While working at GitLab, Job van der Voort and Marcelo Lebre hired remote workers in about 70 countries. The process was such a challenge that they decided to found Remote in 2019. The platform, which allows companies to hire remote workers and manage payments and compliance, announced today a new product called Global HR Platform designed for employers with workers in multiple countries. Van der Voort told TechCrunch that Remote decided to launch Global HR Platform because it sees more companies encountering the same kinds of problem he and Lebre had at GitLab. He says Remote can help reduce the amount of time it takes to onboard a candidate in another country from weeks to days, making it easier for companies to expand globally.
“Although the news headlines might talk about returning to the office, the reality is that many companies, if they do return to the office, they operate on a hybrid model,” Van der Voort said. “But most importantly, because the demand for remote work is so incredibly high, there’s a high opportunity for employers that want to hire the best person on the planet instead of looking in the local vicinity.”
Remote, which has a fully distributed workforce, has itself scaled up quickly over the last few years. In April 2022, it announced it had hit a $3 billion valuation with its Series C round—less than a year after reaching unicorn status on its Series B. Its customers include GitLab, Loom, DoorDash, Aston Martin, Burger King and HelloFresh.
Before its expansion, Remote’s features included payroll, benefits, taxes and local compliance (including Employer of Record) services for remote workers. Companies that don’t use platforms like Remote often rely on contractors instead, like local employment companies, and use an assortment of providers and tools for tasks like employee acquisition, onboarding, payroll and benefits administration, employee data management, equity tracking and employee engagement.
But as companies expand, especially internationally, they often run into problems adapting and growing their HR stack. What Remote’s Global HR Platform does is consolidate different tools to make it easier to make their workforces global. Its new products include Remote HRIS, which is now generally available for free and allows companies to add all of its employees to the platform. It includes talent management, time and attendance tracking and integrated payroll.
Remote’s HR tools stack also includes providing Employer of Record services, which allows companies to hire, manage and pay employees in countries where they don’t have a legal entity. This also enables companies to offer worldwide equity incentives and country-specific benefits packages.
Other new features are payroll and financial compliance for companies, even if they aren’t using Remote’s Employer of Record service, and a remote API that makes it simple for users to integrate Remote’s functions into other software.
As an example of what Remote’s Global HR Platform can do is give HR managers a sense of what it costs to hire somebody in a given location, and what the company can offer in terms of benefits and equity, and make sure that is compliant.
Another thing Remote built for its Global HR Platform was a personal time-off module for global employers, which turned out to be more complicated than they had imagined. “To be able to deal with PTO accurately, you need to know before you take a day off if it’s a holiday. It’s easy to do for one country, but we want to do this for every country in the world, so we had to look for a resource that gave us all public holidays and how they affect compliance and payroll,” said Van der Voort. “We found there isn’t, so we built this ourselves and maintain it ourselves.”