Job Hunting for an Expat Position

19 June 2019

Deciding that you want to explore the opportunities to become an expatriate is one thing, but actually finding a position and making a move is another. Finding a new job can be difficult at the best of times, but adding finding one in a different country can compound the problems significantly. We take a look at some of the best ways to find the right international role for you.


Finding the right country

An essential part of finding a position abroad is identifying the correct destination for you. This doesn’t have to be a single country, but producing a shortlist of places that meet your needs is important. Discover not only whether the location right for you, but if you are also right for the place. Finding out whether your skills are in demand is essential, as you could be wasting your time if you’re looking to move where there is already an overabundance of graphic designers or nurses, for example.


Another critical point to consider is who will be coming with you, and how will they cope in your new home? Travelling with a family will add many extra pressures not experienced by solo expatriates. Ensure that the conditions will be suitable for them, including job opportunities for your partner and schooling options for any children.


Looking internally

If you’re already working in an international organisation, the first place to search for an expatriate position should be internally. Making a move within a company has many benefits, such as relocation budgets and expert support not accessible to those relocating on their own accord. You will also have the chance to speak to others who have previously made the change and learn from their experiences (and mistakes).


The downside to taking this route, however, is that the choice over destination will be limited if there is an option to choose at all. Generally, you will only be able to move to where your skills are needed. Therefore, if you’re currently feeling unfulfilled in your current role, looking for a new position at the same company shouldn’t be your preferred route to becoming an expatriate.


Searching the web

Although it might seem it at first thought, with the overall dominance of online job boards, searching for a position in your home country or another is pretty much the same these days. The largest online job sites also have international versions, so that you can search for similar jobs across the globe all from one platform.


Although it may seem like the more efficient option to use the big job boards, you may be missing out on some of the more exciting opportunities. There are plenty of specialised sites for people with specific skills and interests, including those looking to move to developing countries or find a position with a significant amount of travel involved.


Becoming a digital nomad

With stable internet connections now available nearly everywhere on the planet, now is a great time to be a remote worker, or digital nomad, travelling and working at the same time. With live sharing of documents and great video conferencing services, you no longer need to be in the same room as your team to work efficiently and effectively.


However, if you want to go down this path, you’ll need to have the right skills to find a position where this lifestyle if possible. Marketing, design, PR and finance are some of the most available career options for this route; basically, anything where you only need a laptop and an internet connection to get the job done. If you’ve got the right background, becoming a freelancer in these fields will provide the ultimate flexibility to take work when you need and want to.


If going this route, it’s essential to make yourself fully aware of the local laws when it comes to living and working. The conditions for working visas and residency permits vary across the globe, and you don’t want to be suddenly ejected from your new home.




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