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Influences of Immigration to the UK, and the Impact

1.1 Overview

The dissertation aims to thoroughly investigate the main influencing factors that do inspire skilled manpower from Bangladesh to immigrate to other countries especially to first world countries. Simultaneously, the dissertation also purposes to identify, analyse and establish the significance of the ultimate impact of such migration on the country, notably on its business ventures.

The economy of Bangladesh is highly dependent on the export of human resources and foreign exchange associated with their remittance. However, there has been a significant change in the global labour market in recent times due to a demand for skilled and educated manpower, which is why Bangladesh is now facing stiff competition from new entrants such as Vietnam, Cambodia and Nepal in this traditional market. While Bangladesh government is trying to create skilled workers and export them, highly skilled professionals are now with the changed scenarios migrating in groups leaving their positions vacant, which is a great concern for the government. Due to such migration, government of Bangladesh as well as private organizations are lacking sufficient and trained high-skilled professionals to fulfil their vacant positions and ultimately suffering from mismanagement.

As is the scenario, Bangladesh is a third-world country located in the South Asia, where almost half of the population lives under the extreme poverty line announced by the UN. Being a poor and over populated country, the country is now only a developing one and modern civic facilities here in this country are therefore almost absent or insufficient. The country badly lacks in providing most basic needs such as food, housing and treatment and let alone education, security, and welfare. In spite of remarkable growth in the GDP, per capita income is only about $300 in the country. Besides, with the social disorder, political unrest and ever increasing violence in the society, only a few people have real wish to live here. Above all, environmental threat such as desertification, sea-level rise, seasonal change and natural disasters etc. add up fuel in them to jump off the country. It is warned that if the continual rise in the world-temperature carries on, almost a-third of the country will go under water with the rise in the sea-level by 2040. Eventually, citizens of all walks of the country are migration-oriented and each year, a lot of people shift themselves to the richer countries in order to avail themselves of the economic and social opportunities. However, many others migrate to be with their family members who have already migrated to other countries. Education, being another reason for leaving country, is also responsible for international migration as once students go abroad to pursue their studies, they ultimately settle there and do not bother to return. However, these migrations have a huge impact on the country especially on its smooth supply of killed workforce in a number of sectors due to deserting many positions all on a sudden. Eventually, different sectors suffer much lacking proper manpower. It is a fact that in Bangladesh, there are about 150 millions of people, but no right people in the right place due the shortage of proper training and frequent migration.

1.2 Rationale

In their election manifesto, one of the two largest political parties, Bangladesh Awami League, clearly announced that short, medium and long term plans will be made and implemented for poverty reduction, efficient management for quick industrialization that can provide employment, speedy expansion of stock market, maintenance of law & order and discipline, elimination of bribe and corruption and administrative difficulties, avoidance of political influence, creation of an investment friendly environment and a competitive market system, adoption of innovative technology, and provision of infrastructural facilities that are able to attract entrepreneurs and expand domestic market.

In order to encourage investment by local and foreign entrepreneurs and expatriate Bangladeshis, the ONE-STOP facility will be made effective by simplifying legal and procedural formalities. Measures will be put in place to protect indigenous industries.

Development of IT industry, strengthening of RMG and textile sectors and expansion of food processing, pharmaceuticals, leather, chemical products, toys, jewellery and furniture industries will be given priority. Special initiative will be taken for alternative use of jute and to make jute industry viable. Small and handicraft industries and agro-based industry will be encouraged and will be given all cooperation in the expansion of markets at home and abroad. Expansion in tourism sector, increase in labour export, and investment of remittance received from expatriate Bangladeshis in productive sectors will be ensured.

All above targets and project implementations need sufficiently skilled, highly educated and experienced workforce. However, once the present government started implementation procedure, they have been facing the problem of not having ‘the right people in the right place’ in almost all sectors due to frequent migration which is why both the government and private organizations are now looking into the rationale of the frequent migrations of their employees that has been affecting their targets terribly.

