Fiskars Group considers the UNITalent programme important for diversity, inclusion, and innovation

A group of international students from the University of Helsinki and Fiskars Group got to know each other in group meetings over a period of three months. In addition to diversity the company, the programme supports the internationalisation of Finnish society.
This is what it’s all about
  • Fiskars Group is a global company that sees international talent as an opportunity for growth and creativity, and for the development of Finnish society. With a rich history dating back 375 years, the company is known for brands such as Fiskars, Iittala, Georg Jensen, Royal Copenhagen, Wedgwood, Moomin Arabia, and Waterford. It employs approximately 7,000 people in 29 countries and at their Head Office in Espoo, 16% of employees are international.
  • The University's UNITalent programme offers organisations the opportunity to network with international students from the University of Helsinki for three months.
  • The programme provided Fiskars Group with fresh perspectives from students, an opportunity to attract future top-tier talents to the company and a way to demonstrate their commitment to diversity and inclusion on a concrete level.

Fiskars Group is a company where the importance diversity is recognised as a prerequisite for operating in a global world. The company's headquarters in Espoo has employees from 27 different countries and for most office-based positions, English serves as the working language. The potential of international talents has been recognised, especially in the company's Data & Analytics team.

At the same time, international students at the University of Helsinki are looking for connections to the Finnish working life. Research coordinator Pirjo Moen from the Master’s Programme in Data Science programme sees opportunities for students and employers to meet important for all parties involved.

"International students usually do not have networks or knowledge of Finnish working life when they arrive to study. In addition to the university world, students also need networks on the business side to help them find employment and better integrate into Finnish society. The UNITalent programme at the University of Helsinki offers support for this."

Participation contributed to diversity, creativity and talent attraction

The UNITalent programme provided a meeting point for Fiskars Group and international students interested in Data & Analytics. According to Liam van Zyl, People Development and Engagement Manager, the programme was also a concrete way of demonstrating the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. 

"Participating in programs like the UNITalent sends a signal to our employees and externally that we are committed to diversity and inclusion and open to hiring international talent. As the global home for design-driven brands, we know that diversity and international talent fuel our creativity and growth as they enable us to connect better with our consumers and help us to design great products."

The UNITalent meetings gave Fiskars Group the opportunity to present its organisation and career opportunities to the group of students. Van Zyl and Senior Data Strategist Lucía Llerena, who organised the group meetings, felt that joining the programme was easy and useful for all parties involved.

"We had the chance to showcase the opportunities for growth and development within our company and in Finland as a whole. In exchange, students asked us questions, challenged our ideas, and showed us new perspectives. This helps us attract top-tier candidates who bring valuable skills and views to our organization, Llerena comments."

Cross-cultural collaboration is key to our success. By participating in UNITalent, we contribute to building a more international society in Finland.

Lucía Llerena, Senior Data Strategist, Fiskars Group
Supporting innovation and student employment

Llerena believes that people from different backgrounds bring fresh perspectives to the company and thus contribute to innovation. UNITalent gave them direct access to a diverse pool of international talent.  

"This exposure is crucial as it leads to breakthroughs and fresh approaches to problem-solving, ultimately benefiting our company's growth and competitiveness."

Discussions with the group also helped to understand the challenges faced by international students in their transition to Finnish working life. Van Zyl believes that participation in UNITalent not only benefits the company and the student, but also supports the internationalization of Finnish society.

"We would encourage other companies to leverage the opportunity and participate in the program. It’s a great opportunity to actively engage with international students to understand their unique perspectives and skills and use the interactions to build a robust talent pipeline for your organization’s future needs. Lastly, it’s a great way to support international students’ entry into the Finnish workforce and contribute to a more diverse and inclusive society."

Is your company interested in participating in UNITalent?

Visit the UNITalent website and contact Career Services,

UNITalent in a nutshell
  • The HelsinkiUNI International Talent (UNITalent) programme has been organized 4 times.
  • The programme coordinated by Career Services brings together each year host organisations, international degree students and doctoral researchers with the aim of bringing working life information and contacts closer to students.
  • Mentor organisations join the programme wishing to support the University’s international talents and share information about Finnish working life and professional networks, as well as shedding light on unwritten rules of recruitment, such those of the hidden labour market.
  • Over three months, mentor organisations organise at least three meetings in their own facilities.
  • Employers receive the opportunity to meet motivated students who are interested in the respective fields and to reflect on their own language practices and diversity in work communities.
  • The University of Helsinki has more than 2000 international students and over 1000 doctoral reserchers. International Master's programmes are offered on all campuses of the University.

More information about the UNITalent programme

Visit the UNITalent website.

University of Helsinki Career Services,