Global mobility not integrated with talent systems, research finds

Just 2% of organisations think that their global mobility functions and talent programmes are aligned, despite nine in 10 (90%) believing that such integration is important.

This is according to research from professional services firm Deloitte, which also found that two-fifths (40%) of employers feel that their global mobility programme needs significant or radical improvement.

The survey of HR leaders and senior business executives from 140 organisations worldwide found that 88% of respondents believed that global mobility needed to be more integrated into core HR processes – such as the talent agenda – and act as a strategic partner to the business.

Alignment between global mobility functions and talent programmes could become an even more important issue in the near future, with three-quarters (75%) of organisations anticipating that the number of internationally mobile employees in their workforce will increase over the next three to five years.

Deloitte’s global mobility transformation partner, Will Gosling, warned that employers that fail to align talent and global mobility could threaten the future availability of leaders.

“Companies need to be both strategic and nimble in order to survive and prosper in an increasingly competitive business environment. Developing new leaders and providing them with experience to grow new markets is crucial.

“However, the current lack of integration with talent programmes and strategies means that many organisations will not be able to fill their talent pipelines with the global leaders required for growth.”

The research also found a discrepancy between the perceived success of global mobility from business executives and HR. Nearly half (49%) of business executives outside of HR considered their mobility to be underperforming and not fulfilling business and talent requirements, compared with one-third (33%) of HR respondents.

Rob Hodkinson, global mobility transformation practice leader at Deloitte and leader of the research, commented: “The transition from global mobility being viewed as a transactional cost centre to a value-added strategic partner is a difficult one.

“The development of strategic expertise within global mobility functions will be an important way for companies to address the challenges ahead, as this will enable them to ensure their mobility strategy aligns with the business and talent objectives. It will also enable global mobility to deliver a more cost-effective and targeted service.”

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