The local public broadcasting agency YLE regularly runs stories in English about the challenges facing foreigners in Finland. This week (February 2021) they reported on the under-utilisation of professional skills in foreigners in Finland:
The article describes the frustrations of a Danish professional in Finland who is unable to find a job that matches her qualifications. Part of the frustrations include the long amount of “wasted” time spent in TE Finnish language classes or learning about Finnish culture in English, and seeing initiatives by the Finnish government to bring in foreign experts from outside while many foreigners already living in Finland are struggling to find a job.
The government has recently set up a number of intiatives to help foreigners and employers find each other and match “talent” with suitable employment – for example the Open Doors and Minds – for International Talents project aims to work towards a systemically more inclusive labour market in Finland.
In the City of Helsinki there is now a Spouse Program for training spouses of international workers, as well as a Career Track program for the same group. The Career Track program works to provide TE office support, career coaching and peer group mentoring to support international people to get work in Finland.
It is hard to judge yet whether these programs (set up in the past 6 to 12 months) have had any impact yet, but it is helpful to see that the authorities have identified that there are extreme difficulties for foreigners to get jobs in Finland. This is something that affects many of our clients and many of the foreigners in the wider community and we hope to see continued work in this important area.