Trends in International Assignments: Demographics, Gender Distribution and Potential Obstacles to Mobility

International assignments and global mobility are a key part of business development, with great value for both the business and the assignee. Mobile employees benefit by growing personally and professionally, while companies continue to expand into new territories and promote a consistent international culture.

With data supplied by more than 750 global companies, The 2012 Worldwide Survey of International Assignment Policies and Practices report from Mercer takes a look at global trends and key obstacles in planning cost-effective international assignments.

Upon analyzing current demographic trends of expatriate transfers, the report reveals that age varies with assignment duration: 66% of long-term assignments are given to employees between the ages of  35 and 55, while short-term assignments are shared between employees younger than 35 and those between the ages of 35 and 55. In terms of gender distribution, men are still taking a much larger share of international assignments than women, with the average percent of female assignees remaining below 14%.

Here’s the complete look at what Mercer’s report revealed:


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