Hiring Internationally and Working Abroad

HRO-International (HROI) is available to assist departments, laboratories, and centers (DLCs) with questions related to employment abroad.

Services include:

  • Managing requests and questions that filter through Human Resource Officers (HROs), the ICC, or from the DLCs
  • Communicating with the ICC to address issues related to international employment
  • Providing guidance throughout the planning process and gathering information needed to support informed decision-making
  • Seeking advice from identified experts on matters related to taxes and employment laws
  • Advising on issues for MIT employees traveling on extended assignments abroad, including options for hiring, identifying potential costs, employee benefits, etc.
  • Discussing how to manage employees working remotely

In rare situations, a project may need to be supported by having a current MIT employee working abroad or hiring someone in a foreign country. Contact the HROI early in your planning to discuss the requirements of your project. There are many factors to consider when structuring this relationship and it is important to evaluate the benefits and risks of each available option. Employment options may include:

  • Direct employment by MIT
  • Hiring through a host country sponsor
  • Secondment agreement between MIT and a host country sponsor
  • Hiring through a host country employment agency, with assignment to MIT
  • Hiring as an independent contractor, which must comply with the laws of the country

Please complete this brief intake form and email it to hro-international@mit.edu Please provide us with as much advance notice as possible so that we can assist you to conduct country-specific employment and labor-related research.

Mobility costs and employee benefits guidelines

MIT has guidelines around compensation, benefits, and support for faculty, principal investigators, staff, and students on a long-term assignment outside the U.S. for one to three years.

Depending on the project agreement, mobility costs may be borne by the sponsor, MIT, or the individual employee. Under the guidelines, costs are categorized by when the expenditure is made.

  • Pre-assignment costs include travel and shipment of goods, and items such as visas, work permits, and tax briefing.  
  • On-assignment costs such as cost of living adjustments, health benefits, tax equalization, and periodic travel home.  
  • Post-assignment costs include additional tax briefing(s), return shipment of goods, and travel home.

While these guidelines apply to long-term assignments, they may also be helpful for assignments that are shorter than a year but longer than typical business travel. For more information, including requesting a copy of the Guidelines and/or a checklist of the items covered in the Guidelines, please contact HROI.

Learn more about traveling abroad