According to Office for National Statistics (UK) report on International Migration, Bangladesh, being one of the smallest countries in the world, is one of the top 10 countries of migrants (Source: Table C(ii): Top 10 countries of last of next residence of migrants who are non-British citizens, IPS only, 2005–2006 combined). Therefore, it is indeed justified to study the reasons of skilled people’s immigration from Bangladesh and its effects and aftereffects on organizations while they are recruiting senior especially officials for project implementation.

1.3 The Research Questions

The basic aims of the research questions are establish motivating factors that lead thousands of people over the world leave their homeland every year to journey to the other countries from their countries of origins. They simultaneously aim at establishing the deep-rooted impacts of such migration on companies, organizations and recruiters in their recruitment leaving long-term significance on the country. They research questions are stated below.

1. Do Bangladeshi people leave their native country?

The very first question aims to establish a general trend among Bangladeshi people i.e. skilled workforce starting from forecast to find out its way to accumulate more obvious secondary data to be processed based on other primary and secondary data found in the relevant field.

2. Why do they plan to leave their native country?

The second question aims to establish typical reasons for Bangladeshi skilled employees to leave their jobs and migrate to other countries. It also aims to organize the factors sequentially from more obvious to less determining the burning issues with employees working in the country.

3. What factors lead skilled and educated employees to plan their migrations?

The third question is a less general one concentrating on only educated and skilled employees to demonstrate their motivational factors to migration to a different country.

4. How does it impact recruitment process?

The final question is the core one that will seek out to demonstrate all positive and negative impacts of such migration on the recruitment process as well as the country. It will determine the impacts that skilled-workers’ migrations can cause and will be mostly answered using processed data supplied by different agencies, organizations and recruiters. Firstly, all primary data from individuals will help us here to identify the relevant respondents’ perspectives and then finally secondary data will assist them to intensify.


The hypotheses for the dissertation are as follows.

H 1.

A lot of Bangladeshi people migrate from their country.

H 2.

Mostly skilled and educated people are migrating from the country.

H 3.

Employed people who are not satisfied with their salaries and/or other opportunities are migrating.

H 4.

Those skilled employees are migrating to developed 1st world countries that beckon better facilities.

H 5.

The majority of the migrating people are deserting their positions in Bangladesh.

H 6.

This migration is affecting the recruitment process in Bangladeshi a lot.

1.4 Definition of Related Terms

In the very beginning of the discussion, it is really important to define the terms that are embedded in the topic. As we see in the topic, the words migration, employees, employers and recruitment as well as their related terms are to be defined for better presentation. It is to be noted that the terms are sometimes replaced by their synonyms which are given below just after their definitions.

1.5.1 Migration:

Different organizations have defined the word in various ways. According to the United Nations, it is simply a ‘transfer lasting more than one year’ (Anna Karenina: The Brain-drain in Lithuania, p10).

However, there are more appropriate definitions of the word are found which are appended below. The web-based definitions of the word are (http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=migration)

• (n) migration (the movement of persons from one country or locality to another)
• (n) migration (a group of people migrating together [especially in some given time period])
• (n) migration ((chemistry) the nonrandom movement of an atom or radical from one place to another within a molecule)
• S: (n) migration (the periodic passage of groups of animals (especially birds or fishes) from one region to another for feeding or breeding)

Again, online thesaurus defines it like the following (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/migration:

Noun1. migration – the movement of persons from one country or locality to another

Related terms:

emigration, out-migration, expatriation – migration from a place (especially migration from your native country in order to settle in another)

immigration, in-migration – migration into a place (especially migration to a country of which you are not a native in order to settle there)

movement, move, motion – the act of changing location from one place to another; “police controlled the motion of the crowd”; “the movement of people from the farms to the cities”; “his move put him directly in my path”

2. migration – a group of people migrating together (especially in some given time period)
people – (plural) any group of human beings (men or women or children) collectively; “old people”; “there were at least 200 people in the audience”

The synonyms of the word are immigration, wandering, journey, voyage, travel, movement, shift, trek, emigration, roving, and expatriation.

