Prepare for Brexit with Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit

Though the UK’s exit from the European Union is several years away, companies must start preparing for its impact now. This gives global mobility and HR the chance to shine as true business partners.

Prepare for Brexit Global Mobility Toolkit
If your organisation plans to relocate groups of employees and their families internationally (either out of or into the UK), or to move premises in response to Brexit (or any other driver), the planning for such complex relocation exercises must begin now.Global mobility and HR professionals are in the spotlight. This means ensuring that you have all the necessary information ready to contribute to shaping your company’s strategy, policy, and administrative activities relating to every aspect of mobility. You will need a strong grasp of the underpinning principles that enable all aspects of mobility to be managed efficiently and effectively.Relocate’s new Global Mobility Toolkit will be there to guide you, through a series of factsheets, analyses and guides on specific mobility issues. Despite the uncertainty that the UK’s future outside the EU brings, we know that businesses must take steps to continue to grow, raise productivity, and generate successful financial and social outcomes.To achieve business imperatives, short-term priorities cannot be overlooked. Strategy must also be in place to ensure that medium-term and longer-term objectives are anticipated and addressed with our eyes firmly on the post-Brexit landscape.In the current climate, short-term objectives are wide-ranging and multifaceted. Global mobility and HR professionals need to ensure they remain up-to-date in their awareness of the key issues and with good practice in how to manage them. You need to focus on both planning and implementation, balancing strategic priorities with your day-to-day activities, ensuring compliance and employee engagement.By downloading the Relocate Global Mobility Toolkit, you can ensure that you are on top of the issues that are critical to your organisation’s response to Brexit.

Talent and career management

The management of talent is critical if organisations are to recruit, select, develop, deploy and retain key personnel capable of delivering organisational objectives efficiently and effectively. Without the right people with the necessary skills, knowledge and behaviours who add the competitive edge, your company will be unable to achieve high performance.For example, the requirement for leaders and managers to possess global vision and understanding has never been more critical for organisational success than in today’s ever-globalising world. Even domestic-based organisations need their leaders and managers to have cross-cultural and international business understanding to manage diversity and handle business transactions. Indeed, developing cross-cultural leadership competencies has been identified as one of the top requirements for business effectiveness.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit includes a series of factsheets providing guidance on talent and career management. These will help you to address the vital issues of:

Workforce diversity and inclusion

Other issues that are particularly relevant in the context of Brexit include managing workforce diversity.Immigration is an area that is causing some tension and has been highly publicised in relation to the UK’s vote to leave the EU. Organisations must have a positive response to this, to ensure that employee engagement is maintained and to capitalise on the benefits of having diverse workforces. The basic concept behind managing diversity is the acceptance that everyone in the workforce is unique. Harnessing people’s differences will create an inclusive, productive environment in which everyone feels valued, their talents are fully utilised, and the organisation’s goals are met to best effect.Research into global talent management has conventionally focused on mainstream assignees undertaking traditional long-term expatriation – usually senior male managers who are accompanied by a wife and family.Today, a far wider perspective is taken on expatriation – in terms both of the types of assignment used and of the human resources that service them. Organisations are taking action to address social and moral responsibilities through a focus on diversity and inclusion. In so doing, they also benefit from a wider talent base.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on workforce diversity and inclusion will help you understand:


For anyone relocating employees internationally, a thorough understanding of immigration and visa issues and how to stay compliant is essential.Given the high profile of immigration in the Brexit discussions, global mobility and HR professionals must ensure that they follow the debates and plan ahead for how immigration will be handled post-Brexit. In addition, you must also remain compliant today in terms of the administrative requirements needed to manage globally mobile personnel.Relocate’s Toolkit series on immigration will provide a briefing on issues relating to:
  • International business visitors and business travel
  • Assignment types (long term, short term, commuter, etc)
  • Tracking/technology
  • Dual-career (spouse/partner) immigration
  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues
  • Country profiles
In respect of short-term business travel, a series of factsheets will also address:
  • Technology/tracking
  • Serviced apartments
  • Employee support/location information
  • Compliance
  • Duty of care

Relocation policy design and review

A good relocation policy underpins all relocation, from domestic moves to international assignments.Since the Brexit decision, currency fluctuations have presented a major challenge to organisations relocating staff globally, given the fall of the pound against other currencies. Addressing such issues, and in the context of the run-up to the UK’s departure from the EU, provides an impetus to review and redesign international relocation policy.Major international developments (such as Brexit) can result in significant organisational change. This can also trigger policy design/review as managerial focus homes in on compliance – immigration, tax and social security, for example.Companies responding to mergers and acquisitions or looking to set up in a new location will also need to design or review their relocation policy.By being responsive to planned organisational change and transition, policy design/review can create policy fit for the future. However, it is important to remember that policy design or review must also align with talent management strategy.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on relocation policy design and review will provide you with step-by-step guides addressing the principles, content and communication of your policy, including:

