When it comes to staying compliant, there are a number of problem areas for employers. Two of these – status changes and public access files – are keys to immigration compliance that often fall under the radar of many hiring managers and HR. And they can have troubling consequences for a company’s compliance with immigration laws.
The first is tracking employee status changes to make sure your foreign national employees’ and global travel employees are always in compliance. The second, maintaining public access files compliantly, can be tricky for employers who don’t know how to store files, how long to keep files or what to do with them when they no longer need them.
Here are a few tips to manage these two overlooked keys to immigration compliance to help you become a compliance-first organization.
Create and store public access files compliantly
For the creation and retention of public access files, you should begin by creating a public access file policy. This helps answer basic creation and storage questions for anyone inside the organization: How should they be created? How should they be stored? How do we audit them to know all required documents are in order? How long do you store them? When is it safe to delete them and how?
Some of the best practices in public access files storage include automating as much as possible for easy assembly, storing documents in a secure online location, performing regular audits and leveraging technology to set alerts and reminders to complete or purge files. Get more on public access files here.
Track status changes
Our recent Changing Landscapes of Immigration Management report revealed that one in four employers aren’t tracking employee status changes. The problem with not tracking changes in status is that it could lead you to be inadvertently out of compliance. And ignorance of compliance laws doesn’t necessarily safeguard you from their related penalties.
So why does tracking status changes matter? There are some visas that are reliant on a single work location, salary or role. When any of those details change for an employee, the authorities may have to be notified or an amended petition may need to be filed.
Plus, when your employees are traveling internationally, it’s important to track their immigration and location status in order to make sure you’re fully compliant with the laws of other countries. Creating a status change tracking process – that you share widely with managers throughout the organization – can help you maintain compliance on a global scale.