When it Comes to Global Hiring, Let’s Ditch the Word Outsourcing

Employee Benefit NewsBy Employee Benefit News
October 5th, 2023 • 3 Minutes

The word “outsourcing” gets thrown around a lot when people talk about hiring across borders. In this context it’s an outdated, pejorative term synonymous with cheap labor. The talent pool – whether you’re a contractor or full-time employee – is more global than ever, and its prospects deserve a better term.

Interestingly, the internationalization of the workforce comes as businesses grow more inward- looking in other areas of their operations. Not long ago, Blackrock CEO and Chairman Larry Fink declared that the war in Ukraine has unraveled the last three decades of globalization. On the one hand, he was right: we’ve seen a wave of nationalism applied to energy, agriculture, and manufacturing to offset growing global supply chain vulnerabilities. But while many of the biggest industries have become more insular, a new wave of talent globalization is happening, accelerated by the internet and the pandemic.

Read more:  15 remote-friendly companies providing student loan benefits

One of the internet’s greatest yet often unspoken truths is the ability to reach labor markets anywhere in the world. It’s still an unspoken truth because global hiring has been extremely complex for most businesses. It’s always been easier, though not by a huge degree, to sponsor a few foreign workers in the United States with visas like the H1B than hire dozens in their home countries. People still have to uproot their lives and families for job opportunities instead of opportunities coming to them. But that’s all changing.

Acceptance of remote work and the widespread adoption of collaboration platforms like Slack and Zoom have democratized access to amazing talent, no matter the location. For HR practitioners, tools have finally caught up to the moment, and hiring an engineer in Ukraine is now almost as seamless as hiring one in your city. As a result, companies are starting to realize that good talent is good talent, no matter where they find it. They are hiring, not outsourcing. This trend finally gives anyone, regardless of where they were born or live, a real shot at working for their dream company. In the last year, hiring abroad has continued to grow, even with termination driving headlines. As of 2022, of all the 300,000+ contracts on Deel, 89% of them were for remote workers from the Philippines, India and Brazil — all of which saw salaries rise.

Read more:  Allstate’s $10 million commitment to remote and hybrid employee connection

This new world of work promises that you don’t have to, for instance, move to Silicon Valley to be an engineer. You can stay right where you are. Demand for your skills is increasing, along with your wages. A couple of years ago in Argentina, the median salary for an engineer working remotely was $33,000. Now it’s around $40,000, according to Deel’s data. Multiply this phenomenon worldwide, and you start to grasp the impact.

The one thing holding all of this back? Companies’ mindset — both within leadership and on HR teams. If the future of work is more distributed, shouldn’t we decentralize our approach and de-stigmatize global hiring? Non-headquarter teams shouldn’t feel like second-class citizens just because they work in another country. Instead of concentrating power in a HQ, with facetime and All-Hands meetings in one specific time zone, executives need to shift their HR strategies to become more global, flexible, and inclusive. And all of this starts with word choice.

Read more:  25 remote companies with the happiest employees

Here’s my plea: let’s stop calling it outsourcing and call it what it is: global hiring. While we’re at it, let’s lose “offshoring.” And maybe in the not-too-distant future, “remote work” will just be “work.” (Some governments are already willing this into existence.) And hopefully we can go further in the future, offering contractors more benefits like pensions and healthcare.

We simply can’t cast aside a cross-border workforce in the race for great talent. Beyond the reality of changing work norms, there are meaningful benefits to a global hiring strategy, like more time zone coverage, more language capabilities, and more diversity of background and thought. Whether you’re remote, hybrid, or back in an office five days a week, no one should have a different work experience because they’re not within a 50-mile radius of a headquarters. New HR tools are leveling the playing field and making borderless work a reality.

Talent is everywhere; opportunity is not. But it can be, if we change our language and our mindset.

This article originally appeared in EBN and was written by Alex Bouaziz, co-founder and CEO of Deel. It is being reposted with permission.

Check Out Our Marketplace for Recruitment Marketing Solutions
Find the right tools for your talent acquisition needs — over 1,000 solutions to optimize each stage of your hiring process.
Find a Solution

The B2B Marketplace for Recruitment Marketers

Find the right recruitment marketing solution for your brand and for your talent acquisition needs.

Create your account

[user_registration_form id="9710"]

By clicking Sign in or Continue with LinkedIn, you agree to RecruitmentMarketing.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. RecruitmentMarketing.com may send you communications; you may change your preferences at any time in your profile settings.