How Enterprise Leaders can Navigate the Challenges Surrounding Remote Work Environments

How Enterprise Leaders can Navigate the Challenges Surrounding Remote Work Environments

“With remote work and a variety of lower-cost relocation options, HR teams now have more tools at their disposal to deliver what the company needs and, importantly for development and retention, what employees want,” says Steve Black, Co-Founder & CSO, Topia, in an exclusive interview with EnterpriseTalk.


ET Bureau: What challenges enterprises experience while engaging with their employees in a remote work environment?

Steve Black: The biggest challenge remote work creates for enterprises is knowing where work is happening and staying compliant with tax and payroll obligations as a result.

According to recent data from Topia’s annual Adapt survey, 28% of employees have worked outside their home state or country during the pandemic, but only one-third reported all those days to HR. This creates a huge tax and compliance issue for enterprises.

Companies may have unknowingly failed to withhold payroll taxes appropriately or may have grossly overpaid on taxes for their remote workforce.

Survey data also revealed that location tracking could be a viable option for enterprises to overcome this challenge. 94% of respondents reported being comfortable with an employer tracking their location down to the city level.

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ET Bureau: How can enterprises seamlessly deliver mobility as part of their talent strategy? 

Steve Black: Remote work has removed significant barriers to creating the diverse workforce culture that enterprise leaders have been striving for.

In fact, 94% of HR professionals surveyed by Topia said their organizations can now access a more diverse team than they could pre-pandemic, which means talent becomes more important than geographic location.

Additionally, one in four employees we surveyed desire an international work experience, up significantly from just 17% last year.

Leading companies recognize that their talent strategy must live at the intersection of what work needs to be done and where the right person is currently located.

With remote work and a variety of lower-cost relocation options, HR teams now have more tools at their disposal to deliver what the company needs and, importantly for development and retention, what employees want.

ET Bureau: How can enterprises automate the entire global talent mobility process? 

Steve Black: Technology-based solutions are the key to automating the global talent mobility process. Where global talent mobility used to mean traditional international assignments or business trips, now it includes remote and hybrid work.

By implementing the proper tools and technology to help manage all types of mobility, apply compliance logic, and manage the complex web of vendors and systems, enterprises will be empowered to leverage the benefits of global talent mobility to drive post-pandemic business growth.

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ET Bureau: What strategies must enterprises focus on to effectively support remote work environments?

Steve Black: Unless enterprises deliberately build-remote cultures, training and development may suffer.

Remote work policies could potentially interfere with attracting, developing and retaining talent if they’re not executed well. One strategy that companies may not be considering for managing a successful remote or distributed workforce is implementing a new business travel policy.

Many experts predict that business travel is dead; in reality, the opposite is true.

As enterprises transition to a fully remote or distributed work model, there is still a need to meet in person for training and development, team building and collaboration.

As a result, there will be a new class of business travelers who will be traveling a few times a year, where they may never have gotten on a plane for work before.

To effectively support remote work environments, companies cannot overlook or underestimate the value that occasional in-person meetings can bring.

Since co-founding Topia in 2011, Steve has been there to see the company grow from a small London-based startup to an award-winning global talent mobility management platform supporting organizations around the world. At Topia, Steve leads strategic and product initiatives leveraging deep industry, technology, and customer insight.

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Vishal Muktewar is a Business News Reporter at On Dot Media. He reports news that focuses on the latest trends and innovations happening in the B2B industry. An IT engineer by profession, Vishal has worked at Insights Success before joining Ondot. His love for stories has driven him to take up a career in enterprise journalism. He effectively uses his knowledge of technology and flair for writing, for crafting features, articles and interactions for technology enterprise media platforms.