Expatriates in Japan were one of the business focal points in the aftermath of the March earthquake and tsunami, which sent the country and its people into a crisis that will take years from which to recover. Companies with business activity in Japan have responded to the evolving conditions and changing needs in a number of ways, reveals a pulse survey conducted by Worldwide ERC®.
Respondents to the survey, who had between 1 and 50 employees on assignment before the crisis, largely said they had moved at least some their international assignees out of Japan. Employees were most often relocated back to their home countries. In addition, some or all of the families of those assignees who remained in the country were relocated out of Japan.
For those employees not relocated back to their home countries, companies usually moved them under an extended business travel policy or took a case-by-case approach. Short-term assignments were used less often. For those employees moved back to their home countries, companies also reported offering home leave or simply ended the assignment by repatriating the employee.
To help local employees in Japan, companies are using a variety of approaches that include more frequent communication, the opportunity to move to a less affected area within Japan or overseas for a temporary period of time, and counseling through an EAP or global counseling service.
Worldwide ERC® is the recognized industry authority on relocation and international assignments in the U.S. and major global traffic areas. Worldwide ERC® provides leadership, advocacy, education and networking to global workforce mobility professionals and stakeholders through specialized training, credentialing, meeting events and information exchange. Worldwide ERC® is headquartered in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, with offices in Brussels, Belgium and Shanghai, China. Contact Worldwide ERC® at +1 703 842 3400, or visit www.WorldwideERC.org.