Posts

Worried that your local team will fall apart during recruitment ?

By Nim.mersion, TIRA member, Sweden

 

If you are recruiting talent outside of Sweden, you may have worries about the reliability of the timelines posted on the Migration Agency’s website as they don’t always coincide with your experience. And you know that a delay in bringing new talent in to ease the burden on your local team only adds to their stress. Let’s look at the reasons why — and what HR can do.

The Problem

HR, together with the Account Executive for project, has the ultimate responsibility for the success of the project and the wellbeing of those working on the account. That means a portion of HR’s success is in the hands of the Swedish Migration Agency. Having the timing of your whole project set by an outside source makes your job coordinating the timeline of all components, including staffing and employee administration volatile to say the least.

While the timelines to get work permits cleared in and of itself isn’t a problem, not knowing when new resources will be able to join your team most certainly is.

For a team to work together they need to feel good together and have a reasonable stress level.  If communal stress due to lack of talent continues for a long time, there will not be a good outcome.  Ultimately, leadership has to take responsibility for making sure that the company is fully and appropriately staffed. The skills gaps in Sweden and a labor shortage (along with labor laws hindering growth) sure gives HR a challenge to fill positions to keep deadlines.  HR needs to do whatever they can to accomplish their goals. Also, they need to think about sales and project timelines already set that they need to integrate with.  Failing to schedule a project with a realistic timeline will not be a winning formula.

Avoiding Bottlenecks

Finding and recruiting top talent globally is not accomplished without hurdles, but there is more to think about. The next question is how can HR work around the bottlenecks in the Swedish infrastructure, both with government agencies, school availability and housing?

Realistic Schedules

While the first obvious suggestion is to have a recruitment schedule and rotating plan of employees with a heads up of 6 months. BUT, we all know that it can only happen in a perfect world and most of us live in a less flawless, yet more interesting space.

Salary Levels

Perhaps you can be more generous with submitting applications and do it with candidates that you are hoping to sign; however, if you are doing it before all components are in place, a clever objection would be “well, we haven’t agreed on a salary yet and thus we would risk the renewal”. This is actually a very valid point, the good news is that you can always give a higher salary so just present the base line and as long as you never go below that threshold you will be fine as paying someone more isn’t a problem at all.

Working Remotely 

Another option is to ask the person to start before arrival. This year, we have seen HRs begging new team members to work remotely, and continue this way while an application is pending or while they are looking to find suitable housing with a limited budget.

Working remotely brings us to a completely different kind of animal… How is a person paid for remote work?  And, how would it actually work? We have suggested that companies to use the freelance platforms available to start while waiting for the permits. Given that globally sought-after talent have many opportunities and don’t have to wait to move somewhere and start getting a salary,  HR may want to review how they can onboard people while they are still waiting for permits to entry in oder not to lose these new hires to companies that operate in countries with faster admittance to enter the country.

 

This article was originally published here.

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More about NIM.MERSION

NIM.MERSION was founded with an entrepreneur’s enthusiasm, the creativity of a problem-solver, and with one goal: to alleviate the logistical and compliance conundrums for companies that maintain international offices and workforces.

The goal of providing a Smooth Arrival, an Easy Living, and a Swift Departure for relocating talent was born.

Our ability to hear our clients and work with their needs in a tailor-made fashion took our bold ambitions to new heights. Today, our vision is to be a corporate immigration and relocation service trailblazer that opens the path for our clients to unchartered territories at home and abroad.
Our four core values permeate everything we do, down to the last email. They are integral to our operations, they define us as an employer and they determine our service delivery trajectory. They are: Quality, Passion, Innovation and Structure.

Website: https://www.nimmersion.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NIMMERSIONAB
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/newcomer%27s-relocation/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/newcomersrelocationsweden

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More about TIRA
TIRA is an aligned network of quality mobility service providers. The network provides access to leading mobility experts from around the world that provide local solutions to global challenges. Network members exchange best practices and share this value with the industry through benchmarking exercises.

Website: www.tiranetwork.org
Twitter: @TIRAORG
LinkedIn: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)
Facebook: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)

9 Ways to Work Most Effectively with Your Swedish Relocation Company

By Nim.mersion, TIRA member, Sweden

If you are new to working with a relocation company to bring a new hire to Sweden, you may be overwhelmed with all the details and unsure how the partnership will work best to benefit your transfer.  We have been helping HR teams relocate new hires for over 20 years. We have lots of tips on how to make the partnership a win-win.  Here are our 9 top recommendations for working effectively with a Swedish relocation company.

