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Indonesia Recruiting & Hiring

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Congratulations on your expansion to Indonesia! Growing your company across borders is an exciting time for you and your business, but there’s still plenty to learn. You need to hire employees and ensure you meet all of Indonesia’s employment compliance laws, on top of running a new location in a new country. That’s why Globalization Partners offers Indonesia hiring outsourcing. As a global PEO, we will hire talented employees in Indonesia to fill your open positions, as well as take on matters of compliance.

Recruiting in Indonesia

Business etiquette in Indonesia differs from that of Western countries. If you want to ensure a successful recruitment process for your new business, you’ll need to develop an understanding of the country’s cultural nuances before you start meeting with candidates. Keep these guidelines in mind as you begin interviewing potential hires in the country.

1. Offer a Light Handshake

As in many other countries, handshakes are the accepted greeting for business associates in Indonesia. However, you should be aware of a few related nuances. While many cultures prefer a firm handshake, that’s not the case in Indonesia. Instead, you should apply very light pressure.

You should also keep in mind that when a man and woman greet each other in a professional setting, the man should wait for the woman to initiate the handshake. Women may prefer to nod in acknowledgment instead of shaking hands.

2. Avoid Rushing the Process

In Indonesia, business relationships are based on trust. You should take the time to get to know candidates on a personal level before jumping into the professional aspects of hiring. You should also plan to hold multiple meetings before you get a decision from a potential hire. If you try to hurry the process along or force a decision, your company might miss out on an excellent candidate.

3. Be Mindful of Religion

While you should avoid asking direct questions about religion, it does play a significant role in day-to-day life for many people in Indonesia. You should be mindful of certain customs during the recruitment process. The majority of the country’s population is Muslim, so you should avoid scheduling meetings and interviews during daily prayer times.

You should also be mindful of dietary restrictions if you plan to share a meal with new hires or prospective employees. Muslims typically avoid eating pork and drinking alcohol. Many local restaurants will not feature these items on the menu, but you should refrain from ordering them if they do.

4. Consider Your Body Language

Body language can be one of the most complicated aspects of an unfamiliar culture. In Indonesia, it is considered rude to show the soles of your feet or allow your feet to point toward another person. Resist the temptation to cross your legs while sitting. Instead, leave both of your feet on the floor and keep your posture as straight as possible. Doing so is a way to show respect.

You should also avoid using your left hand to point, touch anyone, or receive anything. The left hand is considered unclean in Indonesia, so use your right hand or both hands.

A Look at the Recruitment Process in Indonesia

Understanding Indonesian culture will help you through the interpersonal aspect of the recruitment process. That said, you should also take some time to learn about the practical side of staffing. It’s important to familiarize yourself with the laws surrounding the hiring process in any new country. If your company is non-compliant, you may face fees and an even lengthier setup process for your new business.

Legal Requirements During the Recruitment Process

Under the Indonesian constitution and labor laws, employees are protected against any form of discrimination throughout the hiring process and the course of their employment. Types of discrimination include unfair treatment based on the following characteristics:

  • Ethnicity
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Skin color
  • Religion
  • Nationality
  • Origin
  • Politics
  • Disability
  • HIV-positive status

You should avoid asking candidates questions about any of the above characteristics. If any of these subjects do come up in casual conversation with prospective employees, make sure you do not factor them into any hiring decisions.

How to Hire Indonesian Employees

Understanding Indonesian culture is essential to hiring and negotiating with employees. The country focuses on the group instead of the individual, so businesses are often hierarchical, and employees care about “face.” Indirect communication is normal, and employees that tell you “yes” may often mean no.

You should also prepare for long negotiations over an employment contract, as deliberations are a sign of respect. Indonesians view time as a fluid concept and believe everything will happen in its own time and space, so punctuality is not a concern. Instead of rushing through business transactions, take the time to build relationships.

Indonesia Employment Compliance Laws

You must follow Indonesia employment compliance laws starting with an employment contract. You can use a fixed-term employment agreement as long as it’s written in the official language, Bahasa Indonesia. The contract cannot exceed two years, but you are allowed to extend it for up to one year.

Employment contracts can also last for an unspecified period of time. When you hire an employee in Indonesia under this contract, you should include information regarding compensation, benefits, termination requirements, and more. Make sure you state all compensation amounts in Indonesia rupiah instead of foreign currency.

How Do You Onboard Employees in This Country?

Once you understand how to hire employees in Indonesia, you need to onboard them. Indonesia’s laws do not mandate one way to onboard employees, so you can choose the option that is best for your company. Since negotiations can be complex, we recommend reviewing the agreed-upon employment contract together during the employee’s first day or week.

You can also choose to onboard multiple employees at one time. This approach will streamline the process for you and help new hires bond with each other over their employment with your company.

The Benefit of Indonesia Hiring Outsourcing Services

If you opt for Indonesia hiring outsourcing services with Globalization Partners, you can hire employees and start working faster. You will not have to establish a subsidiary to start working in the country as we use our existing subsidiary to run your business. Our Employer of Record platform means we will hire employees through a compliant process and assign them to work for you. You only need to worry about building up a new location.

Globalization Partners Can Help You Expand

Globalization Partners understands all of Indonesia’s employment compliance laws, and we’ll help you hire top talent quickly and compliantly. Contact us today to learn more.

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