmation page or a copy of the submitted work and residence application. The application will not be processed until the biometric authentication is complete. Applicants living in countries without a Danish consular post can submit biometrics after arriving in Denmark; specific instructions will be given to them upon entry.
Australia Government Will Limit Fringe Benefit Tax Exemption, Increase Migration Quotas to Remedy Skills Shortages in Regional Australia (June 7, 2012) The Australian government announced several initiatives in its Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 budget that will affect employers of foreign workers. Fewer foreign workers will qualify for fringe benefit tax exemptions. The budget also responds to the shortage of skilled local workers in regional Australia by increasing the number of permanent employment-based visas available
in Fiscal Year 2013, revamping two key permanent residence programmes and creating a streamlined path to permanent residence for temporary workers. Strict New Limits on Tax Exemption for Living-Away-From-Home Allowances and Benefits Effective July 1, 2012, foreign workers will no longer be able to claim tax exemptions for housing and food benefits unless they have established a residence in Australia for their own use and their employer transfers them to another location in the country. This is similar to the rules on taxable housing and food benefits that apply to Australian workers. Currently, foreign workers’ housing and food benefits are generally exempt from both income and fringe benefit taxes. This concession delivers significant tax savings to foreign workers and their employers and has played an integral role in many Australian employers’ recruitment and retention strategies. The practical effect of the change, which was proposed late last year, will be to increase foreign workers’ tax liabilities and reduce their take-home pay unless their employer increases their gross pay to offset the higher tax liabilities.
Canada Buffalo Visa Office Closes; Visa Applications Shifted to New Filing Locations (June 6, 2012) Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) closed its visa office in Buffalo, New York on May 29, resulting in new filing locations for temporary and permanent visa applications. The change also means that foreign nationals already in Canada can now apply for temporary resident visas (TRVs) in-country. Temporary delays are expected over the next few weeks as consulates and CIC offices assume their new responsibilities. The content herein is provided for information purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact Fragomen Global Immigration. Fragomen has 39 offices in 15 countries. For further information, please contact: Global Knowledge Team Fragomen Global, LLP +1 (212) 688 8555 (direct) email@example.com www.fragomen.com
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UK Immigration: A Time Of Change There has been an unprecedented number of changes to the UK Immigration Rules over the last two years and you could be forgiven for struggling to keep up with all of them. The latest changes to the Points Based System (“PBS”), implemented on 6 April 2012 and 14 June 2012, will perhaps have the greatest impact, affecting not just who you can bring over but also how long they can stay. We have been inundated with questions from businesses and individuals asking how the changes will affect them. To help you understand these new policies we have provided a list of what we think are the most important changes and explain how we think they will affect employers and individuals alike. However, it is important to note that this is not a comprehensive list and should you require any further information on the changes and/or require any general immigration advice please do not hesitate to contact us using the details found at the end of this article.
The limit on Tier 2 General In April 2011 the Home Office placed an annual cap of 20,700 places on the number of Tier 2 General visas – the work permit category – available to skilled workers entering the UK to work. The cap only applied to new hires and did not affect those earning over £150,000 a year or entering as Intra-Company Transferees. In April 2012, the Home Office followed up by announcing that the limit would remain at 20,700 places for each of the next two years. This is very welcome news for business. Only half of the quota was used up in the first year and it seems reasonable to assume that it will not be reached in 2012/13. In a small departure from previous policy the Home Secretary also announced that dependants of migrants holding student visas will also now count towards the limit. Numbers are likely to be small here and we do not foresee any significant issues.
The cooling-off period - a change in strategy may be required On 6 April 2012, strict cooling-off periods were introduced across the Tier 2. This new policy will mean that if an assignee
previously held leave to enter or remain in Tier 2, then he or she will not be able to reapply for entry in the Tier 2 category for 12 months from the date their previous leave expired or was cancelled. This policy could have significant impacts for employers, for instance: • If one of your employees is in the UK as an Intra-Company Transfer and their job becomes permanent, you will not be able to switch them to a Tier 2 General visa. This might mean that the assignee would not then be able to stay in the UK for more than total five years and will be barred from re-entry for a year • If you are recruiting to fill a post you might, in the absence of a suitable resident worker, select a non-EU employee of a competitor. If that individual holds a Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer visa in the long term or short term category the assignee will not be able to work for you until they have spent 12 months outside of the UK.
Tougher requirements for permanent residence Tier 2 General migrants who wish to apply for permanent residence, also known as settlement, will now be subject to stricter requirements. Tier 2 General migrants who entered the UK under the rules in place from 6 April 2011, will be granted a total of up to six years leave to enter and remain in the UK as a Tier 2 migrant. Migrants will be able to apply for settlement after five years’ residence. But (and this is a crucial “but”), if they do not qualify within six years of first entering the UK as a Tier 2 General migrant, they will have to leave the UK. They will not be able to re-enter in any Tier 2 category for 12 months from the point their visa expires or is cancelled. In other words, they will be subject to the cooling-off period. The new addition to the standard requirements for settlement (continuous residence, having no unspent criminal convictions etc.), means that Tier 2 General migrants entering the UK on or after 6th April 2011, must be paid at least £35,000 or the appropriate rate for their role (whichever is higher). This means that from 2016, migrants who are applying for settlement and who do not earn at least £35,000 will not, in most cases, qualify for settlement.
The only exceptions to this policy are those who have spent time in a shortage occupation or are working in PHD level jobs (more on this change below).