  1. Think of all the ways you can provide a great transfer for your new employee and prioritize the ways you can be there for them. When your transfer is happy, things will run more smoothly with your relocation company.
  2. Plan ahead as best you can. The best option is to have at least 3-6 months to plan so you can save money and avoid start-date delays due to hold ups from the Swedish Migration Agency and other unforeseen challenges. When relocation is rushed, costs increase, the employee may not find the best home and school for their children, and much more stress will be involved. If you have more time at the front end of the relocation, your relocation firm will be able to work most effectively for you. Also remembers families need to plan around the school year and the placement.
  3. Pass on as much detailed information to your relocation firm as possible. This will allow them to best serve you and your new hire to get immigration forms done accurately, find the right housing, and save costs all along the way.
  4. Know your budget and make sure it is realistic based on local housing prices, local salaries and moving costs. It is not a great reflection on your company if you aren’t offering a reasonable package.
  5. Have clarity and basic guidelines in your policy. Clear boundaries about what you will, and will not be offering helps everyone know what to expect. You can save money and usually get more help for your transfer by buying relocation packages vs a la carte services. This will reduce the need to customize staple products and services and give you more time to focus on the soft issues.
  6. Don’t take risks with Immigration details. If immigration and compliance pieces are not perfect, there may be taxation issues, delays and maybe even evictions involved as well. If your employee has worked in Sweden before, make sure there is an impeccable paper trail.
  7. Never assume anything. We can’t tell you how many times assumptions have gotten in the way of a great transfer. Make sure you go over every last detail needed with your new hire and relocation team to prevent any delays and work visa rejections.
  8. Be responsive. Set the scene from the beginning, showing that you are a support your transfer can count on. Answer any questions your relocation company has for you as soon as possible so that your new hire feels you are there for them.
  9. Take into account where people originate from. For instance, people who have worked in London or the US that have a favorable exchange rates are usually fine to pay a first month’s rent and a deposit. However, individuals from countries where the cost of living is considerably lower may not have the funds to move to a high-cost country. We have seen people really struggle with a move to high-cost Sweden and while it is an investment by the employee to move to a country with a higher quality of life, it may be a dealbreaker if they cannot pay these upfront expenses. A lot of companies therefore offer a relocation allowances to cover ad hoc expenses.

We would like to offer our Professional Inspiration course to your employee as a complimentary gift from us. The goal of this course is to help your new hire feel inspired and clued into the cultural challenges that expats face when moving to Sweden. To learn more you can go here.

This article was originally published here.

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More about NIM.MERSION

NIM.MERSION was founded with an entrepreneur’s enthusiasm, the creativity of a problem-solver, and with one goal: to alleviate the logistical and compliance conundrums for companies that maintain international offices and workforces.

The goal of providing a Smooth Arrival, an Easy Living, and a Swift Departure for relocating talent was born.

Our ability to hear our clients and work with their needs in a tailor-made fashion took our bold ambitions to new heights. Today, our vision is to be a corporate immigration and relocation service trailblazer that opens the path for our clients to unchartered territories at home and abroad.
Our four core values permeate everything we do, down to the last email. They are integral to our operations, they define us as an employer and they determine our service delivery trajectory. They are: Quality, Passion, Innovation and Structure.

Website: https://www.nimmersion.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NIMMERSIONAB
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/newcomer%27s-relocation/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/newcomersrelocationsweden

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More about TIRA
TIRA is an aligned network of quality mobility service providers. The network provides access to leading mobility experts from around the world that provide local solutions to global challenges. Network members exchange best practices and share this value with the industry through benchmarking exercises.

Website: www.tiranetwork.org
Twitter: @TIRAORG
LinkedIn: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)
Facebook: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)

Topics For HR to Discuss With Upper Management Before a Relocation

By Nim.mersion, TIRA member, Sweden

If you are new to Global Mobility, here are some things you will want to discuss with your upper management so that their intended global mobility plan runs smoothly.

Compliance: Upper management usually just wants to get things done. You, as an HR Manager, will need to be concerned with compliance. Here are a few questions you need to ask:

  1. What are the immigration laws for the relocation country?
  2. What are the work visa restrictions that need to be considered?
  3. What is the length of stay for your employee?
  4. What is the project timeline for the relocation?
    TIP: Encourage reasonable timelines even when business needs are pressing.

