How Global Mobility professionals are using data analytics and technology

Extract from Santa Fe Relocation’s Global Mobility Survey 2020/21 ‘REPURPOSE: Challenging change’

Global Mobility professionals are prioritising talent-related metrics to demonstrate value to the wider business and this includes tracking talent post international work experience—30% track long-term career success of repatriated/serial assignees. Equally, there is a focus on measuring a positive experience while undertaking forms of international mobility through key performance indicators both internally and externally with suppliers.

In the chart below, Business Leaders view total programme costs as a priority.

Areas of note

+ Greater visibility on policy exceptions (requiring more situational, deeper analysis with the business and international deployed employees).

+ Talent management ratings.

+ Greater alignment needed by GM on total programme costs.

Considering the strategy, talent, advisory and risk focus for Global Mobility professionals, these findings support the case for transformation.

Santa Fe global mobility survey


The chart below reports the operational measures that Global Mobility employ to create value for their organisation. Global Mobility teams must avoid being a silo activity/department—as it is integral to the facilitation of global business outcomes. Organisations are now recognising the need to assess the longer-term value of international assignments, post assignment.

Top three metrics

54% Tracking career progression for a minimum of two years post assignment.

45% Tracking annual performance ratings for a minimum of two years.

42% Data analytics produced by a talent/HR team outside of the Global Mobility function and provided to Global Mobility, post assignment for a defined period: minimum of two years after assignment completion.

Technology is seen by both Global Mobility and Business Leaders as an enabler for analytics that can drive insightful decision making and create competitive advantage.


Technology is a key platform to change but so is broader transformation to deliver the value the Business Leaders expect from the benefits of investing in technology.


60% Better forecast versus actual cost tracking.

53% Improves information provided to business management.

48% Improves employee’s experience working internationally.

43% Allows proactive management of relocation supply-chain.

40% Reduces overall mobility programme costs for the business.

Although the overall goal might be to reduce programme costs, technology does not inherently provide those savings. Instead it can provide the insights needed to identify the areas to reduce costs further down the line.


+ Technology is critical to track internationally mobile employees and provide better reporting and analytics.

+ Both Global Mobility professionals and Business Leaders are focussed on commercial analytics, principally total cost focus.

+ Business Continuity Planning (BCP) has become an additional remit of Global Mobility Teams.


Key reflection

With the microscope firmly on the Global Mobility function at Executive Board level, the ability to understand and deliver analytics on the measures that matter to ‘C’-suite are critical to credibly influence decisions on talent deployment, risk considerations and financial investment in supporting existing operations and growth opportunities.

Having a story without facts and analytics will only remain a story. Telling a story supported by data, analysis and critical reasoning is more likely to generate further invitations to be involved in broader organisational decisions.


Global Mobility Survey 2020/21 ‘REPURPOSE: Challenging change’ Download the full report


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