Time and again when I speak with clients, DE&I is at or near the top of their to-do list. The C-Suite is driving fundamental DE&I change in many companies and Global Mobility has its part to play. With sustainability also high on the agenda, there is a strong convergence of DE&I initiatives with the Social pillar of sustainability. In fact, in our survey about the social pillar of ESG, it was clear that DE&I is the biggest single focus area for most Global Mobility teams.
What is interesting to me is that despite two-thirds of companies having modified their mobility programmes in some way to support DE&I and more than half of companies saying it is a high priority area, very few mobility teams are able to demonstrate the impact of the initiatives they are making.
Only 8% of companies are currently consistently producing reports on the DE&I profile of the programme and even then, the data is often little more than a snapshot in time. Being able to find and highlight if the mobility experience has played a positive role in an employee’s further career progression is rarer still. That said, many companies have recongised the need to improve reporting and it is certainly true that without a baseline, it is impossible to measure progress. In this context, most companies expect they will soon have to supply DE&I information and are starting to supply some ad-hoc reports, even if this is not systematic.
What happens to employees after their assignment?
We all know reporting has been a perennial challenge for Global Mobility teams. Even as AMS systems supply increased ability to track, analyse and report, the business appetite for more reporting and more insights seems to grow. As ever, the biggest difficulty is knowing what happens to employees after their assignment. They drop off the Global Mobility radar and knowing what happened to an assignee’s career 1, 3 or 5 years later is notoriously challenging to prove.
The true value of measuring DE&I in mobility will come when that information can be successfully married with talent information to show how Global Mobility is positively influencing the ongoing careers of diverse employees. Already some companies are starting to find ways to connect the dots. For example, one client I work with has created a Talent Council where Global Mobility, Talent, HRBPs and other constituents review the career paths of key talent in the organisation. Through the Talent Council the long-term impact of DE&I initiatives can be measured, and this offers and exciting prospect for Global Mobility teams to better prove the true value their DE&I initiatives are bringing to the organisation.