Going global can be difficult. Regardless of how much of the work you take on yourself, you will always be reliant on partners – whether those partners are local to you or local to that country. If you enter the same market time and again you can use the same trusted partners each time, but what happens if you are entering a new market? If you find the right partner, how do you know they are the right one?
For the purposes of this article, we examine what makes a great partner for global expansion. We took a look at past anecdotes, our case studies, and some expert research to come up with three things that you should look for in an international expansion partner. Take a look:
Many of the issues our clients ran into with partners in this space were not necessarily due to malicious actions, but just a lack of real-world experience from the team servicing them. Every country is different. Every business need is different, and the wealth of knowledge required to navigate a clean expansion initiative is quite substantial. If you’re dealing with a local country partner, make sure they have years of experience. If you choose to work with a global partner that is close to your HQ, make sure they have strong in-house expertise.
2) Extensive Positive References (And Great NPS)
Ask each company to share their NPS; Net Promoter Score is a simple way for companies to measure the satisfaction of their customer base. It basically means that their clients are willing to recommend the services of the company to friends and family. If a company doesn’t know this or won’t share it, it’s not necessarily a red flag but might be yellow…
(Shameless Plug: Velocity Global is very Happy with our 9.2/10)
Other things to look for in terms of what these references say are:
-The provider is transparent and honest with billing
-The provider recommends services outside of their solution when it fits
-The provider exercises creative problem solving regularly (let’s be clear, every global expansion plan requires improvisation, discovery, and solution creation – and any provider that over-uses the expression “our policy is…” may be a red flag)
-The provider adheres and respects local compliance and understands IP laws
3) An Extensive Network of Service Providers and Strong Relationships
There is definitely something that can be said for the value of a large network. It’s not just what that network can provide, but also what it represents. A large network means that the provider has the ability to build strong relationships with many people, which in global expansion is key. Many times much of the work your partner does is vetting the best local service providers for you, and using those relationships to gain access to local WTC contacts.
Other relationships to make sure your partner has, specific to the country you are looking at:
-Trusted in-country legal providers (that truly understand compliance and all statutory requirements)
-Reliable in-country recruitment capabilities
-Trusted housing providers, if necessary
-Efficient and cost-effective benefits brokers
While we know that these three points are common-sense, it’s a great starting place for evaluating an international expansion partner.
Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions in these matters or are looking for a referral to a great global expansion partner. We are always happy to connect. If you are looking to expand globally, consider our solution, Foreign Subsidiary as a Service (FSaaS); reduce time to hire, reduce risk, and no long-term commitments.