Expatriation Assignment

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Expatriates

What are some of the risks that an organization faces when stationing an expatriate overseas?

I think the greatest risk that organizations face when stationing an expatriate overseas mostly deals with money. The organizations undergo major financial risk when sending an employee overseas. The organization spends a great deal of money compensating the employee to pack up and move to a foreign country with their family. All the money spent, and there is no guarantee that the expatriate will be able to handle the stress and anxiety associated with relocating to another country. According to an article in Expat Exchange, “fewer than 50% of employees remain with their companies following repatriation, with assignment failure, including family concerns and low satisfaction levels among the expatriate's partner or ‘trailing spouse,’ being primary causes,” (Anber, 2007 ). Furthermore, there are major financial burdens with expatriate insurance, delivery of necessary products and services, transportation, international travel, etc.

What are some of the capabilities that other expatriates believe contribute to success and failure in overseas assignments?

Expatriates believe that language skills, work permits, and professional network have a lot to do with the success or failure of an assignment. Language barriers are difficult in any situation, but they can be particularly frustrating and stressful for the expatriate if he/she is not fluent in the main language of the country. Work permits are handled through the organization most often, but they are difficult to obtain and each country has different visa laws, all of which can make or break the expatriate experience. Expatriates are also looking for an acceptable place to work and network. Almost everyone has the ability to network locally and even nationally, but many of us have never and will never build relationships and network abroad. As the world becomes more interconnected,...
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