What did we at TEK learn from hiring non-Finnish speakers?
The recruitment of Shannon Nichols and Patricia Virsinger also taught us at TEK where we have room for improvement.
– For example, our intranet had been only in Finnish until Shannon and Patricia were recruited. We also didn’t have any information about TEK as an employer in English on our website. These were some of the most concrete things we needed to fix, describes Kati Johansson, HR director of TEK.
The team where Nichols and Virsinger worked also needed to adjust their practices. Team meetings, emails and discussions switched to English.
- Our Research teams transitioned really well into working in English, as our summer trainees also commented, says TEK’s Research Manager Susanna Bairoh, who was the supervisor of Nichols and Virsinger.
– It was important that everyone had an open attitude, rather than knowing how to speak perfect English or Finnish, Bairoh reminds.
Overall the experience was positive.
– We learned a lot and received valuable feedback, which taught us, for example, to take the language matter into consideration in our internal communication. We have also participated in the Recognising International Talent campaign by Väestöliitto, during which we will examine our language requirements and strengthen our organisation’s awareness on language matters and inclusiveness, says Johansson.