Wired: Tech's Offshore Hiring Gone Overdrive

Gives new meaning to “Work From Home” when you can work from half-a-world away, get paid in your local currency, have taxes taken care of, and also win partial ownership of newly launched companies in the USA.

Wired headline: Tech’s Offshore Hiring Has Gone Into Overdrive

Sub-headline: Companies that once battled to hire employees close to home are now turning to Latin America and other markets for talent.

https://archive.ph/pqSC5

A 2022 report from tech services company Commit estimated that offshoring software development roles would increase by 70 percent over the next year. Some companies, like Coinbase and Shopify, have already hired aggressively outside the US to fill open technical roles. “Software developers are shaping up to be the first global role,” says Alex Bouaziz, the CEO of Deel, a startup that provides payroll and remote hiring services. His company saw a 50 percent increase in its US-based clients hiring abroad in 2022.

In the past, companies accessed a wider pool of talent by strategically building offices in secondary markets. “It was mostly like we have an HQ1, then we pick one market and we build HQ2,” says Dylan Serota, cofounder of Terminal, a company that connects developers in Latin America, Spain, and Poland with startups in places like the US and UK. Terminal provides the infrastructure to offer benefits and pay local taxes, something many smaller companies don’t have the resources to put in place. The rise of remote has encouraged companies to rethink their approach to talent in ways they would not have considered doing before, says Serota.

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Many new hires are coming from countries like the Philippines, Argentina, Brazil, and India. While tech companies have long sought out those markets to cheaply staff call centers, content moderator positions, and IT departments, they are now following talent to fill open roles on any of their teams. “We used to think of this as a cost arbitrage story—you hire in Mexico or India because it’s cheaper,” says Jimit Arora, a partner at the research firm Everest Group. “Now I see this as a talent arbitrage story. You go where the talent is.”