The influence of expatriate and repatriate experiences on career advancement and repatriate retention

Maria L. Kraimer, Margaret A. Shaffer, Mark C. Bolino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

157 Scopus citations


We address repatriate retention from a career advancement perspective by developing a model that analyzes the effect of expatriate experiences and organizational career support on repatriates' career advancement upon return to the home country. Career advancement, in turn, is expected to affect the repatriate's perceived underemployment and turnover intentions. We collected data from a sample of 84 recently repatriated employees. Results revealed a curvilinear relationship between the number of international assignments and career advancement upon repatriation. Results also showed that developmental expatriate assignments were positively related to career advancement while the acquisition of managerial skills was negatively related to career advancement. Acquiring cultural skills, completing assignment objectives, and organizational career support did not relate to career advancement. In terms of outcomes, we found that perceived underemployment mediated the relationship between career advancement and turnover intentions. A lower level of organizational career support also resulted in greater turnover intentions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)27-47
Number of pages21
JournalHuman Resource Management
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology
  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


  • Career advancement
  • Repatriation
  • Retention


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