Workforce Mobility from Talent Development’s Perspective 07.17.2020 | Ellie Sullivan

Talent Development Professionals have unique perspectives on workforce mobility

Ask different stakeholders in an organization what they need from their mobility program and you’re certain to get not only differing, but what may even seem like opposing perspectives. “Lower costs”, “Better Employee Experience” or “Faster process” are all very common comments.

In this post, we’ll examine relocation from Talent Development’s perspective. Among this stakeholder group, a common refrain is: “We just can’t find the talent locally – we’ll need to relocate the right talent. Are we selecting the right candidates and what happens when they return?”

These stakeholders recognize that today’s employees need and want a deeper global mindset and the best way to gain that is through experiential learning—either in global business groups, rotational programs or global assignments. Because experiential learning delivers 3 times the performance impact of traditional training (according to CEB) global assignments provide a unique opportunity to become immersed in the new culture, region and business unit. So what’s not to love about providing employees with experiential learning opportunities through global assignments?

The biggest complaint we hear from Talent Development is a lack of involvement, alignment and collaboration with mobility. Even with a sophisticated HRIS system they struggle to leverage the data and analytics to uncover ideal candidates, measure engagement and skills development. They realize it may be impossible to guarantee a role at the conclusion of an assignment, but career pathing is a viable option that ensures connection between the assignment and the career. In general, Talent Management is enthusiastic about partnering with mobility to support their recruiting, development and engagement initiatives.

Curious to see how other stakeholders view the mobility process and reassess how well you’re meeting their needs — especially given how much has changed as a result of COVID-19? For information on how you can build this synergy for your organization, download our Stakeholder Perspectives Whitepaper.

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Written by Ellie Sullivan


Ellie Sullivan, SCRP, SGMS-T, has over 30 years of experience overseeing critical mobility advisory initiatives, including policy benchmarking, proprietary research and tracking global trends and best practices. She is also the creator of our proprietary Optimization Lab format, which brings together Weichert SMEs and client stakeholders for day-long workshops to analyze current program challenges, identify solutions and create a road map to the ideal future state.

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