Remote working: The road to the future - Tax and Legal blog


Whether your employees have been “working at home”, “remote working” or setting up a “home office”, significant challenges have arisen from the new working norms.

A recent article (co-produced by Deloitte with Worldwide ERC) highlights what this means for corporate HR professionals.

The article, which is based on input from 122 corporate HR professionals, suggests that the transformation to remote working will continue. The majority of HR mobility specialists are planning for half or more of their workforce to work from home even when the pandemic subsides. This will be a major change, as employees will no longer simply make occasional requests to work from home but will instead expect to receive support for doing their jobs and fulfilling their responsibilities from a location away from an official company office or workspace. HR professionals have already been reviewing policy in respect of “remote working” requests. Their efforts are typically focused on making the workplace, wherever situated, mutually beneficial to both employees and the company. However, the new working environment requires a review of how employees needs can be met whilst also achieving company and business objectives. There have been some surprising findings in terms of how companies, and specifically corporate HR professionals, should best respond. In particular:

1. Permanent establishment presence is a key deciding factor: 54% of respondents stated that they would not allow remote working arrangements in a location in which their organisation did not have a presence.

2. Compensation adjustment: 32% of respondents indicated that they would adjust total rewards on a case-by-case basis for those employees working in lower cost areas.

3. Tracking and risk assessment: 40% of respondents said they are in the process of developing and establishing arrangements for ongoing tracking of employees who work from home, and 34% are creating a process for ongoing risk assessment.

Deloitte's view: 

The extent to which organisations can or should implement a new policy which restricts or tracks remote working is currently one of the most challenging issues that mobility professionals need to tackle. To go further and seek to adjust compensation for lower cost areas will require input at a wider level and collaboration with both strategy, legal and reward professionals.

Although this presents them with a challenge, HR professionals, and in particular mobility specialists, have a great opportunity to make a significant impact on their organisation by supporting new working models but within a framework that manages the associated risks.

If If you would like to discuss more on this topic, please do reach out to our key contacts below.


Renaat Van den Eeckhaut – Partner, Global Employer Services Leader Switzerland and EMEA

Renaat leads the Global Employer Services (GES) Practice for Deloitte Switzerland and EMEA. He specialises in international assignment and cross-border employment matters and advises on tax, social security and international mobility policies. Renaat has nearly 20 years of experience with Deloitte Belgium and Switzerland and has worked with many companies across a broad range of industries. Renaat holds a Master in Law and Accounting Law and has authored many publications on international taxation.



David Wigersma - Partner, Global Employer Services

David has 20 years of experience in the area of international corporate and individual taxation planning. He specialises in addressing the complex compliance needs of a cross-border workforce with varied elements of compensation.


Ross Hamilton110x110

Ross Hamilton - Director, Global Employer Services

Ross has over 20 years of experience with a wealth of knowledge in dealing with human resource and taxation issues that face corporate organisations, specialised in expatriate taxation, global mobility, reward, global payroll and benefits. For the last 5 years, Ross worked for a leading global pharmaceutical company as Head of Mobility Taxation and Global Employment Company lead, responsible for driving significant change within the mobility function.



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