As companies face tighter competition for the best available talent, internships provide an opportunity to fuel their talent pipeline and present themselves as an employer of choice. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the intern conversion rate in 2015 was 51.7 percent, making internships a healthy recruiting solution. Even more importantly, this report indicated that employees who completed an internship (or co-op program) with their employer are more likely to still be with the company at both the one-year and five-year retention benchmarks. Continue Reading →
We often hear that “nobody goes to college for a career in relocation.” In some ways it’s true; ours seems to be one of those industries that people find themselves building careers in without ever really planning to. One thing that may help change this, and raise mobility’s profile as a worthy vocation, is our summer intern program.
The idea for an intern program was suggested by our President, Dave Bencivengo, during his first Town Hall meeting of 2016 as a means of attracting, engaging and retaining talent. The idea caught the interest of Lindsey Cramer, Counselor in our Morris Plains office, who raised her hand to get involved.
“Along with a few other colleagues, I represented Weichert Workforce Mobility at a career fair at Seton Hall last year,” says Lindsey. “And a lot of students seemed genuinely interested in our business and wanted to know if we offered internships. When Dave mentioned it, it seemed a good time to revisit the topic and see what we could do.”
Once Dave greenlighted the idea, Lindsey assembled a team of colleagues representing different areas of the company to determine what a Weichert internship would look like and what areas of our business could provide the deepest engagement, and construct the program from the ground up. Continue Reading →
Brazil is the seventh largest economy in the world and the largest in Latin America. In recent years, the country has been one of the fastest growing economies in the world primarily due to its export potential. The country’s trade is driven by its extensive natural resources and diverse agricultural and manufacturing production. Also, rising domestic demand, increasingly skilled workforce along with scientific and technological development, have attracted foreign direct investment. However, bureaucracy, corruption and weak infrastructure remain the biggest obstacles to economic development.
The vast majority of expatriates who visit Brazil are surprised to know that they can find some of the same things that they have in their country of origin including food, many accessories, modern buildings, as well as many other expatriates areas as the country has become increasingly international.
The cost of living is also surprising to the assignee community; currently Brazil is very costly, not only in housing but all consumables.
I’m always on the lookout for signs of an improved real estate market within mobility programs. And while there are certain areas where selling homes is still difficult, Weichert’s recent research shows an overall decline in the need for loss-on-sale in the departure location for mobile employees and that many companies are finding a healthy and stable rate of home sales.
In fact, more than half of the companies participating in our 2015 Workforce Mobility Survey reported that they provided loss-on-sale assistance to less than 10% of their home-owning transferees.
It’s great to see mobile employees (and their companies) enjoying the advantages of an up market with a low number of homes going into inventory, increased payout of home sale bonuses (due to properties not going into inventory) and low interest rates that make purchasing a new home attractive. That said, there are still instances where home prices in the destination location exceed what an employee can reasonably afford. When this happens, there are signs that mobility professionals must look for: Continue Reading →
With the steady increase in demand for a highly flexible and mobile workforce, Companies are growing concerned about a number of risks when it comes to business travel. These include employees using business visas to circumvent work visa obligations, violations of tax laws, the inability of their company to track length of trip stays, and employees misrepresenting their business travel activities. In this post, I’ll present statistics that demonstrate the urgency of the situation, identifying red flags and recommendations for overcoming the obstacles in managing extended business travelers.
A recent survey (2015) sponsored by NFTC and conducted by the law firm Berry Appelman and Leiden revealed the following statistics:
• Although about 60% of companies reported that their employees take over 500 international business trips annually, only one third of all respondents has a written business visa travel policy.
• The overwhelming majority of respondents (77 percent) would like to have improved capability to track business visa travel. Today, only one in ﬁve global mobility pro grams track all business visa travel.
• Authorization for business travel is generally approved by the business unit or employee manager in the employee’s home country. Companies then rely on a variety of resources (e.g. law ﬁrm, visa processing company, internal resources) to process the business visas.
In response, we felt it appropriate to create what we consider to be the Best Practices for extended business travelers. To get started, it makes sense that your company understands your areas for exposure, engages in due diligence and identifies specific risk areas: Continue Reading →
Although a global assignment brings a sense of excitement and wonder, one of the first questions that expatriates and their family members often have — even before they depart — is, “when can we come back home to visit?”
For that reason, and to keep assignees happy and productive in their new roles by helping them maintain ties to their home locations, most companies allow for some type of home leave in their policies.
Home leave policies should include reimbursement of appropriate travel expenses designed to give the assignee and accompanying family the opportunity to renew ties with family, friends and work colleagues in the home country and to stay informed of the economic, political, cultural and social trends there. Companies should strongly encourage the assignee and family to take home leave annually. In addition, to facilitate repatriation, companies should encourage the assignee to include a visit with their business unit when they schedule home leave. Continue Reading →
Last week, I attended the New Jersey chapter of the Forum for Expatriate Management’s first meeting of 2016. There, I was proud to serve as a panelist alongside fellow subject matter experts from KPMG, Control Risks, NFTC, Mercer and CAI, summarizing the top global workforce mobility trends and forecasting future challenges.
Among some of the trends our group identified:
Although they can be more challenging to administer, interest in core/flex policies is growing in response to the widening demographics of the global workforce and the ongoing need to minimize costs.
Attracting top talent for critical positions in difficult locations is more challenging now than it was five years ago. With the job market improving in the US, there’s been a resurgence of premiums to provide incentive for high potential employees to accept international assignments. This trend is likely to continue in thriving economies and competitive industries.
The report provides an outlook for workforce mobility trends affecting all industries, an analysis of such mobility hot topics as flexible programs and programs for millennials and a discussion of major challenges that could impact the deployment and management of mobile talent in the coming years.
Some of the most valuable insight in our survey comes from breaking down the results by industry. So for our latest infographic, we’ve pulled out some of the insight we collected from companies in the manufacturing/engineering sector. Here’s what they told us.
As the end of the year approaches, so do the gentle reminders that tax season will soon be upon us. While the tax filing and reporting process can be cumbersome, for folks who have relocated for work over the past year, it can be extremely complex.
To shed some light on the process, our in-house tax affiliate, Weichert Mobility Tax Services, has developed a year-end tax planning guide. This informative piece will be a handy guide for reviewing the past year’s tax activities, and also offers invaluable tax planning techniques that can help save you time and money.
Please consider this required reading as you take down the decorations and mistletoe.