Importance of Global Onboarding

August 14, 2023
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India's tech sector has witnessed a meteoric rise in recent years, solidifying its position on the global map. As home to a vast pool of tech talent and innovative start-ups, India’s tech industry revenue is projected to cross $245 billion in 2023

The government's Digital India initiative has further catalysed this growth, fostering an environment conducive to technological innovation and infrastructure development. Bangalore, often dubbed the "Silicon Valley of India," alongside cities like Hyderabad and Pune, has become a hub for tech giants and budding entrepreneurs. 

With its blend of skilled human resources, cost-effectiveness, and a rapidly digitising economy, India is a pivotal player in global tech expansion. Many US and UK companies now look forward to adding Indian talent to their workforce by undertaking global onboarding. 

What is Global Onboarding? 

Global onboardin refers to the process of integrating new employees who are hired in different countries or regions into a company. It encompasses familiarising these employees with their roles and the company culture and a deep understanding of local cultural nuances, legal compliance, and other region-specific considerations. 

This process ensures that international hires are well-integrated, productive, and aligned with the company's overarching objectives.

In contrast to regular onboarding, which typically focuses on inducting new hires within a domestic context, global onboarding demands a more comprehensive approach. It requires employers to be attuned to the diverse cultures, languages, employment laws, and business practices their international hires bring. 

Where regular onboarding might delve into company culture, job expectations, and some training, global onboarding extends to understanding visa regulations, cross-cultural training, handling different time zones, and sometimes even language barriers.

Importance of Global Onboarding 

Companies often tap into talent pools across continents in today's globalised business landscape. As firms diversify their workforce, ensuring that international employees are effectively integrated becomes paramount. This is where global onboarding steps in, proving crucial for many reasons:

1. Cultural Integration: 66% of C-suite executives and board members emphasise culture as a factor in performance than the organisation’s strategy or operating model. International employees come from diverse cultural backgrounds, each carrying its unique set of values, norms, and work ethics. Global onboarding programmes are tailored to bridge cultural gaps, fostering understanding and mutual respect. Without it, misinterpretations and miscommunications can arise, potentially hindering collaboration and team cohesion. 

2. Rapid Productivity: Transitioning to a new role is challenging; it's even more so when adapting to a different corporate culture or perhaps even a new country. Effective global onboarding accelerates this adaptation process, ensuring that international hires swiftly become productive assets to their teams.

3. Legal and Compliance Awareness: Different countries have distinct employment laws, taxation rules, and business practices. Global onboarding educates employees about their rights and responsibilities and safeguards companies from unintentional legal breaches.

4. Retention and Loyalty: A well-structured onboarding process can significantly impact an employee's tenure. Companies can bolster employee satisfaction and retention rates by ensuring international hires feel welcomed, valued, and well-equipped to perform their roles. Work Institute’s Onboarding Studies find that employees with a great experience in the first 90 days of employment are ten times more likely to stay for a long time than those without. 

5. Risk Mitigation: Navigating the complexities of international employment can be daunting. Effective onboarding reduces the risks associated with cross-border hiring, from compliance issues to cultural faux pas.

6. Building Global Teams: In an era where cross-functional global teams are common, cohesive onboarding processes ensure that teams, although separated by geography, are unified in purpose, direction, and collaborative spirit.

Key Elements of Onboarding International Employees

Key Elements of Onboarding International Employees

“Creating a well-crafted process and structure, preparing detailed training documentation, and hiring the right person are the secrets to success,” says Inna Shevchenko, the CMO at iGMS

Onboarding goes beyond the mere induction of international hires. The global onboarding process ensures these international employees are integrated seamlessly. 

Let's delve into the key elements that constitute this process:

1. Eligibility and Basic Details Documentation: The foundation of global onboarding is the meticulous verification of an employee's eligibility and documents to work in a specific country. This includes ensuring that all required visas, work permits, and other relevant documentation are in order. Gathering basic details like contact information, emergency contacts, and banking details is vital to ensure smooth administrative processes.

2. Employment Contract: Drafting a comprehensive employment contract tailored to the host country's legal landscape is important. This contract should detail terms of employment, job responsibilities, duration, confidentiality clauses, and any other company-specific provisions.

3. Compensation: Addressing compensation in global onboarding necessitates a keen understanding of the local market standards and currency rates. The package should be competitive and consider the base salary and potential bonuses, allowances, and other benefits. Additionally, understanding the local tax implications for the employer and the employee is vital to avoid discrepancies.

4. Compliance: Adhering to the host country's legal and regulatory requirements is non-negotiable. Ensure all employment practices, from hiring to termination, align with local labour laws. This also includes adhering to local taxation structures, social security contributions, and any other statutory requirements pertinent to employment.

5. Insurance: Providing adequate insurance coverage, whether health, life or any other relevant insurance, is an integral part of onboarding international employees. Given that insurance structures and providers can vary widely between countries, choosing a plan that offers comprehensive coverage tailored to the employee's location is essential.

6. Cultural Training: Every country and region carries its set of cultural nuances, work ethics, and communication styles. Offering new hires insight into these aspects helps mitigate potential misunderstandings and fosters a more inclusive work environment. This training should also introduce international employees to the company's culture, ensuring alignment with its values and ethos.

7. Performance Expectations and Feedback Mechanisms: Clearly outlining what is expected regarding job performance, goals, and milestones ensures that international hires have a roadmap to follow. Simultaneously, establishing a robust feedback mechanism allows for consistent communication, improved performance and a sense of belongingness among the employees.

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How Can Rapid Assist in the Global Onboarding Process?

Expanding into the bustling tech landscape of India requires more than just identifying talent; it involves navigating the intricate legal, cultural, and administrative challenges in international onboarding. This is where an Employer of Record (EOR) like Rapid steps in, with 20+ years of local expertise to streamline the process.

Rapid’s standout offering is its integrated HR platform, a centralised system designed to manage every aspect of human resource management. From employee onboarding and training modules to performance tracking and exit processes, this platform is tailored to the Indian market. 

They also offer comprehensive health insurance and localised benefits boosting employee satisfaction and retention rates. Payroll management, especially in a foreign country, can be complex, riddled with legal and tax implications. Rapid ensures that all payroll processes – from salary disbursements to tax deductions – comply with Indian regulations. 

To expand into the potential of Indian tech talent, let Rapid take care of the intricate onboarding and employee management details. 

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