The government’s processes of doing business in Saudi Arabia can be complex in nature. With the right kind of help, you can operate well. If your government relations processes are not supported or managed diligently, that can lead to problems for the business. There is a broad range of services the GRO (government relations officers) provide for setting up a company., such as setting up of block visa, license and permit renewal, a PO box, iqamas, etc. Due to a broad range of processes, many companies choose to keep a GRO. They choose not to use internal resources.
What is a GRO?
A GRO is a person, a Saudi national, who takes care of the Saudi government relations and processes. The GRO manages documentation, application, translation, attestations, and setting up a business account on business sites. These run the business smoothly. To become a GRO one must know both Arabic and English and have a valid driving license. He should also have an extended knowledge of Saudi labour law. Having a GRO in a company helps smoothen the process making it error free staying updated with the laws which affects the company.
For example, GRO services are required to acquire a visa for a colleague who is visiting the Saudi office, in the US head office, your GRO will take care of the needful which would be as follows. Obtain the correct visa by checking the purpose of your travel
- Helping you in airing the LOI.
- Overseeing that you have the visa requirements and you are eligible to travel.
- Helping you to acquire any documents, take care of the attestations if needed and also acquire any necessary supporting documents.
- Gro may also apply for a visa on your behalf.
- Until the service is complete GRO provides visa monitoring service as well.
Why GRO is essential for your business?
An essential part of doing business in Saudi Arabia is by remaining compliant in Saudi Arabia. Having a platinum Nitaqat rating along with a high level of compliance reaps benefits from the government, it also reduces potential legal risk. GRO is well versed in the intricacies of the Saudi market. The requirement of compliance depends on what type of industry we are talking about. The GRO will ensure what you need to stay compliant with the norms. They will make sure you attain. They will manage the task of renewal of visas when required so that penalties are avoided if delayed.
GRO minimalizes legal risks or errors in the process of administration of government processes which are often the case when asking in-house staff to do the work. These reduce penalties when done by an expert, GRO. Taking the help of a GRO will keep the in-house staff focused and reduce the legal risk for businesses by ensuring they are compliant with the laws.
The Saudi market is constantly changing and the evolution is because of the new reforms which are implemented by the government, it becomes challenging for the company to go forward with its operations smoothly. Without proper support, the company may face difficulties. GROs in the company keep up to date with the changing laws and thus this allows faster response and faster adaptation thus avoiding confusion. GRO will keep your company to the standards helping to operate as a trustworthy organization.
What does the GRO role include?
GRO role has a number of different parts and they include the following;
- Submission of documents for visa application to the Ministry of labour.
- Arrange the renewal of the company license.
- To obtain a license by Submission of documentation.
- Representation of your organization at embassies, ministries, airports, police stations, and ministries.
- Registration of company vehicle and renewal as well.
- Attestation of employee qualification.
- Also manage visa-related work, like administration of the records.
- Continuous updating of the new laws and implementing them as per procedure, abiding by the government rules and regulations.
- GRO also pays fees including, visa transfer fees, labour cards, medical tests, and bank guarantees.
- Preparation of official invitation letters
GRO must also have the following skills to successfully undertake the duties.
- GROs have to be Saudi nationals.
- He must be able to speak and write in Arabic and English fluently.
- He must have a valid driving license
- Must have strong government networks which would make his work smooth.
- Profound knowledge of labour laws
GRO outsourcing can also be done because there are many companies that provide the services which are essential elements in doing business in Saudi Arabia. It has proven a key link between company and government, thus making the process seamless.
GRO Services can help in regulating compliance requirements which the outsourced company does, freeing you up to focus on other requirements to run a company.
GRO specialist has an in-depth idea of Saudi labour law, visa and regulation laws, and visa and licensing regulations which help him to streamline the company’s interaction with the government. The process saves time as well as 60 % of the operation cost.
The whole process of managing GRO work can be a tedious process and may be frustrating if you rely on in-house resources. GRO should have enough knowledge to handle the deadlines and delays and fines from happening by juggling the work seamlessly. The GRO needs to be on top of the changes in the laws and must have the skills to implement them in the company. Outsourcing to a GRO provider allows you to concentrate on your business.
If you are looking to set up a business in Saudi Arabia, then GRO is a must-have to take care of the day-to-day business. For many businesses new to the country, the concept of GRO is new to them or something that they have never heard before. But if they have done business in and around the middle east they may have come across the service under the name of PRO.
Thus, the above article covers the need for GRO in a company and their responsibilities.