Employers do not discriminate between foreign-born and UK-born candidates

IES News

10 Oct 2016

There is little evidence of discrimination between foreign-born and UK-born workers in the recruitment practices of key sectors in the UK, reveals a new report from the Institute for Employment Studies.

The report into employer and employee experiences in relation to recruitment finds that differential treatment of foreign-born workers was infrequent and UK-born applicants were most likely to be unsuccessful due to a perceived lack of motivation, enthusiasm and energy, or a lack of experience.

In comparison, foreign-born workers were more likely to be perceived as flexible and as having a strong work ethic and a positive attitude to work.

Focusing on sectors with high proportions of foreign-born workers and a mixture of skills levels, qualitative surveys found that both UK-born and foreign-born workers did not report experiences that suggested they had been targeted for work on the basis of anything other than their ability to do the job.

The report also considers the lack of legal knowledge displayed by many employers and agents with regards to the recruitment process.

The research was undertaken by the Institute for Employment Studies (IES) on behalf of the Equality and Human Rights Commission in partnership with IFF Research Ltd and the Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS).