UK revealed as third most common place to be sent on international business

UK behind only USA (1st) and China (2nd)

The UK has been revealed as the third most popular location in the world for international work, behind only USA (first) and China (second), according to new research by Santa Fe Relocation*.

The findings from Santa Fe Relocation’s 2017 Global Mobility Survey, which surveyed nearly 1,000 global mobility teams and business leaders in 56 countries, showed that despite concerns around Brexit, the UK was the third most common place to be sent on international business - with almost 1 in 10 international business assignments (8 per cent) arranged for the UK. 

This figure is only behind the USA, which sees nearly a fifth (18 per cent) of international secondments and continues to be a vastly popular business destination despite concerns over the Trump administration. China is the second most common location (11 per cent), a reflection of its increasingly open rhetoric towards international business and foreign investment.

However, Brexit appears to have already had an impact on the number of workers being sent from the UK on assignment or secondment to locations around the world, with the report showing a decline in the number of workers being sent abroad from the UK. In 2016, 13 per cent of all international assignments were for employees based in the UK, falling to 9 per cent this year.

Indeed, the new report acknowledges that relocations and assignments are becoming increasingly complicated more generally. Despite business leaders still believing employee mobility is needed for commercial growth, it’s also acknowledged that immigration complications and the changed political climate are threatening international mobility. To manage business leaders’ and employees’ expectations on the potentially slower pace of enabling relocations, global mobility teams need to be proactively engaging business leaders to ensure they are involved at the earliest intentions of an international assignment and ensure mechanisms are in place to facilitate mobility.

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