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A PEO provides employment and payroll services, similar to a temporary staffing agency. This is an option when a small number of employees are needed in a specific location for a limited period of time. In this model, the individuals would be employed by the PEO and assigned to the program. The PEO is responsible for all employment law, tax, and reporting requirements. However, because Tufts may share liability if the PEO fails to comply with the law, such relationships must be monitored closely. Global Operations manages the University’s relationship with several global PEO firms and can guide you.

Note: It is possible to second a current Tufts employee to a PEO for the duration of the international assignment, while still maintain Tufts status and benefits. Global Operations can provide more information.


  • Fast implementation
  • Widely available
  • PEO responsible for tax and labor law compliance
  • Limited risk for Tufts


  • High administrative costs
  • Limited Tufts affiliation
  • Little to no control over benefits

Budget Considerations

  • Salary
  • Employer-owed taxes
  • Employer-sponsored benefits or allowances (i.e. health insurance, housing)
  • PEO monthly fee (18 – 25% of monthly salary or a minimum of $1000-$1500 per employee)
  • PEO one-time onboarding fee (between $1000 – $1500 per employee)
  • If applicable: Visa sponsorship fees
  • If applicable: Severance requirements in -country

Next Steps

Global Operations facilitates communication between the PEO and Tufts departments. Communication during the on-boarding includes contract negotiations to ensure the university-required clauses are included in all employment contracts and information displayed in contract reflects need of project. Please contact Global Operations to start this process.