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Hiring Internationally? Contract vs Employee

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Hiring Internationally? Contract vs Employee

Building Remote Teams podcast

Building Remote Teams,

5 min read
4 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Overseas workers join firms as either regular employees or as contractors. The difference matters – to the worker and the employer.

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Hiring remote workers increases your talent pool exponentially. But how do hire someone from abroad? What legal implications do you need to consider? Tim Burgess runs a GEO called Shield GEO which helps connect international employees and employers. In this episode of the podcast Building Remote Teams, host Jevin Maltais talks to Burgess about engaging overseas workers as regular employees versus contractors. 


More than ever, organizations engage remote workers based in other countries.

Every nation has labor laws and cultural norms around employment. Firms that wish to tap into overseas talent should do so thoughtfully and with awareness of local rules, norms and culture. In the United States, for example, many employees don’t have a contract. Instead, they receive an offer letter that specifies their status as an at-will employee: The employees can leave, and employers can let them go, without notice or cause. Almost everywhere else, laws require at least two weeks’ notice and legitimate cause for termination.

Whatever their status, most traditional employees enjoy benefits that amount to half or more of their salary. To make up for having no health care, paid vacations and other perks as well as less job security, contractors typically charge higher hourly rates than equivalent employees. Normally, however, they remain less expensive than regular employees and easier to separate.

For most firms, contracting with remote, foreign-based workers makes better sense.

In most...

About the Podcast

Building Remote Teams is an interview podcast about building strong remote teams. In this episode, host Jevin Maltais talks to Tim Burgess who runs Shield GEO and has helped connect international employees and employers throughout his career.

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