Going global

Time to open shop overseas? Sound HR can make the difference between success and expensive failure. Put the right people in the right roles with the right support.
By Gail Reinhart
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/05/2001

The world has grown smaller and many companies are testing the waters in established and emerging markets. An increasing number of organizations are finding out “going global” brings a challenging array of human resource issues. Preparing for the opening of a new office overseas goes beyond determining the location that best meets a company’s business needs and objectives. Negotiating with government authorities in a different country, where laws, culture and language differs, is vital to success.

Staffing the new entity will likely involve the assignment of one or more employees to the foreign country. This allows the application of a firm’s business standards and procedures, and ensures the organization has a measure of control over the operations of the overseas office. The expectations of assignees should include the training of local nationals who can eventually assume the management responsibility of the new venture — but that comes later. There’s a lot of work to do to prepare the initial team.

Selecting the right candidate