Travelling is good for your mind, soul, and happiness. Experiences give you a richer tapestry of life. Remember what it’s like to open your eyes in a foreign land? Wrestle with the language or culture? Meet a group of strangers and learn new things? Many of us are missing even the unpleasant aspects of travelling like getting lost and tiny airplane seats. Travelling is a great way to put life in perspective, but it’s sadly missing for most of us right now. And since personal travel has come to a grinding halt, international work opportunities have also dried up.
The pandemic has reduced international mobility drastically. Over 2/3 of companies have delayed all or some international assignments. Sometimes work assignments have been delayed or shuffled to a new location. 56% of companies cancelled all or some short-term assignments. But sometimes, that’s not an option. And when there’s a will, there’s a way.
At Easy Skill, we know that projects are successful because they have the right people in the right place at the right time. Our clients depend on this. And so we never abandoned our pledge to move people where they’re needed most even when it seemed impossible. Today we’d like to introduce you to one of our global mobility victories – Vincent Giraud. He relocated successfully from France to New Caledonia – a COVID-free country.
COVID complicates mobility seriously.
Since March 2020, bringing foreign talent to New Caledonia is extremely difficult. With a two-week mandatory quarantine in a dedicated hotel, even those who manage to obtain an approval have a tough road ahead. When determining eligibility for relocation exemptions, the qualifying criteria is more difficult, the case must be solid, and the time to process the request can be longer than usual. To add complexity, the number of entry approvals is not defined by the number of seats on the plane, but by the number of hotel rooms available for quarantine.
Be a sought-after expert.
When becoming an expat gets more competitive, the rarest experts are best placed to win the race. With a degree in data science and working as an IT expert specialising in SAP systems, Vincent Giraud works in a highly competitive sector. The growth rate in data science and other mathematical occupations is projected at 31%, which is one of the highest among all other sectors. As a growing field, the IT skills gap is also growing worldwide and nationally within New Caledonia. For our client, finding someone with highly specialised skills - just like Vincent - was critical to building a high performing IT department in one of the largest mining sites on the island.
An impossible mandate to deliver.
Like most companies, the HR department was struggling to find the right local talent and yet mobilising international talent seemed next to impossible. After an extensive search, we managed to uncover a few hard-to-find SAP experts. The client was thrilled to have the luxury of choice and immediately felt relief when we shared Vincent’s profile. He was the trusted expert they had been missing in their SAP team.
Hard work before a dream comes true.
Vincent had always wanted to take his career to the skies and so he accepted all of the challenges in making his dream come true. Even after signing his job offer and booking his flight tickets, his dream hung in the air waiting for a negative COVID test. A positive result would mean cancelled flights and postpone his relocation. Luckily for him, the planets were aligned to make his dream come true. “My biggest dream has always been to become an expat!” shares Vincent.
Unusual welcome pack.
Arriving in a country with a strict two-week quarantine in a hotel room isn’t the ideal welcome experience. “Thankfully someone from my new company brought me a computer so that I could start reading more about the company and start preparing for my role,” says Vincent. Unlike most first days at new jobs, the lack of socialisation was challenging. Meeting colleagues and forming new relationships is a key part of the traditional onboarding experience. Luckily, this was the final piece of the hard work to be completed before discovering his delightful new home.
Discovering real life.
When you accept an expat role, there’s a lot of the unknown. Gaps exist between your research, stories, and reality. But you only figure this out when you arrive and discover it with your own eyes. Although he’s still working in IT, there’s a big learning curve for the mining site and the different SAP modules. “I’m an experienced SAP professional, but still learning a lot every day,” he shares. The greater the effort, the more rewarding your success. And this is exactly how Vincent and all expats are feeling given the complexities of relocating during intense travel restrictions.
Adventures are available now! Check out our current openings here and share your CV! You never know where it will take you.
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