One of the commonest definitions of the word is as follows.

Migration: the movement of persons from one country or locality to another

What migration refers, however, can be divided into two types. One is emigration and the other immigration. Emigration typically refers to the process of people leaving a nation (Adler and Gielen) . On the other hand, immigration is the process that involves people entering and settling in a country or region to which one is not native (The Free Dictionary) .

Secondly, employees refer to the persons involved in doing any job or paid work under any authority. The term employee is defined as a worker who is hired to perform a job (wordnetweb) while an employer is ‘a person or firm that employs workers’ (wordnetweb) .

Finally, the term recruitment “refers to the process of screening, and selecting qualified people for a job at an organization or firm, or for a vacancy” or ‘the process or art of finding candidates for a post in an organization, or of recruits for the armed forces” .

External recruitment is the process of attracting and selecting employees from outside the organization.


The main objective of the dissertation is to examine the overall status of international migration of skilled people from Bangladesh. Simultaneously, it aims at examining the influences on recruitment process due to such migration.

2. Introduction to Literature Review

It is a fact that literature review is one of the most important components of any research being undertaken. The basic aim of the review is to spot or identify the current status or state of the investigation in relevant field. It also facilitates the facts and findings of others working in the same field by providing some invaluable background information and statistics.

2.1 Brief History of Migration in Bangladesh

In this globalized world, the annual growth rate of the global migration increased from ‘1.2 per cent in 1965-1975 to 3 per cent in early 2000’ (Abella, 2002). The increase in the movement of workers is indicative of increased employment opportunity in the global market.

One and the same, since its inception in 1971, from Bangladesh, one of the major emigrating countries in the world, migration has enabled many people to obtain productive, fulfilling and creative work. However, for many others, it has failed to provide jobs of acceptable quality. Yet, each year a large number of people voluntarily migrate overseas for both long- and short-term employment.

The earliest immigrants from the British-ruled Indian province of Bengal arrived in first-world countries during the late nineteenth century. They accompanied a small number of retired British Indian officers as either servants or workmen.

During the independence of India in 1947, the old Bengal was split, and its Muslim-dominated eastern part became East Pakistan and following a struggle for independence Bangladesh separated from Pakistan in 1971. Despite political independence, and development of a clothes and textiles industry, Bangladeshis experienced a low standard of living which is why people started to seek a better life elsewhere. Thus the trend to immigrate among Bangladeshis started since the inception of the country.

During the independence war, the operation of the Pakistani military in East Pakistan in 1971 caused an estimated 8 to 10 million refugees to cross the border into India in one of the great mass movements of modern times. Apart from the above, since 80’s educated youth, skilled workers and executives, and unskilled workers have been migrating from the country in regular basis, mainly migrated to the Middle East and other regions. Additionally, Bangladesh have also lost some highly skilled members of the work force to Western Europe and North America.

As time has progressed, the country experienced more migration of skilled employees to somewhere. During the past year, 370,000 Bangladeshis have found employment in Malaysia. It has been learnt that a further 100,000 may also be able to go within this year. This recent Reuters article places most Bangladeshi migrant workers in the Middle East, US, UK, Germany, Italy, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore (The Migration and Remittances Factbook 2008). In fact, migration to other developing countries is more prevalent than it is thought.
Mr. Dilip Ratha and William Shaw have estimated in a World Bank Working Paper taking Bangladesh and India for example that Bilateral migration data estimates show 50 million skilled people born in Bangladesh live in outside. The New Nation reported recently that some 370,000 Bangladeshis have found employment in Malaysia and about 100,000 are expected to join them this year.

