Working abroad presents a whole new world of possibilities. Often it is seen as a plus for your career. However, our research on HR decision-makers' attitudes towards international working has highlighted that assignees’ lifestyle ambitions are an increasingly popular reason for sending employees abroad. In fact, the importance of lifestyle ambition has increased by 14% in the past three years, making it a priority for over one-third of businesses. It’s no longer just about improving overseas operations.
So, the motivations driving assignees to spend time abroad has changed, and as such, the way they are managed has also changed. This could be because the people managing employees on international assignments often have personal experience of living and working abroad. We actually found that as many as nine-in-ten HR decision makers overseeing international assignments have personal experience of international working – they know first-hand what it's like and what the focus should be on.
But the prioritisation of employees’ lifestyle ambitions poses a challenge for Global Mobility Managers: developing healthcare packages for international workers that are sensitive to the variety of scenarios they’ll face across the globe.