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Looking for a job abroad: 5 ways to find one

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Looking for a job abroad: 5 ways to find one

Interested in getting a job abroad? There are many ways to get a job abroad. Reliable references and a waiver of recruitment fees are a good start to finding a job abroad

Looking for a job abroad but don’t know where to start or where to apply? Here are 5 ways to get a reliable job abroad. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, so think about all the options before deciding which one is the most convenient and affordable for you.

1. Use an intermediary recruitment agency in your country

If you are interested in working abroad, the easiest way to start looking for a job is to contact recruitment agencies in your home country, which offer jobs in various foreign countries. In many countries, you do not need a special license to provide recruitment services abroad. However, although many of the agencies involved are reputable, you should be aware that there are some illegal companies that do not follow the rules and cheat jobseekers abroad.

How to check whether an agency is reliable

Reviews

The best way to check whether a recruitment agency is trustworthy is to ask people close to you who have gone abroad for work what kind of agency they have used and how they would rate the service they received. Only people close to you or friends will be able to give you the most reliable information about their experience of working abroad and advise you on the best agency to choose.

Another good way to get information about an agency is through online reviews. Sites such as Google or Facebook show the ratings left by expatriate staff about the agency. You can be sure that these ratings are genuine and not written by the agency itself. However, bear in mind that people tend to leave reviews when they are dissatisfied with the service provided and very rarely describe and rate a good experience. Therefore, these evaluations do not always reflect the real situation.

In order to check the credibility of a review, it is important to check other reviews written by the same person. Some people write them sincerely and provide really useful information, but others just want to make their opinions known, not necessarily in a well-founded way, and they do this by any means possible. And the way in which the agency described reacts to the various reviews shows how much it values its clients and how important their opinions are to it.

If the recruitment agency publishes employee reviews of its services, check how these reviews are collected and whether all reviews are actually published online. If you only see positive feedback, take it with a pinch of salt, as even the most trustworthy agency will receive negative feedback.

Robin Agency is open and willing to share both positive and negative feedback about its services with all people looking for work abroad. We believe that this is the only way for jobseekers to get a clear and realistic impression of what awaits them when they go to work and live abroad.

Karolina Kirstukaite
Karolina Kirstukaite
Friendly recruiters, who gave me all the information I needed and were ready to help me once I was on the job. I recommend it.

Does the recruitment agency have its own office

At the start of its operations, Robin had only one office in Lithuania, where recruiters interacted with candidates from different countries. However, we quickly realised how important it is for candidates to know that there is an office in their own country where they can visit and see for themselves how the agency operates and get professional advice or assistance from a recruiter. In many cases, a job interview is more pleasant and smoother when there is the possibility of a face-to-face interaction rather than an online one with a video camera.

You can check with your country’s business register to see if the recruitment agency you are considering has an office. If an office address is listed, use Google maps or Google street view to check whether it actually exists. We also use this tactic when we make contact with new partners in the Netherlands or Germany and plan a meeting with them.

The agency’s recruitment services are free of charge

We have all heard stories of gullible jobseekers who paid a recruitment fee to a recruitment agency and then went abroad to work and got no job. Fortunately, such cases are becoming increasingly rare.

 

So I probably don’t need to remind and warn you not to use recruitment agencies that charge recruitment fees. European law prohibits the charging of recruitment fees to people looking for work abroad. Surely you do not want to use an agency that profits from breaking the law and deceiving people? An honest agency does not make money by charging a brokerage fee to jobseekers, but by charging a fee to its partners abroad. And if the partners are not willing to pay the agency a brokerage fee, that says a lot about the agency’s reputation and the quality of its services.

Therefore, the money you were planning to pay to the agency to broker your job placement is better spent on an English language course. Because if you know English, you will have a wider choice of job offers abroad.

Ask questions and ask for details!

Another way to check the credibility of an agency is to ask questions about everything that interests you and to ask for detailed information. An experienced recruiter will tell you in detail about everything you can expect to find when working abroad. Robin’s recruiters often visit the countries where we recruit so that they can get to know the working and living conditions as well as possible and can tell you everything in detail. This way, there’s no room for unrealistic expectations and no disappointment when you go to work abroad.

