The international PEO industry, also called the global employer of record industry, is one of the fastest growing verticals within HR software.
As businesses are moving towards remote-first work and communication technologies are more ubiquitous, organizations are starting to hire top talent wherever they can find it.
Traditionally, hiring internationally would involve either (a) hiring contractors, which can exist in a compliance grey area, or (b) setting up a foreign entity, which can be costly and full of bureaucratic red tape.
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International PEO, or Global EOR, solutions can help solve this problem. International PEO providers have created entities in almost every major country, which allows businesses to hire that international candidate through their pre-built entity for a surcharge.
While these solutions are a huge time saver for businesses (and can help ensure compliance), one challenge to adopting them is finding the right partner. The industry is full of brands that the average buyer in unfamiliar with. And, it can be challenging to understand how each vendor differs and what their strengths and weaknesses are.
If you're looking into an international PEO solution, reach out to OutSail and our free services can guide you through the process, helping you find the right vendors, ask the right questions and negotiate the right deal.
Here's a quick overview of the key vendors and how they differentiate:
Best for companies who prioritize expert support
Globalization Partners is often considered the market leader in the global PEO space and recently raised a $150M round of funding. They have more fully-owned entities than anyone else allowing greater price control, consistency and standardization. Globalization Partners also provides significant in-country legal and compliance expertise.
Velocity Global is also viewed as a market leader in the global EOR space. Unlike their peers, however, they are a self-funded business that hasn’t taken any outside capital. Velocity Global’s biggest differentiator is their comprehensive service model which leads to very high client retention rates. Velocity Global can also offer an HRIS platform with a broad scope of modules.
Best for companies who want flexibility
Papaya is one of the fastest growing companies in the global employment space. They are the only company that can provide global payroll, EOR and contractor management services. Papaya also differentiates on technology and can provide a broad set of modules in a modern, easy-to-use platform. Papaya also utilizes a flat fee pricing model which can help with cost predictability.
Safeguard Global has been in the industry since 2008, originally as a managed payroll service provider. For companies that want a strong partner in both global payroll and EOR, SG can be a strong fit. Safeguard Global has owned-entities or partner-entities in almost every major country. Safeguard is also the largest company on this list and their internal team provides full in-country compliance and tax support.
Best for companies who need more than just PEO services
Global Upside is one of the most experienced and comprehensive providers in the global business expansion space. They have been around for over 20 years and have over 50 fully-owned entities. Their partners provide coverage in the other 120 countries where they can support clients. In addition to their EOR services, Global Upside also provides arguably the most robust entity set-up services in the market. Global Upside can offer a full suite HRIS and staffing services too. Finally, their emphasis on security and compliance meets the highest standards.
Global Expansion can offer EOR services in over 214 countries and territories and they offer a comprehensive flat-fee pricing model. Through their parent company, Equus, Global Expansion can provide a variety of additional global services including background checks, benefits and immigration. GX also offers a modern, easy-to-use HRIS system through their partner GoCo, which is very strong with payroll integrations.
Best for companies who care about technology and costs
Deel is a great choice for companies that need the flexibility of being able to hire both full-time employees, as well as contractors. Their contract management tools are best-in-class and make it very easy for employers to create locally compliant contracts. Deel is also more cost-effective than many of their peers and provides a dedicated support model.
Remote was founded by leaders from GitLab, one of the world’s largest fully-remote companies. They are the only vendor on this report that does not utilize a single partner for their EOR services. Remote also differentiates on cost and by emphasizing IP protections more than their peers. Remote maintains a proprietary network of in-country experts in every country in which they operate.