International Hr Strategies

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Developing & Implementing Effective
International HR Strategies
Introduction
The purpose of this report is to provide an insight into current and emerging practice in developing and implementing effective international HR Strategies. A short series of questions were asked of 21 senior HR professionals with global responsibility at the Penna sponsored Strategic HR Network workshop on 6 November 2007. The topical questions focused on the recruitment, retention and cultural challenges facing HR Directors with an international remit.

The statements that gave the strongest results are highlighted in bold. At the end of the report are some case studies of how Penna has worked with organisations to improve aspects of their international HR strategies.

Global HR Strategy

1. We have difficulty implementing an international
standardised recruitment and retention strategy
2. Issues arise as a result of a difference in Leadership
style from different regions / cultures

Recruiting and retaining key talent is a difficult
task for most organisations. It’s no surprise
therefore that 71.4% have difficulty
implementing an international standardised
recruitment and retention strategy.
Furthermore, 80.9% of organisations experience
issues that arise from a difference in leadership
style from different cultures / regions.

Strongly
Agree
33.3%
9.5%

Agree

Neutral

Disagree

38.1%

14.3%

14.3%

71.4%

14.3%

Strongly
Disagree

4.8%

“Working for a global partnership,
there is a constant debate
between senior individuals as to
the appropriate direction of the
firm. There is much we can learn
and should apply from outside our
sector to improve our business.”
HR Director, Law Firm

Attraction and recruitment

3. Our recruitment strategy and channels differ from
country to country
4. Our international presence gives us access to a
larger talent pool
5. It is difficult to benchmark candidates from different
countries

81% of HR Directors surveyed are in agreement
that their recruitment strategy and channels
differ from country to country. This is why it is
so important for global organisations to have a
recruitment partner that can manage their
whole international recruitment strategy while
at the same time taking a country by country
approach with local knowledge and consultants.

Strongly
Agree
19%

Agree

Neutral

Disagree

62%

9.5%

23.8%

9.5%

52.4%

14.3%

9.5%

33.3%

19%

42.9%

Strongly
Disagree

4.8%

76.2% of our sample feel that their international
presence gives them access to a larger talent
pool and 33.3% find it difficult to benchmark
candidates from different countries.

“We still have a country/country
approach for recruitment and
retention programme.” International
HR Adviser, Insurance

Organisational culture

6. Our employer brand is strong in some locations but
needs work in other areas
7. It is difficult to find people that are able to adapt quickly to different cultures
8. We find it difficult to embed corporate values while
respecting cultural differences

An overwhelming 90.4% have a strong
employer brand in some locations but it needs
work in other areas.
The question around the difficulty in finding
people that are able to adapt quickly to different
cultures gave a mixed response. As did the
question around embedding corporate values
while respecting different cultures.

Strongly
Agree
33.3%

Agree

Neutral

4.8%

57.1%

Disagree

Strongly
Disagree
4.8%

14.3%

28.6%

14.3%

38.1%

4.8%

4.8%

28.6%

28.6%

28.6%

9.5%

“We are developing a global
workforce planning process
(resourcing, recruitment,
diversity) to address the need for
sustainable resourcing in
changing business.” HR Director, IT
sector

Engagement and retention
Strongly
Agree
9. We find it difficult to create meaning at work for people in different regions /...
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