What guarantees does the agency give you

During your job interview with the agency, make sure you ask what guarantees the agency gives you. If you are interested in a job abroad with a residence and you expect the company to take care of all the documents needed for legal work and to accommodate you, ask for guarantees that the agency will provide these services. This will avoid unpleasant situations when you arrive in a new country.

2. Get a job through a foreign employment agency

Another way to get a job abroad is to apply directly to a recruitment agency in the country where you want to work. This can be a convenient way if you know exactly which region you want to work in and that the agency you contact offers exactly the kind of recruitment and accommodation conditions you expect. Bear in mind that living conditions and payment of salaries may vary slightly from agency to agency, so make sure you check in advance.

How to check the credibility of a recruitment agency

Depending on the country you are planning to go to, you can check the quality of the services provided by the agency and its reliability by using the following criteria:

Whether the agency belongs to an association of recruitment agencies or a similar organization

In the Netherlands, for example, there are organizations such as ABU and NBBU. If the recruitment agency through which you want to get a job belongs to one of these organizations, you can be sure that it will comply with the basic requirements in terms of the recruitment contract and the payment of wages.

The UK has a Recruitment and Employment Organisation, which also sets standards for recruitment agencies in this country. If you are interested in working in England, you can check whether a recruitment agency belongs to the REC.

So if you’re planning to get a job through a foreign recruitment agency, check whether there is an association or organization of recruitment agencies in the country you’re interested in, and whether the agency you’re interested in belongs to it.

What additional services does the Agency provide?

The country where you plan to work determines what additional services the recruitment agency provides in addition to the recruitment service. In our experience, the lower the unemployment rate in a country and the higher the demand for workers, the more additional services a recruitment agency provides.

France, for example, has a relatively high unemployment rate compared to other EU countries, so you shouldn’t expect recruitment agencies to take care of your trust and provide you with a place to live.

In the Netherlands, the situation is the opposite. The country has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe, so when you arrive to work in the country, a Dutch recruitment agency will not only welcome you but also provide you with the services you need:

  • Salary payment;
  • Accommodation;
  • Documentation (i.e. employment contract, insurance, legal worker number);
  • Transport to and from the workplace;
  • Assistance with medical consultation if needed;

Before choosing a recruitment agency, find out what services it provides and think about what you are prepared to do yourself in case the agency cannot help.

How employees rate the agency

Just like when you go abroad to work through a local recruitment agency, when working through a foreign agency it is important to check the feedback from the staff about the agency. The best feedback comes from people in your immediate environment. Also people who have worked for several agencies and know their advantages and disadvantages.

It is not easy to get a clear impression of an agency from reading reviews on the internet. This is made more difficult by the abundance of websites where employees can leave a review. You should remember that people usually leave a review when they have had a bad experience with a recruitment agency abroad. Very often, a bad experience is caused by a mismatch between the expectations of the employee and reality. That is why we advise all people interested in working abroad to use a recruitment agency in their home country. The agency can offer you exactly the kind of job abroad you are looking for, based on your expectations of your future job and on the experience of workers who have already worked abroad.

3. Apply for a position directly with the company

For those who have been living abroad for some time, it may be convenient to apply directly for a job in a particular company. If you already have a place to live and a vehicle with which you can travel to and from your place of work, then it is possible to apply for a job without using a temporary employment agency.

However, there are 6 reasons why it is not worthwhile to work directly for a company:

  1. Employees who work directly for a company are less likely to work extra hours compared to employees who work for the same company through a recruitment agency;
  2. In the event of a reduction of work in the company, there is a higher chance of being unemployed;
  3. The employment contract and other employment-related documents may be drafted in a language you do not understand;
  4. You are unlikely to be given a place to live;
  5. You will have to arrange your own transport to and from the workplace;
  6. In the event of problems or things not going as you expected, it is unlikely that you will have anyone to turn to for help;

For these reasons, we do not recommend direct employment for anyone planning to work abroad for the first time. Only workers who know specific companies, have their own place of residence and a means of transport can consider this option.

4. Use your country’s Job Centre

The possibility of getting a job abroad through your country’s Job Centre depends on the country where you live.

