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Recruiting international talent

12 May 2023

The 4 panel members stood smiling
L-R, Chris Chugg, Rakshanda Khaunte, Glyn Lloyd and Emily Davis.

The benefits of hiring international graduate talent and navigating the visa process were the topics of discussion at a breakfast briefing held at Cardiff Business School on 3 March 2023.

The event saw a packed guest speaker panel offering informative insights from graduate and employer perspectives.

Joanna Harris, Careers Adviser at Cardiff University hosted the session. She began by saying: “we feel really passionate about how capable our international students and alumni are and we are mindful of the barriers they can face when trying to secure a graduate job.”

Joanna added that they also see this through the employer’s perspective and how it may seem complicated to navigate the visa process which is required to employ international graduates into roles in the UK.

First to speak from the panel were Glyn Lloyd and Emily Davis from Newfields Law, a specialist immigration law firm based in Cardiff. They explained the two main visa routes, which are: the graduate scheme visa (non-sponsored) and a skilled worker visa (sponsored). Emily and Glyn discussed the costs and time frames as well as the pros and cons of each visa type.

Alex Hicks, Placement Manager at Cardiff Business School, and David Keane from the university’s Student Futures team were next to speak. They explained how they can support employers to hire students through placements and work experience. They discussed how placements can be an effective way to attract the brightest talent into businesses and how they can be used as a talent pipeline, with some employers offering graduate roles to students who worked with them on placements.

Next, two Cardiff Business School international graduates shared their story of finding a job in the UK. Pistachio Bu, a graduate from China explained how hard she found it to secure a graduate job, as not many companies would sponsor her. Pistachio is now employed by Vargo Group in the UK, working as a Recruitment Consultant through the highly skilled worker visa route.

Rakshanda Khaunte, a graduate from India, discussed how her placement year helped her develop skills and improve her confidence, preparing her for a graduate role. She is now employed through the graduate visa route and is working in London.

The final panel speaker was Chris Chugg, founder of Vargo Group a recruitment business for international tech companies. Chris talked through his experience of navigating the visa process, which he used to employ Pistachio who spoke earlier on the panel.

Chris went on to explain the many benefits he sees from employing international candidates. He said these include:

  • Access to a larger talent pool
  • Bringing diversity and cultural awareness to the workplace, which can help improve creativity and innovation
  • Improved productivity and profits
  • Addressing the skills shortage

Chris said that the tech companies Vargo Group have worked with who have opened up their recruitment to international candidates have seen massive benefits, especially as there is such a skills shortage in tech. They have seen a huge increase in the number and quality of applicants.

To end the session, the panel then took questions from the audience which covered the following topics: types of placements, frustrations of the visa process, and costings. Joanna said they are keen for the conversation on hiring international talent to continue after the briefing and that support is available.

Watch the briefing here

Cardiff Business School's Breakfast Briefing Series is a network of events, which enables business contacts to find out more about the latest research and key developments from industrial partners.

Information for employers
Information for students

Find out how Student Futures can help you on your career journey, including support with applying to work experience and graduate jobs.

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