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How to Spot Hidden Talent in Candidates from Outside The UK

Refresh your recruitment practices so that you don't miss out on talented candidates who speak English as a Foreign language.

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There is plenty of international talent

Even after Brexit, we're still a multi-cultural country, and there are some great candidates living here already who speak English as a Foreign language.

For example

Here are some groups of people who have permission to work and don't need sponsorship-

  • People from Hong Kong with a BN(O) visa.

  • EU nationals who have settled status.

  • People on the 'UK Homes for Ukraine Scheme'.

  • People whose asylum application has been accepted. 

  • Syrians who arrived on the Vulnerable Person Resettlement Scheme.

  • Most recently, people arriving on the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme.

Many of them have impressive workplace skills and qualifications. Most of them want to find work quickly so they can build a new life here. Many speak English well enough to work in a professional setting. 

But it is harder for them to be recruited

"People with lived experience of migration very often struggle to secure work that is compatible with their skills and education level (despite often being highly skilled and more educated than UK born citizens)."

Is English your first language? That is a luxury which many talented international candidates don't have. Job interviews are intimidating for all of us, but can you imagine how much harder it is harder to show off your skills when the interview is in a foreign language? 

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A candidate could speak English well enough to do the job but still flounder in the interview. This means that you, the employer, can miss out on a great hire. We can teach you how to conduct accessible, sensitive interviews, so that those candidates can show you what they are really capable of. 

This course was very engaging. It was helpful to take a fresh look at the typical recruitment practices we use here in the UK and see them through the eyes of people who grew up overseas.

Harriet Dee, North East Migration Partnership

What will you learn during the workshop?

During this online workshop you'll learn the answers to these questions-

  • Why bother creating a culturally diverse workforce? What are the benefits?

  • How can you word a job advert so that candidates who didn't grow up in the UK feel encouraged to apply?

  • How can you tell which candidates have permission to work and which require a sponsor?

  • How can you read between the lines when considering their applications, so that you don't miss the ones with great potential?

  • How can you tell if a candidate’s English is good enough?

  • Which interview questions enable candidates from overseas to shine in the interview, and which should you avoid?

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Questions like the one above may seem easy to you, but candidates from some cultures can can find them confusing (even if their English level is high.) To find out why you shouldn't start your interview with a 'small talk' question, and what to say instead, don't miss this course. 

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How to Support Colleagues whose First Language isn't English

What are the hidden struggles of colleagues who work in their second language, and how can you help?


Humour and politeness in the culturally diverse workplace.

How can you make jokes and be polite in a way that lands with everyone?

Contact us now to request a price list and further information. In your email, let us know whether it is for a group or just one person - we'll reply as soon as we can. 

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