Expert Strategies + Global Talent = A World-Class Cleveland

Global Cleveland provides supportive services, programming and consultations for employers of all shapes and sizes to address international talent hiring and retention. Don’t just take our word for it! Here’s what the experts are saying about the importance of engaging with global talent:


“In the era of productivity slowdown, knowledge diffusion is the biggest challenge our economies face”

Dany Bahar, Brookings Institution Global Economy and Development Fellow and Associate, Harvard University Center for International Development

“If there is the perception among people who don’t live here that they aren’t welcome here, then they’ll go elsewhere”

Jon Baselice, Director of Immigration at US Chamber of Commerce

““There is no such thing as a local business. Every business operates in a global economy, every business has global ties” 

Elizabeth McIntyre, Crains Cleveland

“It comes down to talent, and talent exists anywhere on the globe. Are the employers here willing to buy a ticket to participate (in the H-1B lottery)? The chances of winning over 3 years is 75%.”

Jeff Duerk, Case Western Reserve University School of Engineering

“If we lose the ability to bring the best and brightest to this country, we will not be America.”

Dr. Giovanni Piedimonte, Cleveland Clinic


Expert Strategies

     Before You Hire

Assessment of Foreign-Acquired Skills

While employers mostly learn about candidates from their resumes, many immigrant workers acquire skills, experience, and credentials abroad, which makes assessing their qualifications difficult. Thus, many immigrants end up taking jobs for which they are overqualified and employers do not take full advantage of their skills. As a solution, employers can train staff members in assessing foreign-acquired skills, partner with Global Cleveland and develop company specific guidance and interview protocols geared toward eliciting more information about the content of foreign-acquired credentials.

Cultivate Relationships with Immigrant Organizations

Employers can partner with immigrant-serving organizations to find English-language instructors, build translation or interpretation resources, and develop culturally competent work-related materials. Employers can also increase successful job placement of immigrants by helping partner organizations with interview preparation, participating in job fairs, performing mock job interviews, placing job applicants, and serving as instructors or speakers for career training and workplace cultural adaptation workshops. Here’s how you can get involved in these efforts with Global Cleveland >>

Increase Human Resources and Legal Staff Members Knowledge about Immigration Laws

Immigration laws are complex, and the hiring of foreign nationals does take time and resources. Staff members can choose to be trained in immigration laws, temporary worker visas, status adjustments, and sponsorship requirements, or outsource to immigration experts. Global Cleveland offers complimentary consultations on how to find an immigration partner, general understanding of the most common types of employment visas, and how you can find the best resources to successfully – and legally – hire the talent you need.

   After You Hire

Workplace Language Programs

Holding workplace English classes for LEP (Limited English Proficient) workers is one of the most common workplace practices used to foster immigrant integration. Several factors have been named as essential for effective workplace English learning: (1) English classes contextualized to the work experience; (2) training provided on the clock; (3) classes at hours that are convenient to workers; (4) curriculum development; and (5) classes designed to match business goals. Workers can also take advantage of the new teaching technologies for workplace English, such as webinars, online classes, and software training that they can do at home. Another corollary practice to English-language classes is the pairing of a worker with a corporate volunteer to practice conversational English. Global Cleveland provides individualized technical assistance to implement this type of program in your organization.

Occupational Training That Workers Understand

Employers can offer training in the workers’ native language and can use bilingual trainers and graphical materials. Global companies can also use translated materials developed for their overseas branches. Important documents should be available in the languages that workers understand. Employers can also integrate occupational training with English-language training. Global Cleveland can provide basic translations of workplace materials in select languages and will assist in securing the right partners for translation or interpretation needs in your organization.

Diversity Management Practices

Diverse workplaces such as those with a large immigrant workforce demand culturally competent supervisors and managers. Managers may have to adopt practices to incorporate immigrants and boost their productivity. Practices in managing diversity could involve (1) work teams that include persons with different backgrounds; (2) supervisors who speak the languages of the workers; (3) diversity, inclusion, and cultural competency training for supervisors; and (4) language classes for employees and supervisors. Companies with a multinational presence can also tap into their international supervisors to help design workplace integration programs for immigrant workers. Global Cleveland can provide cross-cultural workplace guides, training, and and technical assistance in creating internal programs.

Immigrant-Conscious Employee-Assistance Programs

Employee-assistance programs provide a range of services to help workers deal with a variety of difficulties in their daily lives, including everything from behavioral or mental health issues, to financial difficulties, to finding child care and summer camp options. Employers can tap into Global Cleveland’s community resources and information to assist in the integration of their teams.

   Eventually…

Naturalization Assistance

Naturalization can make a whole new workforce available to a select group of occupations that require a strict security clearance, including government and other private sectors. Practices to assist in naturalization included citizenship orientations in the workplace, one-on-one orientations, and civics classes to prepare for the citizenship exam. Employers can offer interest-free loans to pay citizenship fees, and those loans are paid with payroll deductions. They can also match workers’ contributions to citizenship fees and making donations toward the fees if workers attend citizenship classes. Global Cleveland offers a variety of supportive services to assist with citizenship and naturalization, and can provide technical assistance in implementing these types of programs in your organization.

Immigrant Sponsorship for Status Adjustment

Employment-based immigrants have to be sponsored by an employer. This means that many employers are helping their employees gain permanent residence. Employers can also sponsor immigrant workers by providing affidavits of support. Interested employers can discuss their options with legal representatives or work with Global Cleveland to identify the best resources to successfully sponsor employees.

Global Talent Connections

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Contact us!

Jessica Whale, Director of Global Talent and Economic Development – Jessica@GlobalCleveland.org 216.472.3282 ext. 105

Wenzhu Sun, Connection Program Associate – Wenzhu@GlobalCleveland.org 216.472.3282 ext. 106

We are grateful to these supporters who have helped Global Cleveland become a reality