ical. “Your best practices should all exist in written form,” Larkin says. “You
should be able to transport those back
onshore so you’re able to leverage those
materials. It has to be well-planned,
and all parties have to be communicating so that everybody is singing from
the same hymn book.”
REMEMBER THE FOREIGN
An important but often overlooked issue is that workers in many countries
typically have employment contracts
and are not at-will employees. “HR really has to work with legal counsel overseas to make sure the company is compliant” with the contracts, Olsby says.
The amount of notice you need to give
workers who are about to be let go varies
by country. “Your company may have a
plan to [transfer IT operations] in this
amount of time, but the laws in a country may require more time,” she says.
“You have to understand the landscape.”
In China, for example, employers
laying of workers must follow strict
procedures and, in some cases, get
government approval. At least 30 days
before initiating a mass layof, a business is required to present a plan to the
workers’ labor union or to all employees if there is no union, according to
Grace Yang, senior attorney with the
law frm Harris Bricken and author of
China Law Blog. The employer must
consider any comments it receives, revise its layof plan accordingly and then
fle a report with authorities.
Beyond following the legal require-
ments, employers should show consid-
eration for the workforce left behind.
“It’s important to who you are as a com-
pany,” Olsby emphasizes. “You always
want to make sure you treat people
with respect and dignity. They have
been important to your business.”
Some companies ofer services to
help displaced workers fnd other jobs,
she notes. “You want them to feel that
exiting the company was as good an
experience as onboarding.”
In other words, don’t leave foreign
workers high and dry. “They are not
going to forget that. You don’t want to
lock yourself out” of that market in the
future, Coates says.
FINDING TALENT BACK HOME
IT workers in the United States are in
high demand, so budget a lot of lead
time to find new employees when
reshoring, Olsby says.
A project team made up of representatives from HR, the legal department
and facilities management―along
with various subject matter experts―
should meet every week, at least virtually, to discuss goals and progress.
“HR needs to be working very closely
with the business to understand what
kind of competencies will be needed,”
With the IT market being so hot, you
should have a secondary stafng plan.
“Do we want to use contract workers
until we fnd the right workers? Is there
a period of time when we will be using
consultants?” Olsby suggests asking.
Choosing the right geographical location at home depends on several factors, including whether skilled workers
and facilities are available, the cost of
living, and the location of corporate
headquarters. College towns may provide a steadier source of talent.
“Rural sourcing” is another strategic approach, according to the International Economic Development
Council. This approach allows companies to access reduced labor costs in
rural towns—as much as 25 percent
to 50 percent lower than in urban locations—and is a growing practice
among smaller domestic outsourcing
frms that ofer specialized IT services
and customer service.
Smaller cities that have a strong focus on IT―such as Salt Lake City or
Austin, Texas―can similarly be a bargain compared to larger cities, Randstad’s Larkin says.
Your decision of where to set up shop
may also depend on whether you can
secure tax incentives. Government
enticements designed to lure jobs
to the United States are snagging
some big fish. Last fall, Wisconsin
‘To be global is
not as easy as
you think. A lot
say, “We want
access to talent,
so we’re going
to this country.”
But they don’t
how to monetize
Home is easier to
CAROL OLSBY, SHRM-SCP