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The Warsaw Voice » Business » January 4, 2018
Business & Economy
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What do Poles do Abroad?
January 4, 2018   
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Gaining international experience, learning languages and exploring unknown places while saving some money - this is a very popular career goal nowadays. There is a growing trend of young Europeans applying for jobs abroad to broaden their horizons.

Traditionally the migration flow within the EU brings people from the East to the West and from the South to the North, as people come looking for better opportunities and higher salaries.

This is the case in Poland as well; after Romanians, Poles are the Europeans who relocate the most. As stated by Europe Language Jobs, an international job board focusing on multilingual candidates, the demand for Polish speaking talent in the European labour market is also growing from year to year. They have more than 13,000 Polish jobseekers in their database and most of them aspire to live in the United Kingdom and Germany. Denmark, Ireland, Norway, the Netherlands and Spain are also very popular destinations.

Poles have many options when it comes to working abroad. Some jobs such as developers or engineers require specialised knowledge, and others for example cleaning or waitering positions can be done without any previous experience. For these openings, Poles have to compete with locals, with expats from other countries and of course, with other Polish candidates. Besides these opportunities, many jobs require Polish speakers, and clearly this requirement eliminates all other competition for Polish speaking applicants.

According to Europe Language Jobs, the sector that demands the most Polish speakers is customer service. Basically, the demand for this job arises because more and more Poles relocate abroad, and their presence creates the need to handle them as customers.

Another very demanded position is related to business development and sales. As we live in the era of young and international startups who wish to gain presence in different countries, these positions are perfect for those who want to live abroad but still work within the Polish market.

Multinational companies tend to hire bilingual account receivables. They are accounting professionals who ensure organisations receive payment for services offered or goods sold to clients. To maintain a good relationship and keep the communication effective with Polish clients, hiring a person how speaks their native language is a convenient decision.

The demand for Polish speakers increases the demand for Polish speaking recruiters, who normally get hired by huge recruiting companies.

There are many attractive positions for Poles, but what are the difficulties of finding a job abroad?

To find answers to these questions we interviewed Natalia, a 25 year old Polish expat who works in sales at a startup in Barcelona. She has lived here for one year and shared some insights into the process of moving here and finding a job.

She fell in love with Spain and its culture. After spending an Erasmus semester here, she decided that one day she would come back and live here. One day she had a call from a friend who was about to leave his job, and he showed her CV to his boss, and said that she had a good profile to get the position. Eventually they hired her, and three weeks after receiving the good news she was already in Barcelona. She started at the company as an intern but later got hired as a full-time employee.

She was searching for the best offer for 3 years by that time. She found many openings, but the majority of them were non-paid internships and she was looking for a full-time job with a salary. At that time she had a stable job in Poland and didn`t feel comfortable about quitting for an offer which was not that attractive.

She thinks the most obvious one is language knowledge. Speaking the language of a country gives one a huge advantage while looking for jobs. It is also really important to know yourself, know what you want, have a career goal and be passionate about it.

“In Poland the job market is not as competitive as here and there are more job opportunities”, she said. “In Spain the unemployment rate is very high and it is very challenging to get a stable job with an indefinite contract and decent salary. Whereas in Poland it is something that one can achieve more easily. I also noticed a difference in working hours. I mean here work starts later, so I can wake up and go to bed later than I used to do, but apart from this difference, the working culture is very similar”.

People who are asipiring to move abroad, need to review their CVs, cover letters, interview techniques to compensate for the differences in the job markets between countries.

It is also recommended to network a little bit and maintain good relationship with people from the desired industry.
Even a six month stay abroad can improve one`s employability significantly. Gaining work experience in an international environment helps you stay open-minded and improve language skills, which are essential when competing for jobs.

But Natalia`s example shows that with patience and some determination finding a job abroad that suits your career goals is achievable.
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