This piece was originally featured on Re:Locate Magazine.
At a recent event that I attended, a panellist asked the crowd how they measure return on investment for talent mobility. Not to my surprise, no one could answer the question.
For almost every other function in the 21st century organisation, including those in HR, the ability to track cost and measure success with real-time access to information is essential to operating in an optimal manner. So, why is talent mobility treated differently?
According to PwC, only 36 percent of organisations currently have access to the right data in order to manage their globally mobile employees, and only 8 percent believe they have a world-class system in place. An impressive 64 percent of companies struggle with manual and labour-intensive processes for extracting data and translating it into actionable insight.
Data is powerful because it equips companies with valuable information to make more educated decisions that drive better results. This is as true for the business leads as the employees who move. Even what you call “gut feeling” is based on experience from repeat decisions and learning from their outcome time after time.
In a mobility program there are many areas that are ripe for improvement including policies, processes, vendor management, compensation and tax planning. Regardless of the target area, the approach to deliver improvement should be the same and include few straightforward steps:
- Collect data
- Establish a baseline
- Identify areas that need addressing
- Implement changes
- Track results
It sounds easy, however, it is daunting for the majority of organizations out there. My team ran a live survey during the past Global Workforce Symposium in October, and 96 percent of the respondents stated that they spend too much time looking for and consolidating data from their mobility programs.
Try this for yourself: how long would it take you to get a detailed breakdown of year to date costs associated with mobility broken out by business unit? As far as I can tell, it would be more than “here you go!”
Luckily there are now technology solutions that are making the process of tracking mobility much easier in a timely and accurate manner. The ultimate goal is to enable mobility teams to easily collect complex data in a single, secure place that can be accessed by all stakeholders as needed.
Think vendor spend, management fees, employee satisfaction, exceptions to policy, tax, payroll and more – segmented by policy, country, and business unit at the click of a button.
As a result, the benefits of a single, instant mobility view are worth the investment. Just imagine:
- Outstanding employee experience
- Better value to mobility stakeholders
- No cutting corners regardless of budget pressures
- More informed decision-making
In a nutshell, a successful mobility program is not possible without accurate, transparent, and timely data. Now more than ever, it is time to equip talent mobility with the resources it needs to become a strategic business partner for the 21st century organization.