Reasons to hire refugees

Why I should hire a refugee?

One of the biggest challenges during the efforts to integrate the beneficiaries of International Protection in the Greek labour market is to give an answer to the most common query raised by the potential employers: the reasons of hiring a refugee and the benefits that could be achieved via the recruitment of a refugee.

While there are challenges in place such as the language, the different cultural background, which are not less important, but some employers are decided to go along with. Employing a refugee is not a charity act, it can prove to be an added value for the employer too. Hereby you can find some of the key points that you could take into consideration

Capitalize on their skills and knowledge

The fact that refugees are starting again does not mean that they do not have previous education, work experience, skills, and qualifications. Refugees are not only capable of low-skilled working hands, but also comprise a talent pool of skilled candidates that can compete along with everyone else. Along with their skills, they also bring their languages, a factor that can be an asset for a company that either is looking for the enlargement of their customer base or looking to establish cooperation with companies and stakeholders in the countries of origin.

Bring innovation to your company create new products

Alongside with the language knowledge refugees also bring their knowledge and experience of international work practices and techniques in several employability sectors. This incorporation of new techniques and methods by a company could lead as well as to the development and launch of new products and services. Depending on their origins and their backgrounds refugees can share within their new workplace their skills and techniques. Innovation is not only about big companies but also Small and Medium Enterprises. A wide range of occupations and employers can benefit from this pool of skillset from the local bakery to the construction company.

Target to new markets and expand your company’s client base

It is worth mentioning that by hiring a refugee you can create a wider pool of potential clients who belong to the hosted communities or support diversity and solidarity and prefer to receive services from companies that provides to refugees the opportunity to enter the labour market. Furthermore, by having a skillful refugee on board, it can help you expand your activities or your clients in wider base. Creating a multilingual e-shop or looking for cooperation in third countries can be assisted by a person who has the know-how of the market and has a cultural understanding of the markets you are aiming to expand.

Hiring a refugee can contribute to the development of a network between the host market and the market of country of origin. As a result, new markets can be established. A refugee employee not only can act as a mediator but also can educate you and your team.

Enhance diversity in your company

Employers who employ refugees often have the chance to learn from the experience. The difficulties that might occur or the time you may need to spend on making the refugee part of your employees’ team can make you rethink, adjust, and learn by your own tactics and eventually become a better manager of a diverse workforce. Furthermore, refugees’ life experiences and culture differences affect their views and influence decision-making in organizations. People with different experiences will have different ideas when solving problems. This might be beneficial for any organization.

By hiring a refugee, you can also bring added value to your staff. Colleagues of refugee employees and staff who are involved in recruitment or day-to-day cooperation, also experience personal growth. Apart from feeling proud of giving someone the opportunity to build a new life, staff members can broaden their horizons, develop skills, and enhance their capability to handle other diversity issues that may arise in your company.

Widen your labour pool and cover your employee shortages

It is worth mentioning, as the experience indicates, that the refugees can prove to be hard-workers, highly motivated, and highly skilled. Even the less-skilled refugees can assist in sectors with shortage of employees. On the other hand, refugees could be a recruitment solution for filling low skilled vacancies which are hard sometimes to fill and difficult to keep filled, using the local workers.

Furthermore, refugees may not have a problem to live where the jobs are, and this could be an advantage for some employers, especially those who can find workers with the right skills, but they have a problem with the job location.

Every employer who invests in refugees’ skills could create a wider pool of employees able to meet the needs of the business through relevant matching skills. The mentioned pathway could ensure to every employer a stronger local network of collaboration and open the prospect of hiring more people from the refugee’s community.

Support the development of the local community and local economy

Small, and medium size enterprises, and mostly the companies that are based in the countryside, through hiring refugees can contribute to the revitalization of the host community. If companies develop strategies for actions on refugee employment, they can bring life to smaller hosting communities, revitalize their day-to-day reality but also financially boost the local economy.

Support the personal growth and integration of refugees in the local labour market

Employers who are ready to recruit refugees can contribute to the social and financial stability of persons that were forced to flee their countries and are able to establish a diverse workplace. Being an employee of a refugee is also an act of good will and support of the population. It is important to highlight that employment is one of the major steps of person’s integration to the host community. A hiring of a refugee is a good step towards his/her own financial autonomy but also plays a major contribution to the navigation of the new culture. Cooperation proves to be one of the most effective pathways to create a cultural understanding between the refugee and the host community.

Access refugees’ skills

In many occupations qualifications and accreditations are necessary to access the occupation, while in others competency is what it matters most. Often employees are reluctant on hiring a refugee because they are not sure if the self-claimed skills by the refugees are translated into the Greek reality. By hiring a refugee or have an intern for a trial period, you help them not only to recognize their ability and their potential but also you set a stone for the creation of a culture of inclusivity in the labour market. You set an example for the other employers and become a guard of their qualifications and abilities.

Access to public funds

Assisting refugees to enter the labour market could give to every potential employer access to public funds. The Greek Government, through OAED, provides motivation to employers to recruit vulnerable persons, including refugees, subsidizing the employer’s social insurance contribution (part of it or in total) or percentage of the salary.

Be part of the solution

If you are thinking or are willing to:

  • Hire a beneficiary of international protection,
  • Organize an internship program for beneficiaries of international protection
  • Provide job shadowing opportunities or on-the job training

Do not be scared by the cultural differences or your company’s lack of knowledge in this area instead of wondering how you can find the proper candidate contact HELIOS EMPLOYABILITY COMPONENT which supports beneficiaries of international protection to access the local labour market. We can support you reach out the appropriate candidate for you and provide you with potential solutions.