Meet Jan-Peter Böckstiegel

Jan-Peter Böckstiegel is the Vice President of Global Infrastructure at WorkMotion. He leads a team responsible for the company’s global EoR partner network, in-house in-country operations, payroll partner network, benefits and operating partner ecosystem, and WorkDirect solution. His strategic vision and hands-on approach have significantly contributed to WorkMotion’s growth and success in the global workforce management industry.

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Quick Read: Jan-Peter Böckstiegel Interview Highlights

Can you tell us a bit about yourself and what you do at WorkMotion?

Jan, VP of Global Infrastructure at WorkMotion, joined the company in February 2021. His role focuses on building employment infrastructure, legal infrastructure, and managing employer record partners. Jan is responsible for incorporating local subsidiaries in other countries, getting them ready for licensing and banking setup, and building HR processes to offer compliant employment. He also works on expanding the company’s benefit and extra services offering related to HR setup. Jan explains, “So my role now is focused on building the legal and employment infrastructure that lets us hire talents worldwide for our clients.”

How do you think global hiring trends are changing, and what challenges or opportunities might come up because of it?

According to Jan, the pandemic significantly influenced global hiring trends. He says, “during the pandemic, people understood that not everybody needs to sit in the office, right? And then if somebody does not sit in the office, consequences, it doesn’t necessarily matter where they sit.” In the short term, Jan sees a renewed focus on costs, with companies using remote hiring to optimize their budgets. He believes that the general shortage of talent will continue, driving companies to use employer record models for hiring talents abroad.

With more talent available due to recent layoffs, do you think companies might shift towards local hiring instead of global hiring?

Jan explains that while some companies might hire locally, cost-consciousness remains a strong factor. Many companies continue to hire in other countries because they can find similar quality talent at different salary levels. In addition, salary levels in Europe have not dramatically dropped, maintaining the drive to find talent in other locations. Jan states, “there’s still a drive to maybe go to other places to find this talent within the constraints of the newly reduced budgets.”

Is there a trend for replacement, where companies fire expensive employees and replace them with others from different countries with lower salary expectations?

Jan acknowledges the possibility of cost-driven replacement, saying, “there’s, of course, the kind of cost replacement.” However, he also emphasizes that many replacements are project-driven. Companies are now forced to make decisions and face trade-offs, which could lead to both cost and project-driven replacements.

Which countries and specific roles seem to benefit the most from global hiring in today’s economy?

Jan highlighted that Eastern and Southern European countries, such as Greece, Italy, and Spain, are benefiting from global hiring as they can offer job opportunities to their well-educated youth who may struggle to find suitable local jobs. This also prevents brain drain to countries like Germany, the Netherlands, or the UK. Jan mentioned that “a lot of these countries where you had big outflows of people before are now able to retain or even to gain back a lot of their citizens or even to attract people from other countries.”

Which roles specifically seem to be in demand?

According to Jan, software development and product management roles are in high demand, even during economic downturns. Additionally, country-specific roles such as local marketing, local copy, and local business development are also sought after. He explained that “for a lot of software developers, especially in niche specializations, through EOR, it’s becoming truly global market, you know, for the first time for, I guess, any role.”

Are there any industries, businesses, or specific roles where you advise being very careful with global hiring?

Jan mentioned that companies in regulated industries, such as finance, insurance, and pharmaceuticals, should be cautious about which roles they hire globally. Moreover, companies should be aware of the risks associated with intellectual property transfer, trust, and confidentiality when hiring remotely. Jan emphasized that they “have put a lot of emphasis on developing a robust framework for IP transfer from the locally employed talents to the end client.”

What are the top three things companies should keep in mind before going global?

Jan suggested three key considerations:

  • Conduct a reality check on whether the company is ready for global hiring, taking into account language, culture, and time zones.
  • Understand which countries suit the specific skill sets and roles the company seeks.
  • Determine appropriate salary levels for each location, keeping local standards and expectations in mind.

Jan explained that “having the right match here is crucial. Because, of course, as a client, you don’t want to overpay; at the same time, you also don’t want to underpay as for local standards.”

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