Local Expertise For Global Expansion
Your first hire as a globally expanding business is… Not who you might expect. It’s more than one person; it’s a team of support services with in-country expertise.
Whether it’s Steve Jobs stepping out of his garage or Mark Zuckerberg expanding beyond his Harvard dorm room, every successful company reaches a point where it’s too big for where it started. As you look to expand your business beyond your home country or territory, there are vital steps to take to ensure a relatively easy landing.
Local laws and regulations have to be understood and evaluated. An innocent mistake – like, for example, hiring misclassified employees – could lead to costly legal action, fines and reputational damage, before your local team has even unpacked their suitcases.
Before you enter a new country, make sure your team has familiarised itself with the basic entry – and exit – requirements of your target market.
After you’ve completed your market assessment and weighed up your market entry options, you’ll need to start bringing in the necessary expertise. Who are those experts, and who needs a seat at your global expansion table?
Cast your mind back to the earliest stages of your business, when you were first moving from an ambitious start-up (possibly even a one-person show) to growing concern. Your first new hire might have been ‘someone who could correctly advise you on the appropriate tax structures and on regulatory compliance.
HERE'S WHY YOU NEED TO HIRE LOCAL EXPERTISE
Global expansion would require the same expertise, but on a local country basis. This team would assist your own newly landed team with managing local tax regulations and providing bespoke accounting solutions.
Legal advice would be a necessary extension of that, and another key early “hire”. From navigating local laws and employment laws (which might be very different from what you’re accustomed to in your home jurisdiction) to managing visas and work permits for staff who’re relocating to set up your new satellite office, trusted legal support is of course absolutely essential.
Less obvious, but no less important, benefits of in-country legal support include conducting risk analysis and crisis management. Then, as the business establishes itself in its new territory, property – either renting or buying – would become the next problem to be solved.
Recruitment, payroll, outsourcing… Global expansion support would also cover HR services, which can vary dramatically from country to country. Country-compliant HR processes would also have to be set up and implemented, as would the necessary cross-border banking solutions.
Many companies make the mistake of entering a new market without hiring any local team members. Local people have unique, invaluable insights into local customs, cultural standards, and employee expectations, which can only come from having lived and worked in that particular market.
The key driver behind global expansion is, of course, the potential to grow your company’s brand and profitability. It can also serve as protection against the risk of decline in your domestic markets. The trick lies in getting it right – and to do that, you’ll need to call on in-country expertise.
The Centuro platform provided end-to-end assistance through the complexities of global expansion, activating the local business ecosystem to provide a clear roadmap of actionable solutions.