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In the current global economy, a lot of companies are sending their employees to work overseas. While the opportunity to combine an overseas adventure with work experience can be exciting to an employee, the move could make them feel daunted if not handled well.

Whether you’re sending an employee on an indefinite transfer or a short term assignment overseas, you need to provide adequate support before, during, and after the move to ensure that the relocation is successful for everyone. Blue Collar People suggests tips that you can use to ensure smooth international employee relocations.

  1. Set clear expectations. Relocating an employee overseas is and expensive undertaking for both parties. It’s, therefore, important to make expectations about the role the employee will be taking up clear from the get go. Make sure they fully understand their salary package, the tax implications they should expect, how long the assignment will be, as well as the moving process. Employers often offer employees a relocation lump sums, an allowance given to the assignee to cover the cost of relocating overseas. This will ensure that they are no shocks during and after the move and thus increasing the chances of a successful relocation.
  1. Undertake a scoping mission. If possible, arrange for the employee and their partner to visit the city or town they will be working in to be shown around and meet people from the local office. This way the relocating employee will get the chance to have a first-hand look at the childcare or schooling options available, if needed, as well as to find suitable areas that they might want to live in. It is worth considering renting something like these apartments in oakland ca located or similar as they only have a three-month contract which is a great option for a new employee who might have to pass a probationary period.

If a reconnaissance mission is out of the question for whatever reason, you can use other ways to help the employee get a sense of the new country before they get there.
For instance, you could ask them to perform comprehensive research on the cost of living and any additional expenses they might incur once they arrive at the location. Always assure them that you are only a phone call away in the event of an emergency. A simple thing you can do is compile a list of relevant websites similar to, which may assist them in analyzing the location and what the benefits of living in that city/country are. You can also get them in touch with people working in the foreign office can help the relocate the employee to get a feel of how it is like to work and live in the country in question.

  1. Provide cross-cultural training. While some countries such as the UK and Australia have quite similar cultures making transitions easier, other countries may require more drastic cultural adjustments. This is where cross-cultural training proves useful as it prepares the relocating employee for the significant cultural shift they will experience and how to interact with that culture.
  1. Provide orientation. The first few weeks in a new place are always the most challenging. Arrange team activities where the relocated employee can spend time getting to know their new teammates or assign the employee a mentor to show them the ropes. Temporary accommodation should also be arranged for by the host country office before the relocated employee can find a permanent home.
  1. Support the whole family. To ensure successful employee relocations, make sure that you provide support to not just the employee but also to the family that moves with them. In most cases, the spouse will not be eligible to work in the host country office, so helping them create a social network can help them feel settled. Provide the employee’s family with an assigned network on arrival with families either from the same country or who share in their experience of moving to a new place for work.
  1. Maintain communication. Make sure to keep regular contact with the employee to help them feel connected to their home network. Check in regularly and have more formal contact at least after every quarter to find out how the employee is fairing and catch any issues as soon as possible. This will also help you monitor the employee’s performance and to find out whether they are developing and achieving the goals they set out to achieve on the overseas mission.

A smooth international relocation not only reduces stress for the affected employee but also ensures that the undertaking is successful for both the employee and the employer.

Andy McGowan
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