The New Face Of International Assignments


The modern world of business is only becoming more and more globalized as time goes on. As companies find themselves with more and more work to be done in foreign locales they inevitably turn to their experienced, reliable employees, sending them to work on international assignments in greater numbers than ever before. With the increased number and variety of assignments, a new nomenclature has arisen to describe and categorize the types of work assignment. While the mandate for this division has a lot to do with legal regulations, it helps to understand the differences between them, to understand the probable duration of a given assignment and which aspects of it are likely to merit company compensation.

Long-Term Temporary Assignment

Building on the fundamental ideas of short-term, long-term, and permanent assignments, one of the most important types of modern assignment is the long-term temporary assignment.  Usually this consists of a one- to five-year assignment, although the maximum length is dependent on local and home nation tax rules. Any longer, and it becomes a question of whether the assignment should be permanent.

Short-Term Temporary Assignments

Generally covering terms of three to twelve months, the more definitive differences between short- and long-term temporary assignments are the payment and benefits arrangements, which in this case typically conform to the home nation’s standards.

These assignments usually have a specific task or goal, with the employee sent over to troubleshoot an issue and return home. An important consideration for the employer is how to compensate the employee for the cost of care on their home county housing, as the term of the assignment is too short to expect them to sell or lease it.

Employee-Requested Assignments

Rather than the duration or nature of the assigned task, the defining factor here is that the employee in question have themselves requested the move. Usually this is to coincide with a desired shift in their personal life or individual ambitions within the industry.

Obviously since the assignment was not mandated by the company there is much less onus on it to support the employee financially, but there are still some situations where it is reasonably expected. In these scenarios, such as an employee moving to accompany a spouse on assignment, the company might cover travel and shipping costs for the move.

Obviously the specifics of each case will dictate a company’s response, and moving internationally is such a complex process that countless small obstacles will be thrown up in course of any assignment, and must be dealt with.

In these situations, a professional moving company like Allied can offer invaluable support, taking care of everything and ensuring these delicate moves go off without a hitch. Speak to your international moving specialists at Allied when handling your next employee reassignment.

To find out more about Allied's moving services, or to book a consultation, visit or call +65 6862 4700.


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