Mobile expat staff pose benefits challenge for employers
A recent study has highlighted how the growing number of working expats based in more than one country is creating challenges for their employers when it comes to providing them with the right benefits package.
Recent research, carried out by the international consulting group at Mercer, has suggested that the number of these “global nomads” has increased greatly in recent years, yet employers are still finding it tricky to provide appropriate benefits - such as pensions and health insurance.
A study of the benefits offered by nearly 300 multinational companies to their expatriate workers found that one in 10 employees sent abroad by their companies are now classed as “mobile workers.” This is a notable rise from 2008/09, when they represented just 6% of staff.
76% of companies said they had developed a policy to provide benefits for their more mobile employees, but the rest either had no policy or said benefits were arranged on an individual basis. The study also found that the percentage of “long-term expatriates” (those sent to a country for more than a year) had increased from 21% to 40% since 2008/09, while the number of short-term expatriates fell – probably due in part to the rise in cross-country workers.
Mark Price, who led the team which carried out the research, suggested that professionals who could bring their international experiences to a number of environments were becoming “increasingly vital to companies looking to create or expand new ventures abroad and gain a competitive advantage.”
He noted: “Offshore plans may not address all concerns…depending on the jurisdictions concerned, but…they are very effective in providing consistent cover for mobile populations and in jurisdictions where no appropriate plans exist.”
William Russell’s range of Global Plans are internationally portable, so cover doesn’t stop when employees cross a border. Wherever they are, expatriate staff can depend on William Russell to deliver assistance when it’s needed most, backed with our first-class levels of service. Designed exclusively for expats, our range of international insurance plans make arranging overseas employee benefit solutions simple – irrespective of their level of mobility, our affordable health plans will still offer access to the best medical care, wherever or whenever it’s required. Additionally, our Global Life and Global Income Protection plans offer employees life cover and financial security in the event of long-term illness or injury, wherever they’re based.
Our employee benefit solutions are available to businesses with 3 or more expatriate employees, so to find out more, click here to contact us, or click here to arrange a call back from a member of our team.
Source – Telegraph 2 Aug 12