Enticing Aussie professionals to return home an HR no-brainer

by Human Capital01 Aug 2012

Australia is known the world over as the lucky country, and following an exodus of the 20-somethings seeking international experience, the majority of Aussies in the UK see their long-term future down under.

According to new survey findings from recruitment consultancy Robert Walters, who canvassed the opinions of Australians living and working in the UK, Australian professionals are enticed back home due to their family, lifestyle options, career progression opportunities and the strong economy.

Despite the apparent desire of Australians to return home from the UK there was concern among 61% of those surveyed that there are better career opportunities available in the UK. However, 60% of respondents do believe that they will get paid more in Australia if they return home.

Given the expenditure on campaigns to entice overseas talent to live and work in Australia, the findings suggest a more targeted approach could be just as well aimed at our own expats. “Our research has shown us that organisations should highlight great work/life balance and career progression in attraction strategies to convince Australian professionals to return to the local workforce,” Sinead Hourigan from Robert Walters said. Given the sizable community of Australians in the UK and their family ties to Australia, a little push in the right direction may make the difference in enticing them home, she added.

According to the report, HR professionals looking to explore this talent resource should give candidates what they want, namely by highlighting:

Lifestyle, work/life balance and community

The findings show that Australia is attractive to professionals due to the lifestyle it affords them. There needs to be a defined approach to offering a package that not only serves the business and candidate, but their families and lifestyle, with a focus on creating an attractive environment. Ensure your job offer furnishes these with benefits such as flexible work hours, the ability to work from home, good site facilities, etc.

Promote the strong remuneration packages on offer

Due to the strong Australian dollar the days of Aussies working in the UK and tripling their money when they return home are no longer. Professional salaries in Australia are some of the highest in the world so this needs to be used as an attraction strategy for overseas talent. Provide professionals with salary comparisons to highlight key differences in remuneration.

Provide clear career progression

The research identified that one of the main reasons Australian professionals would consider staying in the UK was the superior career progression on offer. Counteract this by offering prospective employees a clear path to progression, growth and education. Not only does this add a sense of value, but a more structured approach to career development can be directly linked to employee retention and engagement.

Promote the quality of living and the strength of the economy

Australian cities consistently rank highly in global surveys measuring quality of living. Australia continues to offer world class working conditions, and is a safe haven from political unrest. We survived the global financial crisis relatively unscathed and the economy is still growing due to the continued resources boom.


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