This guidance section is where employers can find comprehensive guidance on hiring refugees. This platform is designed to help inform organisations regarding the process of employing refugees, providing valuable insights and practical advice to provide meaningful employment opportunities for refugees. Whether you're taking your first steps towards hiring refugees or looking to enhance existing programs, our resources are here to support you. If you have any queries, please complete this enquiry form or contact us.


Please find below an FAQ section based on UNHCR's 'UK Employers Guide to Hiring Refugees'. Please hover over the questions to view the answers.

What obstacles do businesses face when hiring refugees?

Some key obstacles that businesses may face and to be aware of: a) Lack of understanding on refugee issues b) Lack of expertise with refugee employment c) Lack of resources, including support on Right to work / legal documentation/ Qualifications

How can we raise awareness and understanding about refugees within our organisation?

Raising awareness among staff about refugees is essential in creating a welcoming work environment for refugees and encouraging engagement among staff members. Awareness and understanding can be improved by: a) Organising training workshops – many partner organisations provide trainings to employers. b) Making internal communications easy to understand. c) Accommodating for religious holidays. d) Recognising that cultural differences will have an impact on communication style, expectations, punctuality, work culture, and other various aspects of the workplace

How can we adjust the recruitment process to be more accommodating for refugees?

The recruitment process and existing employment programmes can be adjusted to take into account the particular needs of refugees. This includes: a) Considering language barriers b) Offering more apprenticeships or traineeships c) Overlooking gaps in CVs due to refugee circumstances d) Familiarising candidates with the recruitment process e) Acknowledging qualifications that might differ from standard UK qualifications f) Understanding refugee's right to work

How do we identify whether a refugee has the right to work?

Anyone who is granted refugee status or humanitarian protection has unrestricted access to the labor market. A refugee can demonstrate their right to work in the same way as any non-EEA national. A refugee can demonstrate their right to work in the same way as any non-EEA national. Employers or job applicants can check their right to work on the UK Government’s view right to work website. If the refugee candidate cannot show you documents because of an outstanding appeal, review or application with the Home Office, employers can use the Home Office’s Employer Checking Service, to confirm their right to work. Partner organisations, such as Breaking Barriers, can also manage right to work checks.

How should we handle cases of overqualification or non-UK qualifications?

Overqualification and non-UK qualifications should not be considered grounds for disqualification. Many skilled refugees look for lower-skilled jobs to meet their immediate needs. Refugees can seek a “Statement of Comparability” for qualifications they hold from their country of origin from the UK ENIC or the UK Government’s Overseas Degree Equivalency Table. It may also be helpful to work with partners and regulated industry bodies to find solutions to refugees whose qualifications may not be recognised in the UK.

How can we make the process of hiring refugees easier for our organisation?

We understand that hiring refugees responsibly can be a difficult and resource-intensive effort and many companies do not have the capacity to implement tailored recruitment programmes from scratch. We recommend working with a partner organisation. Businesses have testified that having an expert organisation on hand to help can simplify the recruitment process and most organisations provide tailored support free of charge.

What strategies can we apply for workplace inclusion after hiring refugees?

Building a supportive environment for refugees to thrive after they have joined your team is important to set your new employee up for success and ensure maximum output for your organisation. Some strategies include: a) Buddy/mentoring system b) Transportation issues – many refugee candidates may not have a driver’s license or access to a car, consider arranging carpooling or providing incentives for refugee employees to obtain their driver’s license. c) Childcare – many refugee candidates will be experiencing financial difficulties and cannot afford childcare. Providing support such as childcare provision or flexible working hours, especially for refugee women will allow your workplace to be sensitive to particular needs.

How can we help refugee employees progress after work placements, apprenticeships, and internships?

Refugee employees typically show higher retention rates than non-refugee counterparts and are often seeking stability and financial security. We recommend that employers create pathways into permanent employment when possible. If that's not a viable option, consider other helpful measures such as providing letters of recommendation or agreeing to act as referees, this can significantly help refugees in continuing their careers.