Time for planning an assignment: Upper management is business driven and often has only a vague idea of what it actually entails to deploy talent in a new location. You cannot get foreign talent in place for longer-term assignments in just a few weeks. It doesn’t work anywhere.

Location: Where will your team stay when they are living abroad? If this is just a short-term affair — a couple of weeks for a training session with a team of ready workers — then a hotel will work. However, if your team members are going to be staying for months or years, they need to have housing that is affordable to them. The housing can be tricky and the salary offered needs to take into consideration the housing costs of your host country.

Education: If your team is bringing their families for longer periods of time, then HR needs to know where their transfer’s children can go to school. If there are no English/German/ French speaking educational facilities in your new country, where will the children be schooled? You also want to be sure that the curriculum is in keeping with your transfers beliefs and worldview. If not, the relocation may not be successful.

Cultural Readiness: Are you choosing people who will be able to assimilate to the new country’s cultural climate easily? Are they flexible, social, and open-minded people who are willing to have patience with the process?

Civics: HR needs to know how foreign nationals are treated and what life is going to be like in the host country. Management, HR, and the team going over there should be concerned with how expats will fit into this host society and how can the team be active members in it. Be able to suggest groups that will help your transfers make friends and contribute to their local community.

Day-to-Day Schedule: Something else that no one ever really considers is the day-to-day things. Where will your team members live versus where they work? How will they get around? Will they be able to drive? What are the customs of those activities? Are they within walking distance of the job site? Where do they get groceries? Where do they go for other services? These are all things that need to be known ahead of time so that proper housing and school decisions can be made. All of this may also influence salary considerations.

Leisure: Finally there is the necessity of leisure. Does this new country offer enough leisure activities to keep your future expats happy? Make sure they know what they are getting into for variety and core free time offerings.

Plan B; what happens if your talent pulls out at a late stage in the recruitment process? What do you do if the transfer is delayed due to immigration problems in the host country? What do you do if you are transferring a family offseason from a school term perspective and have to pay for housing both at home and in the host destination? Will that completely ruin the budget for important future projects? What will you do with the inevitable unforeseen costs? You always want to think through your options.

How do you handle exceptions? Anyone that has had a steering document or policy document to work with is well aware of the exception management policy that also needs to be in place. When do you allow someone to bring pets, cars, sailboats or their grandmother and when do you say no? When is a higher housing budget or a special needs school covered and when isn’t it? Who has the final say in regards to exceptions?

If you are planning on sending employees to Sweden, you can learn loads of useful information from our Guide to Bringing Foreign Talent to Sweden.

This article was originally published here.

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More about NIM.MERSION

NIM.MERSION was founded with an entrepreneur’s enthusiasm, the creativity of a problem-solver, and with one goal: to alleviate the logistical and compliance conundrums for companies that maintain international offices and workforces.

The goal of providing a Smooth Arrival, an Easy Living, and a Swift Departure for relocating talent was born.

Our ability to hear our clients and work with their needs in a tailor-made fashion took our bold ambitions to new heights. Today, our vision is to be a corporate immigration and relocation service trailblazer that opens the path for our clients to unchartered territories at home and abroad.
Our four core values permeate everything we do, down to the last email. They are integral to our operations, they define us as an employer and they determine our service delivery trajectory. They are: Quality, Passion, Innovation and Structure.

Website: https://www.nimmersion.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NIMMERSIONAB
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/newcomer%27s-relocation/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/newcomersrelocationsweden

—————————————————————————————————————————————–

More about TIRA
TIRA is an aligned network of quality mobility service providers. The network provides access to leading mobility experts from around the world that provide local solutions to global challenges. Network members exchange best practices and share this value with the industry through benchmarking exercises.

Website: www.tiranetwork.org
Twitter: @TIRAORG
LinkedIn: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)
Facebook: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)

What HR can do about Expat Happiness in the office

By Nim.mersion, TIRA member, Sweden

What do divorce, death in the family and a move abroad have in common?

Researchers claim that these three are the most stressful life events a person can experience. What these events have in common is the loss of next of kin or friends. Big changes in one’s life can be very difficult.

As a Global Mobility Manager or HR Business Partner you are at least partially responsible for the happiness of the expat population.

More than one HR person has had to sit down with frustrated and lonely expats. Introverts have a particularly difficult time getting up and running with a new set of friends. This is where you can help. Sharing your knowledge and letting the foreign employee know that things take a bit more time in Northern Europe than in warmer climates where socializing requires less effort and planning.

