TRAIN­ING & DE­VEL­OP­MENT

How im­por­tant is ex­pa­tri­ate train­ing to you?

The HR Digest - - Content Features -

Today’s global econ­omy may re­quire even small busi­nesses to send pro­fes­sion­als abroad. It has be­come a com­pet­i­tive ne­ces­sity. For in­stance, nearly 80 per­cent of mid­size and large com­pa­nies cur­rently as­sign em­ploy­ees to work in for­eign coun­tries – and 45 per­cent plan to in­crease the num­ber they have on as­sign­ment. In­ter­na­tional as­sign­ments, how­ever, don’t come cheap. On an av­er­age, ex­pa­tri­ates cost three to four times what they would in an equiv­a­lent po­si­tion back home. A fully loaded ex­pa­tri­ate pack­age in­clud­ing ben­e­fits re­quired by law and cost-ofad­just­ments costs any­where from $500,000 to $1 mil­lion an­nu­ally. The sin­gle largest ex­pen­di­ture most com­pa­nies make on any one in­di­vid­ual ex­cept for the C-suite.

In a study of ex­pa­tri­ates at about 500 U.S., Ja­panese and Euro­pean com­pa­nies, it was found that man­agers don’t find their ten­ure worth­while. Man­agers sent on in­ter­na­tional as­sign­ments re­turned early be­cause of job dis­sat­is­fac­tion or dif­fi­cul­ties in ad­just­ing to a for­eign lo­ca­tion. In ad­di­tion, nearly two-third did not per­form up to the ex­pec­ta­tions of their bosses. The most prob­lem­atic of all – nearly one-fourth of ex­pats who fin­ished an as­sign­ment with their com­pany only to join a com­peti­tor, within a year of their repa­tri­a­tion.

If com­pa­nies are spend­ing so much money on ex­pats, why do so many com­pa­nies get it wrong? The main rea­son seems to be that many

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