Liberalising the Resident Labour Market Test and an Increase in Tier 2 General Skill Levels From June 2012, when carrying out a Resident Labour Market Test (“RLMT”), employers will not be required to advertise the role on JobCentre Plus: • When the role will include a salary of £70,000 or more per year and/or the position is deemed to be PhD level or above; and • Those recruiting scientists and academics for PhD level jobs will now be able to choose the best candidates, regardless of whether there is a suitable resident worker. Employers will however still need to conduct an RLMT and advertise through one of a variety of other mediums. On the same day, 14 June 2012, the minimum skill level in Tier 2 increased from NQF4 to NQF6 level. In plain English, NQF4 relates to diploma-level positions whilst the higher level of NQF6 relates to bachelors degree-level positions. As a result, employers will need to make sure that any positions they wish to fill with a Tier 2 migrant are at least degree level or above. It is important to note that this increase in skill level will not apply to shortage occupations or creative jobs. Readers may be aware that as part of the Tier 2 visa application process, an applicant’s job role will need to meet the requirements set out in the relevant Government SOC Code (Standard Occupation Classification Code). The SOC Codes tell employers the minimum rates of pay and the skill levels for any job they wish to recruit for. The SOC Codes were also amended on 14 June 2012. All of the Codes which relate to jobs below level NQF6 were removed. Employers should therefore take this into account before bringing Tier 2 migrants to the UK.
Graduate recruitment – new Rules for students taking employment On 6 April the UK Border Agency closed the popular Post Study Work (“PSW”) visa. The PSW category allowed non-EU Summer International HR Adviser
IMMIGRATION students of UK universities to stay in the country for two years after graduation. With youth unemployment rising, the Government chose to remove PSW from the immigration rules in order to make graduate jobs more readily available to UK graduates. The UK Border Agency has attempted to limit the impact of the above on employers by liberalising their rules for graduate recruitment. From 6 April 2012, employers recruiting students who have been awarded a degree-level qualification from a licenced university can switch into Tier 2 without the need to carry out an RLMT. The lack of an RLMT means that employers no longer need to hold evidence that they advertised their role in UK universities. It also means that they can now recruit a stronger non-EU candidate ahead of a suitable resident. This is helpful but comes with two health warnings. The first is that the RLMT will continue to apply to graduates applying from overseas. This might be the case if they studied abroad or if they left the UK after completing their studies. The second is that the move from Tier 4 (the student visa category) to Tier 2 can only take place
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after they have received their qualification. If you need the graduate to start sooner, he or she will need to return home and apply out-of-country (and you will need to meet the terms of the RLMT).
Lots is changing but we are here to help At Fragomen we appreciate the changes may seem daunting so we will always guide our clients and help them to understand and work within the law. Should you have any questions regarding the contents of this article or regarding global immigration matters generally, please do not hesitate to contact us as it would be our pleasure to assist.
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Nadine Goldfoot Partner,Fragomen LLP, Nadine is a partner in the UK office of Fragomen, a leading immigration law firm. She has more than 10 years experience in immigration law. Along with advising on the Points Based System (PBS), Nadine counsels on all aspects of immigration and nationality law covered by the UK immigration rules. Nadine strategically advises companies on establishing and maintaining their immigration compliance and transactional programmes. Nadine is a member of the Law Society of England and Wales, the Immigration Lawyers Practitioners Association and the International Bar Association. She is a regular speaker at seminars and events in the UK and abroad. Tel: +44 (0) 20 3077 5150 Email: email@example.com Visit our website: www.fragomen.com
Super Commuters - Calculating The Cost Expatriate assignments used to be a relatively simple affair. An assignee would clearly leave their home country together with their family and arrive in the host country for a set number of years. Typically they would cease to be a resident and part of the home country system and would commence participation in the host country system. Although there was always the back drop of the logistics of the move, ensuring the trailing spouse was happy and appropriate schooling for children, as well as the tax and social security implications, at least they could be dealt with one country at a time. These assignments were typically planned months in advance under the umbrella of a formal assignment policy and this gave all parties concerned the time to address the requirements of an international move. Times change and, in recent years, given the desire to cut assignment costs and address issues such as dual careers, we have seen an increase in employees working across multiple jurisdictions, the proverbial ‘super commuter’, while the family remains living in the home country. This has proved popular for numerous reasons including the family remaining settled, meeting the multi-national demands of modern day business as well as the perception that by not formally assigning an individual, costs will be kept to a minimum. As there is no formal relocation taking place these arrangements can be put in place relatively quickly, as the demands of the business dictate. This can leave HR playing catch up as the individual commences their working arrangements before terms and conditions of the employment have been revised or formal paperwork has been completed. One down side to commuter assignments is that it is no longer a case of having one or, at worst, two countries rules and regulations to address. Our super commuter travels across numerous borders, potentially creating a tax obligation and/or legal issues wherever they touch down. These will more than likely fall on the local corporate entity in each of those locations and it will be down to the business to ensure they are being compliant both from a legal standpoint and for tax and social security withholding purposes. Each country will have its own guidelines
on when payments are required. The UK is particularly onerous in this regard as the revenue authorities expect withholding tax to be operated where an individual works as little as one day in the UK. The general rule for tax is that it is payable where you work; however, the country where an individual is tax resident will broadly tax worldwide income regardless of the working arrangements. As a starting point this will lead to double taxation as two countries are taxing the same income. For example, a German tax resident working in Germany, France and Belgium will have full tax due in Germany with tax in France on the income relating to French workdays and tax in Belgium on the income relating to Belgian workdays. It is then a case of establishing how this double taxation can be alleviated. If there is a relevant double tax treaty this will provide clear steps as to which country has the taxing rights and how any double taxation is remedied. Otherwise it is down to the domestic law of each location to facilitate relief. There are also special rules to consider for frontier workers within Europe where individuals may live in one country but work just over the border in a neighbouring country. These rules tend to focus on ensuring individuals claiming tax residence in their country of abode but working in another are not able to play the system and pay tax in whichever country has the lower rate of tax. Although it is very rare for eventual double taxation to occur, there may be a period where the individual is out of pocket from a cash flow perspective because of the tax withholding requirements in each location. Consideration must be given to situations where payroll withholding is operated in more than one country as each country’s rules may stipulate that tax is deducted on all employment income – unfortunately payroll withholding requirements do not always tie in with the final tax position. Where possible, it is then imperative that any up front application is submitted to the revenue authorities to allow for double taxation relief to be given via the payroll process. Payroll departments will need to be involved in this process and payroll systems checked to ensure they can process the adjustments as each pay period arises.
