Published on in Responsible Business

People are the biggest asset that any business has.  The basis for a successful company is having the right people in place for the job.  My experience after over 20 years in industry is that a person’s background does not dictate their ability to enjoy a successful career and make a substantial contribution.  An individual’s talents and their drive to succeed are the key factors that determine the impact that they have.

This is why Fujitsu is proud to support the DWP’s See Potential campaign.  See Potential is encouraging employers across the country to look beyond stereotypes and consider the real value that a more inclusive recruitment strategy confers on a business.

Recognising a person’s unique skills is particularly important in the technology sector.  As one of the UK & Ireland’s largest employers in the IT sector, with over 12,000 people, recruiting the right skills is vitally important to my role as the CEO of Fujitsu in the region.

But what I have discovered is that those skills can be found amongst people from all walks of life, and coming from a disadvantaged background should not stop someone from having the security and fulfilment of employment.

Employers should therefore not judge people on their background, and the more successful tend to recognise a person’s unique potential and nurture their abilities for the benefit of their company.  This may involve some flexibility over entry requirements when an individual has something special to bring to the role.

Fujitsu has followed this principle for several years and given managers the scope to be flexible to allow people from different backgrounds the opportunity to shine.  We have experienced significant success from doing so.

To give just one example in particular, our Service Desks in Manchester have worked alongside Job Centre Plus to expand our talent pool with a broader range of young people by providing work experience placements.  We have consistently been impressed by the diversity of skills and talent from those that carried out placements with us, and have gone on to recruit over half of them into full-time roles.

The most important aspect of this to me, is that this approach addressed a genuine business need that Fujitsu faced.  We found that we were able to recruit a wider range of people that diversified the workforce and brought in new perspectives and skills.  This has been crucial in improving performance and has been a real business benefit.

See Potential will encourage more employers to recruit people from a diverse range of backgrounds.  Utilising the talents of the entire workforce is good for business, good for the economy and of course good for the individual who is given an opportunity.  I believe in giving people a chance to prove themselves, as Fujitsu did for me early in my career.  We all deserve that.

 

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