“Expanding its platform to support international employees as well as non-payroll workers — which includes freelancers, independent contractors, consultants and agencies — Stoke is filling a newly developed market need by enabling companies to work more effectively with a global workforce that includes both freelancers and full-time employees,” the company said in the release.
The move comes as small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in the tech field are expanding into global markets, according to the release. This new recruiting method gives them a larger talent pool, but also presents new challenges, including dealing with compliance and payment as laws vary from country to country and state to state.
Hiring just one employee in a foreign country can mean opening a local office and hiring local payroll and tax experts, the release stated. Stoke can manage the legal and tax liabilities for companies, handling everything through its platform.
“As more companies adopt hybrid and remote models of working, our goal is to enable them to grow freely in whatever way suits them,” said Stoke Co-Founder and CEO Shahar Erez in the release. “Rather than sourcing only local candidates, companies should think about who is the best talent out there to execute it — regardless of their location. By simplifying the process, we hope to remove barriers between employers and workers across the world.”
Based in Palo Alto, California, Stoke helps companies hire and pay workers in 150 countries, while also managing independent contractors, payments, compliance and other freelance management needs, according to the release.
In an interview with PYMNTS in June, Erez spoke of the many challenges facing companies in the face of a boom in freelance workers, including making sure these workers get paid on time.
While salaried workers are part of a payroll schedule, there’s no recurring calendar for when freelancers get their payments. The result, Erez said, is that these workers are forced to wait for their payments and hope they arrive soon enough to meet their needs.
“Independent contractors are just as much in need of getting paid on time as employees,” he said. “There’s almost some disrespect to independent contractors by not making sure they get paid on time.”