How to Hire Remote Employees In 

Zimbabwe

The Basics

Currency
Zimbabwe Dollar (ZWD)
Employer Taxes
3.5% -7%
Payroll Frequency
Monthly
Official Language
Shona/English

Employment in 

Zimbabwe

Hire Independent Contractors

Independent contractors or freelancers are self-employed individuals who provide services to companies as a non-employee. This is one of the most common ways companies tend to hire non-local designers, engineers, support reps, etc.

For legal and tax purposes, independent contractors are not classified as employees. They may work for multiple clients, set their own work hours, negotiate their pay rate, and decide how a job gets done.

For example, the IRS says that if an independent contractor or freelancer does work that can be controlled (what will be done and how it will be done) by an employer then they are, in fact, classified as an employee.

As you can imagine, hiring someone as an independent contractor versus an employee is a fine line to tread.

While there are benefits when you choose the contractor route, there are quite a few drawbacks to consider and you’ll need to weigh them carefully to determine the best fit for your company.

Benefits of Hiring Independent Contractors
Reduced overhead: Lower cost in expenses, payroll, benefits, and more.
Greater flexibility: Contractors can be brought on as-needed. If not a good fit, you simply don’t have to move forward with the contract.
Reduced legal risk: Contractors aren’t usually protected by employment anti-discrimination and workplace safety laws.
Disadvantages of Hiring Independent Contractors
Risk of Misclassification: Not only does this deny workers their proper protections, it can also result in steep penalties and damage to your company. If the IRS determines that employee misclassification has occurred, you will be liable for a percentage of the employees wages, FICA contributions, penalty fines, unpaid taxes, up to a year in prison, and more.
Lack of Control: Contractors are drawn to being independent because it gives them greater control over the work they perform and who they work with. Because they’re not employees, you can’t tell them what to work on and how it should be done.
Lack of Loyalty: Contractors come and go as-needed. Many companies hire contractors for short-term work, which makes it difficult to cultivate loyalty.
Increased Scrutiny: Using Independent Contractors typically leads to an increased risk of being audited.

Set up a subsidiary in 

Zimbabwe

A foreign subsidiary is a company that operates overseas as part of a larger company who’s HQ is in another country.

Establishing a foreign entity is great for having an international presence and accessing new markets. Though, setting up a subsidiary in Zimbabwe can be expensive, stressful, and time-consuming. It's not for the faint of heart.

To set up a subsidiary in Zimbabwe, you have to:

  1. Register your business name and file articles of incorporation
  2. File for local bank accounts
  3. Learn and keep track of the local employment laws
  4. Set up local payroll
  5. Hire local accounting, legal, and HR people

If you're lucky, this process can take months. If you're not so lucky, it can take up to a year. And on average, it costs about $50k-$80k, all-in-all, to get setup. And that's just for Zimbabwe.

Use an Employer-of-Record (EOR)

An employer-of-record (EOR) is a company that hires and pays an employee on behalf of another company.

An EOR is typically used to overcome the financial and regulatory hurdles that often come with employing remote workers.

Each country has its own payroll, employment, and work permit requirements for non-resident companies doing business in their jurisdiction. Meeting those demands can be a huge obstacle when it comes to hiring remotely.

At Panther, we help companies employ and pay people in over 160 countries, without having to set up a foreign subsidiary. Payroll, benefits, taxes, compliance, and more are all handled by us, at a fraction of the cost.

Outside of saving you months and tens of thousands of dollars, other advantages of using Panther are:

  • Ability to attract talented and motivated employees from all over the world.
  • Full legal compliance: There is no risk of violating local employment laws.
  • Transparency: Employees are still your employees. All the work, processes, operations and day-to-day business belong to you, the company, just like with any other employee. Panther just takes on all of the responsibilities, obligations and admin work related to your team's employment.
  • No risk of misclassification

Because you no longer have to set up your own subsidiary, you’ll save a ton of time and tens of thousands of dollars using Panther.

Paying Remote Employees

Paying employees in Zimbabwe  is not the same as paying workers in your own country. Employees have to be paid using Zimbabwe’s employment and payroll standards.

This means that you have to know, understand, and keep up with 1) fluctuating currency changes, and 2) local payroll and tax laws in the countries you’re looking to hire in.

Outside of the laws and regulations around payroll, there may be different conditions surrounding leave, overtime, termination, and more. As you can imagine, maintaining this kind of regulatory knowledge can be challenging. But it is crucial and necessary to follow local legislation.

After, you’ll have to determine the best way to pay your international employees. This can be done in a number of ways, including but not limited to:

Pay through a local entity

One of the most challenging (and expensive) parts of paying international employees is setting up the infrastructure to do so.

Before you start to run payroll, you have to register your company as the local employer in the country the worker resides in. As you can see in the “Set up a subsidiary” section, this is a multi-step process that can take up to a year and put you on your way to bankruptcy.

Work with an EOR

Outside of EORs acting as the full admin employer, many also provide remote payroll.

