HR can carry a hefty load – but what about when it comes to scouting for employees who would work well in their overseas division? What qualities should they look for? We break it down for HR professionals to take the guesswork out of the process.


An expansive attitude and outlook on life is a huge asset when considering employees to send abroad. Someone who finds the unknown and novelty of a new country appealing and a privilege rather than a burden will help the overall chances of everything going smoothly as the transition can carry many unknowns and cultural shocks. They’ll be more likely to see cultural differences as amusing or interesting and not a nuisance. If they genuinely want to see another part of the world and even have some similar experience in travel or extended stays, the transition will probably be a smoother one.

Professionally Competent

Of course, you’ll want to have some data that the employee is good at their role and can execute it effectively, especially seeing as they’ll potentially be doing it in another country. This may seem obvious, but make sure they are solid in the core competencies they’ll be required to perform. A history of a job well done is essential as they’ll want to be solid in what they’re doing and you’ll want to feel confident in where you’re placing them. They will be learning and absorbing a lot just by virtue of moving alone, so ideally they’re skill set is something you can pretty confidently say will transfer over with little to no problems.

10 Secrets to Managing your Multilingual Global Workforce

Emotionally Mature

It’s been said that employees rarely move on (either voluntarily or involuntarily) from the workplace due to the work itself, but rather because of conflict with the people or culture. As much as you can, assess the person’s ability to play well with others and get along reasonably well with their co-workers. This doesn’t mean that they are a social butterfly, just that from what you can ascertain, they can be relied upon to be decent to work with. Character and integrity can be hard to pin down when you haven’t known a person long or had the chance to see them in different environments over a period of time, but references can be helpful with that aspect.

Fluent or Wishing to Be

Naturally if the employee is interested in new languages or are currently fluent (or striving to be), this is a major bonus as it will cut down on the learning curve. Relocations often fail due to the inability to learn the language in a meaningful way. If they are already headed down the path of learning the language, then they are ahead of the game and make the move more likely to be a fruitful one.

Fluency Corp can help your employees and their families assimilate to their country, city and neighborhood through private English lessons in home, in office or online. We transform communication with employees and their families so the success of international relocations are greatly increased. For a free consultation, contact us at or (800) 401-3159.