In many jurisdictions double taxation credit via payroll is not feasible and employers may need to loan their employees the funds to pay tax withholdings. Social security usually works a little differently to tax. Although the same basic rule applies in that social security is due in the country where the work is performed, social security legislation tends to override this to ensure it is only paid in one country at any one time. This is especially true within the EU (including Switzerland who has adopted the EU social security regulations) and between countries who have signed social security agreements for the avoidance of dual contributions. In particular, there are specific provisions within the EU regulations that deal with multi state workers. These tend to site the social security liability in the home country but the necessary certificate must be applied for and approved by the relevant authorities. The same is true where countries have social security agreements in place. Where interacting countries do not have a social security agreement then the domestic social security legislation of each country needs to be reviewed and this can sometimes lead to a dual social security liability. Contractual arrangements can be adjusted to factor this possibility into account. Much like tax, social security rates vary widely from country to country. Careful planning with contractual and working arrangements can lead to a much reduced social security liability. Care needs to be taken however, as social security/state benefits typically flow from the contributions paid. This can lead to conflict where the employer is focussed on limiting their cost but the employee is concerned with the provision of social benefits and the long term aim of maximising their state pension. Taking France as an example, although their social security rates are high (especially for employers), French nationals tend to prefer to remain within the system to maintain their entitlement to various benefits. This is especially true for commuters who not only have to consider their own health care coverage (usually dealt with by way of private international medical cover), but also that the family remaining in the home country will have full access to medical care. Summer International HR Adviser
taxATION will be created in multiple jurisdictions, the employer will almost certainly want to include a commuter within their tax equalisation policy to ensure the individual is not adversely affected by their cross border role. For some companies this may actually mean implementing a tax equalisation policy for the first time or adjusting their existing policies to formalise the terms and conditions for commuter arrangements. Individual tax return preparation assistance will be required in each country as well to meet the legal filing obligations which arise. There are also the corporate considerations; where there is no corporate entity in a country does the individual create an establishment just with their presence there and the role they are performing? If they are concluding deals and signing on behalf of the company then this may well be the case. This leads to the legal implications, time and cost of having to register the entity, appoint directors (and some countries will only allow local nationals to be appointed), file accounts and pay tax and establish HR policies. The requirements will all depend on the laws for that particular country. Apart from the tax considerations there are other issues to factor in. Although EU nationals generally have free rein to travel within the EU, moves between other countries will almost certainly involve obtaining the necessary work permits/ visas. Some countries will have additional requirements such as registering with the local police or town hall. It is not uncommon for commuters to start working in a country before the necessary paperwork is completed and there has even been the occasional case of an expat being For further information arrested as a result – and to reserve your free place this does not usually go down too well! It please email: can also impact on firstname.lastname@example.org the company’s future ability to do business
Some countries will allow voluntary social security contributions to be paid and in certain circumstances the arrangements can be constructed which allow the best of both worlds – social security being paid at the lowest possible rate whilst enabling the expat to pay into their home country social fund and access home country benefits. Many companies are not even aware that they are creating any tax and social security problems as they view commuter arrangements as business trips. Additional benefits provided such as flights, accommodation costs and subsistence which would normally be allowable business expenses may actually be considered taxable income. This is due to the fact that there is permanence or regularity to the duties being performed which is a clear distinction from a genuine business trip which tends to be ad-hoc in nature. This may create a number of permanent workplaces for the employee across the globe. Again the rules in each jurisdiction need to be reviewed to determine the taxability of these additional benefits and planning measures considered to minimise the tax and social security impact. Given the likelihood that tax liabilities
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in that location if they are prevented by the relevant authorities from doing so due to prior non compliance. One longer term factor often overlooked is pensions. Employees invariably want to remain within their home country scheme and continue contributions in that country. Although this is nearly always possible where an individual remains employed and resident there, it may not necessarily provide optimum tax relief. Pension schemes in one country are not always recognised as allowable retirement vehicles in other countries. This can lead to unexpected tax charges, reduced tax relief and therefore a reduction in overall return on investment upon retirement. As we can see, what may have been considered a series of low key business trips to start with, is actually a full blown assignment in reality, with all the associated ramifications and potential costs of a traditional assignment magnified across a number of countries. So is our super commuter here to stay? In our view this type of expat arrangement is likely to increase if anything, especially within regions where you can travel anywhere within a particular continent within a few hours. There is a clear need for commuters in multinational companies to cover regional or global roles. More and more, businesses will need to have a good understanding of the issues they face when instigating this type of arrangement. Forward planning is essential to minimise disruption to the employee and the business and to quantify hidden or unknown costs. Andrew Bailey is national head of human capital at BDO LLP. He has over 29 years’ experience in the field of expatriate taxation. Andrew is indebted to Lee Coccaro for his contribution to this article. BDO is able to provide global assistance for all your international assignments. If you would like to discuss any of the issues raised in this article or any other expatriate matters, please do not hesitate to contact Andrew Bailey on +44 (0) 20 7893 2946, email Andrew.email@example.com or Lee Coccaro on +44 (0) 1189 254489, email Lee.firstname.lastname@example.org
