44% can tailor benefits for globally mobile staff on an individual basis


More than two-fifths (44%) of employer respondents have the flexibility to tailor benefits packages for individual staff members going on international assignment, according to research by Axa.

Its A world of opportunity report, which surveyed 250 multi-national organisations across eight countries and 372 expatriate employees across 11 markets, also found that 54% of employer respondents have the flexibility to tailor packages for globally mobile staff on a country basis, and 33% can tailor packages for regions and continents.

The research also found:

  • 14% of employer respondents make decisions centrally when developing remuneration and benefits for internationally mobile staff.
  • 45% of employer respondents think that ensuring international assignments run efficiently and that staff can meet the demands of the role is the core motivation driving the design of benefits packages.
  • 47% of employer respondents believe that managing cost is a key driver in decisions about remuneration packages for staff on international assignments, and 36% feel incentivising staff with appropriate compensation and benefits packages is a key challenge.
  • 61% of employee respondents list housing support as one of the top benefits that they want to receive from their employer when going on an international assignment. Other top benefits that staff going on assignment would value include international health insurance (55%), employer-paid flights home (52%), education support for children (45%), and protection insurance (41%).
  • 68% of employer respondents are concerned about international assignments failing due to mental ill-health problems among staff who have been sent on assignment.
  • 75% of employee respondents receive health insurance as an employer-paid benefit, and 67% rely on this health insurance to cover their health needs while they are abroad.
  • More than half (51%) of employee respondents who are currently working on an international assignment accepted a global placement in order to gain higher pay and benefits.

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Tom Wilkinson (pictured), chief executive officer, global healthcare team at Axa, said: “While the internet and improved communications technology has made it easier for businesses to work globally, the key differentiator remains the talent of the people that organisations employ.

“Our study highlights that taking a flexible approach to pay and benefits that allows staff to remain connected to family and home while also accelerating their careers and creating commercial value for their employers is vital if international assignments are to succeed.”