February 2023

Webinar Explains How Companies Are Focused on Globalization of Teams

By Bryan Kirk

In the on-demand Global Payroll Management Institute (GPMI) webinar, “How Borderless Hiring Can Help Build the Best Teams on Earth,” sponsored by Omnipresent, experts addressed the significance of global companies that are adopting a remote or hybrid work model, and how the globalization of teams has fostered borderless hiring.

Prior to the webinar instruction, attendees were asked if their companies currently hire employees outside the United States or Canada, and if so, what is the percentage of those employees they hire.

Approximately 26% of those responding said their company hires about 10% of its workforce outside the United States and Canada. By comparison, 48% of those who responded said their company doesn’t hire outside the United States and Canada. However, those numbers clearly don’t tell the whole story for most other global companies.

Kate Gray, Director of People and Talent at Omnipresent, said the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic has not only shown that remote working in a corporate environment can be successful, but that global companies are going further and hiring across borders to build strong global teams.

“The pandemic accelerated existing remote work trends, and now we are on the cusp of something new—the globalization of teams,” she said. “Companies were forced to try out this remote environment, and many companies were skeptical … we are now seeing a shift. It’s not just remote work, it’s working from anywhere in the world and the emergence of truly global teams across all industries.”

Gray said as remote working has become more globalized, companies realize these changes can drive global business innovation and growth can positively impact society and the global economy.

The globalization of teams is a mega-trend that is following on the previous major waves of globalization, like the emergence of container shipping that globalized trade in the 1950s, the emergence of the internet with the information superhighway in the 1990s, and the recent and continued growth of video conferencing and remote teams working globally in the 2020s.

“This new globalization will revolutionize knowledge industries, so technology, media, law, research and development, programing ... these industries are the product of intellectual collaboration,” Gray said.

The globalization of teams, according to Gray, will also transform numerous other service professions that are typically conducted face to face, such as consulting, education, counseling, and corporate management.

“There are massive benefits to opening up to hiring a borderless talent pool, and we are seeing this trend a lot,” Gray said. “We’ve talked about how this is great for the employer, but it’s great for the employee, too. This increase employee satisfaction and flexibility.”

Of course, this shift indicates how involved payroll must be in the globalization process of companies that are building strong borderless teams.

Hiring remotely has a massive impact on all aspects of HR and payroll. For example, taxation, health benefits, and payroll will almost always differ by country. This poses a new compliance risk for businesses that will only increase with the rise of remote international teams.

Nurul Zin, Payroll Director at Omnipresent, agreed that the COVID-19 pandemic had proved that remote work for many corporations was not only possible, but in many cases profitable.

“We can all work remotely effectively” Zin said. “Companies are not entirely restricted to hiring in a specific location anymore, so we tend to see more and more globalization of teams in order to bring in the right talent from all over the world.”

Zin said the new dynamic has created a demand on the payroll world that requires continuous expertise on statutory requirements and local legislation for various countries, especially those that tend to be “very specific to the country or the continent.”

“For instance, the payroll in the U.S. and Canada can be quite different than the payroll we have in Europe or Asia-Pacific,” she said. “More automation and integration are needed, especially when we are dealing with the volume, in terms of the number of countries or even the size of the employee population. So, experience and familiarity are the key to payroll [success] these days.”

Zin added that those companies that are looking to expand globally and building their teams should only rely on highly experienced global payroll professionals.

“It’s not just about continuous learning,” she said. “For us to be able to execute successful global payroll operations, it is crucial for us to have that experience with various country requirements.”

Register for the on-demand webinar, “How Borderless Hiring Can Help Build the Best Teams on Earth,” today.

Bryan Kirk is the Senior Writer and Editor of Membership Publications for the Global Payroll Management Institute (GPMI) and the American Payroll Association (APA).
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