Skip to main content

How to hire a refugee

If you’re looking for new staff for your team, and you’re looking to hire from a more diverse selection of employees, it might be worth considering hiring a refugee. We’ve found out what skills a refugee can bring to your business, and why hiring refugees can improve your team.

What is a refugee?

The legal definition of a refugee is a person who, according to the UK government, has a, ‘well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion’. A person who has been forced to flee their country due to the risk of persecution, violence or war may be unable to return home, or are afraid to do so. 

A refugee can come from anywhere in the world, but if they meet this definition they’re able to seek asylum in the UK. It’s difficult to know how many refugees are currently living in the UK, as a person’s residential status can change over time. A person may enter the UK as a refugee, and over the years apply for permanent residence or indeed UK citizenship. It’s estimated that about 0.2% of the UK population were refugees in 2015.

Can businesses hire refugees?

A person who is granted humanitarian protection has unrestricted access to the labour market. The refugee can demonstrate their ability to work through their Biometric Residence Permit or Immigration Status Document. In short, anyone with refugee status in the UK has the right to work.

What barriers prevent refugees from finding work?

Those who enter the UK as refugees face a unique set of barriers in finding work. Some refugees will have fled their countries before they could finish their education. Many find that their qualifications are not automatically recognised in the UK.

 Additionally, they face the challenge of being in an entirely new environment, often with very little support. This means that initially refugees can face issues around learning a new language, and finding and using transportation; both of which are important for starting work.

How do refugees benefit businesses?

Hiring refugees is a great way to make your team more diverse. According to Mckinsey, teams that are ethnically diverse are more likely to outperform their competition. Having employees with different backgrounds and life experiences is enormously beneficial for businesses as it allows them to keep up with their competitors and grow within their industries.

According to TENT, refugees have significantly higher job retention rates than those who are not refugees. The hiring process is one of the most expensive parts of running a business; it is estimated that it costs the average SME around £3,000 every time they hire someone new. Refugees stay in their jobs longer than those who aren’t refugees, which drastically cuts hiring costs.

Finally, refugees are great for business growth. Not only are they likely to have a range of qualifications from their home countries, they’re also likely to have greater language skills which can be utilised by businesses to reach new customers and clients. When businesses have a team who speak numerous languages and have a diverse skill set, they’re able to reach communities that a homogenous team cannot.

How can businesses hire a refugee?

There are a number of avenues that businesses can utilise in order to hire a refugee. You can contact the Department of Work and Pensions to let them know the work that you’re able to offer through the UK government website. You do not have to pay for this service.

Alternatively, businesses can partner with a refugee recruitment organisation. These agencies are often not-for-profit, and they focus on helping refugees settle in the UK through getting them access to training, language classes and job opportunities. Two such organisations that business can partner with are The Refugee Employment Network (REN), and Sona Circle are two such organisations in the UK. 

The Refugee Employment Network (REN) is a charity which seeks to help refugees in the UK find fulfilling and appropriate paid employment. Employers register their interest on their website, and after being approved they can post unlimited job opportunities on the Refugee Employment Network’s jobs board. Candidates can then apply to these job opportunities directly, and employers can invite suitable candidates to interview.

Sona Circle is a non-profit social enterprise which aims to help refugees get into work in their local communities, through education, training and job opportunities. They also request that employers register their interest on their website, and subsequent to being approved, their job opportunities are then advertised on Sona Circle. They’ll also help you filter through respondents in order to connect you with skilled and qualified applicants.

Tweet us @TranscenditUK

The Transcendit Way

Transcendit understand that when you choose to work with us, whether we're taking care of your IT, app or web development, you're trusting us with part of your business. So whether we're looking after your computers, phone systems or servers we always do things 'the Transcendit way'.

The whole of our team adhere to the same values, beliefs and policies - the principles that were written when Transcendit first formed in 2000. Whether you come to us for cloud services or recovery backup you can be confident that you'll always receive the same excellent service.

The Transcendit way outlines how we do business; following the same straightforward principles with every client and customer, regardless of how big or small they may be.

That means we get to know you and your business. We offer you a friendly, professional and efficient service, and we'll always be honest with you.
We understand that not everybody speaks fluent IT, so we try to explain things in a way that is simple and clear. We always spend as much time as is necessary explaining things to you.
If you need to talk to us about something, no matter how insignificant, we are only ever a phone call away – and we’re never too busy to make you a cup of tea and have a sit down with you in person.
We understand how frustrating it can be when things are late. When we schedule an appointment with you, we are there when you’re expecting us. If something prevents us from getting there, we always call you in advance to let you know.
Sometimes things can go wrong, but we never lie to you or try to cover something up. If things go askew we tell you what’s happened and how we plan to prevent it affecting your business.
We want you to continuously benefit from working with us. We regularly discuss your business and make suggestions for improving systems and processes wherever we can – but we never try to push you into a purchase.
When we quote a fixed price, that's always the amount we charge – you won’t find any nasty surprises on a bill from us. If you are paying by time and materials, we inform you if our approximations could change.
We understand the importance of privacy for your business and your customers. We respect the confidentiality of your data, and we will never pass on your information to third parties.
We appreciate it when you take the time to give us feedback. A system called CustomerSure records our client's responses, so you can trust that our reviews are from real people.
Find out what they're saying here.
As ever, the most patient, understanding and effective support one could ask for. Simon Stewart, Trinity Chambers

Based on 9849 reviews our customers rate us 9.8/10. Reviews and ratings by Customersure. 27-August-2021

Transcendit are proud sponsors of CHUF, the Children's Heart Unit Fund.

Transcendit is a Living Wage employer