Ensuring tax compliance on a global scale

In today’s business world, top executives need to be able to travel and work in many different countries and jurisdictions. Their compliance needs may therefore be quite complex, with factors like increased confidentiality, adapting to last minute changes in travel schedules, and their own personal, industry-specific regulatory requirements coming into play.

Our client is a major semiconductor manufacturer with more than 45,000 employees worldwide. It faced the challenge of ensuring consistent multi-jurisdictional tax compliance for its C-suite executives and corporate vice presidents. High standards of confidentiality were required, especially for payroll data, so that access to sensitive information would be restricted.

Our approach involved careful co-ordination of client service teams in all countries where the C-suite executives needed to be compliant. Our team in Switzerland worked with our practitioners in France, Italy, Germany, Singapore and Japan to develop an easy-to-use mobility management model. We gathered further expertise from external payroll specialists to help implement and operate the new system.

The resulting model we developed, compared with our client’s previous model, has saved several million Swiss francs in tax and social security charges. It also provided protection over accumulated pension benefits, and ensured that these benefits could be distributed in a compliant and tax-efficient way. In addition to the savings, our compliance model guarantied confidentiality and provided user-friendly dashboard reporting for budgeting for the future.


Tax efficient secondments: A new model for new markets

Many Swiss-based companies with global ambitions seek to expand their business operations into new markets worldwide, especially countries with fast-growing economies. They will usually need to re-locate staff, from head office or around the world, to establish operations from scratch and get business going. Re-located staff may need to remain in place for several years. Taxation can be a major concern when companies enter a new market, and they will want operate in the most cost-efficient way. Therefore, before they decide where to operate, they need to be aware of all the possible implications.

Our client was looking to expand its business into five South-East Asian countries, but to locate all newly deployed staff in just one of them. They would then make regular business trips from the base country to the other four locations. The client considered cost-efficiency as a high priority. Our role was to identify which country would be the most cost-efficient base, with business travel arrangements that would provide the most tax-efficient structure for the new operations.

Our Swiss practitioners worked with Deloitte teams in each of the five countries to devise a structure that would limit exposure to taxation. We conducted extensive research and identified a location in which taxation could be avoided entirely for the first six months, along with a business travel plan that would minimise further tax costs. Using our extensive network and unparalleled expertise, we were able to provide extensive advice relating to all five countries within just three days. Our Global Mobility team was able to recommend a tailored solution that would enable our client to achieve its business objectives, and at the same time meet all compliance requirements and minimise costs. The client has implemented our recommendations, and the relocated executives are now living in South East Asia and travelling within the region, helping to establish a business presence there.

The challenge

With top executives often travelling extensively between various countries, or re-locating internationally for varied lengths of time, multinational companies have to juggle numerous immigration policies and tax regulations. A lack of sufficient detail about specific national regulations, or technical solutions to coordinate this information, can affect the efficient deployment of global workforces.

Many countries indeed have immigration policies with complex controls over the granting of visas to foreign workers, and these are often subject to change. Tax and social security regulations are also very complex and differ between geographies, and furthermore, this can make it difficult to devise incentive schemes that attract talent in a competitive labour market.

The increasingly regulated environment, particularly with regard to disclosures about remuneration, also places additional demands on corporate reporting and compliance.

Installing and managing a global mobility programme that aligns with both business and talent strategies is therefore a major challenge for multinationals. Our dedicated expert teams can help your firm create a robust, efficient Mobility programme that ensures compliance and captures value.

Our approach


We help organisations understand mobility compliance obligations and how to address them in line with a company’s overall compliance strategy.


We assist companies in continually leveraging the latest technology in order to bolster compliance, improve employees’ overall assignment experience and reduce cost.


We advise on mobility strategy, including segmenting mobility populations or measuring the ROI of mobile employees and other methods of analysis.


Reassurance that country-specific compliance obligations are being met

Knowledgeable local contacts ready to assist your international workforce

Alignment of your mobility programme to your talent agenda

In-depth insights from your own mobility data using our innovative analytics technology

Digital Workforce Mobility

Why Deloitte?

  • Hollistic approach: Global team, local touch

    We are able to offer a broader range of services locally in Switzerland than any of our competitors in the field of global workforce management. We are able to draw on both our global network of member firms and our local Swiss team to provide expertise from all angles.

  • In-house topic experts

    We have a diverse team of experts with considerable consulting and in-house corporate experience in global mobility transformation, technology, analytics, immigration, social security, tax and reward.

  • Fast and innovative approach

    We work closely with our clients to drive innovative programme and leading technology enhancements to enable Global Mobility functions to make a greater impact within the organisation.

  • Tax Firm of the Year 2019

    For the seventh year in a row, the renowned International Tax Review named us Switzerland's 'Tax Firm of the Year'. We are the largest and fastest growing tax and global mobility practice in Switzerland.

Case studies

Ensuring tax compliance on a global scale

Our worldwide network of experts helped us create a bespoke global solution for our multinational manufacturing client

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Tax efficient secondments: A new model for new markets

Helping a client to expand its business into Asia through tax-efficient relocation and business travel

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The team

Renaat Van den Eeckhaut

Renaat Van den Eeckhaut

Partner, Global Employer Services EMEA & Switzerland Lead

Email Renaat icon-chevron-arrow

+41 58 279 6986

Michelle Hug-Fahrni

Michelle Hug-Fahrni

Partner, Global Employer Services, Zurich

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+41 58 279 9773

David Wigersma

David Wigersma

​Partner, Global Employer Services, Lausanne

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+41 58 279 9260

Dirk Hangarter

Dirk Hangarter

​Partner, Global Employer Services, Zurich

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+41 58 279 6335