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Moving abroad for work remains a big dream

July 11, 2024

One in four professionals is willing to work in another country, and 23% are actively looking for a job abroad, according to the study “Decoding Global Talent 2024”. The Boston Consulting Group, together with consultancies The Network and Stepstone, listened to 150,000 workers from 185 countries. The result is very close to the same study carried out in 2020, but what drives these talents around the world is what is striking this time.

  • People move abroad primarily for professional and financial reasons. 

They would like to build their professional futures through higher income, expanded work experience, and career advancement. Another strong motivator is having a concrete job offer in hand. If they secure all of these desired outcomes, it stands to reason that they’ll also experience a better quality of life, another mobility goal cited by a large share of respondents. 

  • Benefits and services offered by the destination country are secondary factors.

Factors related to benefits offered by the new country matter less. Social systems, health care, political stability, a better climate, or a more accepting society are not the main drivers of job-related mobility.

“We estimate that up to 800 million professionals could be actively looking for jobs abroad. To tap into this talent pool, companies need to understand what drives the choices that these workers make. Certain factors are crucial: country of origin; demographics, jobs, and industries; and economic and quality-of-life aspirations,” the report says.

English-speaking countries with strong economies continue to lead the list of top destinations. Survey participants tend to choose these primarily because of the quality of job opportunities offered. To attract foreign talent, an inclusive, international culture is as important as the salary package.

“Companies must identify which talent profiles they need, how many, and when. They must identify talent gaps two to three years in advance. Gaps that are difficult to fill from the local workforce are the best candidates for international recruitment,” the authors conclude. “The next challenge involves figuring out where to find the needed talent. What talent hot spots promise to meet specific recruitment needs? The availability of needed talent profiles is a key factor, of course. But employers must also weigh how motivated that talent is to move to a particular market, and why.”

Source: BCG