Global Taxation Update Australia Changes to the tax treatment of the living away from home benefits The Australian Government has now released for public consultation an exposure draft of the legislation to implement the living away from home (LAFH) tax law changes announced in the recent Budget. The consultation period is very tight with submissions required prior to publication of this article. The nature and operation of the proposed LAFH law changes, as explained in the 2011/12 Winter Global Taxation Update, largely confirms the draft legislation, with the following notable exceptions: • Transitional measures included in the draft legislation indicate that temporary or foreign resident employees who had entered into LAFH arrangements prior to the Budget announcement on 8 May 2012, will only be eligible for LAFH tax concessions beyond 1 July 2012 if they are required to live away from a home which they are maintaining in Australia (owned or rented) and which continues to be available for their use and enjoyment while they are absent • Australian permanent resident employees who entered into LAFH arrangements prior to the Budget announcement on 8 May 2012, will not be required to maintain a home in Australia in order to remain eligible for LAFH tax concessions in respect of these pre-existing LAFH arrangements (potentially until 30 June 2014) • From 1 July 2012, LAFH allowances (LAFHA) cease being taxed as fringe benefits and will become assessable income of the recipient employees, for both new and pre-existing LAFH arrangements. The exposure draft makes it clear that employers will no longer be able to claim an outright Fringe Benefit Tax (FBT) exemption for other LAFH-related benefits, such as rent reimbursements or employerprovided accommodation. These benefits will become subject to the ‘otherwise deductible’ FBT rule, whereby the employer will be able to reduce the taxable value of the particular type of fringe benefit involved (e.g. ‘expense payment’ or ‘residual’), provided the employee meets the new income tax
deduction requirements for LAFH benefits (and a valid LAFH declaration is provided by the employee). BDO Comment The key tax impact of the exposure draft, which was not clear from the Budget announcement, is that if this legislation gets enacted in its current form, it is likely the vast majority of temporary or foreign residents (irrespective of whether they had a pre-existing LAFH arrangement or not) will no longer be eligible for any LAFHrelated tax relief post 30 June 2012. Furthermore, all employers that provide LAFH benefits to employees will need to urgently consider the impact of the proposed changes on various aspects of their operations, including: • Employment tax obligations generally (e.g. FBT, PAYG, Superannuation guarantee and payroll tax) • Salary packaging arrangements and other HR practices and policies.
Ireland Special Assignee Relief Programme The Special Assignee Relief Programme (SARP) was mentioned briefly in the 2012 Spring Global Taxation Update. Further details are set out below: It is widely acknowledged that in order for Ireland to be competitive on the international stage and to attract business and key skills to Ireland, an effective expatriate regime is essential. In an attempt to address this issue and the perceived weaknesses of the existing regime, Finance Act 2012 introduced a new SARP. The old SARP relief, which continues to apply (up to 31 December 2015) where individuals qualified for the regime in 2009, 2010 or 2011, provided limited relief for individuals coming to work in Ireland for the first time. The old SARP applied to individuals with earnings in excess of €100,000 per annum and as those earnings had to be paid outside of Ireland, this often proved a difficulty for multinationals bases in Ireland who wished to directly employ individuals within the Irish operation. The new SARP relief is aimed at improving the terms of the relief to match similar regimes in other countries. The relief applies for individuals that arrive in Ireland in 2012, 2013 or 2014 and has
the following features:• The relief applies to individuals that are employed by companies incorporated and tax resident in a country with which Ireland has a double tax treaty or in a country with which Ireland has a tax information exchange agreement • The relief also applies to individuals employed by associated companies which can include an Irish resident company but it does not apply to branches of foreign multinationals and unincorporated businesses • The employee must – - have been employed for at least 12 months by their foreign employer prior to arriving in Ireland - perform the duties of their employment in Ireland for 12 consecutive months - Not have been tax resident in Ireland for the 5 tax years prior to their arrival in Ireland, and - Earn a minimum base salary (excludes bonuses, share awards and benefit-inkinds) of at least €75,000 from this employment • The relief applies by way of a deduction from remuneration based on a formula as follows: - (A - B) x 30% - Where A is the total remuneration of the employee with a cap of up to €500,000, and B is €75,000 - The maximum tax relief is therefore calculated as follows: - (€500,000 - €75,000) x 30% = €127,500 at a 41% marginal income tax rate gives tax relief of €52,275 • The relief does not extend to USC or PRSI • The individual is required to submit an annual tax return in order to claim the relief. However, relief may be granted at source through payroll provided that prior approval has been received from the Revenue Commissioners to do so • While the relief must be claimed by the employee, the employer must certify that the relevant conditions to qualify for the relief have been satisfied • Individuals that qualify for this relief are also entitled to recover the cost of a return trip to their home country for them and their families from their employer tax-free. In addition, school fees (of up to €5,000 for each child) may be paid tax-free by their employer. Summer International HR Adviser
GLOBAL taxation Example - John Byrne is employed by a US Multinational under a US contract of employment for 8 years up to 31 December 2011. On 1 January 2012, John is assigned to the Irish Subsidiary and will devote his time to developing the Irish operations. The assignment is expected to last for 4 years. In 2012 John has the following remuneration package:• Base salary €250,000 • Company Car BIK €12,500 • Bonus €60,000 • Share Award €20,000 • School fees €4,000* • Private Travel costs €3,000* • Total Taxable €357,500. *tax relief is available for school fees and travel costs home. Under the new SARP Regime, the deduction would be:€342,500 - €75,000) x 30% = €80,250. The tax repayment due would be 41% of this amount, i.e. €32,903. John is obliged to submit an annual income tax return in Ireland for 2012 which is due for submission on or before 31 October 2013. BDO Comment Governments will continue to adopt new and favourable tax rules in order to attract investment and individuals into their jurisdiction. The more businesses and individuals that are based in a location the greater the tax take. We expect to see further competition by Governments to make their tax regimes more attractive.
