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A Compilation of Global Mobility Trends

Rewind a few years; a research report by Strategy Analytics stated that the global mobile workforce is set to increase to 1.87 billion people by 2022, which is about 42% of the global workforce.

As we progress through 2022, we can see that millennials are increasingly becoming interested in traveling and working internationally. In fact, by 2025, we can expect millennials to represent 75% of the global workforce who prefer mobile and remote working.

Trends in global mobility are evolving. 35% of business leaders believe that globalized workforce empowerment is crucial to meet their strategic objectives.

In this blog, we will provide you with insights into global mobility statistics and trends. Once aware of the trends, you can also strengthen your efforts in building a global workforce.

Global Mobility Teams: Important Statistics

As organizations become more focused on building and empowering global mobility teams, here are a few noteworthy global mobility statistics.

  • Keeping all global conditions aside, the workforce is willing to move across borders. In a Harvard Business Review Analytics Service and EY survey – Strategic Global Mobility: Unlocking the Value of Cross-Border Assignments, 70% of respondents expect an increase in global mobility needs.
  • The most common reasons behind the workforce relocating are career advancement/ high pay (49.3%) and transfer within the company (11.1%).
  • 51% of organizations mention flexibility, increased engagement, and well-being as key benefits of remote work. Global mobility empowers flexibility and helps organizations adapt to a hybrid work model.
  • 59% of millennials are willing to work abroad and are expected to represent a huge part (75%) of the workforce.
  • 38% of global mobility teams identify cultural differences as the key challenge in various locations.
  • 71% of global mobility teams have an immigration program to ensure the compliance of business travelers.
  • A huge majority of 91% of US professionals and 87% of UK professionals expect their employers to help with their relocation. The main expectations include insurance coordination, cash allowances, housing assistance, and spouse and family support.
  • 61% of global mobility teams plan to invest in new technology.
  • 33% of global mobility teams view immigration compliance as the main challenge to achieving global mobility objectives.

Top 10 Global Mobility Trends

After the disruptions in work models in 2020, businesses have got the opportunity to reimagine global mobility.

As businesses have started investing in global mobility teams, several global mobility trends emerged between 2020 to 2022. Let’s take a look.

Trend 1: Career Advancement

Among the many global mobility trends, moving people to jobs and jobs to people is one aspect that critically contributes to global talent strategy.

Global mobility provides exposure to employees. It allows getting beyond the traditional career models. Talents are encouraged to move to new roles, assume leadership roles, assignments, etc., across different geographies.

According to the Deloitte Study Report 2021,

  • 72% of executives think that their employee’s ability to reskill, adapt, and assume new roles is the most or second most significant factor in navigating future disruptions.
  • 41% of executives mentioned that building workforce capability through reskilling, upskilling, and mobility is one of the significant actions for transforming work.

Trend 2: Repatriation Programs

One of the current global mobility trends is the implementation of repatriation programs. As of 2015, 85% of companies addressed repatriation in their global mobility policies. Now, the percentage of companies has increased to 87%.

However, only 9% of companies address aspects like Repatriation Integration Briefings and ROI support in assignments.

Discussing repatriation in-depth and framing policies is extremely important for organizations. Especially in short-term jobs where employees plan to return to their home country, repatriation is a must to ensure the highest ROI for the business.

Trend 3: Immigration Roadblocks

Immigration is one of the top complications, ahead of concerns around political climates at 42% and safety at 37%. As global mobility statistics indicate, around 50% of global mobility professionals mention that immigration complications are a roadblock to achieving business objectives.

By far, the US is the most challenging country to get work visas, but it still tops the list of destinations to which global employers send their employees.

Further, with Brexit updates and continuously changing US immigration policies, organizations must keep themselves up-to-date.

Trend 4: Support to Partner/Spouse

Often the reason behind the failure of an international assignment is the inability of the partner or spouse to adapt to a new environment.

Households, where both partners/spouses have careers, are becoming the standard nowadays. In such scenarios, whether or not the partner can find a job in the new city is a major factor in global employment decisions.

Research shows that 27% of relocating spouses take care of the household, while 17% are looking for work. That makes 44% of people not fully employed.

Today, many organizations structure partner/spouse support programs to provide networking opportunities to female partners/spouses. But organizations need to change their programs and policies to make them gender-neutral. They must offer job search and networking opportunities to both partners..

Additionally, to offer maximum support to dual-career households, organizations must provide them with opportunities with other working members.

Trend 5: Inclusive Workplace

Businesses place a greater emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) to make employees feel a stronger sense of belonging and to enhance their motivation.

