Half of employees globally open to working abroad

Mon Feb 6, 2012 10:49am EST
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By Patricia Reaney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Nearly half of workers around the world would consider moving to another country for the right job, a pay rise and other incentives such as trips home and language training, according to a new survey released on Monday.

With the global economy still struggling, employees in Mexico, Brazil, Russia, Turkey and India were most eager to grasp new opportunities, while workers in Sweden, the United States and Belgium preferred to stay closer to home, the Ipsos international poll showed.

Nearly 20 percent of people questioned said they would be very likely to work abroad for two to three years if they were given a 10 percent pay rise, and 30 percent said it was a possibility they would ponder.

"You are looking at half the population of employees in 24 countries who are actually willing to take an assignment abroad, which is huge," said Keren Gottfried, research manager at Ipsos Global Public Affairs.

"When you consider the increasing globalization of our world and how portfolios now include multiple countries and employers are looking at international experience as an asset, it is not surprising that you get so many people that are interested," Gottfried explained.

At nearly 40 percent, higher pay was cited as the main incentive for workers to venture abroad, followed by better living conditions, a good career move, adventure and time for a change.

A guarantee to resume their current job after two years away was another big incentive when considering a move.

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<p>Office workers walk during morning peak hour in central Sydney October 28, 2009. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz</p>