Scotland Devolved taxation in Scotland – plans move ahead Scotland is currently part of the United Kingdom, at least until the vote on independence scheduled for 2014. Notwithstanding this, The Scotland Act 2012 gives the Scottish Parliament the power to set a Scottish rate of income tax to be administered by HM Revenue & Customs. This is expected to be introduced effective April 2016, subject of course to the outcome of the independence vote. The Government’s intentions as to application of the Act were announced in May. Under current plans the rates of UK tax could each be reduced by 10% with the new Scottish tax added to the reduced numbers at a rate set by the Scottish Parliament. Employers will have to assist in identifying their employees who are Scottish taxpayers, who are defined as those International HR Adviser Summer
individuals who are UK tax resident with their main place of residence in Scotland. Interesting times beckon for employers and Scottish taxpayers, especially as plenty of possible political changes may occur before 2016 - watch this space.
Switzerland Switzerland signs up to new EU social security agreement Regulations (EU) No 833/2004 of 29 April 2004 and (EU) No 987/2009 of 16 September 2009 on the coordination of social security systems, which replaced the Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71 of 14 June 1971, entered into force on 1 May 2010. Initially this legislation only applied to cross-border workers within EU Member States. With effect from 1 April 2012, both regulations will also apply in relation to moves between Switzerland and EU Member States. From a Swiss perspective, the following changes are of major importance: • International assignments: the duration of international assignments for employed and self-employed persons will be extended from 12 to 24 months (Article 12 of the Regulation 883/2004) • Activity of employed persons in two or more member states: an employed person who normally pursues an activity as an employed person in two or more Member States will be subject to the legislation of the state of residence: - if a substantial part (25%) of his activity takes place in that state, or - if he is employed by various employers whose registered office or place of business is in different Member States. Employed persons who carry out an unsubstantial activity in their state of residence will be subject to the legislation of the state in which the registered office or place of business of their employer is situated (Article 13(1) of the Regulation 883/2004) • Activity of self-employed persons in two or more Member States: a self-employed person who normally pursues an activity in several Member States will be subject to the legislation of the state of residence, provided that a substantial part (25%) of his activity takes place in that state. Self-employed persons who carry out an unsubstantial activity in their state of residence will be subject to the legislation of the state in which the centre of interest of their activities is situated (Article 13(2) of the Regulation 883/2004)
• Simultaneous employment: under the (old) Regulation 1408/71, persons who pursued employed and self-employed activities in two or more member states were subject to different legislation. The new regulations, however, are based on the principle of being subject to the legislation of one state only. As a result, a person who normally carries out an activity as an employed person and an activity as a self-employed person in different member states will be subject to the legislation of the state in which he pursues an activity as an employed person (Article 13(3) of the Regulation 883/2004) • Employees in the international transport sector: in contrast to the (old) Regulation 1408/71, the Regulation 883/2004 no longer contains specific rules for employees working in international transport companies. The legislation applicable to these persons is determined in accordance with the general rules; and • Transitional rule: there will be a transition period (10 years) during which employees who are already on assignment may opt to have their social security position determined according to the new Regulation 883/2004 (Article 87(8) of the Regulation 883/2004). Putting this in practice, with examples for employees; • An individual, domiciled in Switzerland, works 80% for an employer domiciled in Italy and only 20% in Switzerland is subject to legislation in Italy (employer's domicile) • An individual, domiciled in Switzerland, works 70% for an employer domiciled in Italy and 30% in Switzerland is subject to legislation in Switzerland (country of residence) • An individual, domiciled in Switzerland, works for an employer domiciled in Germany. 20% of the work is pursued in Switzerland and 80% in Italy. They are subject to legislation in Germany (employer's domicile), even though there is no activity in Germany. BDO Comment Bringing Switzerland into alignment with the social security rules affecting the rest of the EU will help simplify cross border moves. Looking forward, further revisions to the EU social security rules are likely to occur as the new regulations are applied by member states. Prepared by BDO LLP. Contact Andrew Bailey on 0207 893 2946 or at email@example.com
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diary dates SEPTEMBER