Increasingly, immigration policies of developed countries tend to favour the entry of skilled workers, raising substantial concerns among sending countries. Among many others, the first concern is that a higher skilled content of migration is found to be associated with a lower flow of remittances and second, there is little evidence suggesting that raising the skill composition of migration has a positive effect on the educational achievements in the home country.

2.2 Number of Migrants

Located in the north-eastern part of South Asia, Bangladesh lies between 20º34′ and 26º36′ north latitude and 88º01′ and 92 º 41’ east longitudes. These picturesque geographical boundaries frame a low lying plain of about 1,47,570 sq. km criss-crossed by innumerable rivers and streams having population of about 120 million which makes it the eighth populous country of the world.

As is stated before, the country is has been experiencing emigrated people since its inception and the rates of the university-educated people’s immigration tend to be higher than for the general population in developing countries. This is even greater for scientists, engineers, and members of the medical profession.In South Asia, the tertiary-educated people’s emigration rate from the region is more than 100 times greater than primary or secondary educated people.

In 2005, total stock of emigration from Bangladesh was 4,885,704, which was 3.4% percent of the population. Among all emigrating countries in the world, the country placed 5th in that year, whereas in the year 2000, it was not in the top 10 list of tertiary educated emigration list.

2.3 Top Destinations

In 2005, by a rough estimate, two of every five migrants on the globe were residing in a developing country. Most of these migrants are likely to have come from other developing countries. The extent and issues surrounding migration between developing countries, however, remain poorly understood, largely because data on migration in developing countries are incomplete and unreliable. However, as far as the destination is concern, Bangladeshi emigrants have been regularly emigrated to a selected list of countries. According to siteresources.worldbank.org, the 10 top destination countries of Bangladeshi emigrants in 2005 were India, Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom, United States, Oman, Italy, Canada, Singapore, Rep. of Korea, and Malaysia. However, the UN Population Division differs a bit. As per them, the top Immigration Countries are the US, Russia, Germany, Ukraine, France, Saudi Arabia, Canada, India, U.K., Spain, Australia, Pakistan, U.A.E, Israel, Italy, Kazakhstan, Cote d’Ivoire, Jordan, Japan, Iran, Singapore, West Bank & Gaza, Ghana, Kuwait, Switzerland, Malaysia, Netherlands, Argentina, Turkey, and Uzbekistan. The following bar graph shows the details relating to those counties’ immigration pattern in 2005.

3. Introduction to Methodology:

In order to provide a complete up-to-date analysis, both secondary and primary researches were carried out. A variety of methods were considered to find the most suitable ones collecting the specific types of data.

3.1 Secondary Research:

Secondary research normally denotes an activity whereby no new original data is collected but where the research project draws an existing sources alone. Secondary data can be seen as books, journals, statistical reports from government and other document . In order to access relevant data, it was essential to use a variety of different sources of information. Majority of time was spent in learning resource centre at Thames Valley University where possible to gain access not only to textbooks, but also to a variety of magazines, journals and online databases. Very useful were search engines like EBOSCOhost and Emerald, which can pull information from a range of academic sources. Some time was also spent in Ealing Library browsing through additional text. A vast amount of articles found was Bangladeshi Language; therefore a fair amount of time was spent on translation of those texts.

3.2 Primary Research:

The aim of the primary research is to seek the answer to one the key questions of this dissertation;

What are the main factors/motivators affecting the decision of highly skilled labour to migrate form Bangladesh?

It is very important to select the most adequate and reliable primary data collection methods. Various ways of collecting data will be discussed in this chapter as well as

why have been chosen or declined or specific information collection.

Primary research generally refers to that research which involves the collection of original data using an accepted research methodology.

3.2.1 Types of Research:

There are two different types of research: qualitative and quantitative. Therefore, first of all it is important to make distinction between these two types of research methods. According to Clarck, Riley, Wilkie and Wood (2003) qualitative techniques rely on the skills of the researcher as an interviewer in gathering data whereas quantities methods place reliance upon the research instruments employed to gather data and analyse it.

