Multinational companies have faced many challenges over the last year. Now that the new year has begun, it’s time to look at your global payroll and identify ways to simplify the process. With new in-country regulations due to COVID, new Brexit rules, and furlough schemes in each country, payroll has gotten more complicated. How can you make sure you’re getting the most out of your global payroll in 2021 and stay ahead of new changes?


Each country has made adaptations to daily work life due to different government lockdowns and social distancing protocols. Some offices are fully remote, some are working with 50% capacity each day, and some have laid off or furloughed employees due to business conditions. Using technology to communicate and manage daily operations is a must have in this environment.


Using one platform to manage your employees across the globe is the gold standard in global payroll. Your payroll technology should have one login to manage employees in every country, provide automated updates, customized reporting across all countries and currencies, and real-time access to your payroll costs across the organization. If your payroll process isn’t running smoothly, your technology could be the problem. Having the right software that works for you is the key to simplifying payroll, reducing errors, and ensuring compliance in each country.


One other aspect of global payroll is in-country expertise. What happens if you have a question about your payroll in India? What if the rules in India have changed and you didn’t know? Having direct access to in-country experts is another step in the right direction. You shouldn’t have to wait a week (or 2) to hear back on a simple payroll-related question. If you don’t have direct access to your payroll experts in each country, you’re missing out.

Blue Marble has taken the stress out of paying employees internationally. Our cloud-based technology is easy to use, provides customized monthly reporting across all countries and currencies, automatically updates with new payroll regulations in each country, and we provide a unique-to-the-industry hybrid service model so you have a US-based team and direct access to payroll experts in each country when questions come up. How simple can it be? Talk to us today to find out! 

2020 certainly turned the world upside down and forced organizations to make significant changes to their operations. In recent conversations with my clients, I’ve seen both sides of the spectrum. Some have scaled back operations, while others embraced expansion as employees worked entirely remote. Global Expansion in 2021 will been different, but is still possible.

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Global expansion is always an exciting opportunity, but when it comes to setting up business entities, hiring employees, and getting payroll up and running, things can get complicated. There are several key aspects of starting up in a new country that are often overlooked and unique challenges in each country when expanding and hiring. Here are some common challenges when expanding into new countries that a company may face:

Business Entity Setup

Creating a new entity is not as easy as it sounds. Depending on what type of entity you are setting up impacts your tax liabilities, you may need to hire local talent for certain positions within the company, and the required reporting and deadlines for tax payments are sometimes determined by the type of entity created as well.

Bank Accounts

Do you need an in-country bank account in order to pay local employees, or can you pay staff from a US bank account? Understanding the payroll regulations in each country and the bank accounts required for payroll is key to hiring and paying your employees. Some countries require a local bank account and some will allow for US bank accounts to use for payroll.

Multi-country Payroll

Will you use different in-country providers in each country to manage payroll or one platform to manage all of your countries? Using different providers can cause a multitude of issues when it comes to reporting and visibility. It is also difficult to manage all of the currencies for payments. If you have one platform to manage all of your payroll, you have real-time access across all countries, you can settle payroll from multiple currencies in US dollars, and you have customized reporting for each country and aggregated views across all countries.

HR Compliance

Once you’ve figured out payroll, then it’s time to hire employees. What are the statutory benefits in the countries you are expanding in? What happens if your benefits are not in compliance? There are unique HR regulations required in each country – some have limits on how many locals must be employed, some positions can only be filled by local talent, etc. You need an HR compliance partner to help navigate the circumstances in each country or face fines and penalties for non-compliance.

Getting started in a new country is always an adventure, but if you’re prepared you won’t face disaster as you’re trying to launch. Know before you go and your global expansion will be seamless and you’ll wonder why anyone ever thought it was complicated! Talk to us about global expansion services. From entity setup and company formation, to payroll and HR compliance – we’ve got you covered. Click here to get started

This year the UK government has implemented several UK Regulations Affecting employee payroll. The Job Retention Scheme that was announced in March 2020 has been gradually changing the employer contribution requirements each month, and in November 2020 announced the scheme would be extended until April 2021. Another highly controversial regulation related to IR35 (off-payroll rules) affecting contractors was postponed in 2020 but will go into effect beginning in April 2021. How does this affect your employee payroll?

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As the year draws to a close, companies have faced unprecedented challenges that will unfortunately most likely continue into early next year. Countries around the world have adapted regulations and compliance requirements to account for the ongoing pandemic, and multinational companies have had to adapt to the changes in real-time. What does this mean for 2021 business operations? What kind of Global Payroll Challenges in 2021 will we see?

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This year is different in so many ways, and we have had to make challenging decisions and changes to the way we work. Trade shows and events have evolved as a result, with most conferences moving to virtual events. One of the largest industry conferences of the year, HR Technology Conference and Expo, has moved to a virtual event that begins October 27th.

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Each year you make a plan, budget, and create new initiatives. Payroll is often overlooked as an operational expense, not as an area for improvement. But when it comes to strategies to simplify global payroll, there are always enhancements that can be made.

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