Refugees’ interest in qualified jobs is growing and employers are open to them. At the same time, Czech companies take over part of the workloads and teams from their sister companies from Ukraine. This follows from a unique survey conducted by the ABSL association among the Czech business, IT and customer services centers.
Ukraine has long been a popular location for business services centers. This sector employs over 200,000 skilled workers, especially in the areas of IT, research and development. Due to the war in Ukraine, a growing number of centers are moving considerable volumes of work and part of their teams to the Czech Republic and other countries.
„ 36 % of Czech business services centers have sister companies in the conflict zone. They are now taking over part of the workloads from Ukrainian centers, 16 % even part of the teams,“
says Jonathan Appleton, Director of the ABSL association.
At the same time, the sector is also in view-finder of refugees who are looking for a qualified job; according to a survey, 24 % of centers register an increased number of applicants from Ukrainians. They already represent 5 % of the total number of 145,000 employees in Czech business services and work in majority of the 350 companies operating on the Czech market. Therefore, after the outbreak of the war, 72 % of employers from this sector provided direct assistance in relocating family members of their employees or their accommodation, 44 % tried to help them find work and 68 % provided their employees with the support of a psychologist. More than half of them (56 %) offered paid leave to their Ukrainian employees so that they could organize the support for their families and friends.
„We register the interest of refugees mainly in customer services jobs, but we also offer work to experts in IT, data and predictive analytics, research and development, finance, and HR. The big advantage of most positions is the possibility to work from home. This can help because the refugees are spread throughout the Czech Republic and because most of the refugees are women with children who have not yet been comprehensively cared for,“
says Jonathan Appleton. One of the companies that provides opportunities for refugees is, for example, the Comdata customer service center:
“We are currently looking for 40 new employees for our clients’ customer lines. The requirement is mainly a combination of two of the languages Ukrainian, Russian and Czech. The interest among Ukrainians is great,”
says Jan Nedělník, the company’s director.
Over 40 % of centers expect the war will affect their business in the long run. Although the situation may bring several qualified job seekers, which the sector needs with its planned growth by 15,000 jobs this year, it also opens up many risks, whether cyber threats, high employee stress, logistics problems, or component availability.
ABSL is monitoring the situation carefully and engaging with business leaders and the government to manage these risks and support the transition of Ukrainian people into our society and workplaces.