Blog about Smart Industry companies and their ambition to expand their businesses globally, the common mistakes and tips

Why are Smart Industry companies so unsuccessful at hiring international talent?

Kimberley Wellen, Senior Account Manager at FMC Global Talent.
Kimberley Wellen, Senior Account Manager at FMC Global Talent.

Software and technology companies in the Smart Industry commonly make the same mistakes when recruiting international talent to support business expansion.

Whilst product innovation remains an integral part of success within the Smart Industry, broadening a business’s international reach continues to increase competitiveness internationally.

Globalisation is rising for all types of businesses, particularly for the SME market which can reach worldwide audiences in record times thanks to technology.

Considering expanding your Smart Industry business internationally? Here’s the biggest threats and common mistakes facing international business expansion in 2019, alongside some tips when profiling commercial talent in the Smart Industry.

International threats

There are various factors which threaten the success of business expansion, including the level of trust between businesses and new hires. For example, managing a new international office is a lot of work and communication can breakdown. Discipline between both offices is important to avoid breakdown in communication which can result in high staff turnover.

Additionally, international differences between countries, which can be sensitive, are sometimes difficult to either identify or understand. This is particularly an issue for organisations which send existing employees across to expand operations in another region. Religion, food, travel and communication are a handful of cultural differences which can upset business operations.

Some candidates may apply for new positions with businesses entering new markets because of their failings with established businesses. New businesses possess limited knowledge of the talent markets outside of their established regions and, without realising, hire poor quality talent who have a reputation of short, unsuccessful tenures elsewhere.

Lastly, tailoring benefit packages to suit specific geographical regions is essential for attracting and retaining international talent. Too often businesses offer similar basic salaries, bonuses and benefits as their host country and are confused when international talent reject offers. Conducting research and listening to candidates during the onboarding process will avoid the risk of losing out on top talent.

Profiling commercial talent

Recruiting the right individual to implement an international business plan means identifying various personality and experience attributes which satisfies a search criterion.

Characteristics play a huge part in verifying whether a candidate suits a vacancy. They must culturally be able to inherit and fulfil the values of a business whilst possessing the necessary attributes to be successful within a commercial role. This includes:

  • Working overseas means strong communication skills are important to establish a healthy working relationship.
  • Commerciality is vital for identifying new business opportunities and influencing prospects which are loyal to competitors.
  • A positive outlook is important when entering a new market. There will be challenges and certainly pushback, so finding someone who is optimistic is important.
  • First boots on the ground means you’re likely to be busy, very busy in fact. Being organised and managing a workload effectively will support success.
  • Someone who is ambitious will appreciate the opportunities ahead and thrive off the challenge of building something exciting.

Track record also plays a major role in selecting international talent. Testing their sales or implementation results within the same or aligned markets will help to determine their commercial abilities.

Additionally, knowledge of aligned software solutions will confirm their aptitude in dealing with complex products or services whether in sales or implementation. Naturally, talent which exists in competitor organisations often satisfy this.

Lastly, local knowledge has proven to be essential in guiding and delivering a business plan. Onboarding someone who has experience and knowledge of a chosen region will help avoid barriers to success including cultural difficulties, logistics, and competitors.