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Global Mobility Strategies - Finding the Right Assignment Types for Successful Global Deployment in Today’s VUCA Environment

  • Today’s era is marked by high volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity – VUCA. As the global reach of businesses increases, the need for competent managers to take on cross-border assignments grows. Even though the results can be key to organizational effectiveness, global mobility remains a low priority on the list of strategic imperatives. This thesis will explain why and how companies should consider a strategic approach to global mobility in a VUCA environment discussing links between today’s turbulent times and global mobility. It will combine theory with practice, point out the key factors global mobility strategies must focus on in today’s VUCA environment and use these findings to develop a set of assignment types beneficial in the VUCA era. The study is based on qualitative research methodology using primary and secondary data. A literature review was used to gather theoretical information comparing various sources from academic journals and books on relevant topics. Case studies featuring Budenheim and Hewlett Packard shall give an insight into which methods companies are using in order to survive in this chaos and relate discussed theories to practical situations. It has been revealed that the three main factors responsible managers must focus on strategically when sending employees abroad are developmental value, cost effectiveness, and flexibility of cross-border assignments. The need for developmental value of assignments stems from an increased involvement of employees in their own development as well as the need for competent global managers. The need for cost effectiveness results from fierce global competition, and flexibility is highly important due to all of the VUCA forces creating turbulence around the globe. Based on these results the most advantageous assignment types are found to be developmental assignments, extended business travels and project assignments.

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Author:Theresa Schwarzer
Advisor:Nikola Hale
Document Type:Bachelor Thesis
Year of Completion:2016
Granting Institution:Hochschule Furtwangen
Release Date:2016/05/20
Tag:Expatriation; Global Mobility; International Assignments; Strategy; VUCA
Degree Program:IBW - Internationale Betriebswirtschaft
Functional area:Human Resource Management
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt