Bringing in Expats

istock_000002337283small.jpgAs the influence of CSME expands, it’s more and more likely that HR professionals in the region will be involved in assisting an employee to transition from one country to another.

The skills they need to help the employee are not easy to obtain, unless the HR practitioner has some direct experience themselves in being transferred.

I tackled the question in my blog, and also in a recent issue of FirstCuts.

In my blog, I talked about the fact that the skill of transitioning expats is an emerging trend.

In FirstCuts, I tackled the question of Caribbean expats moving from one country to another, and the lack of preparation that is provided coming from an expectation that transition in the Caribbean “must be easy” because “we are all Caribbean people.”

It is an area of the profession that has not gotten a lot of attention, but perhaps this might change in the near future.


  1. davika bridglalFebruary 14, 2008

    i think this topic requires a lot of training and research especially with caribbean people because our culture and life style is very different to those of other countries in that we in the caribbean have our set hours of work and also methods or a system but i have worked with some expats from south america before their pattern was the day of work stated around and would work right through the night until 5a.m. the next morning.They also had a notion that caribbean people do not like to work because we prefer to work 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. or 5p.m. so you see we the caribbean people when we go to other countries we would have to adopt their mehtods and time of work also.

  2. Makini BordeFebruary 14, 2008

    As Davika said, this topic requires an ample about of research. We sometimes take for granted that ‘we are all West Indians..” and are alike, and in many ways we are, but the differences stand out like oil and water!
    Comparing simple work ethics between Trinidadians and Jamaicans, especially considering a Caribbean expat managing in group of locals, these are topics and issues that people need to be prepared for. It can work, once the HR professionals are trained and the necessary preparation and directions are given and monitored.

  3. Gale ArchibaldAugust 12, 2008

    Global HRM and International HRM have already established the research foundation. What we need to do is challenge the propositions and hypothesis using our contextual evidence.In so doing we will begin to build our Caribbean theories about Caribbean HRM and Caribbean organisations.

    To prepare ourselves for CSME, Caribbean HR professionals need to ensure that our competences straddle disciplines that include:
    – law: labour law for instance vary among the countries. We as HR professionals must be capable of interpreting the law.
    – IT: setting up HRIS that considers employees in different countries
    – insurance / social security: variations exist among the CSME countries. We need to understand these variations and how to adjust for compensation and benefit packages
    – economics: labour market issues and measurement
    – accounting: skills to value human capital along the similar principles for financial accounting
    – information management: skills for efficient and effective documentation and structuring of HR information – Employee Handbooks, Policies, Procedures, Standards etc
    – Marketing: skills for promoting and selling the organisation as a great place to work
    – psychology: skills for designing, implementing and managing programs to address work place health and safety; localisation, etc
    – engineering (yes engineering !!) skills for designing organisations as a well synergised system of interdependent components
    – statistics: we need skills for conducting statistical analysis of HR data, presenting these and relating them to the organisation, the country and the region.

    The countries ust establish the institutional and information infrastructure to guide, direct and support human resource management at the organisational and national levels.


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