According to Jennings (2001) qualitative data is based on textual representations of the phenomenon under study, often referred to as phenomenological approach. Qualitative or inductive research commences in the empirical social world, where data about the phenomenon are gathered, and then analysed and theoretical constructions are generated. Research that utilise a qualitative methodology draws on data collection methods such as participant observations, in-depth interviews, semi structured interviews, case studies and focus groups. Veal (1992) argues that data could also be collected through informal interviewing as well as in depth interviews. Qualitative research enables researcher to highlight detailed and in depth snapshots of the participants under study.

Quantitative research is grounded in the positivists social science paradigm that primary reflects the scientific method of the natural science.

The quantitative approach to research usually involves statistical analysis. The data can be derived from questionnaire survey, observation or from secondary sources .

The main quantitative methods for gathering data are:

ƒ˜ Questionnaires
ƒ˜ Non-participant observation
ƒ˜ Surveys

Veal (1992) believes that these two approaches complement each other and even that qualitative research should be based on initial qualitative work.
Webster, Stephen, Marshall and William (2004) also argue that the contrasting nature of positivism and phenomenological approaches can be used to complement each other. The feasibility of these statements can be backed up with the “mixed method approach” discussed by Jennings (2002), who states that this type of research is often used to gather information on the tourism phenomenon, which in some extent is migration process.

3.2.2 Data Gathering Methods: Case Studies:

Case studies are a complex research activity, which involves the through analysis of a single unit- a person, or a company. However, this method does not allow the researcher to apply theory developed to other similar cases. Interviews:

Interviews have been likened to conversations they are merely one of the many ways in which two people talk to one another . There are major advantages to using to using interviews. Researcher can collect more information and more complex information, response rate is generally very good and can use recording equipment. Also, interviewer can take a note of body language, gestures or facial expression of the interviewee . However interviews can be difficult to arrange, might be time consuming and quite costly.

There is a range of interview types that can be applied when gathering information. Understand or in depth interviews are those interview where there is no formal schedule. The interviewer has the idea about the issues and might have a list of relevant topics and these are merely used as a guide . Main disadvantage about using those types of interviews is that they come up as a bit of a challenge. Interviewer has to be experienced and leas the conversation in order to gather relevant data. Veal (1992) mentions that in order to conduct a good in depth interview researcher has to have the skills of a “good investigate journalist”. For those who do not posses such skills, semis-structured interviews might be another option. According to Jennnings(2001) semi-structured interviews can be used by both qualitative methodologies. Those interviews still remain in the way of conversation type; however the interviewer has a prompt list of issues that focus the interaction. The main advantages of such interview are that the questions are not specifically predetermined; therefore the researcher is still able to ask further clarification on the particular issue . Also the semi-structured schedule provides a more relaxed interview setting.

Due to a nature of the topic, an interview was not chosen as a method of gathering primary data. In order to complete the research many opinions have to be gathered and that can not be possibly done using interview method. Also, because the research country is quite a bit away from the UK, it would be vary difficult to match times with every interviewee and also very costly (air-ticket, accommodation, food, etc). Focus Groups:

Instead of interviewing participants individually, study participants individually, study participants are interviewed together . According to Veal (1992) groups usually comprises between 5 and 12 people. According to Jennings (2001) focus groups are used when the researcher believes that the interaction between group members will add to the richness of data collected.

The main advantage of focus groups lies in the possibility between people, generation of new by the participants and the degree of flexibility to follow trends or issues. However, same as in depth interviews focus groups require an experienced facilitator to lead the discussion otherwise it may result in stronger personalities dominating the session. It was mostly the lack of experience that drove the decision of not using focus groups approach as the method for gathering information. Observation:

Observation can be participant or not participant, in either way researcher is observing the surroundings around him. In participant observation researcher becomes a participant in the process that is being studied.

