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The Second Course of the Returnship, the Program for Resuming the Career of “Adult” Specialists, Has Been Completed

On February 26, the second graduation of trainees who took part in the Kyivstar Returnship program, aimed at combating age discrimination in the labor market, took place. This year, 15 persons at the age of 35-52 became the participants of the internship for "adult" specialists, three of them were invited to join the company's team upon completion of the internship.

"Kyivstar was one of the first Ukrainian employers to draw attention to the issues of employment of specialists who had a significant break in their employment. Now we have the second graduation of specialists in the Returnship program. The project is developing and gaining new meanings and substance. It's not just an internship program. For the participants, this is first and foremost return of confidence in their own strength and professionalism and, as a result, a chance to return to their careers or try on new roles. For Kyivstar, as a responsible employer, this is an opportunity to change stereotypes inherent in the labor market and show that the age of the candidate is not an indication of his/her professional abilities," – commented Oksana Oliynyk, the Director for Human Resources and Development of Kyivstar.

The company is planning to continue the project and information about the recruitment of a new group of trainees will be announced later. However, Kyivstar hopes that other employers will take up the initiative, because the entrenched stereotypes will be easier to overcome when addressed by combined efforts. The numbers indicate the demand for the project: the competition for one trainee place was more than 70 people, and only 15 people became participants of the program.

Participants of the Returnship-2020 were trained in the departments of IT, Retail, Corporate Market, Change Management, Marketing, HR, Finance, Cybersecurity, Logistics and PR. The program lasted for 4 months. During this period, trainees were officially registered and received a salary.

The internship was held remotely because of the pandemic. Accordingly, the company developed a new adaptation program for trainees. In order to feel the company as much as possible and to immerse in business processes, trainees received additional lectures and trainings: Big Data, Marketing Communications, Finance and Audit, IT, New Business Stream, Digital, Design, SAM, as well as personal development trainings, etc. The adaptation of newcomers in the company is promoted by a "buddy", more experienced employee who helps to understand the processes and become part of the team.

"Before the Returnship project, I was looking for myself, combining this with maternity leave, – Kadysh Anna, a participant of the internship, shares her story. – Every person has a potential, and if it is properly directed it will definitely give results. That's why I decided to take part in the program. Quarantine and remote adaptation were the hardest for me. I express great appreciation to Kyivstar company whose managers organized the office at home, to my buddy who helped with the adaptation and set the pace and, of course, to colleagues from all sectors, who were always ready to help. Moreiver, Kyivstar’s educational resources have no limits!"

The Kyivstar Returnship program started in 2019. In total, 24 people became participants of the project during its period of operation, 10 of them were finally invited to join the Kyivstar team.

We remind you that, in addition to the Returnship, Kyivstar has had an internship program for students for three years: STARt Yourself. Students from the 3rd course consolidate the knowledge gained at the university in practice and have an opportunity to propose and implement their own ideas. The "junior" trainees work flexibly, combining work and studies.

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