When discussing maximizing international expansion success for businesses, a question that we often get asked, given the new virtual world we are all now working in is, “Where do you look to recruit when expanding internationally?”
In this article, we will take a look at the top three things that you need to be aware of to help make your international hiring more successful.
Our team covered the topics outlined below to review international expansion considerations and solutions in our live panel event with RSM UK. You can watch the full video here.
Location of available talent
One of the first things to think about when looking to hire in a new geography or new territory is the quantity and quality of available talent within each geography and location you are considering hiring, and factoring this into your business plan. Whether you are building a sales team or a technical team, understanding this is mandatory. When planning to hire internationally, you need to think of the amount of high-quality talent available on the market. Some countries have a much higher volume of talent than others in different kinds of skill areas. The reason these considerations are important is that it can significantly impact:
A. The quality of the talent you are able to attract.
B. The cost of acquiring and retaining the best talent (from hiring costs to salary, benefits, taxation levels etc).
C. The time it takes to hire the best people, which may likely have an impact on your business goals.
In our experience, we find that many companies put a solid business case together when looking to expand their team, but often fail to consider these points in detail and then run into challenges further down the track and hiring then becomes a bottleneck for the business.
A detailed salary benchmarking exercise can help you plan for this.
Candidate and culture fit
We often find that it is common that many businesses don’t consider in detail is how to attract the right personalities to fit with the businesses culture. We find that even a simple review to see the percentage of the talent population in-country speaks English (if English is a key language requirement for the position/s) can be key. In addition, it can be a significant benefit to have tools and technologies to review areas such as personality, experience in similar-sized organisations, skills, motivations to predict performance and cultural fit into the business which ultimately predicts retention and success for both the employee and the business. These kinds of measures are worth considering alongside the overall cost of acquiring talent.
You can achieve this by implementing a rigorous but efficient interview and assessment process that is in-line with the location and type of positions you are hiring and by balancing a rigorous but fast recruitment process in a competitive market. If you are unsure about what to ask to gauge personality and cultural fit, maybe check out our previous webinar with an occupational psychologist or reach out to our team who can help you mould this process.
Think differently about your approach
When we think about finding talent, Launch Global has been actively seeking candidates in different ways. We break the mould on how this has been done in the past by other recruitment professionals. The trick is not to be overly reliant on the likes of LinkedIn internal databases or generic job adverts but to think outside the box in terms of where you can find and attract the people to expand your business.
We would focus on other platforms, for example, using tools like Meetup and looking at alternative online communities. For example, if you are looking for technical, developer type profiles, using tools such as GitHub to find out where these people interact and are more likely to listen and engage in what you have to offer, ideally to gauge your ability to hire the best people in a location you are considering to hire within.
The key is to embed your search team into the communities that your candidates are frequenting, and not to simply message them on Linkedin which is what the vast majority of recruitment people do. We have seen C-Change in the response rates along with positive feedback from not only candidates but clients as it has enabled them access to (on average) 300% of the candidates they would otherwise have access to in addition to employing your employment brand.
When approaching, try to personalise your messages, passive candidates will appreciate the effort and focus on what’s in it for them. Job ads tend to focus on what the employer is looking for and less about what is in it for the candidate or future employee, growth opportunities, learning opportunities, exciting projects and your general culture.
You need to understand what you will need to offer your ideal candidates in terms of a salary and benefits package before going out to market. Remember, whilst there is a trend moving towards a levelling of salary levels globally, benefits and package benchmarks remain wildly different based on the geography you are looking to hire in. In addition, a strong employment brand may be excellent in one country, but need a change of message for other countries.
We tend to see a lot of generic messages being sent by recruiters which are turning off potential candidates in reviewing or replying. Why not consider being creative and using video to approach people, embedding a GIF into your emails (check out BombBomb)?
Looking back at these points, here are the biggest takeaways:
- Understand the quantity and quality of available talent before deciding on expansion geographies.
- Salary benchmark to gain an in-depth understanding of the available talent, costs and attractive benefits packages.
- Make sure you understand your employer value proposition and have a clear understanding of your business culture and the kind of personality you need within your business.
- Create an interview process that assesses or questions candidates to cover cultural fit and personality.
- Think outside the box when searching for your candidates, where do they hang out virtually/physically and aim to embed in those communities. The key is not just finding where the talent you are looking for interact, but also focus heavily on how to attract them.
- Be creative and personal when approaching and focus on what’s in it for the candidate. What can you offer a passive candidate who is happy in their current role?
We hope this helped and we hope you have a better understanding of what to look out for when hiring and expanding your business internationally.