We have talked to many expats and their Swedish colleagues over the years to determine what the winning formulas are. We have also done a number of exit interviews with those who leave Sweden. There certainly seems to be a winning formula with several components.

Happy employees who have a great time outside the office will be more productive, and will also stay longer with the company.

Many HR experts are daunted by the prospect of feeling responsible for the happiness of new employees in their free time. They are already spending a lot of energy on creating a wonderful workplace for employees.

Here are some easy happiness life hacks that you can spread around the office. These ideas will benefit your whole office not just your new hire — a win-win for everyone.

Begin by being a stellar role model yourself.

  • Always say hello to people in the office, but why not start outside. Say hello to everyone in your building, block and neighborhood around your office. You will see how it creates new friendships and spreads cheer and good will.
  • Give at least one compliment per day. Keep track.
  • Check in on at least one expat per day.
  • Eat lunch with a new colleague in the office each week or as a minimum make sure someone else does.
  • Plus One. (I love this one!) Next time you go to a coffee shop, lunch, have a dinner party, or go for a walk, ask at least one more person to join or ask the persons/s you are meeting to bring someone. Soon you will have a far bigger network. Try it so you can tell your expats how it worked for you.

Put down your smartphone and remove Facebook

Here’s the FB experiment from The Happiness Research Institute. Can you get people in your office to join you in a week-long experiment?

It is so sad to see a table full of people eating lunch or even dinner with their phones out. No wonder we are not super happy.  The fake connections over a device can’t trump a real live conversation.

You will need critical mass for this experiment to work though. Being the only one not on a device, if everyone else is, could make you feel  a little odd.  If you want to create a NO PHONE zone in the kitchen at work you may need some back up arguments to promote this.  Take a look at what Simon Sinek says on dopamine levels. There is a great talk on YouTube you can find here. It is part of the health responsibility of the employer to inform and encourage less phone use at least in the office.

Do you think it will be easier for your expats to strike up a conversation and perhaps friendships with colleagues if eating together with their full focus on the people actually in the room? I think so and it will cultivate a real interest for one another and understanding and curiosity for others. It is far easier to work well together if there is a bit of a connection gained from small conversations and true engagement.

How about having a challenge in the office with “Find free fun” and post it with encouragement to do it together.

Free movies, free evenings at selected museums, and openings. You want to make sure that no one is excluded because they are saving for the downpayment in the Swedish housing market! Joint experiences rank a lot higher on the happiness index than consumption.

Encourage your expat to join our private Facebook group for expats in Sweden where they can ask questions and get help and advice from other expats. We have found that a strong expat community can mean the world to a newcomer in Sweden.  Here is the link to the Facebook group called Successful Expats in Sweden.

Lastly, feel free to offer your expat our complimentary online course which will help them understand Swedish office culture and give them loads of tips on how to succeed in their new job. You can take a look at it here.

If you have an questions on immigration to Sweden, feel free to reach out to us for a free consultation.

This article was originally published here.

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More about NIM.MERSION

NIM.MERSION was founded with an entrepreneur’s enthusiasm, the creativity of a problem-solver, and with one goal: to alleviate the logistical and compliance conundrums for companies that maintain international offices and workforces.

The goal of providing a Smooth Arrival, an Easy Living, and a Swift Departure for relocating talent was born.

Our ability to hear our clients and work with their needs in a tailor-made fashion took our bold ambitions to new heights. Today, our vision is to be a corporate immigration and relocation service trailblazer that opens the path for our clients to unchartered territories at home and abroad.
Our four core values permeate everything we do, down to the last email. They are integral to our operations, they define us as an employer and they determine our service delivery trajectory. They are: Quality, Passion, Innovation and Structure.

Website: https://www.nimmersion.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NIMMERSIONAB
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/newcomer%27s-relocation/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/newcomersrelocationsweden

—————————————————————————————————————————————–

More about TIRA
TIRA is an aligned network of quality mobility service providers. The network provides access to leading mobility experts from around the world that provide local solutions to global challenges. Network members exchange best practices and share this value with the industry through benchmarking exercises.

Website: www.tiranetwork.org
Twitter: @TIRAORG
LinkedIn: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)
Facebook: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)

Expats need as much support as we can give them

By Nim.mersion, TIRA member, Sweden

August is the time when many expats are arriving. NIMMERSION has been helping expats settle in Sweden for over 20 years and we continue to be impressed by expats each and every day. They are brave and intelligent people. They risk everything in their home country to move to Sweden for their career. The culture gap between Sweden and their home country is often very large. This can cause unique challenges in addition the the usual ones for new hires.

