Thinking about working abroad? It could be a big life change and involve leaving your friends and moving your family. Whatever your reasons for wanting to work abroad, there are some things you can do to make it easier.
As well as researching the company you are thinking of working for, research the country you are moving to. Each country, especially as you move from continent to continent, will have different cultural nuances when it comes to work ethic. The working week may be Sunday to Thursday or be eighty hours or more.
Some of these changes may affect you outside of work too. The cost of living, medical costs, public transport, store opening hours and social conventions.
You’ll need to look at any documents you’ll need to have before you leave, maybe even before you apply. Applying for Passports, Visas, Work Permits etc can take a long time and it’s best to get them as early as possible.
Also check to see if you need any immunisations for your destination country.
They always say it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. But what if you don’t know anyone? Check with ex-colleagues, school friends, friends of friends to see if anyone has any experience, advice or connections.
Luckily, we have the Internet. It’s FULL of expat forums, sites based in your destinations location and larger well known sites like LinkedIn and Facebook.
A Recruitment Agency is like having a built in network for jobs abroad. They will have a relationship with the employer and may be placing lots of employees in their company. They will also help with the language barrier as they will have an open line of communication already.
If you have done your research and networked the best you can, you will know how to write an application for your target country. You’ll probably see that what employers are looking for is the same around the world but the way it’s laid out may differ from country to country.
The Internet can be your friend here too.
The interview process will differ around the world. Usually the first interview will be over the phone no matter what the country. You will need to research what employers in your target country are looking for in an initial interview to help you move forward.
Again, the Internet is your friend.