Working overseas

You’ll have to do some research about which countries will and will not employ foreigners. Working overseas You’ll have to do some research about which countries will and will not employ foreigners.

Dear Molly: I am employed as a systems analyst, and am considering spending a few years working outside the United States. I can’t afford to travel a lot, but I like experiencing different cultures, so I thought I’d get a job in Europe and stay there awhile. How can I find a good job outside the U.S. without moving to the country first, and how hard is it for an American to work legally in another country?

Molly says: Finding a job might be the easiest part of your project; getting the permission to work in the country might be the hardest. There are job sites for United Kingdom and European countries. Here are a few: EuroTechnique Consulting, Eolas Recruitment (Ireland only), and Blue Fruit. Visit these sites and others like them. If you can, ask the people behind the scenes at these sites for their opinion about your plan.

Getting a work permit abroad can be difficult because many of these countries have regulations that forbid foreign nationals to work in jobs that citizens could have. Their economies are just not robust enough to support the employment needs of citizens and visitors. Of course, regulations vary from country to country and from time to time, so you’ll need to check with the government in whatever country you would like to make home base to make sure you can get a work permit.

I do not recommend that you take a job in any country and then try to work there illegally. If the company hiring you says that’s okay, you need to look for a more scrupulous employer.

You could also get a job with a U.S. company that has offices overseas in hopes of transferring. Companies that transfer people abroad will often pay for all or part of their living expenses while they are out of the country.

Molly Joss also writes the monthly Career Advisor column for ComputerUser magazine. Ask a career-related question at [email protected]

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