The municipality of Boden’s immigration service is one of several important pieces of the puzzle in the ongoing societal transition. With personal contact and smart digital solutions, new residents and skills are welcomed.
Bharat Kumar and Krishnama Raju from India have been working together in different locations for 17 years. They are two of H2 Green Steel’s hand-picked international experts. For the first time, their families have chosen to accompany them on their missions around the world. The families arrived in Boden just as winter was turning into spring and the northern lights were replaced by long, bright evenings that will soon become midnight light around the clock. With over 40 degrees of temperature difference, they faced a whole new life overnight. Boden’s move-in hosts became the first contact for all practical matters outside of work.
“This is very good for us. We want to be with our families and this was the opportunity,” the families say.
Their children, two sets of siblings aged 8 and 11, are the first students at International School of Boden.
During Bodenxt’s visit, the families have just arrived at the NordPoolen water park in central Boden. The children greet happily with Swedish phrases and tell us that they like Boden and can’t wait to go ice skating. Mothers Sailaja and Naveena want to learn Swedish as soon as possible and get a job here. The families’ first home is an apartment each in central Boden. But they are looking for houses, preferably close to each other and not too far from the children’s school.
During a Sunday afternoon, they have been guided to various attractions, facilities and leisure activities in and around Boden. The tour ends with a “dive and dine”, dinner and swimming, together with more newly arrived H2 Green Steel employees. The initiative is part of the much-appreciated efforts made by Boden’s relocation service.
The foundations of the municipal relocation service function have been laid by Linnéa Byberg who was the initial relocation host. A native of Boden, she has a good knowledge of associations, the school system, the city and the countryside.
The resettlement team has been complemented by Peter Wallin, who has extensive experience in tourism and hospitality locally and nationally, and Katarina Nyberg, citizen services. Together they reinforce the practical reception and organizational systematization of all the tasks received by the relocation service.
H2 Green Steel has a cooperation agreement with the municipality of Boden regarding the relocation of their staff. In the cooperation agreement, the municipality of Boden and H2 Green Steel commit to a number of mutual obligations. The aim is to facilitate and ensure that as many as possible of the growing group of H2 Green Steel employees settle in Boden. From the municipality’s point of view, this primarily concerns support in matters related to housing, preschool and schooling for employees who choose to settle in the municipality of Boden. But at the same time, the settlement service becomes a personal contact in the community for information on everything from shopping to football training.
Specifically, H2 Green Steel’s recruiters work with the potential employees of the steelworks and put them in touch with the relocation service. Linnéa Byberg conducts a first digital move-in meeting where she maps out wishes and needs. Based on the initial calls, the requests are sorted into a digital form that directs the cases to schools, childcare, housing management and more.
“Move to Boden”
The relocation service, together with the skills management team, is an important part of the ecosystem of the Move to Boden website. The Move to Boden web is built internally by the municipality of Boden and is tailored to match and channel expressions of interest in a smart way. “Move to Boden” has 50,000 visitors and 7 million exposures in digital channels per month. Around 3,000 visitors per month return and 100-150 people per month make contact to move here and work.