Licence to recruit in Latvia

Recruitment agencies in Latvia that offer recruitment services abroad to local residents must be licensed to do so. The licence, which allows you to carry out recruitment agency activities, is granted by the local Labour Exchange . If you go abroad to work with a licensed agency, you can be sure that the agency complies with the basic requirements for agencies.

Job centre in Portugal

Employment agencies in Portugal that help you get a job abroad do not have to be licensed to operate. The local Job Centre works in partnership with Eures to help unemployed Portuguese people find work abroad. Eures is a European employment service and cooperation network that aims to ensure the free movement of workers in the 28 EU countries and Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. Robin also tried to work with Eures, but we were not satisfied with the slowness with which jobseekers were matched with employers abroad. In the international labour market, the demand for workers changes every day, so it is important to react quickly to these changes.

Recruitment agencies in Romania are subject to checks by local authorities

In Romania, recruitment agencies are inspected by the Ministry of Labour to make sure they meet certain requirements. This provides security for workers looking for work abroad.

Although recruiting abroad through the local Job Centre is safe and secure, it is a lengthy process that will require a lot of time and energy from you. It is therefore better to use a reliable local recruitment agency.

5. Get a job abroad after signing a Lithuanian employment contract

If your employer in Lithuania offers you a temporary work project in another EU country, they may offer you a temporary work contract and an A1 (E101) certificate. The A1 certificate is a document proving that the employee in Lithuania is covered by social security and will not have to pay social security contributions in the other country to which they are posted. This certificate is required for employees of Lithuanian companies who are sent by their employer to work abroad.

Benefits:

Working abroad with a Lithuanian contract can be an attractive option if your Lithuanian employer sends you abroad for short-term work. You won’t need to sign additional contracts and all the information you receive will be in Lithuanian.

Another advantage is that you are likely to receive a travel allowance and a daily allowance. This will increase your monthly salary. This way you can earn more money in a short time.

Disadvantages:

Working abroad with a Lithuanian contract also has its downsides:

  • You won’t build up a pension fund in the foreign country where you go to work;
  • You can only stay in the foreign country for a maximum of 3 months per year;
  • Your local health insurance will only cover a very small part of your health costs;
  • The paperwork for a worker going abroad takes a long time and is prone to errors;
  • Some agencies do not comply with the law and use this method of recruitment to save tax;

Summary:

The opening of borders in many EU countries has opened up a variety of ways to get a job abroad. Each way of going abroad has its pros and cons and requires time to decide which way is most convenient and acceptable to you.

If you are planning to work abroad for the first time, we recommend using a local recruitment agency. To check whether the agency you are interested in is reliable, ask around your immediate circle or read online reviews. The quality of an agency’s service depends a lot on how the agency presents itself and the information it provides about itself. Under no circumstances pay a recruitment fee and be sure to ask for guarantees.

For those who have already worked abroad and know what to expect, it’s a good idea to go directly to the recruitment agency in that country when looking for work. The credibility of recruitment agencies can be demonstrated by their membership of a national association of recruitment agencies and the additional services they provide to their staff in addition to recruitment.

If you already have a place of residence and your own vehicle in a foreign country, you can try to get a job directly with the company you are interested in.  But be aware that this type of employment has a number of disadvantages.

How easy it can be to get a job in your country with the help of your local Job Centre or similar institution depends on the laws governing the work of such institutions. Some countries require a licence to provide foreign employment services. This licence guarantees jobseekers that the agencies providing employment services abroad comply with basic requirements.

If your employer offers you a job abroad with a Lithuanian employment contract, check the terms and conditions and paperwork before accepting.

FAQ on 5 ways to get a job abroad

Why is it not advisable to get a direct job with a company abroad?

In some cases, working directly for a company abroad can be a good option, especially if you have a place to live and your own car. However, even then, the advantages are fewer than the disadvantages. If you are going abroad for the first time, this type of employment will require you to spend extra time and effort trying to settle in an unfamiliar country, as you will have to take care of everything yourself. It is therefore worth knowing that if you take up a job through a recruitment agency in your home country, it will take care of everything for you – arranging the necessary documents for legal work, providing you with accommodation and a means of transport to get you to work.

27.06.2021

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