On March 11, 2020, it is unlikely that anybody accurately imagined the extent to which the coronavirus was about to change our world. From the introduction of new public health procedures to spending weeks quarantined in our homes, seismic shifts could be felt across every dimension of our lives. We might have said goodbye to our office desks and colleagues nearly two years ago, but when those doors were slammed shut, new ones were knocked wide open. But these doors were not located in our cities, in our states, or even in our country. For the first time in our lifetimes, hiring individuals from around the world to a position hosted by your company is well within your reach.
Whether you prefer to list open positions on LinkedIn, Indeed, or Glassdoor, you can refine your location to international and change the format of the job to remote. In the wake of the pandemic, the results listed from this search have grown at an unprecedented rate. Suddenly, companies no longer view the internet as simply a means for advertisement or publicity, but as a place to conduct their business.
Let’s take a moment and break down how this globalization has happened, how to approach the issue of time zone differences within the virtual workplace, and how you can take advantage of this new job marketplace.
A word for job seekers: A tremendous asset in getting you hired into an international role is foreign language competency (check out our article on Foreign Language in the Workplace here!) but this is by no means an “all or nothing” requirement.
The Virtual Office Space Revolution
The first, most prominent, and most clear cause of our new global job marketplace setup comes in the form of remote work. Many jobs nowadays are conducted entirely through a computer screen at an employee’s home rather than a formal office setting. This being so, wherever you can open a computer and connect to the internet, you can work your business.
Another word for job seekers: Consider this in an international sense. Did you apply and get hired for a job in Paris? Say the office is located in La Défense, in the western region of the city. Yet, you can conduct your work from your local cafe, and provide just as much value to the team as an individual located in France.
Important: Make certain that you make clear the layout of your office, and potential plans for re-opening in the future. It is not easy for an employee to uproot their life and jet off to another country just to keep a paycheck. Be realistic, and be transparent about jobs that might potentially require on-site attendance in the near future.
Combatting Time Zone Restraints
Despite all of the changes we have experienced, nothing can change the flow of time. We are still subject to global time zone variations, and this can greatly affect the work life of aspiring international correspondents. In many cases, this is still a make-or-break element in selecting a candidate for a job. However, for jobs with more scheduling leniency, it may indeed be possible to make ends meet. If the job you are hiring for meets the following qualifications, it is likely that remote work can get you around time zone restraints:
- A Consistent and Light Schedule of Zoom/Video Meetings: Your potential hire can anticipate the timing and adjust your sleeping schedule to accommodate meetings.
- Majority-Independent Work Creation: This would apply most directly to jobs in which tasks revolve around creating content on an individual basis
- Deadline-Orientation: Depending on how far away your company is based from your potential hire, you might need to operate with them on a “day ahead” model and ensure that their work is prepared early.
Time zone differences are one of the biggest barriers to online international jobs. It is imperative that both you and your hire are aligned in your potentially non-standard working hours.
Yet another word for the job seeker: Keep in mind also that candidates who are more aligned in terms of time zones will likely be favored in the selection process. But, don’t let this stop you from considering hiring someone!
Taking Advantage of the Global Job Market
With so many opportunities open, now is the time for everyone to send in some applications for jobs they never thought would be realistic to pursue. As a business owner, this means applications from people all over the world.
The first thing to evaluate is where you would like your virtual office to be headquartered. Previous experiences in either foreign language instruction or cultural competencies can help guide you in this case, as well as minimizing time zone differences. Pay close attention to the description of the job to make sure there are no surprises for potential new hires. Let’s go through the process of finding a remote, foreign job on the LinkedIn job marketplace (the process will be very similar on other job search sites.)
- Navigate to the job search bar and input the skill, company, or job title that you would like to find.
- Navigate to the search bar with the location pin placeholder and input the country/city you would like to be virtually based out of.
- Under the job search and location search bars will be a set of filter drop downs. Select the type of job you are searching for. (I.e. internship, part-time, full-time, etc.)
- Select “Remote” from within the “On-site/Remote” drop down.
Available jobs will then appear from your search criteria. Remember that this is how potential hires will find your listing, so keep things clear!
Although we have all experienced hardships in the wake of the online work revolution, it is key that we maximize the benefits we can take from the situation. If you’ve ever dreamt of making business connections abroad, we have never been better equipped as a global society to do so. Expand your hiring horizons to the horizon line, and then beyond. Who knows…your next top employee may be waiting overseas.