Attracting international talent

Posted by: Diana Zaharia
on May 8th, 2012 No Comments

How does one country attract foreign talent?

One country’s success also depends on their ability to attract and retain international talent. A good case practice of how to create a better environment for foreign experts professionally, but also privately, has recently caught our attention here at JobsinNetwork.   

Nowadays, talent is not something “nice” to have; it is considered to be the essential ingredient for sustained success . It’s not a secret for anyone that international talent helps a country become more competitive, and create more opportunities than it can generate on its own. So how is this being handled by the national community and the companies?

Let’s take a closer look at Denmark. With their 60 million kr received this year for this cause, the Copenhagen Capacity now takes the lead in attracting and retaining international companies by strengthening the framework conditions for international staff in Denmark .. How would they do it? Several topics are taken into account, among which:

-Ensuring that there is enough international schools in Denmark, so their children can attend school, their eventual spouse must be helped to get a job and they should be helped to become both culturally and socially integrated into their immediate environment.

-The Danish workforce cannot comply with the requirements of specialized companies demand. So they make it attractive for international experts and talents to come to Denmark and live.”It is important that they feel wanted,” says Kim Bek, Development Director of Copenhagen Capacity

An important part of Copenhagen Capacity’s work is taken by the marketing of Danish enterprises with foreign talent. Therefore, they invite MBAer educational courses in Denmark and they have appointed 100 international students to ambassadors of Denmark, which will promote Denmark as a potential country of study.


Let’s see how other countries responded to the same need in the past and how they worked to shape their policies to attract foreign talent:

Canada (Quebec Province):

The provincial government of Quebec offered five-year income tax holidays (credits) to attract foreign academics in IT, engineering, health science and finance to take employment in the provinces’ universities.


The government has taken steps to encourage the enrolment of foreign students in Finland, including from Asia.


Several recent measures seek to facilitate the temporary migration of foreign scientists and researchers. In 1998, the government established an agency, Edu France, with a budget of 100 million to attract a greater number of students to France, particularly from Asia and Latin America.


The government seeked to increase foreign student inflows through grants and fellowships schemes. In addition, it launched a program to issue 20000 immigration visas to fill IT job vacancies. In the second quarter, only one-third of the visas had been granted, mainly to people from India and Eastern Europe who were hired by small firms.


The shortage of skilled workers, especially in IT, has led to government campaigns in 2000 and 2001 to attract foreign workers as well as former Irish emigrants.Government-sponsored job fairs have been held in Canada, the Czech Republic, India,South Africa and the United States. In addition, work visas were introduced in 2000 specifically to allow the entry of highly skilled workers in areas where shortages exist inIreland (MacEinri, 2001).


The government seeks to double the number of foreign students through the use of scholarships.
(Source: OECD )


No matter how we look at it, the topic has been taken into account by most of the European countries too. At we engage with top international talent , guiding them through the process of advancing their international career and give them access to better jobs and  higher education beyond national borders.


What other good case practices have you come across? How does your company work to attract and retain international talent?

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