Canada Jumps To Second Place For Employee Relocation

The U.S. loses points, but remains tops among countries global employees would consider moving to; reluctance to relocating for work growing.

Canada has jumped to the second spot among global destinations for employees who are considering moving abroad for employment purposes, according to a new poll conducted by global research company Ipsos Global Public Affairs on behalf of the Canadian Employee Relocation Council (CERC).

employee relocation
TOP CHOICES FOR GLOBAL DESTINATION. Source: Canadian Employee Relocation Council (CERC)

Global employees selected Canada as the second most desirable country to move to, up from the fourth spot when the survey was last conducted in 2012. The U.S. remained in the top spot at 30 percent of employees polled, down four points since 2012. In the poll, 22 percent of employees selected Canada as the second most desirable nation, up two points since 2012. The United Kingdom ranked third at 19 percent, down three points since 2012; Australia occupies fourth spot at 19 percent, down one point since 2012.

The survey also uncovered a growing reluctance on the part of employees to consider moving for work. Almost two in 10 (18%) of employees in 20 countries say they would be “very likely” to temporarily relocate for up to two years and take a full-time job in another country with a 10 percent pay increase, down seven points from 2012 (25%). Furthermore, four in 10 (40%) of global employees agree that there is nothing their employer can do to convince them to take an international assignment, an increase of five points versus 2012.

employee relocation
TOP CHOICES FOR GLOBAL DESTINATION. Source: Canadian Employee Relocation Council (CERC)

“It is increasingly more challenging and complex for companies to motivate employees to move for work,” said CERC President and CEO Stephen Cryne. “Balancing the needs of today’s modern family, which is very likely comprised of dual income professionals, children and aging parents, are at times insurmountable.”

In Canada, 19 percent of employees, a similar proportion compared to findings from the 2012 survey, are “very likely” to relocate. Four in 10 (39%) say they are “not at all likely” to relocate — significantly more than in 2012 when only one quarter (26%) said they would be “not at all likely” to relocate.

The survey also found that the majority of global employees are most likely to agree that they would only move to a country that is friendly to immigrants.

“The rise in protectionism and opposition to global trade and immigration in some regions are very likely influencing the thinking of employees about moving for employment,” said Cryne.

The 2017 CERC Global Mobility Survey reports on the attitudes of 10,091 working women and men in 20 countries towards international relocation for employment purposes.