Maru Inplacement

World Refugee Day: Why Companies Need to Act Now

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Story by
Niki Turner-Harding, Senior Vice President, Adecco UK & Ireland,

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A crucial factor in enabling refugees to build a new life in a new country is securing stable employment. In a world with ever increasing rates of displacement and migration, we must ensure that refugees are provided with equal opportunity.

In the UK, there are currently more job vacancies than people looking for work and there is a skills shortage present many industries. Businesses should therefore recognise the value that refugees can bring to the workforce.

As members of the Purpose Coalition, we recognise that the world of work is facing brand new challenges in 2022 and solving those challenges is about driving equality of opportunity for everyone.

Today is World Refugee Day and an important time to highlight the ways that companies can get involved in building a truly sustainable and diverse workplace that will last long into the future.

As one of the world’s largest employers, we at Adecco have used our global network to set up an employment platform called Jobs for Ukraine designed to connect the thousands of Ukrainian refugees with job vacancies so that they can find a career in their new home.

Ukranian refugees

Any company can submit a free job vacancy advert and anyone who is a refugee from Ukraine can apply. So far, over 1,650 companies have signed up, from across more than 50 countries where the Adecco Group operates, and more than 2,500 Ukrainian refugees have been successfully placed in work through the Jobs for Ukraine website.

More than 5,500 Ukrainian refugees have registered on the platform meaning that we still have many excellent candidates looking for new roles.

More than 1,400 of them have completed one of the training modules available through the Jobs for Ukraine platform to enhance the skills that they have to offer to businesses – such training opportunities are freely available to all refugees on the platform, allowing them to fill in any skills gaps that they have so that they can apply for jobs that they can shape into a successful career.

To further support candidates, there is information on CV writing and job search tips and links to resources to help refugees find housing and other information they may need to help them settle into their new home.

However, it is important to remember that there are refugees coming to the UK from a variety of countries and backgrounds. We have also developed a global partnership with a foundation called Tent who specialise in supporting refugees from all over the world.

Employability skills

Tent mobilise the business community to improve the lives and livelihoods of over 30 million refugees forcibly displaced from their home countries. We are currently working with the Tent Partnership, providing mentoring for 100 individuals that goes beyond just the employability skills that they need to settle into the UK and provides support with other life skills to help them build a life in their new home.

Tent want businesses to help give refugees the skills they need to find employment and that’s what we are using our insight on the jobs market in the UK to enable better outcomes. Tent assist over 200 companies in hiring refugees and we are helping by providing mentoring support to ensure the candidates are successful.

Tent has a network of global companies that span across industries from consumer goods and technology to financial and professional services which demonstrates it is easy for any company to get involved. There is no charge to join Tent so it really is that easy to make a difference.

World Refugee Day

On World Refugee Day, businesses should take a moment to reflect on where the opportunities are in their workplace for potentially offering a life changing opportunity to someone.

Some of the most popular applications that we have received are for roles such as administration, customer services, sales and trading, and hospitality which demonstrates that many displaced people are arriving in the UK with training they have already received in industries that are currently suffering a severe skills shortage.

 These recruitment and mentoring platforms demonstrate that it is easy for companies to help in a variety of ways that go beyond just offering job roles. Training and mentoring programmes that can be open to refugees are also vital in providing the support that can make the difference in helping someone to settle successfully in this country.

We are all experiencing a new world of work following the pandemic and this provides businesses with the chance to build a new and truly inclusive workforce for the future that encourages reskilling, upskilling, and recruiting from a wide variety of backgrounds.

Refugees can bring not only a different skillset, such as the ability to communicate in multiple languages, a highly valued skill in an increasingly global world of work, but also a new perspective. In an ever more competitive marketplace, refugees are valuable candidates that businesses should be recruiting to build a workplace of the future that works for everyone.

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