Refugee Council of Australia
Parliament House, Canberra

Submission to the inquiry into regional development and decentralisation

Encouraging corporate decentralisation

Attracting and retaining skilled labour to regional areas

Corporates and businesses moving to regional areas can benefit from identifying and employing skilled refugees and humanitarian entrants who can contribute to the growth of the business in regional areas.

There are a number of organisations that work to link businesses to refugees with suitable skills. One of these organisations is Refugee Talent, recently renamed Refugee and Migrant Talent. It focuses on long-term employment by creating opportunities for people to gain local work experiences and has seen a major expansion since its inception in 2016.

Refugee and Migrant Talent involves an online platform that matches refugees and other migrants looking for work with companies offering opportunities. It aims to ease the difficulties faced by many refugees and migrants who struggle to gain their first local work experience in a new country, despite their qualifications and transferable skills.

Refugee and Migrant Talent offers a digital platform that connects skilled refugees with job opportunities in such a way that benefits both. Refugee and Migrant Talent assists refugees and migrants at various stages in the employment process. It reviews resumes, prepares individuals for interviews, gives local industry insights, matches individuals with businesses, and supports them after the placement.

Employment areas targeted varies across different industries and skills sets from accounting, banking and finance, HR, marketing, IT, sales and design. It works with more than 200 companies from government departments, corporates, small to medium businesses and start-ups. In 2017, after only operating for one and a half years, they have placed more than 100 refugees into employment across Australia.

Many refugees who arrive in Australia have the skills and expertise that businesses and corporate sectors are looking for. Many were mid-career or upper-career professionals in their home countries before displacement. With proper support, combined with support from organisations like Refugee and Migrant Talent, these groups of refugees might be willing to relocate to regional Australia and assist businesses to thrive.

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