Monalisa reflects on her International Mobility Journey

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#LifeIsOn…We say it with pride, because along with many virtues and values, being humane is one of the most beautiful values Schneider Electric as an organisation has ingrained. And through this blog I wish to share one such wonderful (nerve wrecking 😊) international mobility journey they supported me through.

My journey started with Schneider over 5 years ago in India. After working on a few very interesting profiles in India and then Poland, this year I got an exciting opportunity to move to London and join the Digital Energy Business.

My Relocation Journey

As you can imagine, this can be stressful at the best of times, but along came the support from Ian Allan Smith and Debra Tooze from International Mobility. They were a brilliant support with all the paper-work and appointments with the visa centres, this made process smooth for me and my family. All the timelines were met and as the final decision on visa came as positive, the last leg was in sight. All we needed was to get the vignette (entry visa) on all our Indian passports.

With my family and me in Warsaw, Poland, our passports had to go to Berlin, Germany for the stamping (the visa centre receives the finalised vignette from the Sheffield office of the Home Office). All this happens within 4-5 working days, and as expected, the passports for my family members arrived stamped and ready to go. However my passport didn’t turn up!

The Roller Coaster

Now starts the roller-coaster ride! We waited for 10 working days, and then after a lot of chasing with the visa centre my passport came back…but guess what…NO vignette! And that was unbelievable.

At this point we had already passed my visa start date, my work date in Poland was coming to an end and I was supposed to join UK from 1st of July’22. My household stuff was all packed and gone, the air tickets were getting booked, cancelled and re-booked, but still no vignette. Nobody knew what went wrong and where!

But have no fear…Ian and Debra to the rescue! First of all, they made all the arrangements so that I could join the UK remotely from Poland and made sure that I was mentally at peace and comfortable in whatever way necessary. The option was also given to shift to another accommodation and any other help I needed.

Ian worked day and night, wrote to all high and mighty of the Home Office (including the office of the Home Secretary) to help us resolve this unfortunate situation. Within several days of his persistence, Ian had confirmation from the Home Office, that the vignette would be reprinted but also sent directly to the Warsaw Visa Centre instead of Berlin. Making things much easier for me, and finally making my international mobility journey a success! I arrived in the UK 15 days later than planned, but safe and sound, looking forward to starting my new role.

With this rarest of the rare incidents, it was the above and beyond attitude and support from the International Mobility team that made this a success.

‘What started as a half-joke about contacting the office of the Home Secretary turned out to be the resolution we needed!’

Ian Allan Smith


Looking back

There were 3 things to remember here:

My visa situation was unheard of

Meaning there were no guidelines on how to resolve or who to speak to. It was our value of ‘Act like Owner’ which drove us to take various actions on our gut feelings to solve the problem.

My personal circumstances

I was an Indian citizen, staying in Poland without my passport for 3 weeks, which meant that any emergency in Poland or in India, would have been a difficult situation.

However my trust and confidence in Schneider Electric helped sail through these days, knowing very well that the organisation and all the team members will support my family and I.

Same goal…different processes

Although it is the same organisation, the government employment & tax conditions, including the visa and immigration processes are very different and tricky across countries. Ian and Debra acted as a big pillar of support, and with the right solutions, all of the troubles were taken care of.

‘Learn Everyday’ I believe was the most important factor here. Taking each day as it comes and learning new things to sort and solve the situation.


So here we go… the excitement continues and my journey has now begun with the Schneider Electric UK team. #SEGreatPeople

Click here to find out more on how you can get started:


Profile photo of Monalisa Badola

About Author

Based in London, Monalisa Badola is the Digital Power Business Director, UK & Ireland. Having Cross domain, cross-industry and cross-functional experience, she thrives in challenging situations, giving every new task a fun filled learning experience for herself and the team. She loves travelling across countries, learning and understanding different cultures. In her spare time she likes reading books, is a trained singer who also loves to PAINT.


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