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Scotland must promote itself to attract key overseas talent

25 October 2004
Scotland must promote itself to attract key overseas talent

Scotland needs to market itself better to overseas workers if the country's hospitality industry is to attract the best talent, says a survey from recruitment firm Chess Partnership.

Scottish employers interviewed by the agency highlighted this issue as a key concern, while foreign workers already in the country also said the country should advertise itself far more.

Despite the perceived lack of promotion, Scotland was viewed as a desirable place to work by many foreign nationals.

It was the second most favoured destination in the UK, with 17% chosing it as their preferred location.

Only London scored higher, being chosen by 64% of respondents.

Overseas workers were attracted by Scotland's work-life balance (43%), coastal areas and islands (40%), quality of life (27%) and countryside (24%).

Edinburgh was the preferred place to work, cited by 64% of respondents. Some 42% said they would work anywhere in Scotland, while Glasgow was chosen by 37%.

However, of the 234 foreign nationals interviewed, only one third had considered working in Scotland.

Employers saw the recruitment of overseas workers as crucial to fill mainly unskilled roles such as porters, housekeepers and room attendants.

But they thought many would be promoted because of their strong work ethic and as their language skills improved.

Poland is particular was viewed as a key source of talent.

Obstacles to recruiting foreign workers included lack of suitable accommodation and language barriers, as well as prejudice from both staff and clients.

Eastern Europeans were often viewed as almost third-rate citizens.

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