For example, at Panther, in just 1-click, you’re able to pay your entire global team, anywhere in the world. We send you an invoice each month, charge you in US Dollars, and pay your employees the same amount in their local currency.

We factor in currency fluctuations and use the mid-market rate plus any applicable fee passed on by our provider at cost at the time of billing.

Zimbabwe

 Specific Information

Working Hours

The standards working hours are 8.5 hours a day and 44 hours a week.

Overtime

Overtime may be regulated under Collective Bargaining Agreement. No such regulation could be located. In accordance with the Labour Act, Minister for Labour may issue regulations regarding overtime, shift work and night work.

The minimum overtime rate is 150% of the normal salary/wage rate when employees are required to work beyond the normal working hours. When an employee works on a public holiday, then a premium of 200% of the normal salary/wage is normally paid.

For breakdown, continuous work, emergency and for every hour or part thereof worked by an employee in excess of his/her ordinary hours of work, the employer shall pay the employee not less than one and a half times his/her ordinary rate.

For every hour or part thereof worked by an employee between midnight on Saturday and midnight on Sunday, or midnight of the day before their day off, the employer shall pay the employee not less than twice their ordinary rate.

An employee can only be required to work a maximum of 10 hours per day.

Payroll Tax

Employer

  • National Social Security Authority (NSSA, the National Pension Scheme)

Minimum Wage

Zimbabwe does not have a minimum wage, there is no mandatory minimum rate of pay for workers in Zimbabwe. But According to Living Wage Individual in Zimbabwe is expected to reach 305.00 USD/Month by the end of 2020, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations.

Payroll

Pay Cycle

In Zimbabwe, employee receive their salary in monthly basis.

13th Salary

In Zimbabwe, 13th month pay is not mandatory.

Leave

Paid Time Off (PTO)

Employees are entitled to a rate of 30 days or one-month leave after a continuous employment period of one year. Weekends and public holidays are counted as part of the vacation leave days.

Public Holidays

There are 17 public holidays.

Sick Days

Sick leave is only granted by a duly registered medical practitioner.

An employee may enjoy 90 days of sick leave in a year on full pay (before the employer can consider medical termination)

If the employee has exhausted the 90 days of sick leave in any one-year period of service, they may request a further 90 days of sick leave at half pay. Again the request needs to be accompanied by a signed certificate from a registered medical practitioner.

During any one-year period of service, if the sick leave exceeds 90 days of full pay and 180 days of full and half pay, the employer may terminate the employment of the employee concerned.

Maternity Leave

Female employees are protected under law and are entitled to 98 working days’ leave on full earnings. (There is a compulsory entitlement of 21 days before confinement included in the 98 days.)

A female employee may proceed on maternity leave not earlier than the forty-fifth day and not later than the twenty-first day prior to the expected date of delivery.

Paternity Leave

There is no paternity leave.

Parental Leave

There is no parental leave.

Other Leave

In Zimbabwe it is managed under Section 14B of the Labour Act 28:01

The maximum number of days each employee MAY proceed on this type of leave is twelve (12) days per year.

These days cannot be demanded or enjoyed unless the following circumstances obtain:

-when an employee has been authorized by a registered medical practitioner to be away from work due to an infectious disease.

-when an employee has been subpoenaed to attend court proceedings ONLY as a witness.

-when an appointed employee is attending trade union meetings.

-when an employee has been detained by the police ONLY for the purposes of questioning.

Marriage Leave

None.

Bereavement Leave

In Zimbabwe it is managed under Section 14B of the Labour Act 28:01, the employer may grant the special leave when an employee has lost a spouse, parent, child or legal dependent. The duty to prove the existence of the circumstances rests on the affected employee.

Termination

Termination Process

According to the Code of Conduct, a contract of employment can be terminated if the employer and employee mutually agree to it in writing.

This is also the case if an employee is engaged in a fixed-term contract or for performance of a specific task and the

contract has expired after the mandated period or the task is completed.

Employers CAN terminate contracts on the following grounds:

If an employee:

  • Is guilty of theft or fraud.
  • Willfully destroys employer’s property.
  • Is absent for a period of five days or more working days without giving a reasonable excuse.
  • Lacks a skill that he or she implicitly said they was capable of.
  • Is substantially negligent in his or her duties.
  • Is drunk to the extent that it makes him/her fail to perform their duties.

Notice Period

The notice period in Zimbabwe is:

Notice of termination of the contract of employment to be given by either party shall be:

  • Three months in the case of a contract without limit of time or a contract for a period of two years or more.
  • Two months in the case of a contract for a period of one year or more but less than two years.
  • One month in the case of a contract for a period of six months or more but less than one year.
  • Two weeks in the case of a contract for a period of three months or more but less than six months.
  • One day in the case of a contract for a period of less than three months or in the case of casual work or seasonal work.

Severance Pay

Employers may be required to pay severance pursuant to a collective agreement or employees dismissed due to redundancy. Severance generally is one month of salary for every two years of service to the employer.

Probation Period

In Zimbabwe, the contract includes a probationary period, it may not last longer than three months, except for casual or seasonal work, for which the probationary period may be only one day.