The pressures on the Global Mobility (GM) function today have been discussed many times, and the recurrent themes and findings – often referred to as the Global Mobility “Squeeze” - reported in the leading annual industry surveys.
Recent industry surveys have shown that the GM function is tasked with:
• The need to be a strategic partner to the business; • Demonstrating and improving the ROI of the mobility programme; • The elevation of the duty of care to the relocating assignee.
With all industry indices suggesting a net increase in assignment activity in 2016, especially in the Engineering, Consulting and Technology Sectors, it’s no surprise it’s called the Global Mobility Squeeze.
The increased use of technology is increasingly seen as one of the solutions to these challenges. For instance, improved systems will enable better tracking of costs against the assignment cost estimate (today, this exercise is not completed by the majority of respondents to recent industry surveys), as well as linking Global Mobility to business performance KPIs (again, this often cited as either difficult, or not taking place today because of a lack of connectivity between systems by a majority of respondents to key industry surveys).
Ironically, this lack of connectivity as a barrier to tracking ROI within the GM function is almost certainly a contributor to the continual focus on cost-cutting. If GM teams were able to make the investment in systems or people to track these measures effectively, it would be far easier to demonstrate to the business their value rather than being viewed simply as a cost centre.