Tips for Boosting Retention of Your Expat Workforce

Patty Johnson-Vazquez

Expat employees are a valued resource for your company. As they contribute their skills to your organization, ensure you meet their needs to help retain them for the long haul. In Global Talent Perspectives 2016, a survey VISANOW conducted in partnership with Harris Poll, 700 visa and green card holders told us what it’s really like to start a new job in the United States as a sponsored employee.

Expats integrate well into company culture — and will stay for competitive pay, rewarding job duties and great co-workers.


The 23% who feel they fit in somewhat or do not fit in at all point to several ways to solve the problem.

Visa holders are much more likely to want additional cultural assimilation training, with 33% identifying it as most important, compared to 9% of green card holders. STEM workers are also more likely to want assimilation training — 31% say it’s most important to fitting in, compared to 15% of non-STEM workers.

  1. Additional orientation training
  2. Cultural assimilation training
  3. Language classes
  4. An established mentorship program
  5. Amenities, such as a prayer/meditation room, authentic cuisine, etc.



Employer Takeaway
Despite some employers’ concerns about retention after the cost of sponsorship, expats typically stay with their companies for a long time. Still, not all visa holders feel they fit in, making it even more difficult to retain them with poor company culture or less-than-competitive pay.

For a closer look at how to retain your expat workforce, read our full report, Global Talent Perspectives 2016.

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