By Katy Cottrell, Sona Circle
If you feel passionately about workplace equality and the social integration of refugees, addressing a lack of diversity in your own workspace is a great place to start. But having these types of conversations with your employers can be difficult, which is why we have created a list of key points that you can use to convince your boss to hire refugees.
1. Consumers care about diversity and inclusion
If your employer is reluctant to hire refugees, it’s good to point out that consumers are increasingly concerned with the ethical values of the businesses they support. For example, in 2017 the Cone Communications CSR study found that 78% of consumers say they want companies to address important social justice issues. Additionally, 87% said they would purchase a product because a company advocated for an issue they cared about.
With an increase in awareness of systemic racism and racial bias, thanks to the Black Lives Matter protests, this stance is likely to gain some traction. Therefore, hiring refugees may have the advantage of satisfying socially conscious customers.
2. You could attract other skilled labour
Additionally, research has shown that millennials specifically want to work for companies that are more diverse and inclusive, and this affects which jobs they apply to. A study by Deloitte also found that millennials are more engaged with their jobs when they perceive their workplaces to be more inclusive.
3. Refugees have a variety of employable skills
One reason many companies are reluctant to employ refugees is out of a perception that they lack relevant experience. However, often refugees’ valuable qualifications and overseas experience are not recognised by UK employers. Therefore, the refugee population could be a large skilled workforce with untapped potential.
It’s a good idea to encourage your employer to be more open-minded about the types of previous experience and qualifications that could be highly relevant to their business.
4. You should practice what you preach
If your employer likes to pride themselves on being socially conscious or ‘human centric’, it’s worth reminding them that hiring refugees and creating a more diverse workplace, is a great way to prove that they really are.
5. You could be nominated for a diversity award
In various employment sectors there are a growing number of awards for diversity and inclusion. Examples include, the Employee Engagement Awards and the Inclusive Company Awards. Being awarded with recognition for workplace diversity is something a company can pride themselves on, and will illustrate to consumers that they are dedicated to inclusivity.
6. Sona Circle Recruitment can help
At Sona Circle Recruitment, we connect socially conscious employers with the skilled and dependable refugee workforce in the UK. Our refugee internship programme matches qualified and committed members of the refugee workforce with exciting new start-ups and growth businesses.
How else can I help?
You can also show your support by making a donation (no matter how big or small) to the Sona Circle Refugee Employment Fund where 100% of donations go directly to supporting refugee employment in the UK.