How To Interview For A Global Payroll Position

Global payroll professionals are in higher demand than ever before as the lines of physical geography become blurred around the world.  It used to be that only the biggest corporations had global operations, but thanks to advancements in technology, companies of all sizes are taking advantage of the global market. There are many opportunities in global payroll at all levels, so if you’re looking to grow your career, take the time to prepare for your interview so you can stand out from the crowd.

“In order to assist clients effectively, recruiters focus their attention on Expatriates and Canadian payroll experience when pipelining for a Global Payroll position.  They know that when an existing or new client reaches out, they need to be prepared for what they are looking for specifically.  This criteria gives recruiters a head start in the recruiting and search process!” says Sharon Tsao, CMO of Contemporary Staffing Solutions.

Prepare For Behavioral Interview Questions

Behavioral interview questions are common in nearly every field, but you can be certain you’ll be asked lots of behavioral questions when interviewing for a global payroll position. Global payroll is rife with challenges, and employers will want to get a read on how you’ve handled certain situations in the past.

Behavioral usually aren’t questions at all, but statements that begin with, “Describe a situation” or ,“Tell me about a time when.” You’ll be asked to describe everything from how you handle conflict with coworkers to how you correct payroll mistakes and everything in between.

The best way to prepare for behavioral questions is to practice with a colleague or with a recruiter.  You don’t want to have to think too hard about your answers, nor do you want to ramble on, so it is critical to practice talking about your success and your failures in a succinct manner.

Be Prepared to Address The Challenges Of Global Payroll

Every employer has its own unique priorities when looking for talent, but when interviewing for a position in global payroll, you have to be prepared to illustrate the ways in which you can help the employer overcome some universal challenges like:

  • Meeting legal obligations
  • Staying ahead of changes in laws and regulations
  • Tax compliance
  • Navigating cultural obligations
  • Ensuring KPIs are met across multiple vendors
  • Establishing payroll systems and processes in new locations

As you prepare to interview, be sure to collect anecdotes that show how you have contributed to solving these challenges for previous employers. Whenever possible, quantify your achievements. If, for example, you found that the software your current company uses would not keep you compliant based on upcoming changes in regulations and you developed a solution, calculate how much you potentially saved the organization in errors and penalties by getting ahead of the situation.

Study the Employer

You can’t possibly anticipate every global payroll challenge that an employer will face, but if you study up on the company, you might be able to get a read on their unique situation. You might be able to determine in which countries they currently have employees and contractors, and if you’ve worked with payroll in those areas before, make sure to showcase that experience.

Vendors often list their clients on their websites, so do some digging to see if you can determine which vendors and platforms the company may use, so you can speak to your experience in those areas, as well.

If you are a global payroll professional looking to take your career to the next level, contact the expert accounting and finance recruiters at Contemporary Staffing Solutions today. Our experienced team of senior recruiters place on a national level!