Global Mobility Summit & EMMA Gala Dinner – Americas 13th & 14th September 2012 JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa, Las Vegas, USA www.totallyexpat.com The Forum for Expatriate Management is delighted to invite you to participate in its flagship event in the US for 2012 – The Americas Global Mobility Summit. This event will build on the success of past years and bring exciting new elements to ensure that this remains the premier event in Global Mobility. This year the event is moving to Las Vegas to take advantage of all that this exciting City can offer. Las Vegas consistently attracts more attendees to conferences than any other City. The JW Marriott Resort has 548 rooms and should create an intimate environment to facilitate effective networking and relationship building as we take over the hotel. For more information please contact Iyla MacIntyre on +44(0)20 7943 8027 or email email@example.com The Expat Academy – Global Mobility: A Practical Introduction 17th & 18th September 2012 (8.45am – 5.30pm) Deloitte office, 2 New Street Square, London This course covers the essential principles of global mobility and its practical application. If you are fire fighting inaccuracies and constantly managing expectations this will be a really beneficial course for you. You will also leave equipped with a valuable toolkit for daily use back in the workplace. To attend this course please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Global Workforce Symposium 3rd to 5th October Marriot Wardman Park, Washington, DC, United States of America Worldwide ERC®will gather talent mobility professionals for networking, strategising and sharing ideas for thriving in the global marketplace. As companies position for increased global growth and the talent management and mobility required to support it, now is the time to obtain the cutting-edge information and business connections needed to prepare for what's next. See more information and register at http://www.worldwideerc.org/Events/Pages/fall12.aspx or visit www. worldwideerc.org. Global Mobility Summit & EMMA Gala Dinner – Europe 19th October 2012 Plaza Riverbank, London, UK www.totallyexpat.com The Forum for Expatriate Management will be holding its Third European Global Mobility Summit in London on the 19th October in the Park Plaza, 18 Albert Embankment, London. With a great conference programme, the opportunity to network with many colleagues from the industry and all the fun and excitement of the Awards Dinner, this event is not to be missed for any International HR and Global Mobility professionals. For more information please contact Iyla MacIntyre on +44(0)20 7943 8027 or email email@example.com The Expat Academy – Global Mobility: Intermediate Course 23rd October 2012 (8.45am – 5.30pm) Deloitte office, 2 New Street Square, London This course is for Global Mobility Professionals with 5-10 years’ experience. We will cover in depth some of the key, current and topical areas of Global Mobility, including exploring new locations, justifying the cost of Global Mobility and building the brand, ensuring that you put Global Mobility on the map in your organisation. We will also look at some technical areas such as deciphering deferred compensation, managing currencies and understanding pensions. To attend this course please email: firstname.lastname@example.org International HR Adviser Summer
International HRM Academy 24th-26th October 2012 Cornell University ILR, New York City www.internationalhracademy.com Globalization is now more fluid and dynamic than ever, driving significant international business challenges, many of which arise in managing complex, cross border workforces. The International Human Resources Management Academy has been established by Cornell University’s ILR School and King’s College London. The academy, which meets twice a year in NYC and London is designed as a forum to share cutting edge academic research (often before publication), new ideas, knowledge and organisational best practice. In so doing, it provides insight and understanding into highly demanding, strategically critical, current global HR management issues. In participating in the International HRM Academy, you will be exposed to new knowledge as it is being created as many of our speakers will present on-going research and practice. In this way, you will become part of a diverse learning community of like-minded professionals from organisations with a truly global footprint; sharing knowledge, experience and expertise. Duration: A total of two and a half days Participation Fee: $4,750 (early-bird discount is available for pre 1 September registrations, and can be made through the website)
Global Mobility Summit & EMMA Gala Dinner – Asia 28th-29th November 2012 Grand Hyatt, Hong Kong www.totallyexpat.com The Forum for Expatriate Management are delighted to announce the inaugural Asian Global Mobility Summit on 28-29 November in the Grand Hyatt, Hong Kong. With a great conference programme, the opportunity to network with many colleagues from the industry and all the fun and excitement of the EMMAs, this event is not to be missed for by any International HR and Global Mobility professionals based in Asia. For more information please contact Iyla MacIntyre on +44(0)20 7943 8027 or email email@example.com
SAVE THE DATE FEBRUARY 2013
The Corporate Relocation Conference & Exhibition 4th February 2013 Hotel Russell, Russell Square, London www.internationalhradviser.com There are seminars dedicated to educating and up-dating International HR professionals on key developments and current leanings relevant to the industry, running throughout the day. The seminar programme will be announced very soon. The 2012 Conference & Exhibition saw over 700 visitors attend this not-to-be-missed event, so be sure to put the 2013 event in your diary today!
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DIRECTORY Assignment Management Services
Total Reward Group Chart House, 10 Western Road, Borough Green, Kent, TN15 8AG Contact: Simon Richardson Telephone: +44 (0) 1732 780777 Fax: +44 (0) 1732 668284 Email: email@example.com Website: www.totalrewardgroup.com Total Reward Group is a ‘boutique’ employee owned reward practice, providing consultancy, search, interim managers and professional training for analysts. The Global Mobility division of TRG provides both advisory services on policy development, as well as fully outsourced assignment management services, which provides a ‘virtual’ in house Global Mobility HR service.
