The Productivity Blog

Mix and Match – Global Staffing Done the Right Way

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i4cp's latest study, High-Performance Global Staffing: Shifting Labor Supplies and Strategies, has two findings that are related by theme. The first is tied to a question asking whether managers are local, global or a mixture of both:

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The second involves a question about technical talent, and whether those individuals are local, global or both:
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Although both of these results are interesting on their own, taken together they show a trend in high-performance organizations (HPOs) that may be a result of a broader difference, rather than just one or two policy variations. The two responses that show HPOs well ahead of their lower performing counterparts is “We use a mix of expatriates from our organization's headquarters' country, along with locally hired people to serve as managers in locations around the world” and “Our technically skilled employees are assigned throughout our organization, regardless of the country where they were recruited, or where our headquarters are located.”

In the report, it is noted that that any number of reasons could explain this large disparity, but the possibility that this is reflective of a cultural difference in the way that HPOs operate cannot be discounted. Taken together, these results show that organizations that outpace their peers in market share, revenue growth, profitability and customer satisfaction are willing and able to integrate their workforce in the way that utilizes their people in the most efficient way possible, rather than taking the path of least resistance.

Although it may be cheaper and sometimes easier to hire and staff locally, successful companies understand that putting people where they are most needed will be worth the initial cost of relocation. In order to do this though, there must be procedures in place to make sure that the transition to a new location, with all of its attending issues of environment, cost and cultural differences, happens smoothly, otherwise the benefits from having a fully geographically integrated workforce will never be realized.

The companies that are already showing this adaptability are the ones that are outperforming their peers, but they have also set themselves up to continue to outperform by investing in a diverse and highly-functional talent pool that is able to put needed talent wherever it is most needed.

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