Mrs. Linnea Quai Hoi - HR Global Mobility Program Manager at FireEye
We have had the chance to talk to Mrs. Linnea Quai Hoi, HR Global Mobility Program Manager at FireEye, a cyber security company.
With a strong background in human resource, Mrs. Hoi has developed a specialty in global relocation and immigration over the years. Observing a shift towards millennials in the mobile workforce, Mrs. Hoi said that they typically require fewer benefits than an experienced employee with a home and has family. However, millennials demand other needs such as more guidance, instant gratification and accessibility to online tools.
Stressing how a relevant assignment package can save cost in the long run, she explained, “When you think of the turnover, cost per hire, the loss in productivity because the employee has to focus on their move not their new role, and the money wasted moving someone who leaves within a year because they fee disgruntled for not being taken care of upfront; it’s a no-brainer.”
Read more about Mrs. Hoi personal experience and valuable insights about the global mobility industry in the full interview below.
Q: Can you describe your career path and your current role and responsibilities at FireEye?
A: At this point, I am where I should be, managing a Global Mobility Program. My goal would be to have policies and programs in place that align with the culture at FireEye, within the next two years. As FireEye grows, it will likely be necessary to have individual managers oversee the relocation and immigration while I oversee the Global Programs from a Directorial level. I am an active member in the Global Mobility community, recently elected to serve on the Board for Bay Area Mobility Management (BAMM). I hope to continue on that path and someday lead the board for this amazing non-profit organisation.
There has been a large shift from experienced workers to millennials. Millennials have less, require fewer benefits, but need more hand-holding and instant gratification.
Q: What do you think are the three greatest challenges facing Global Mobility professionals today?
A: There are several challenges that Global Mobility professionals face; one is the justification of expenses moving someone from one region of the world to another. Some examples include educating the HR Business Partner’s and management on the ROI for an assignment vs. the cost of the assignment; ensuring that they are educated on why it’s imperative to do the right thing the first time instead of back tracking and picking up the pieces of a failed relocation; when the level of benefits didn’t align with the needs of the employee. Another challenge is the shift in who is moving. There has been a large shift from executive/experienced workers to millennials. Millennials have less, require fewer benefits, but need more hand-holding and instant gratification. I think this shift will be difficult for some Relocation Management Companies (RMC) too. RMCs that are getting on board with the online tools and using technology to allow the millennial transferees to dictate the level of personal touch will be ahead of the game.
Q: What trends do you see coming for global mobility programmes?
A: I see a potential change in how shipping companies handle their business. This too is a millennial shift. With smaller shipments, and little to nothing to store, shipping companies are going to have to get creative on how they make their money. I see more Crates and Freights, less long term and short term storage needs from the “big shippers” and more furniture allowances vs. a shipment altogether.
A big trend I see coming is a shift in the workforce and needs of the transferee. We have a younger, mobile workforce upon us, those willing to be fluid and move about the world and take on the challenge/adventure of a new location. One who will require far less than an established employee who potentially owns a home and has family. I also see a shift in how assignments are handled. I believe with the younger workforce there will be far more localisations vs. true assignees, remaining on home country payroll. I see mobility really having a stake in the game, a seat at the table when it comes to making decisions for the Company’s mobile workforce. Being able to leverage our knowledge to help the Company determine the ROI on a move is critical.
Q: What advice would you give somebody new to a career in the Global Mobility Industry?
A: Keep your mind open to a constantly evolving industry. I see so many Global Mobility Professionals become jaded and closed minded to the inevitable, change. If it’s not hurting you, it’s not hurting the employee or the Company, and not setting precedence for the program, than consider the possibility and keep an open mind. Don’t allow an old industry to dictate the future of your program. Stay inventive and do what works if it doesn’t fit the cookie-cutter policies you see out there.
Q: Based on your experience in tech companies and the bay area, how do you view the talent mobility management in tech companies as compared to other industries?
A: We are far more aggressive in terms of offerings and being open to doing what’s in the employee’s best interest vs. a sole focus on cost containment. Keeping costs down is a huge factor at any company but I feel tech companies have a bit more flexibility in terms of making sure they’re aligning the needs of the employee with the Company’s budget. I see some non-tech companies so cost driven it can negatively impact an employee’s move. Doing the right thing up front aids in retention, and saves money down the line. When you think of the turnover, cost per hire, the loss in productivity because the employee has to focus on their move not their new role, and the money wasted moving someone who leaves within a year because they fee disgruntled for not being taken care of upfront; it’s a no-brainer. Offering a package that aligns with the needs of the employee up front, can be huge cost savings down the line.