Global Operations Director for Immigration talks borders, business and bureaucracy

Roberta Carnaccini on the challenges of her role and the latest trends in global mobility

Roberta Carnaccini
Roberta Carnaccini, Global Operations Director for Immigration

From on-the-job training to opening new branches, and hiring a workforce, the reasons companies decide to transfer employees are varied, but they all need assistance by industry professionals to ensure that all moves take place within the limits of legality. While markets are increasingly global and boundaries are increasingly fluid, regulations are increasingly rigid. That’s why we are seeing more professionals specializing in corporate immigration management within the mobility industry. 

Immigration is certainly a hot topic of these times: from the emergency management of refugees in Europe, to the blockade imposed by US President Donald Trump on citizens of seven Arab countries. To help support businesses in this rugged terrain, Crown World Mobility employs experts such as Roberta Carnaccini, Global Operations Director for Immigration. 

What does a Director for Immigration really do?

The trend towards internationalization and globalization of markets inevitably leads to increased mobility of people. "Crown World Mobility is present in 54 Countries around the world so lots of move combinations exist," explains Roberta. The target is to "stay in the rules and ensure the legality of any transfer, whether fixed or indefinite." She adds, "the issues to be attended to are mainly bureaucratic and legislative, but that’s not to neglect contractual conditions, for which you must have a good understanding of the local economy.” 

Also, when a person is transferred for a long time, in addition to their work, they bring other relevant aspects of their life. Roberta explains, "it's important to provide a full service from A to Z. We can help them to search for a new home and support the sale of the previous one. We also organize car transfers; changing the number plate and organizing all compulsory documentation." She adds, "sometimes it is also necessary to transfer the person’s employees, such as their child minder. Then you have to consider the family and related services: children need schools and doctors and pets require vaccinations, visas and permits to travel." 

Appropriate insurance, cross-cultural training services and language courses are all added to the transfer of goods and materials, which has always been the core business of Crown World Mobility. "This is made possible by working with a single company that, thanks to over 50 years of market experience, is able to offer a variety of services in an excellent way," says Roberta.

On-the-job training around the world

Roberta highlights the importance of using employees in locations around the world to provide on-the-job training to colleagues. "There are countries like Kenya, where we organize training paths for apprentices, so that they can translate the work we do to their own country. These training projects are conceived so that those who go abroad provide added value when they return." Many companies opt ​​for this type of temporary training, where those who already have the experience move to provide training and know-how to those who need it. For example, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Angola are all regions rich in oil and oil hydrocarbons that attract many companies from all over the world, creating jobs. "The target of such strategies is to protect your talents and limit as far as possible the escape of talents. In this way, you can conduct training with the staff and technology available in the context of origin and it supports the country’s economy," Roberta explains.  

Permanent transfers to open new markets

Regarding longer transfers, Roberta says, "these may last for a few years and over or indefinitely. In these cases, the work contract becomes local and it’s often because the company could not find the necessary resources locally." Roberta explains that these kinds of contracts are a growing trend: "they are particularly popular in countries that are experiencing economic development, such as Latin America, the protagonist of strong market acceleration. Venezuela is the exception in this region, not only because of the problems of civil order due to protracted protest movements against President Nicolás Maduro, but because there are problems in bringing revenue into the country." Brazil and Mexico in particular, are major regions of Latin America where markets are opening up. 

Looking at mobility in Asia, it’s undoubtedly the Country of the Dragon that’s showing a sharp increase. Roberta says, “China today needs a lot of workers, at all company levels, since there are a high number of industries that are developing at the moment." Among the most unexpected places for increased mobility in Asia, Roberta cites Mongolia, which she says, “has investors and is thus opening doors that we had not even considered." 

Even the U.S., where, Roberta says, “the European perception is that the current President is not exactly open to foreigners,” is seeing increased mobility. She explains, “it is in fact still a target for professionals of a large number of companies all over the world. Of course, there may be restrictions, even for European citizens who have, for example, spent a period of time in specific states," says Roberta.

At the same time, there are interesting trends in Europe. Roberta explains, "In the past few years, Italy has been a region of growing interest and in Portugal and Ireland, tax incentives are attracting the attention of foreign companies." The most significant impact in Europe seems to be caused by Brexit, in relation to which, Roberta claims, you notice, "a strong skepticism all over the U.K.. We are seeing a considerable decrease in moves, which are directed instead towards other EU states. The context is characterized by a strong sense of uncertainty."

An analytical eye and passion to guide immigration

Roberta admits that she and her colleagues struggle with the complexity of issues that a Global Operations Director for Immigration must keep under control. She says, "It is necessary not only to stay constantly up to date on issues bureaucratic and legal, but to have an analytical eye capable of reading and listening to everything that happens in the world in matters of war, diplomacy, openness or closure of the borders from the commercial point of view, because it could significantly affect our job."

Roberta also has her own reasons for keeping abreast of world mobility issues. She explains, "I'm an expatriate in the United States, and I have finished submitting my application for American citizenship." Thanks to this personal experience, Roberta has developed the ability to relate with customers, empathizing with them and understanding the dynamics of their situations. Roberta also has almost ten years of customer experience from working for an American multinational energy supplier. She says, "At that time I was the one calling because I needed help in delicate moments. Now that I am on the other side, I can really understand where my customers are coming from." She adds, "an aspect of no secondary importance in our business is also a chance to offer local support, so that customers can physically reach us. This is really helpful in the destination country if there is a crisis," concludes Roberta. 

An analytical eye, a passion for travel, bag-loads of personal understanding and experience with customers: these are the ingredients to navigate a continuously changing global situation and best serve as a Global Operations Director for Immigration. 

Roberta Carnaccini

Roberta Carnaccini, a native of Emilia-Romagna, Italy, has a Masters in Modern Foreign Languages ​​and Literature from the University of Bologna. Subsequently, she has completed a Postgraduate Degree in Communication and Public Relations in Milan. A lover of foreign cultures, she began to travel as a teenager and has never stopped. Work and studies brought her to Germany, France, the U.K., Ireland, the Philippines and the U.S.. After 13 years of experience in the immigration sector, she has gained dual citizenship as an Italian-American and has taken a large number of trips throughout the globe. Carnaccini worked for an important immigration company in Germany before transferring to Crown World Mobility in January 2017, where she currently holds the position of Global Operations Director for Immigration.

Click here to read the original article in Italian from Persone e Conoscenze.