BUSINESS ASSOCIATION J-1 VISA PROGRAMME
BRITISHAMERICAN BUSINESS (BAB) 52 Vanderbilt Avenue, 20th Floor New York, NY 10017, USA Contact: Tamra Eker Telephone: +212 661 4060 Fax: +212 661 4074 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.babinc.org BritishAmerican Business’s J-1 visa program assists companies in offering US training and work experience to qualified employees of any nationality and from anywhere in the world, for a time period of up to 18 months. Sectors covered by our J-1 Visa designation include management, business, commerce, finance, law, industry, sciences, engineering, architecture, information media & communications. Using the J-1 Visa helps companies overcome cross-cultural differences and improve communication between US and overseas offices; enhance employee recruitment/retention efforts by offering US assignments; and meet global mobility challenges. Please call to discuss the program with our J-1 Visa Program Administrator.
Bupa International Telephone: + 44 (0) 1273 718304 Website: www.bupa-intl.com • Bupa – A name trusted by 10 million people in 190 countries • The international healthcare provider with over 35 years’ experience • Multi-lingual helpline open 24 hours • Direct currency settlement • Optional assistance cover including evacuation and repatriation. Depending on the member’s requirements, Bupa International offers plans for both individuals and companies. Most of our plans include; primary care, maternity cover, home nursing, emergency dentistry, hospital treatment and accommodation, health checks, cover for chronic conditions, emergency road ambulance, cover for sports injuries.
HR CERTIFICATION/ CREDENTIALS
HR Certification Institute 1800 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia, 22314, USA Telephone: +1-703-548-3440 Fax: +1-703-535-6474 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.hrci.org HR Certification Institute is an internationally recognised certifying body for the HR profession. We have awarded over 100,000 credentials in over 70 countries to HR professionals who have passed rigorous exams to demonstrate their mastery and real-world application of forward- thinking HR practices, policies and principles. Our certifications are a career long commitment that requires continual HR career development to maintain certification. Four certifications are offered: the Professional in Human Resources (PHR®), Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR®), Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR®), and the California state specific PHR-CA® and SPHR-CA®.
ASSOCIATION OF RELOCATION PROFESSIONALS (ARP) PO Box 189, Diss, IP22 1PE, UK Contact: Tad Zurlinden Telephone: 08700 737475 Fax: 01379 641940 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.arp-relocation.com The ARP is the professional association for the relocation industry in the UK. The ARP’s activities include seminars throughout the year, an annual conference, the publication of an annual Directory of Members and a website, which is updated regularly. THE EUROPEAN RELOCATION ASSOCATION (EURA) PO Box 189, Diss, Norfolk, IP22 1PE Telephone +44(0)8700 726 727 Fax: +44(0)1379 641 940 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.eura-relocation.com EuRA is an industry body for Relocation Professionals in both Europe and Worldwide. EuRa have launched The EuRA Quality Seal, the world’s first accreditation programme for relocation providers. This pioneering initiative provides a straight forward, cost effective audit to reflect your company’s excellence in providing relocation services.
FRAGOMEN 4th Floor, Holborn Gate, 326-330 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7PP Contact: Caron Pope, Partner William Foster, Partner David Crawford, Partner Telephone: +44 (0)20 3077 5000 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.fragomen.com
As the world's leading provider of immigration legal services and advice, Fragomen has served the immigration needs of clients ranging from individuals to the world’s leading multinational corporations for 60 years. With 36 offices in 15 countries worldwide, Fragomen has the resources and the reach to provide strategic and effective immigration solutions for over 140 countries around the globe.
INSURANCE AND FINANCIAL SERVICES ZURICH INTERNATIONAL LIFE Abbey Gardens, 4-6 Abbey Street Reading, Berkshire, RG1 3BA Contact: Adele Cox Telephone: +44 (0) 118 952 4253 Fax: + 44 (0) 118 952 4300 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.zurichinternational.com Zurich International Life is a global provider of life insurance, investment and protection products. Our corporate range offers flexible, portable solutions, designed to suit multinational organisations with an internationally mobile workforce. The International pension plan offers a cost effective, bundled retirement benefits solution comprising of trust services, investment funds and online administration. International group protection is designed to protect an employers’ most important asset – their employees – and offers a range of life and disability protection. With a local presence in key global business hubs and over 20 years experience of implementing and administering plans world wide, we’ve developed our knowledge and understanding of key markets to meet the needs of our customers and business partners.
INTERNATIONAL HR CONSULTANTS
DELOITTE LLP Stonecutter Court, 1 Stonecutter Street, London, EC4A 4TR Contact: Robert Hodkinson, Partner Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7007 1832 Fax: +44 (0) 20 7007 1060 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.deloitte.co.uk Whether you are creating your first international mobility programme for employees or addressing fundamental changes to an existing programme, our International Human Resources team can help. Deloitte provides consulting support that has an appreciation for each company’s size, background and unique cultural environment, aligning your international programme goals with corporate business strategies. Our consultants have developed deep expertise in many fields based on first hand experience with many of the world’s leading organisations: international assignment policy and process design, benchmarking, service delivery modelling, improving vendor management and helping our clients become more compliant and their administration more cost-effective. Spring International HR Adviser
DIRECTORY INTERNATIONAL MOVING
DT MOVING LTD 49 Wates Way, Mitcham, Greater London, CR4 4HR Contact: Tim Daniells Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7622 4393 Fax: +44 (0) 20 7720 3897 Email: email@example.com Website: www.dtmoving.com DT Moving is a world leading international moving company. Founded in 1870 as Davies Turner, we provide an awardwinning* move management service for corporations who relocate their employees to locations all over the world. Whether your employee is moving to or from Europe, America, Asia-Pacific, Africa, or simply just around the corner, we manage the entire process. Our goal is your complete satisfaction from initial contact right through to delivery. With a customer satisfaction rating of 96% for 2011, we offer unrivalled quality at competitive rates.
