With high venture capital momentum and a talent pool comprised of skilled professionals, the United States is an attractive market for companies looking to expand internationally — and the first stop to kick off Globalization Partners’ webinar series: Talent Hubs Around the World.
Sharing insights in the inaugural episode were Emily Reynolds, Director of Global Services at Cosentus; Ramsey Pryor, Founding Partner at Port of Entry; Colin Murphy, Regional Corporate Manager at SIRVA; and Charles Ferguson, General Manager of Asia-Pacific at Globalization Partners and the webinar’s host and moderator.
It is an ideal time to tap into the U.S. market
Prior to the webinar, companies in attendance were surveyed and asked which of them were planning to enter new markets or hire internationally. Almost 70 percent said that they planned to do so within the next six months. Not surprisingly, the United States was among the top destinations for APAC-based companies aiming to expand outside the region.
According to Charles Ferguson, the U.S. currently presents huge opportunities given its large consumer market and highly trained professionals.
Of course, entering the U.S. market is easier said than done; there are considerable challenges that companies have to tackle, such as local tax regulations, compliance risks, and cultural nuances.
Experts are experts for a reason
According to Emily Reynolds, navigating local labor regulations often entails a great deal of time and resources, which can be minimized by partnering with global growth experts.
This includes teaming up with an Employer of Record like Globalization Partners.
An Employer of Record allows companies to enter new markets without setting up an entity. Globalization Partners serves as the legal employer, handling payroll, taxes, benefits, and compliance, so growing companies can focus on day-to-day tasks.
“If you use an Employer of Record, you don’t have to worry about those things, so it makes [expanding into the U.S.] extremely simple,” Reynolds said.
On the other hand, some companies may prefer to take the traditional expansion route, which typically requires setting up an entity or subsidiary. In this instance, Reynolds stressed the importance of having a trusted advisor who can supply market insights and ensure local requirements are met.
“As long as you have an advisor or someone on your team who truly is an expert and can understand those pieces, it’s going to make setting up so much easier,” Reynolds shared.
Expanding into the U.S. is a measurable risk
Aside from conducting rigorous research, expanding into a new market is also about finding the right talent. Among the potential challenges of hiring remotely include a lack of oversight and expansion delays, which, according to Ramsey Pryor, can be addressed early on by looking for the following traits when sourcing talent:
- A track record of working successfully without constant oversight
- A genuine interest in your company and its business
- A referral network of skilled professionals
Pryor adds that first hires are also critical when gauging a new location, particularly as they will do so using “lightweight” tools, which he defined as methods to test a new market that are less costly than traditional practices like building a physical office in the target location.
Such “lightweight” tools include:
- Market research, which is now more accessible than ever and can supply extensive insights long before a company begins expanding.
- An Employer of Record model that allows companies to test new markets compliantly and risk-free, ensuring legal and taxation requirements are covered.
- Shared workspaces, which are more cost-effective than buying or renting an office.
These tools offer the opportunity to “grow once you see all the signals you want to see, and develop a fuller entry strategy, scaling strategy, and ‘steady state’ strategy,” concluded Pryor.
Successful talent mobility rides on preparation
Every company with international aspirations must develop a global growth plan to achieve success abroad. Such plans often include employee relocation.
Although talent mobility is nothing new, Colin Murphy shared that preparation for this transition varies depending on company regulations, where the company is based, and the U.S. state one wants to expand to.
- Duty of care plans must be carefully crafted to cover:
- Secure travel accommodations to the new location
- Comprehensive immigration support
- Proper insurance for travel and medical needs
- Educational resources about risks in the host location
- Options for secure, safe, and proper housing
- Evacuation support, if needed, due to medical issues, natural disasters, or cases of local unrest
Murphy reminds companies that “global mobility is not a one-size-fits-all approach.”
The beginning is important
For all three panelists, the first few months of a company’s expansion journey sets the tone for how it will fare in the new market.
For Pryor, there is no substitute for spending time on the ground and experiencing things first-hand. “My biggest piece of advice is fly there, spend two or three weeks, and interview all the people you can because you’ll learn so much just during that part,” said Pryor.
Similarly, Reynolds believes that first hires are essential for a successful expansion, as they are responsible for establishing a local presence. Some of their primary responsibilities include setting up contact channels, conducting market research, and reaching out to potential U.S. partners. “Having these basic things is going to get you ahead,” Reynolds added.
Such efforts, however, can be hindered when companies neglect certain legal requirements needed to hire or expand in the U.S.
“The most important thing from a company perspective is compliance,” Murphy highlighted. Companies must ensure due diligence — whether that’s following state regulations or developing duty of care programs for international talent.
With over 84 percent of outsourcing deals coming from the U.S., it is understandable that the country is often overlooked as a potential talent hub. However, there are countless reasons for companies in Asia-Pacific to expand into the U.S.
Hiring talent and doing business in the world’s largest economy can be a daunting process, yet with the proper framework, preparation, and on-the-ground research, expanding into the U.S. can be done smoothly and seamlessly.
Globalization Partners helps companies hire anyone, anywhere, quickly and easily. Our AI-enabled, fully compliant Global Growth Platform™ streamlines and automates recruiting, onboarding, payroll, and hiring in 187 countries. Trust the #1 named industry leader that consistently attains 98% customer satisfaction ratings.
For more information on U.S. expansion, watch the full replay of this webinar here.
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