Building a global mobility workforce contributes to the DE&I initiatives of businesses. 6% of leaders actively encourage minorities to participate in global mobility.

Considering the diversity and global mobility, the 2021 Deloitte Study has shared an insight–

In a global workforce, more than 40% are women, yet only 1 in 5 international assignees are female.

Trend 6: Employee Well-being

Who doesn’t like and want a happy and productive workforce?! Employers must implement health and well-being initiatives to build a productive workforce and retain talents.

Employee well-being must be present at every level of the organizational culture. Employers should no longer treat it as a side issue.

Organizations can consider these three key opportunities to integrate well-being into global mobility.

  • Evaluate the current mobile workforce experience through surveys and identify opportunities for enhancement.
  • Understand assignee pain points by mapping their journeys and taking measures to minimize the stress.
  • Partner with DE&I to ensure meeting the global workforce needs and reveal the true potential of each assignee through international work experience and opportunities.

Trend 7: Digital Workforces

As tech advances, organizations can automate several tasks. To ensure consistency and organization in global mobility teams, it is essential to have a standardized data platform.

A data-driven platform can help the workforce create, learn, and collaborate. Ultimately, they can achieve better results too.

As mentioned above, several businesses are investing in innovation and technology for the global mobility teams to perform better. It also makes the process seamless and managing the global teams easier.

Trend 8: Ethical and Sustainable Strategies

Commitment to sustainability is another global mobility trend that organizations must focus on. Most of the talents wanted to work with companies with meaningful strategies for their global mobility teams.

Responding to climate change, travel costs, and Covid-19 precautionary measures are the main aspects that businesses consider.

The Deloitte Study report states that 57% of organizations are already taking steps to minimize business travel impact on the environment since 2021. Also, 79% of organizations have invested in video conferencing platforms as an alternative to short-term travel even before 2020.

Trend 9: Virtual Work

Virtual work has taken the spotlight since 2020, creating the opportunity to expand the global mobility workforce.

The global mobility teams can now embrace remote work, expanding their reach and aiming for leadership roles.

Global mobility empowers virtual working and can speed up companies adapting to the hybrid work model. According to the Deloitte Study, companies need to evaluate a few key areas:

  • Benefits of virtual cross-border work
  • The parameters of compliance (security, industry regulations, etc.)
  • Balancing strategy and operations of cross-border virtual work.

Trend 10: Flexible Support Programs

Global mobility statistics indicate the growth of the global mobile workforce. With the increasing number of millennials willing to be a part of the global mobile workforce, there has been a rising demand for more flexible support programs.

Most millennials prefer doing the entire process with the right technology and human support cost-effectively.

Similarly, several organizations consider providing employees a lump sum amount and limited guidance on how to spend it. Then, employees are free to spend the amount as per their preference. This approach of ‘freedom within a framework allows flexibility to some extent for employees to choose services based on their preferences.

Wrapping Up

As beneficial as it may be, carrying out global mobility programs is one of the most complex things an organization undertakes.

Considering the current global mobility trends, building mobile teams means high investments, extensive planning, and adequate support. Hence, partnering with a platform like Multiplier would be one of the best ideas.

Multiplier’s solutions can significantly contribute to making global mobility programs seamless. Its PEO/EOR solution takes care of everything – from managing payroll, employee benefits and compensation, and multi-currency payments to managing tax compliance.

To know more about the platform, book a demo now!


Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the impact of globalization on global mobility?

Globalization has significantly impacted global mobility by creating greater interconnectedness and opportunities for cross-border movement. It has facilitated the exchange of knowledge and skills, leading to a rise in international assignments and the need for mobility programs to support global workforce management.

Q. What are the main drivers of global workforce mobility?

The main drivers of global workforce mobility include economic factors such as job opportunities and higher salaries, career advancement prospects, skill shortages in specific regions or industries, globalization of businesses, remote work, and the pursuit of new cultural experiences.

Q. What are the emerging markets for global talent?

Emerging markets for global talent vary based on industry and regional dynamics. Some of the emerging markets include countries in Asia, such as China, India, and Singapore, which offer a growing pool of skilled professionals. Additionally, countries in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and Latin America are also experiencing increased demand for global talent.

Binita Gajjar
Binita Gajjar

Content Marketing Lead

Binita is an experienced Content Manager with demonstrated expertise in advertising, editing, journalism, publications, and copy editing. With a strong media and communication background, supported by a Masters in Art, Design and Communication focused in Design and Visual Communications, General from the Center for Environmental Planning and Technology University (CEPT) University, Binita is the epitome of reliable and talented.

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