RED GROUP OF COMPANIES The Bower, Langford Hall, Witham Road, Maldon, Essex, CM9 4ST Contact: Caroline Frostick-Seear and Amie Cutts Telephone: 01621 840600 Fax: 01621 856062 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.redrecruit.com Red Recruit was founded in 2002 and specialises in the Relocation and mobility industry. We are a very professional, friendly and reputable company who have extensive knowledge within the industry. We have access to a large volume of potential candidates all seeking work in your industry all over the UK, we will be able to find you a suitable candidate to enhance your business. We personally understand the importance of finding the right calibre of staff for an organisation. By using our service we will take the pressure off you of finding a suitable candidate for your company, saving you time, money and effort, giving you the best attention at all times.
INTERDEAN RELOCATION SERVICES Central Way, Park Royal, London, NW10 7XW Contact: Barrie Gilmour Telephone: +44 (0)208 961 4141 Fax: +44 (0)208 965 4484 Email: London@interdean.com Website: www.interdean.com Thinking Relocation? Think Interdean. Whether looking to expand into new territories or to leverage your human capital in core international markets, Interdean has the relocation service to support the needs of your business and your relocating employees. Interdean provides the full range of relocation services to support businesses with international interests. Our Services: Relocation Management, Visa & Immigration, Area Orientation, Temporary Housing, Home Finding, School Search, Settlingin Assistance, Tenancy Management, Household International HR Adviser Spring
Goods Moving, Intercultural & Language Training, Relocation Expense Management, Moving & Relocation Insurance and other services available – please ask.
ACS INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS ACS International School Heywood, Portsmouth Road, Cobham, Surrey, KT11 1BL, England ACS International School London Road (A30), Egham, Surrey, TW20 0HS, England ACS International School Hillingdon Court, 108 Vine Lane, Hillingdon, Middlesex, UB10 0BE, England ACS International School Al Oyoun Street, Al Gharrafa, PO Box 200568, Doha, Qatar Telephone: 01932 869 744 Email: email@example.com Website: www.acs-schools.com Contact: Dean of Admissions ACS International Schools were founded in 1967 to serve international and local communities. The schools are non-sectarian and co-educational (day and boarding), enrolling students aged 2 to 18 years. The UK based schools have over 30 years’ experience of teaching the International Baccalaureate, and ACS Doha offers an international and American curriculum. ISL Group of Schools Two UK schools: Old Woking Road, Woking, Surrey, GU22 8HY 139 Gunnersbury Avenue, London, W3 8LG Tel: +44 (0)1483 750409 +44 (0) 20 8992 5823 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.islschools.org Contact: Heather Mulkey The ISL Schools offer an international education with an important addition: mother tongue or modern language training from an early age. Academic research increasingly points to the importance for English as an Additional Language learners of gaining a solid language and literacy foundation in their own language. For English speakers, research supports the value of language learning in overall academic success. Looking towards our students' global future, multiple language facility will become increasingly valuable. ISL London is one of the first schools to offer the IB Diploma and next year celebrates its 40th Anniversary. TASIS THE AMERICAN SCHOOL IN ENGLAND Coldharbour Lane, Thorpe, Surrey, TW20 8TE Contact: Karen House Telephone: +44 (0)1932 582316 Email: email@example.com Website: www.tasisengland.org TASIS England offers the International Baccalaureate Diploma, an American college
preparatory curriculum, and AP courses to its diverse community of coed day (3-18) and boarding (14-18) students from 50 nations. The excellent academic programme, including ESL, is taught in small classes, allowing the individualised attention needed to encourage every student to reach their potential. Outstanding opportunities in art, drama, music, and athletics provide a balanced education. Extensive summer opportunities are also offered. Located close to London on a beautiful and historic 46-acre estate.
BDO LLP 55 Baker Street, London, W1U 7EU Contact: Andrew Bailey Telephone: 020 7893 2946 Fax: 020 7893 2418 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.bdo.co.uk BDO LLP is the award-winning, UK Member Firm of BDO International, the world's fifth largest accountancy network with more than 600 offices in 100 countries. We have a partner-led approach, which delivers the highest quality of service by using short, functional chains of communication to aid decision-making. Clients benefit from our fresh thinking, constructive challenge and practical understanding of the issues they face. Developing strong, personal relationships with our clients is at the forefront of our service approach. Tax advice is just one of our award-winning services and our expatriate team give practical and direct advice, delivering solutions which suit your needs. DELOITTE LLP Stonecutter Court, 1 Stonecutter Street, London, EC4A 4TR Contact: Robert Hodkinson, Partner Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7007 1832 Fax: +44 (0) 20 7007 1060 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.deloitte.co.uk Deloitte’s Global Employer Services is comprised of approximately 2,600 people in over 80 countries. We take a holistic approach to international assignment tax compliance and planning, ensuring that proposed strategies deliver full value to our clients and their international assignees. As well as assisting with employer core compliance, such as tax returns and year end procedures, we provide an end-toend solution that covers a range of services from tax compliance services, payroll support and policy development, international assignment programme administration (“co-sourcing”) capabilities and global visa and immigration services. We also have a dedicated global team of GES technology professional.
Entries in this Directory cost £175 per issue or £600 per annum. For further details email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone +44 (0) 20 8661 0186