2021/22 GMS report — REDEFINE: An extraordinary time

REDEFINE: Global Mobility Survey 2021/22

We are delighted to present this 10th edition of our annual multi-award-winning Global Mobility Survey (GMS) report where we address the critical Global Mobility topics facing organisations operating on a cross-border basis.

This report provides insights into Global Mobility transformation with an increase in visibility and consultative expectations. We continue to see an evolving talent scene where remote working and virtual or hybrid assignments have increased along with a resurgence of all types of international work arrangements. Lastly, we examine the increased complexity of risk, compliance and duty of care

If you wish to informally further explore how we could support you and your organisation with your Mobility programme, please contact Julia Palmer, Chief Operating Officer, Relocation at julia.palmer@santaferelo.com or John Rason, Head of Consulting at john.rason@santaferelo.com.



The pandemic has generated significant change and challenges within global organisations, particularly for the human resources (HR) and GM professionals. Their increased visibility with internal leadership and stakeholders has required wider engagement focusing on the formal GM programme and the wider global workforce, because cross-border remote working and virtual assignments have become a complex additional responsibility.

Topics covered:

  • check_circleHow COVID-19 redefines Global Mobility and makes it visible
  • check_circleStrategic workforce planning
  • check_circleBuilding a business case for international assignments
  • check_circleOpportunity for better data
  • check_circleA growing trend to invest in technology


The evolving nature of global talent mobility has not just occurred since the pandemic commenced. We had referenced in GMS 2019 that CHROs reported a requirement to focus on sourcing new talent and repurposing existing employees in the face of rapidly evolving roles, digitalisation, changing business models and new geographic and product advancements.

Topics covered:

  • check_circleStrategic and business driver insights
  • check_circleTaking the lead on hybrid working
  • check_circleUnderstanding the COVID-19 impact on Global Mobility
  • check_circlePredicted resurgence of international assignments
  • check_circleEquality, Diversity & Inclusion considerations
  • check_circleAdoption of Core/Flex policies


The pandemic has propelled risk up the league table of challenging issues impacting business stability and sustainability. Organisations are seeking to rapidly adjust to a new norm of virtual, remote and hybrid working arrangements whilst simultaneously resolving the retrospective compliance complexities created by a displaced workforce. The pressure on GM professionals to proactively manage this increasingly complex workload alongside the strategic priorities of the business is immense.

Topics covered:

  • check_circle A climate of uncertainty
  • check_circleBridging the data gap
  • check_circleBusiness travel outlook
  • check_circleCrisis management learnings
  • check_circleDuty of care in the pandemic era
  • check_circleRising to the compliance challenge
  • check_circleIncreased innovation and stakeholder engagement


Research methodology

Santa Fe Relocation commissioned Savanta to conduct the Global Mobility Survey 2021/22.
We surveyed 731 professionals responsible for Global Mobility programmes across 35 countries. In addition, 52 Business Leaders were surveyed, spanning the UK, the US, France, Singapore and Hong Kong.

Survey respondents represent organisations that in total employ:

  • check_circleAt least 4,675,730 staff globally
  • check_circleAt least 16,591 full-time and part-time GM professionals
  • check_circleRespondents that globally manage at least 626,525 internationally mobile assignees

This research report is part of Santa Fe Relocation’s ‘Global Mobility Insights’ series – supporting HR/Global Mobility teams manage a globally mobile workforce
. The survey will be followed by a series of webinars and whitepapers produced throughout the year by Santa Fe Relocation’s consulting team, ensuring you are kept on top of trends.

View and register to our upcoming webinars

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