In this era of globalization, it is not uncommon to see organizations, especially the multinationals, hiring globally. Today, the knowledge gap between different parts of the globe have been considerably blurred, at least in relation to a few emerging economies such as India, China, Brazil, South Africa, and to a lesser extent, Russia, Philippines, Mexico and Turkey. For organizations that do business globally, it is tempting to look at hiring a global pool of talent, because if the same talent or skill or knowledge that is available at a high cost in the native country is available at about a fifth the cost; who would not seize the opportunity? After all, business is about cost saving.
Having said this, it has to be admitted that hiring globally brings its unique set of challenges and pitfalls. If it indeed was as simple as hiring the best talent for a fraction of the cost, there would be widespread unemployment in the First World today, and each and every business would have relocated to these upcoming countries. Yes, there are certain advantages of doing business globally, but not everything is as rosy and positive.
Let us start with the pros of hiring globally. As we have just examined, the most obvious advantage is that it saves costs. This has been repeated often, so it is enough to just state that cost is a major advantage of hiring globally.
An organization (although not all) that does business globally will be able to leverage their bargaining power with the governments, stakeholders and decision makers of the respective countries. This will enhance their understanding of the world around them and help them get a better feel of how the systems in these countries work.
Yet, there are some distinct disadvantages of hiring globally. The most important one is the cultural chasm that exists between people of different geographies. Multinational organizations may put uniform and standardizes processes in place, but there is always the element of the human factor. Not every worker all over the world is comfortable with structures imposed on her by an organization that is out of sorts with her worldview, upbringing and values.
This has led to many frictions, because many jobs, especially the outsourced ones in the service sector, require handling of systems that these workers are not familiar with. This calls for specialized training programs, even after which a company may still have employees that are relatively maladjusted.
Viewed in its totality, global hiring brings with it many advantages and disadvantages. Organizations that plan to hire globally have to factor in these considerations when taking a call. HR can be of tremendous value and help in facilitating a decision.
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