Managing group moves

Currently, the interest in Brexit is a major driving force in organisational planning. Depending on the outcome of the UK’s negotiations with Europe, firms may, for example, decide to relocate groups of employees to locations within the EU and/or relocate skilled workers from EU or non-EU locations into the UK, to address talent shortages and changes in trading practices resulting from Brexit.While the Brexit situation is not predictable at this stage, group moves require long-term planning and preparation. Organisations may therefore wish to think ahead, so that they are able to enact a group move when they believe the time is right.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on managing group moves will address the major issues that you need to consider in preparing to move staff internationally as well as domestically. These include:

Managing across cultures

The transfer of personnel across the world and the focus on the reshaping of organisations as they enter new markets via mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures have always raised concerns relating to cultural competence, assignee performance, and return on investment.With the advent of Brexit, cultural awareness takes centre stage if industry and commerce are to enter new strategic ventures and alliances and achieve positive outcomes by so doing.Cultural competence is a clear determinant of business success. Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on managing across cultures will help you to address the factors that can make or break organisational performance. It addresses:
  • Organisational culture
  • National/country cultural differences
  • Training (language/culture)
  • Improving performance/return on investment
  • Managing repatriation

Tax, social security and pensions

Although negotiations on the UK’s exit from the EU have yet to begin, it is likely that there will be changes to treaties that address taxation and social security.Keeping abreast of developments is critical, and it is certain that the day-to-day oversight of managing the complexities of assignees’ tax and social security matters will remain in the forefront of global mobility and HR professionals’ roles.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series looking at tax and social security will give you briefings on:
  • International business visitors and business travel
  • Assignment types (long term, short term, commuter, etc)
  • Tracking/technology
  • Tax planning and cost control
  • Country profiles/treaty changes
Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on pensions will address:
  • Pensions options, principles and administration
  • Employee communication
  • Country issues

Technology in mobility management

One of the key issues that global mobility and HR professionals face is how to track individuals so as to ensure compliance in respect of work permits/visas and taxation. Technological tracking tools can be invaluable in this.The emphasis on cost containment and return on investment has become ever more focused in recent years. As Brexit approaches, organisations will need to attend even more keenly to cost competitiveness, raising productivity, and measuring and monitoring assignment outcomes. Hence, the need to use technological tools to predict costs and report on assignment outcomes as accurately as possible, taking corrective actions where necessary, will no doubt gain prominence in terms of business goals.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series looking at technology in mobility management can help you by providing information on:
  • Assignment cost projections/return on investment (ROI)
  • International business visitors and business-travel tracking
  • Security management
  • Analytics
  • Key tools/new products

Security and risk management

Globalisation continues at an incredibly fast pace. To remain competitive, organisations are entering regions of the world where they have not operated before.This brings the danger of a lack of awareness of health, welfare and security issues. The world is also becoming increasingly volatile, with security issues becoming prevalent in countries that previously were not considered particularly unsafe. You must keep up-to-date with changes, and plan accordingly.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on security and risk management can help you. Key areas addressed will include:
  • Healthcare/medical
  • Disaster planning/emergency evacuation
  • Security briefing/training
  • Managing employee/family stress


We must not forget the fundamental issues that the mobility of personnel raises. Mobile employees, whether they move domestically or internationally, have to address the issue of housing.Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on property therefore considers:
  • Property management/letting
  • Property sales
  • Home search
  • Serviced apartments
  • Removals
  • Vendor selection/management

Employee and family support

The family is critical to the success of any relocation exercise, be it international or domestic. Research has shown that some of the main causes of international assignment failure are related to family members being unable to adjust and manage life in their new location.Spouses and partners who are unable to work and/or fit in culturally are frequently isolated and unhappy. Children have to cope with leaving friends and relatives behind, making new friends, and settling in at school. Unhappy families create unhappy homes.Lack of family support affects relocated employees’ productivity, motivation and engagement detrimentally. Family support is therefore crucial if employees are to accept the position and relocate as necessary, and for the international assignment or domestic move to be a success.Global mobility and HR professionals must keep abreast of key trends in issues such as those relating to schooling, dual careers and family support. Relocate’s Global Mobility Toolkit series on employee and family support therefore addresses:

For a full list of Global Mobility Toolkit components, and to download your free resources, visit our Global Mobility Toolkit page.

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