As businesses continue to embrace remote workforces, outsourcing, and borderless talent acquisition, the demand for global employer of record (EOR) services is predicted to increase.
With the help of employer of record companies, you can navigate the complexities of compliance, payroll, taxes, and benefits in unfamiliar territories—opening up new possibilities for your business.
To help you find the partner that best fits your needs, we’ve compiled lists of some of the best firms that provide global EOR services and the questions you should ask when deciding on which is best for you. But first, we’ll start with a brief overview of what they do and the benefits of working with one in case you are still deciding whether it’s the best solution for you.
What Are Employer of Record Services?
Employer of record services refers to third-party providers that serve as legal employers for your contingent or international workforce.
These companies handle a range of administrative responsibilities, such as:
- Tax withholding
- Workers’ compensation
- Employee benefits
- Local compliance
The responsibilities of an EOR company can extend to recruiting, hiring, and onboarding. However, usually, you find your own employees, and then the EOR takes over for the purposes of paying them, providing benefits, and ensuring compliance with local labor laws.
These employees are still considered your employees and operate like any other team member; however, they are legally employed by the EOR firm.
Essentially, EOR services allow you to hire remote, international, or contingent workers without having to set up a legal entity and navigate the complexities of legal compliance and HR issues in each location you want to hire in.
What Are the Benefits of Using an Employer of Record?
When looking to hire remote workers, there are several different options, but along with hiring remote workers as contractors, using EOR services is certainly one of the most straightforward and popular.
That’s thanks to several significant benefits:
Efficient workforce expansion
One of the key benefits of using an EOR service is the capability it gives companies to swiftly scale their operations domestically and internationally. Here are three main aspects of how an EOR helps facilitate efficient workforce expansion:
- Access to a global talent pool: With an EOR, you can readily recruit and onboard employees from anywhere around the globe, giving you access to a diverse range of skills, experiences, and cultural perspectives that can help stimulate growth and innovation in your company.
- Quick and compliant international expansion: International expansion, especially for smaller companies, has traditionally been hindered by the logistical complexities and time it takes to navigate different legal systems and cultures.
Companies often needed to set up international subsidiaries or joint ventures, which could take months or even years. However, by partnering with an EOR, your business can swiftly (and legally) begin to operate in new territories.
- Lower barriers to entry: Setting up business operations in a new country typically involves substantial investment in understanding local regulations, employment legislation, tax structures, and other bureaucratic procedures. EORs already have this knowledge, meaning you can act faster.
This, paired with their established presence in many countries, greatly eases and speeds up hiring employees in new markets.
Navigating different payroll systems, tax rules, and employment laws can be complex. And if you aren’t familiar enough with the systems where your employees are, this can lead to costly mistakes.
EOR services ensure you stay payroll and tax compliant across different countries and states. Particularly for international employees, your EOR provider will understand and manage compliance with local employment laws, making sure your business stays above board.
Time and cost savings
Companies can reclaim substantial operational time by offloading traditional employment tasks and liabilities to EOR companies. Your EOR will take care of all HR-related tasks from onboarding, payroll, and benefits to even off-boarding.
This allows you to focus more on business development while saving on administrative overheads.
International hiring comes with a series of legal and compliance risk factors, and misunderstanding or lack of awareness about local laws can result in severe penalties.
Employee misclassification, for instance, can incur steep penalties or fines.
EOR services completely absorb these risks by taking on the responsibility for legal compliance in the countries you hire in. They protect your business from potential legal repercussions and let you focus on key business initiatives.
What Questions Should I Ask When Choosing the Best Employer of Record Services?
Not every EOR service may be suitable for your business. Some might specialize in specific industries or geographic locations that don’t align with your business needs.
Others might not offer the full scope of services important to your company, such as benefits administration or assistance with visa and work permit applications.
When choosing the best EOR service for your company, ask the following questions:
Do they operate in and have knowledge of the right countries?
The EOR company should have in-depth knowledge of the countries where you plan to hire foreign employees and a detailed understanding of legal regulations that govern employment and taxes in those regions. You are paying them to be the experts in compliance in a particular country, and you need to be assured they are.
They must have legal entities in those countries and networks and resources to handle local operational requirements, such as payroll processing and benefits administration.
Are they transparent about pricing?
Pricing transparency is critical. The EOR service should provide clear, up-front pricing details, including all the associated costs, fees, and potential charges.
Hidden costs, negotiable pricing, complex pricing structures, or lack of clarity on costs should raise a red flag. You should clearly understand what you’re paying for and how it’s benefiting your business.
Do they include support services?
An ideal EOR service should offer a comprehensive package with relevant HR support services throughout the employee lifecycle.
These could include:
- Recruitment assistance
- Employment contracts
- Visa and work permit applications
- Health insurance and other statutory benefits
- Payroll services
- Regulatory training
- Advisory services
- Employee termination
A firm that offers extensive support services can save you time, money, and stress.
How supportive are they?
