International Work in Domestic Jobs: an Individual Explanation
journal contributionposted on 05.06.2017, 02:09 authored by Tharenou, Phyllis
This study sought to understand the factors related to the amount of international work individuals perform in domestic jobs, a type of work that is increasing in Australia and elsewhere. Alumni from a single university were surveyed, providing 1046 fulltime domestic employees working in a range of industries. Regression analysis showed that, beyond individual and organizational controls, the amount of international work performed in domestic jobs was related to working in organizations at higher than lower levels of internationalizaton (e.g., MNCs) and human resource support, to working at high managerial levels, and to having international skills (e.g., prior international assignments), but little to attitudes related to international work and none to family factors. As predicted, the managerial level of the job made a difference in response to the work environment. Working in MNCs and domestic organizations with operations abroad was more related to the amount of international work senior managers and executives perform in domestic jobs than lower and middle managers or subordinates and supervisors. Analysis of open-ended responses showed the major reasons Australians would take DJIRs were money, professional development, and challenging content, and the major reasons they would not were family commitments/disruption, in contrast to the quantitative results for family factors. The difference between the quantitative and qualitative results and the importance of family factors, international skills (versus attitudes), and HR support was discussed.