10 Feb, 2023 Incorporating DEI in Global Mobility: How Organizations Can Support and Develop Diverse Employee Populations
Developing diversity in your global mobility program allows your organization to utilize new talent pools while providing flexible programs that recognize specific groups of employees. Promoting inclusion doesn’t just make sense from a moral standpoint, it fosters growth in your company by helping your employees excel and develop in their careers.
Your HR team needs to understand the impact DEI has on your global mobility policies, leading to actionable change, higher employee satisfaction, and inclusion on all fronts.
Four Steps to Implement DEI in Global Mobility Programs
The term DEI has been a fundamental component of discussion over the past few years, but many companies fail to effectively implement the concept into their global mobility programs. Your organization may proudly say you are creating an inclusive environment for different groups of workers, but how does your global mobility program support employee populations? Here are four steps that can help your company successfully implement DEI into your global mobility programs.
1. Assess current policies from alternative perspectives
Diversity should be at the forefront of policies within your global mobility program; however, many organizations fail to utilize diversity teams in relocation management meetings. Your organization may meet regularly to track the progress and competitiveness of your relocation program, meaning you should understand the impact diversity plays in filling positions and easing the relocation burden on employees.
For example, traditional mobility policies include the relocation of the employee and their spouse of the opposite gender, but what about if your employee is gay? How about if your employee is a single mom or is the primary caregiver of a parent? Breaking out of the traditional Western mobility policies will help your employees feel more comfortable and ease the transition.
The goal of policy changes isn’t to completely overhaul existing provisions, as these items do remain relevant for certain groups of people. Instead, you want to tweak your policies to be inclusive of specific groups. Not only will this support the overall DEI of your organization, but you will also see access to a greater talent pool when employees have reduced concerns surrounding relocation.
2. Adjust Monetary Benefits
Global mobility policies generally outline monetary benefits, such as a housing allowance. Despite a housing allowance remaining a primary cost driver of relocation attractiveness, there are other financial burdens that many global mobility programs fail to address in a diverse workforce.
Your relocation policies should list the benefits specific to each group of people. Can you offer a childcare benefit for a single mom? How about an additional allowance for a special school for a child with a learning disability? Tailoring your relocation policies to the specific situations of employees sends a clear message that your organization is willing to support all employees throughout the transition.
If tailoring the relocation policies to each diverse employee group isn’t feasible for your company, consider providing employees with a flexible allowance or benefit program, giving them the ability to choose how they spend the money. However, if this is the method that your organization pursues, there is a risk of the DEI purpose of allowance being lost, the lump sum creating a breach of duty of care, and the money being less effective in certain areas. This makes retaining a proper degree of control important.
3.Communicate DEI Throughout Your Program
Implementing a global mobility program that supports and embraces DEI involves having open discussions on unconscious biases that policies may imply. It can be difficult for members of HR to understand the hardships and unconscious biases that employees face if there aren’t open communication channels to relay that information.
Your organization should find ways to foster communication without intruding into employees’ personal lives. This could be an anonymous submission box or pairing employees up with a mentor. Furthermore, cultural training can also minimize the risks of preconceptions. Making cultural training programs available to all individuals involved in the relocation, from the host destination to the employee, can improve DEI initiatives throughout your global mobility program.
Successfully incorporating DEI into your global mobility programs relies on evaluating progress on a regular basis. This can be done by monitoring the different diversity groups your organization has. Consider using these three avenues of measuring success:
1. Workforce Advancement Analysis – This metric dives into the progress employees receive in their careers from diverse mobility programs. What characteristics do promoted employees have in common? Are employees that participate in global mobility programs reaching new milestones quicker compared to their peers? On the contrary, are employees leaving immediately after their relocation assignment? This information can help you comprehend where additional change may be needed and should be assessed on employees from different diversity groups.
2.Pay Advancement Analysis – This component of success measures the movements in pay global mobility participants and nonparticipants receive. Unequal pay among different groups can indicate unconscious bias that needs to be addressed in your relocation program.
3.Employee Satisfaction Feedback – One of the top ways to measure the success of DEI in your global mobility programs is to ask employees directly. After all, there can be significant differences between what management and employees perceive. Include questions that analyze the perceptions of global mobility. Do employees feel the company has inclusive policies? How can the organization improve? Do employees feel like relocation advances their careers? Tangible feedback is vital to continue to adapt your policies to support DEI.
DEI is a relatively new concept in global mobility, which is why many organizations struggle to effectively reflect the concepts in their policies. However, overcoming these challenges is important to show employees you truly care about their specific needs and success in your organization.
Ultimately, incorporating inclusion in global mobility minimizes hiring obstacles, as your business will have a wider talent pool to choose from when employees feel comfortable throughout the relocation process.
For expert help throughout the implementation process, reach out to Relocation Coordinates International. Our team of experts understands that implementing DEI isn’t always as simple as the four-step approach above.