Hiring locally vs. internationally

Funny job interview

When it is time to look for new employees, whether to replace old ones or add to the company, a decision needs to be made whether to hire someone locally or from abroad. Both have advantages and disadvantages and it really comes down to what you are looking for from the employee and the position you are looking to fill. If you do decide to hire internationally, then it would be helpful for them if the company provided assistance with the immigration process.

The immigration process for many new immigrants to North America can sometimes be a source of headaches. By looking to hire employees internationally, it is a way of increasing the level of interest the employees have in their job and does not even cost much more than hiring them locally. However, the immigration process can be a real downer for new workers, especially if they brought their entire family with them. 

When someone comes to a new job and moved from a different country to do so, they are more likely to put a lot of effort and attention in to it versus someone who has all the distractions of working in the same town they grew up in. They are also going to be more reliant on the people at their work because they usually do not have a lot of other people they know in that town so they are more likely to make friends with their co-workers.

At the same time, hiring someone from abroad will usually be less efficient at first because the new employee will have a steeper learning curve. Not only will they need to understand the company culture, they will have to adapt to the culture of the town and people. This does not apply as much for Americans looking to work in Canada or Canadians looking to work in the U.S. because the cultures and people are very similar, but for someone coming over from Europe or Australia as an example, there are definitely some things that are different here in North America.

One of the best types of positions that may be best filled by an international hire is if the company is looking to expand to a particular to new market. For instance, if my company was looking to expand to Brazil, then I would definitely want someone on board that knows and understands the intricacies of doing business in Brazil. Among some local hires that have knowledge of that market, I might also want someone from Brazil to help streamline the operations. It would make it easier when someone needs to travel there as they will know where to go and how to conduct business there.

Another good scenario where an international hire can be beneficial is when the position requires a special and uncommon qualification such as a certain level of knowledge on a specific piece of equipment. Sometimes, you may only find that person in another country and in that case it would be a good reason to bring them over.

Hiring from abroad should not be done just for the sake of doing it because it will have certain challenges and can require more from the company by way of assistance than hiring locally. Also, hiring locally will usually give the company a return on the investment quicker because of the smaller learning curve. The hiring decision can be a tough one but it is among the most important decisions that companies make because as the saying goes: companies are only as good as their employees.