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Global mobility strategies do not meet boardroom agendas, says Deloitte

Organisations are aware of both the requirements and limitations of their global mobility programmes, however they are not translating that awareness into improvement and change, according to a report published today by business advisory firm, Deloitte.

The report, Strategic Moves, found that just 12% perform assessments of their mobility practices and make clear links back to improvement efforts they need to make. And 70% of business and HR stakeholders say global mobility in their organisation is underperforming or needs improvement.

The report claims that organisations recognise global mobility as an important tool to support the top strategic business issues and support the business in addressing the top three strategy issues: emerging geographical markets, increasing globalisation and increasing competition.

However, the report claims that less than 30% are using mobility to completely address those issues.

Will Gosling, a human capital partner at Deloitte, said: "There are opportunities for the business and global mobility teams to deepen ties with each other and a large number of organisations are taking proactive steps to do this.

"A third of the organisations say they are planning on reviewing their global mobility strategies in the next 12 months, including alignment with business issues and goals.

"Alignment requires global mobility to be involved at strategy table discussions, so they can then explain the value that assignments can bring to developing talent. They also need to keep abreast of changing business drivers that may affect the way they structure their programmes and deliver services," he said.

The report found that there is a widespread recognition of the need to improve the services that mobility practices provide, however the vast majority of organisations surveyed (88%) are undertaking only a limited assessment of the services that are being offered.

Rob Hodkinson, global mobility transformation practice leader at Deloitte, said: "Would other HR areas, such as reward, learning and development or talent management, experience similar neglect if they were found not to be up to a sufficient standard.

He added: "By failing to assess and measure global mobility practices in a planned and regular manner, organisations are missing the chance to fully understand their difficulties and learn how to overcome them."

The report states that in order to align global mobility strategies with a businesses issues and goals in the longer term, global mobility will need to support a business more effectively by providing global workforce management, where they manage an organisation's global supply and demand of skills and talent. It claims this will require the mobility function to acquire skills and capabilities that will lead to improvements across the entire organisation.

Gosling said: "If positioned appropriately, by adding global workforce management capabilities to its suite of services, global mobility can be the key player in solving an organisation's long-term skill supply-and-demand talent gaps. This will create value for an organisation but will require the departure from the current model and a strong vision of the future."

The online survey was conducted across all major regions in the world. It surveyed 1,195 employees who were all senior HR professionals - heads of HR, talent, reward and senior HR business partners.