A participant observation raises a number of problems such as admittance to the particular site of observation and when admitted the way researcher should handle the activity . In the case participant observation is not realistic option because of the nature of research topic. Furthermore, non participant observation is not possible as the subject is not related for example to the length of the queue for breakfast, but requires educated population opinion and attitude. Surveys:

Surveys generally ask who, what, how many, or where. They tend to include relatively large samples and wide fields of study, often using questionnaire or standardise interviews. Surveys provide a good what to summarize the status of large group of individuals, companies, etc. (Johns and Lee-Ross, 1998-58)

According to Jennings (2001) surveys are methods of data collection in which information is gathered through oral or written questioning. Surveys may also include self-completed questionnaires administered by post, e-mail or in person as well as structured interviews carried out in person or over the telephone. Surveys completed in person can use interviewer completed questionnaires as the tool to gather information. Mail or email surveys use questionnaires to gather data. Pilot surveys, which are small “trail runs” of a larger survey, are often carried to try our wording of questions, the understanding of terms used, to test sequencing of questions and to gain a preliminary estimate of the likely response rate.

A pilot is a simple way of testing whether the articulation of the method(s) selected for use in a research programme is adequate to meeting research objectives. (Clark, Riley, Wilkie and Wood,2003) Questionnaires:

Questionnaires rely quite heavily on respondents being literate or familiar with the language used in questionnaire . Questionnaires can be used only when respondents are available and willing to participate as research subjects. The main advantages of using questionnaires are:

  • Can cover a large number of people
  • Relatively cheap
  • Avoids respondents embarrassment
  • Possible anonymity of respondent
  • No interview bias

When using questionnaires to perform primary data collection it is very important to remember some major disadvantages of using that method. First of it is very difficult to design a perfect questionnaire from a very first time. Bell (1992) suggests that producing a really good questionnaire is harder than it might be imagined. Another problem with questionnaire is regarding the actual questions itself, which have to be relatively simple.

The advantage of questionnaire being anonymous can bring also a disadvantage of not being able offer assistance if needed. The major advantage to use questionnaires is that the reliability and validity of data collected depend upon respondents’ memories and forthrightness . Generally questionnaires are used when the researcher is specific on the subjects of the investigation; the research is covering a relatively large number of people gathering facts or opinions; or when the researcher is trying to establish the extent of something . Special data processing is often needed because of the considerable amount of missing data or simply to evaluate data received and present it in graphs/charts .

Questionnaires may be self employed or interviewer completed. The interviewer completed questionnaires give an opportunity for face to face interaction, which can contribute to increased participation; it can also bring it clarification sought by the respondent regarding language problems or terms used . However, that sort of activity would involve high travel cost and tends to be rather time consuming, as well as refuses the possibility of anonymity. Whereas self completed questionnaires at their own time peace. On contrary, respondents are not able to seek assistance or clarification on the questions if needed. Respondents may not understand the language of the questionnaire and therefore it may result in questionnaire being partly completed or non-completed at all, which would lower the response rate .

For this particular research it was decided to develop a structured questionnaire and take survey as many emigrate from Bangladesh as possible.

In total target are 200 interviews; participation from emigrate person from Bangladesh in this survey via email, face to face interview.

3.2.3 Sampling:

Sampling is a process that involves the selection of some members of the larger population . In most survey research and some observational research it is necessary to sample. Usually sampling approach is used where research is concerned with a very wide group of population . Clark, Riley, Wilkie and Wood (2003) suggest that samples are frequently studied in order to learn something about the characteristics of the larger groups of which they are part.

Sampling can be random and non-random. The key feature of non-random sampling is that items for research are chosen not randomly but purposively . Random sampling is a sampling technique where a group of subjects for a study is selected by the researcher from a larger group (a population). Each individual is chosen entirely by a chance and each member of the population has a chance of bein

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