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A leading e-commerce business began receiving remote work requests from their employees on a regular basis. They realized the company didn’t have appropriate policies, processes, or bandwidth in place to handle such requests. Having no idea where to start, they reached out to GTN for assistance. GTN worked alongside the company to build a global remote work policy and automated approval process that not only ensured employee and company tax compliance, but also maintained a strong company culture and positive employee experience.


150 tracked remote work requests annually
100 state and country arrangements tracked
5 internal stakeholders involved in the development of policy and process

Addressing the client's issues and pain points

By identifying historical risk as well as current and future business needs, and then using that data to create a global policy and process, we were able to configure our technology to automate and centralize the entire remote work process—from request and approval through to compliance.


What is our historical risk and how does it impact our employees and company?

Having employees working in jurisdictions where the company did not have a legal entity or in a location where they had not generally done business was creating unknown compliance risks. They were unsure how to determine their historical risk and there was a lack of understanding of that risk and what it meant for the company and employees.

Steps we took, together with the company:

  • Developed a framework to locate all existing remote employees along with a process to proactively track their remote employees going forward
  • Identified the historical compliance risks and defined the areas of highest risk with recommendations for moving forward
  • Built the business case for internal key stakeholders and leadership outlining the risks of not managing their remote worker population and how it would impact their business
  • Outlined the steps necessary to move them into compliance providing peace of mind that the areas of highest risk were identified and actioned


How do we handle the lack of resources and management reporting?

Without a defined global mobility team, there was no dedicated resource to manage the remote work requests that were coming in. Instead, this fell to the compensation and benefits team who had little knowledge of the tax compliance risks associated with allowing employees to work remotely. There was also very little data on their remote worker and business traveler population which led to an inability to provide management with enough knowledge to make informed decisions for the company and its employees.

Steps we took, together with the company:

  • Held initial meetings to determine project partners and discussed key areas of focus for each internal stakeholder including compensation and benefits, corporate tax, human resources, immigration, and legal
  • Established the remote worker assumptions for building a policy and the internal mapping and escalation structure for the approval process
  • Outlined a reporting cadence to highlight key trends and insights such as payroll operations impact, cost management considerations, legal risk issues, tax compliance matters, PE risk concerns, and HR data information


How do we develop a policy and process?

A global policy and approval process did not exist which meant the company didn’t have a process in place to handle the remote work requests as they were submitted. They needed a policy that not only outlined what was expected of a remote employee request but also detailed an approval process for each scenario. Additionally, the company wanted to ensure employees were not negatively impacted by any change of a new policy, process, and/or technology.

Steps we took, together with the company:

  • Finalized a global remote work policy that adhered to company and employee needs as well as technical and compliance related requirements
  • Implemented a global remote work approval process utilizing GTN’s Whereabouts™ technology to automate and centralize the process
  • Went live with the policy and approval process throughout the company ensuring minimal impact to employees by providing clear communication, guidance, and training for all employees