Often because of a skills gap in the sector you recruit in, it can be necessary look further afield for suitable candidates. There are often people in different professions who would be interested in relocating for the right opportunity, or who are actively looking to do just that. In some fields, like IT and medicine, it is fairly normal to consider overseas applicants, but there are some extra things to consider when you are talking to candidates that you may not think about if you are recruiting from a pool of locally based candidates:
Pitching the Location as Well as the Job
The way you would normally pitch a job to somebody fairly local wouldn’t normally include a whole lot of stuff about the location or environment, unless the company has an unusually interesting or prestigious site. However, when you are talking to people who are going to have to relocate, this is almost, if not as important as convincing them of the merits of the job itself. This may mean you have to do a bit of research, because you don’t necessarily want to wing it when persuading someone that Luton is a great place to come and base yourself.
How Supportive Will the Working Environment Be?
Whether you are talking to someone in Italy or India, they are going to have some concerns around the job that a local person wouldn’t have, for example how supportive the business they would be working at is of expatriate employees. Do they currently employ other people from overseas? Is their HR department well versed in things like work permit and visa issues (where people are from outside of the EU)? Will there be help for them to find accommodation? Some companies are very experienced in bringing in people from overseas to fill roles, whereas others may be open to the idea but aren’t really able to supply any more support to relocating expat employees than to any of their other staff, and so you need to consider only candidates who are completely confident about building a new life around the job independently (for example people who have worked in other countries before) where this is the case.
Of course, anyone you are speaking to will have to have a reasonable level of English for it to be viable for you to pitch them about a job in the first place, but what level of fluency is required for the job? Perhaps you are recruiting overseas because you actually need someone who is proficient in another language for the role, and their English skills only need to be adequate for interacting with other people in the workplace, or perhaps you need someone who can not only communicate well in English, but can also write flawless formal documents and make clear presentations in it. Be clear on what is required so you can assess whether your potential overseas candidate matches up.
Broadening your net to include other countries can be a great way to find new, interesting candidates, but it does require a slightly different approach to make it work without problems.
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