As desirable employees, expats seek appealing locations. Mentioning a city in France results in images of a certain lifestyle. Reflecting upon German cities may be less inspiring or invoke blank expressions. Finland struggles with an extreme image of mosquitos and darkness, while for Spain topics can be heat and humidity. The list of preconceptions is endless.
Expectations of “joie de vivre” are highly personal. Thus companies are required to promote not only themselves and job descriptions but also the place of employment. A new location can appear attractive to an expat for many reasons. The new position or career move, attractiveness of the city, salary on offer, country and culture, climate, geographic locality, infrastructure for entrepreneurs and startups or image of the city.
Almost everything in the new home is unusual. Quite probably the language too. Alongside their busy lives, expats need to settle in, find their way around and acquire a feel for the place. They also have to invest in their new home.
Expats are international business professionals and highly trained employees. They form one of the most attractive groups of people in the world, are well educated and earn high incomes. That comes at a price way beyond salaries.
Companies in cities across the globe compete with each other for international talent. Some locations radiate their images intensely, while others remain relatively unknown. Yet more surprise as secret gems.
Companies, and thus locations, need to bolster their local labour force by attracting international employees for key positions. Ideally, they engage in both initial and ongoing support for expats to ensure they remain.