The level of support the EOR company offers can make a significant difference in your experience. They should be responsive, communicative, and ready to address your queries promptly.
It’s crucial that they walk you through the compliance process and keep you updated on changes that impact your business instead of solely working behind the scenes.
Do they have a trusted reputation and a proven track record of success?
Check for testimonials, case studies, and reviews that provide insights into their work ethic and successes. A good EOR company will have solid references that corroborate their expertise and show how they have effectively worked with similar businesses to yours.
Are they cost-effective?
Cost-effectiveness doesn’t always mean the cheapest. It’s about providing value for money.
Most EOR services are billed as a cost-effective path to international expansion, as they remove the need for a separate company or subsidiary in the countries you want to hire in. If that’s the case, they must genuinely provide a return on investment, not just a convenience.
What Are Some Top Employer of Record Companies?
With so much at stake, it’s crucial to partner with the right EOR company. Here are eight of the best and most reputable EOR companies:
Near is a full-service employment platform that aims to streamline the process of hiring and managing remote employees.
We go beyond the services of a typical EOR as we handle everything from sourcing and screening candidates to payroll, taxes, and compliance, enabling companies to focus on growth and not on managing international employment issues. However, unlike an EOR, we don’t take on the role of legal employer of your remote workers. Instead, we find that most of our clients prefer to hire their workers as independent contractors—a method just as simple as hiring an employee through an EOR.
Near offers a smooth setup experience and provides end-to-end recruitment services. We are known for our high level of personalized support, attention to clients, and our ability to scale remote teams quickly and efficiently.
The nearshoring model of hiring from Latin America is perfect for US companies looking to find cost-effective staffing solutions while leveraging benefits like similar timezones, cultural familiarity, and geographical proximity.
Near focuses on an ever-growing talent pool in Latin American countries like Mexico, Argentina, and Brazil.
Deel is designed to simplify the legal and compliance procedures for hiring globally. It offers a reliable and easy-to-use platform that manages contracts, tax documentation, and payroll for companies in over 150 different countries.
A standout feature of Deel is its user-friendly interface, which simplifies the process of managing global employment tasks. The company also offers 24/7 support and transparent pricing.
Deel has an extensive reach, operating in over 150 countries worldwide.
3. Papaya Global
Papaya Global offers a comprehensive global workforce management platform, dealing with everything from payroll and compliance to benefits and workforce management. Its platform enables businesses to expand globally with a unified and streamlined solution.
The company is known for its robust software and seamless integration capabilities. Additionally, Papaya Global provides personalized customer service and allows for scalability as businesses grow.
Papaya Global operates in over 160 countries worldwide.
As the name suggests, Remote is designed to enable companies to hire, pay, and manage remote employees worldwide. The company is committed to simplifying the process of employing a global workforce.
Remote offers a broad range of HR services and a simple, easy-to-use interface. It also provides IP protection, which is a unique feature in the EOR market.
Remote operates internationally, spanning multiple regions and continents.
Rippling is an all-in-one platform that manages everything from payroll and benefits to devices and apps for businesses. While not limited to EOR services, they have a robust program to support global employment.
Aside from its comprehensive HR solution, Rippling stands out for its powerful integration with other applications. The platform is also known for its intuitive design and broad range of features.
Rippling primarily operates in the United States but supports global hiring.
With Remofirst, companies can tap into international remote talent and support their employees with local benefits while maintaining compliance with international laws.
The company offers comprehensive HR services and easy-to-use payroll management. Features like bulk payment processing, automated tax calculations, and time-off management make it a one-stop solution for many businesses.
Remofirst operates in over 160 countries, covering regions including North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia.
7. Oyster HR
Oyster HR aims to simplify the process of employing a distributed team across different countries. It handles all aspects of global employment using a single automated platform where all employment functions can be managed, including hiring, payroll, and benefits.
Oyster HR operates in 70 countries worldwide.
8. Globalization Partners
As one of the pioneers in the EOR field, Globalization Partners enables companies to hire in over 180 countries without the need for establishing subsidiaries. The firm offers a comprehensive global business solution that handles taxes, legalities, and other administrative tasks.
Globalization Partners has a wealth of experience and a solid reputation for delivering high-quality services. They also stand out for their comprehensive coverage, serving more countries than most other EOR service providers.
A truly global operation, Globalization Partners operates in most countries worldwide.
The ability to quickly and efficiently assemble a talented, global workforce is a significant competitive advantage. Using an EOR or another type of company that offers similar services guarantees simplicity, compliance, and a remarkable reduction in the potential risks associated with international hiring.
If you are ready to grow your workforce with highly skilled international remote workers, Near can help you source and hire top-tier talent in Latin America without worrying about complicated regulatory or logistic hurdles. You don’t need to worry about using an EOR; we can handle everything for you—from sourcing and screening the best candidates to paying them and administering benefits afterwards.
Book a free consultation call so we can discuss your hiring needs, and let us find a perfect fit for your open positions in under 21 days.