What does expat support mean?

For new hires to give their best to their host company, it is crucial that they have the full support of their HR department. What does “full support” mean?

Here are our thoughts on what type of “full support” expats really need..

An organized transfer

Being organized saves time, money, and also increases the success rate of your expat. “With so much at risk, global human resource managers can use the high failure rates to support investing in upfront and ongoing programs that will make international assignments successful. Selecting the right person, preparing the expat and the family, measuring the employee’s performance from afar, and repatriating the individual at the end of an assignment require a well-planned, well-managed program. Knowing what to expect from start to finish as well as having some tools to work with can help minimize the risk.” All of this must be done on a timely basis and this means planning a timeline in advance so that all of the puzzle pieces can fit together as planned.

A mentor on each side of the move

Expats need mentors on both sides of the assignment. It is important that they are properly educated on the country they are going to. They should be informed of the specifics of their new job, as well as what their new lifestyle will be like. This works best when done in advance of the move. We believe that once and expat arrives, they should also have ongoing support to answer any questions they have about office culture, general career advice, and be educated about fun things to do and getting around in Sweden. This greatly helps them to stay positive and informed.

Time and resources to find a home that is within scope of their co-workers with similar experience

As you know, Sweden is in a housing crisis. We know this but the new hires are not always clued in on what this means to them regarding the housing search logistics and the type of home they will be able to rent or buy. They often arrive with only days to find a home and this can cause stress and overwhelm for all parties involved. You can learn more about housing in Stockholm from our Housing Guide and this blog post:

Cultural readiness training so they can give their new job the best possible outcome

At Boeing, they use a mix of a variety of approaches to teach their employees about the culture they are moving to from online modules to afternoon seminars, to one-on-one training. All these exposures help their employees to become more culturally aware. We use online courses, support groups, newsletters and short films as useful ways to teach expats about Sweden.

A community for ongoing support is also helpful

Who doesn’t love sharing inspiration and struggles and also helping others who are just a few steps behind in the process. We find support from other expats is very helpful. Often your new hire is one of few foreigners and a network of other newbies to Sweden is a welcome reprieve.

NIMMERSION offers lots of services but we are excited to add cultural readiness education for new hires living in Sweden to the mix. This platform is called Professional Inspiration. We are combining this with a supportive community to help expats stay inspired and give their very best to their new position.

We put together a fun and convenient course that will help expats assimilate in Sweden. It’s called Professional Inspiration. While this course doesn’t answer company specific things on where to find the coffee, or how the credit card policy works, it will give expats insights to how to act in the Swedish workplace and it can create a great start rather than friction with colleagues and not least things for HR to deal with. In addition, we aim to provide a community for expats where they will get lots of advice and encouragement from us and other expats on how to excel in their job and make the most of this exciting time in their life. This is a Facebook group called Successful Expats in Sweden. We will be in this group every day offering suggestions and answering questions so that our expats get the best new start they can possibly receive from their recent move to Sweden.

If you would like to talk to your expat about helpful things they should know about the Swedes, this article might be helpful.

Wishing you a wonderful last few days of summer!

This article was originally published here.

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More about NIM.MERSION

NIM.MERSION was founded with an entrepreneur’s enthusiasm, the creativity of a problem-solver, and with one goal: to alleviate the logistical and compliance conundrums for companies that maintain international offices and workforces.

The goal of providing a Smooth Arrival, an Easy Living, and a Swift Departure for relocating talent was born.

Our ability to hear our clients and work with their needs in a tailor-made fashion took our bold ambitions to new heights. Today, our vision is to be a corporate immigration and relocation service trailblazer that opens the path for our clients to unchartered territories at home and abroad.
Our four core values permeate everything we do, down to the last email. They are integral to our operations, they define us as an employer and they determine our service delivery trajectory. They are: Quality, Passion, Innovation and Structure.

Website: https://www.nimmersion.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/NIMMERSIONAB
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/newcomer%27s-relocation/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/newcomersrelocationsweden

—————————————————————————————————————————————–

More about TIRA
TIRA is an aligned network of quality mobility service providers. The network provides access to leading mobility experts from around the world that provide local solutions to global challenges. Network members exchange best practices and share this value with the industry through benchmarking exercises.

Website: www.tiranetwork.org
Twitter: @TIRAORG
LinkedIn: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)
Facebook: The International Relocation Associates (TIRA)