LinkedIn’s vision is to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce. It’s this vision that makes me proud to work for LinkedIn, especially when it can help an important global issue: the refugee crisis.
Last October, a friend who works at the Swedish Migration Board shared with me some of the challenges refugees face as they enter the country and look for employment. These challenges include no local professional network, a language barrier, the nuances of a new culture, and of course, knowing where to find a job. We quickly realized that LinkedIn had a unique opportunity to leverage what our company does best: connect these individuals – many of whom are highly skilled – with opportunity.
On a per capita basis, Sweden has received more refugees than any other European country. In addition, many of these refugees have skills that the Swedish economy can benefit. According to a recent article, a quarter of refugees in 2014 had higher education — up almost 5% on the previous year. More than two-thirds of them had skills that matched graduate job vacancies.
Today, we are very proud to launch Welcome Talent, a new initiative that aims to help refugees in Sweden find opportunities created specifically for them and their unique circumstances. The site includes resources in both Arabic and English, including potential opportunities and information on how to create an effective LinkedIn profile. There is also a section for employers that explains how to to post internships and jobs on LinkedIn, at no cost, for refugees. Employers simply mark their internships and job opportunities with a special hashtag, #welcometalent, so they can be easily discovered by refugees. To date there are more than 150 opportunities from companies such as Spotify, Proffice, 3 and Happyr.
If you work in Sweden, please consider joining us by posting an opportunity. If you’re a newly settled refugee, either in Sweden or anywhere in the world, create a LinkedIn profile to help find opportunity, no matter where you are.