Over the Language Barrier into the Finnish Labour Market

Experts in the Helsinki metropolitan region created solutions for promoting the Finnish language learning and employability of highly educated immigrants.

For international talent finding employment in Finland is often hindered by a lack of Finnish language skills. Many highly educated immigrants are lost to the Finnish labour market as they must leave the country after being unable to find employment.

The project coordinated by the University of Helsinki gathered representatives of the Helsinki region education institutions, municipalities, public administration, organisations, and industry and commerce to tackle together the problem posed by the lack of language skills in highly educated immigrants. The policy recommendations for improving the Finnish language learning of highly educated immigrants were formed in these workshops during spring 2013.

According to the recommendations, Finnish language studies should be developed into a more working life oriented direction. Certain competence level in Finnish within degree requirements should be considered, especially within the fields of welfare and health. Moreover, information and services should be created to support employers in recruiting highly educated immigrants.

Achieving these goals require commitment to constant and well-coordinated cooperation in the Helsinki metropolitan region. One of the recommendations proposes the establishment of HERIEC (Helsinki Region Immigrant Employment Council) with the purpose of bringing together stakeholders in order to improve the employment of highly educated immigrants within the region.

Read the policy recommendations: www.helsinki.fi/urapalvelut/ONE_BSR/recommendations.pdf