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Three alternative ways to pay your overseas employees

on Tuesday, 21 February 2017. Posted in Financial management, Finance

From bitcoin to travel cards, savvy startups are giving hefty international transfer charges the slip

Three alternative ways to pay your overseas employees

Being able to tap into a network of talent is critical for many British businesses but the practicalities of paying these overseas workers can prove to be tricky. Not only will you need to comply with another country’s financial regulations and tax laws but you’ll have to deal with the ins and outs of transferring money too. For example, when you send money abroad through a bank, financial institution or payment gateway, you have to pay certain charges to process and finalise the transaction. But for businesses that don’t want to incur extra charges, there’s a whole host of alternative payment options to choose from.

1. Bitwage

Some businesses are turning to bitcoin, an alternative currency, when paying overseas staff. Because bitcoin is a decentralised currency, it means that it won’t lose value against other currencies and can be converted into virtually any currency via bitcoin exchange. It also allows business to avoid costly transactional fees.

One of the platforms allowing businesses to make bitcoin payments is Bitwage, a blockchain-based bitcoin payroll company. Founded in 2013, the company aims to  to reduce the costs involved with moving money globally, increase the visibility of the payment process and boost the speed of international wage payments. It’s become an extremely popular option among businesses and has processed more than $4.5bn worth of payments since its inception.

2. Wirex

Another option for businesses looking to explore bitcoin payments is Wirex, a financial platform that allows businesses to pay their employees directly in bitcoin by depositing funds into their Wirex account. Once deposited, the recipient will then be able to use both digital and fiat currencies to purchase goods in the country they’re based in. Employees will be able to access their money abroad and convert it at any time from bitcoin into a fiat currency. 

Paying employees in bitcoin like this will save any transactional or transfer fees and FOREX commissions, giving you a more accurate and appealing exchange rate between bitcoin and either Euro, USD or GBP.

3. Travel cards

Although perhaps better suited to people who are working overseas temporarily, travel cards are an easy method of paying your employee’s wage without having to face hefty payment processing fees. For example, if an employee is sent to another country from the UK to work for three months it’s probably not the best option to pay their wage into their UK bank account since they’ll face charges when withdrawing money from an ATM abroad. This is where travel cards can be an extremely useful way of sending money without facing heavy transfer fees, as you’ll be able to credit your employee’s travel card with funds they can withdraw while they’re abroad.

Whether you pay your employee in bitcoin or use a more traditional route, making payments as hassle-free as possible will not only save you money but can help you  attract top global talent too.

This article was brought to you courtesy of Digital Next, the full-service digital agency.

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