7 Practical Tips for Finding Work in Another Country
If you want to travel the world, you’re going to need to fund it.
One of the best ways to travel is to work and live abroad.
With the Canadian passport, we’re incredibly fortunate to have working-holiday opportunities in 32 countries! Working holiday visas allow you to extend and sustain your travels with income and immersive cultural experiences.
A week after walking the stage for my uni graduation, I was on a flight to Australia where I’ve now lived and worked for two years. One of my jobs while in Brisbane was working at a career recruitment agency, where I later ended up writing for their blog on job application strategies.
From my personal experience, I'm sharing a few practical tips to help you find a job in another country.
1. Get your references sorted before you move
We live in a digital world. It’s easier now more than ever to connect with people on the other side of the world. There shouldn’t be a reason why your future employer can’t contact your references back home.
If your hiring manager can't get ahold of your references, you're likely to get skipped over for the position. Ask your references to keep an eye on their inbox and junk box, so they don't miss a reference check.
2. Get on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is an essential tool for connecting with people professionally. You can directly message hiring managers and recruiters in companies of your interest. With the right LinkedIn strategy, you can even arrange interviews before you’re on the plane.
When you move to a new country, you'll be starting your professional network from scratch. An active LinkedIn profile will give your resume credibility, especially if the potential employer is unfamiliar with the companies on your resume.
Make your LinkedIn easier to find by changing the vanity URL to your name.
3. Take Online Classes
A big move is a perfect opportunity to reinvent yourself.
You can start a new career path or switch your current direction. Either way, you’ll want to sharpen your skill set to add some juice to your resume.
Have a look at job requirements on the job postings. Brush up on some skills that are a little rusty or learn something you've always wanted to.
4. Use Facebook Groups
One of the best tools for networking and finding work is Facebook groups. It’s a great place to ask for advice and start connecting with people.
Facebook features a search function where you can enter keywords to help match relevant groups.
Search "Brisbane Backpacker Jobs," "Auckland Hospitality," or "Vancouver Videographers" for more specific groups.
5. Register With a Temp Agency
When you move to a new country, you’ll realise how much more free time you have now that you don’t have as many social obligations. This is in part because you can count the number of people you know in the country on your hands (or maybe you don't know anyone yet).
With an open schedule, temp-work is your best friend.
Do your research and register with a recruitment agency who have clients and roles that interest you. With temp-work, you can “try on” different roles and working environments.
If you’re lucky and you do exceptionally well in a role, you’ll be on their mind for a permanent position when it comes along.
6. Check your visa restrictions and required permits
In Australia, working-holiday visa holders can only work with one company for a maximum of 6 months.
This can make it challenging to find work, so know what you’re getting yourself into and make sure your employer is aware of this ahead of time.
If you’re looking for work in hospitality, childcare, or construction, get organised and get on top of any required permits you’ll need to hold these jobs like serving licenses, Blue Card (for working with children in Queensland, Australia), and a White Card (for Construction in Queensland).
7. Practice Patience and an Open Mind
You’ll have to be patient when looking for work abroad.
Even with a killer job application strategy, job hunting can sometimes take months. If you’re unable to find work in your desired profession right away, get creative in ways you can make money in the meantime.
Sites like Airtasker post one-of jobs for errands and other odd jobs around the city. Hostels tend to post short-term work, and even volunteer opportunities can turn into work opportunities.
The most important thing you can do to help your chances of landing a job is to get yourself out there and meet people.
Wishing you the best of luck on your future travels and your job hunt!