How to Hire International Employees
today at 10:07 am
Hiring new employees looks a lot different today than it did a few decades ago. Instead of headhunting in your local area or networking across your state, the internet has turned the entire globe into a pool of potential new hires. Bringing an international employee onto your team isn’t as easy as hiring a citizen of your home country. However, there are so many talented people it’s often well worth the extra work.
Here are some easy to follow steps to help you expand your recruitment pool and hire international employees. There are ways to simplify the process and find the ideal match for your company.
Start Early and Don’t Rush
Hiring international workers isn’t like tossing a job offer to the first person who walks in off the street. It is often a long and involved process, and trying to jump the line can have negative consequences for both your company and your new hire. Even if you disregard the time it takes to interview and vet someone, bringing in an international employee can take months as you navigate immigration, visa applications and other legal requirements.
Don’t rush the process. You’ll end up causing more problems than you solve. Instead, create a checklist of everything you know you’ll need to do. Have someone with experience in international hiring go over it for you, just to make sure you’re not missing anything. This is a step well worth taking.
Hiring for in-Person vs. Remote
Remote work is growing in popularity, regardless of where your employees live. In addition to keeping people safe through events like the current global pandemic, on average, businesses are saving $11,000 per year by working with remote teams instead of in person. You might think that hiring international workers for remote work might be the solution to your immigration and visa problems. However, it presents an entirely new set of challenges for you to navigate.
Pay close attention to the laws and regulations surrounding remote work in your new hire’s home country, as well as the U.S. tax law as it pertains to international employees. Although you never have to worry about applying for a work visa for your new hire, you’ll still be responsible for reporting their income, even if they’re not eligible for withholding as a non-U.S. citizen.
Setting up a New Business Entity
One way to overcome some of the challenges of hiring an international team member is to set yourself up as a new business entity in their home country. In addition to making it easier to hire internationally, this step opens up new markets for you to explore. It can be a fantastic tool if you’re planning to take your entire business international instead of just tapping into the local talent pool.
Just like bringing a new hire to the United States, setting yourself up as an international entity takes time. In the best case, you’ll be looking at six to 12 months before you can start operations. Again, don’t rush things. The last thing you need is to make a mistake and have to start the process over. Your ideal hire might be willing to wait while you set up a business in their home country, but no one can afford to wait forever, especially if a better deal comes along.
Cover All Your Legal Bases
When you hire a citizen of your home country, there are still hoops you have to jump through and processes you have to follow to ensure everything is legal and aboveboard. With international hires, you have to do all that and more to bring your employee to the country legally.
Make sure you cover all your legal bases, both for the U.S. and your employee’s home country. If you’re not sure where to start or worry you’re missing a step, consult with someone who is experienced with international hiring practices. You may even want to talk to someone in your employee’s home country, just to make sure you’re not overlooking any local laws or regulations that could come back to bite you later on.
Work With An Employer of Record (EOR)
This is one loophole that many people overlook when they’re trying to bring international talent onto their teams. An employer of record (EOR) acts as a middleman in your new hire’s home nation. Instead of going through all the steps to help someone immigrate to your country while you’re navigating labor laws, an EOR does all the hard work for you. They’re available in many European nations, and they essentially hire your worker, covering all the paperwork and legal practices, and then assign them to your company.
This takes all the guesswork out of hiring someone internationally. You can tap into your new hire’s talent while the EOR handles all the compliance issues and takes on all the risk. Plus, when you use an EOR, you can bring a new hire on in days instead of weeks or months. This makes things ideal for all parties.
Tap Into a Nearly Limitless Talent Pool
Bringing a new employee into your family is never something to take lightly. You want to find someone who fits with your values and culture and will bring something new and innovative to your company. Hiring internationally might come with its own challenges, but it gives you access to a nearly limitless talent pool to help you find that perfect fit.
You don’t have to tackle this alone. We definitely recommend seeking the assistance of someone who has experience with international hiring if this is your first time looking outside of your home country. Once you get the hang of it, it’s easier to navigate the ins and outs of international hiring.
You don’t have to limit yourself to employees in your home country. There’s a nearly limitless talent pool out there just waiting for you to tap into. Broaded your horizons and start looking outside your borders, and you might be surprised by what you find.