International HRM




The world has gone become a global village this has created the need for companies to set up headquarters overseas due to the saturation of local markets and opportunities for new markets overseas as put in Medland (2004).

As a human resource manager to recruiting staff to fill up vacancies in the overseas branches in Germany certain key issues need to be addressed for the success expatriation process.  Issues addressed include;

Risks Faced When Placing the Expats in Germany

When setting up international companies the management leaves the technicalities of addressing risks associated with expatriating employees to the human resource manager (Polak, 2003). Risks identified as potential threat to the success of the process include;

Financial risk

As put in Grensing-Pophal (2008) the cost associated with relocating an employee to work in a foreign country is seven times more than when the same employee is working locally. The company has to take to consideration hardship allowance in the pay package as put in (Marquis, 2002). Additional cost also arise from tax system differ from country to country (Gale, 2003).

Legal Risk

The human resource has to into consideration legal implications associated with the relocation before he sends the expats to Germany. The immigration and labor policies in Germany have to be analyzed in order to avoid any legal implications that could come up in future as argued in Medland (2002).

Cultural Risk

The company has to ensure it understands the values of the Germans. This will help in avoiding any cultural mishaps that may arise in future due to the expats inability to integrate with the culture of the Germans as put in (Medland, 2002). They have to ensure the religious values of the expats will crush with the religion embraced by the locals.

Survival Skills Possessed as a Success Expatriate Manager

The ability to access the foreign county for any risks that could adversely affect the expats such as health and safety risk and be able to come up with ways to mitigate the risks.  This is based on good observation skills and ability to take initiative quickly.

Ability to learn quickly, learning skills help when to learning the employment and labor laws of the foreign country. This ensures quick adaption to the culture and language of the foreign country. This also helps when orienting the expats to the culture of the people in Germany.

People skills, that facilitates and eases communication when relating with people from different backgrounds and culture. The skill helps when they are seeking assistance from the local people in order to learn the legal and cultural requirement required for success expatriation process.

Observation and listening skills, that aid when learning the language culture and the legal system of the foreign country.

Capabilities That Lead To Success or Failure by Expatriates in Overseas Assignments

For an expatriate to be successful in overseas assignment he or she has to have the technical requirement required to perform the given task. As put in Marquis (2002) more employees are saying no to overseas assignment due the safety and hardships involved leading to the positions being filled by unqualified personnel.

The expatriate should also be in a position to adapt quickly to the new environment otherwise he or she will not be able to concentrate or the given task leading to failure.

The inability of the expatriate’s family to adapt to the new environment may distract the expatriate leading to failure in the assignment.

If the expatriate was forced to relocate overseas he or she may lack the motivation required in order to perform the assignment effectively.

Key Issues for the Successes Expatriation of Families

The human resource manager has to ensure that the expats family lifestyle in Germany is same as in the local country as put in Grensing-Pophal (2008) so as to give the employee a chance to concentrate on given assignment.

According to Gale (2003) issues that should be addressed before the relocation is safe housing is secure neighbor hoods, school for the children, health issues for example the closest hospital in the neighborhood has to be identified; a job should be secured for the other spouse if they were working before. When these issues are addressed the expatriate family will adopt very fast to new environment.

Ways that private firms help in Expatriation process

According to (Polak, 2003) international investment by companies’ poses major challenges for the human resource manager. The company may choose to out source the services of a private firm to aid in the expatriation because they are more knowledgeable with the expatriation requirements as put in Medland (2004).

They help the company in understanding the employment laws of the Germany, they will also assist in recruitments of locals in Germany, and they will help the company in understanding the tax systems in Germany and also help them in getting referrals they require to get started as put in Medland (2004).


Gale, F. S. (2003), Taxing Situations for Expatrates.

Grensing-Pophal, L. (2008), Expat Lifestyles Take a Hit.

Marquis, C. (2002), More Say Yes to Foreign Service, But Not to Hardship Assignments: New York Times.

Medland, M.E. (2004), Society for Human Resource Management: Setting up Overseas.

Polak, R. (2003), Finding a path to global Benefits.


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