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EURES (EURopean Employment Services)
News article5 November 2020European Labour Authority, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion3 min read

Tips for finding jobs abroad during the COVID-19 restrictions

Now is an unusual time to be job seeking, as we continue to see widespread remote working and travel restrictions due to COVID-19. However, employers across Europe are still hiring and there are many ways you can optimise your search to find the job.

Tips for finding jobs abroad during the COVID-19 restrictions

In this article, we offer the top five tips to help you find a job abroad during these challenging times.

Be strategic in your search

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the European job market, but there are still plenty of vacancies – you might just need to look in different sectors or regions to find them. Try to be strategic. Which sectors are doing better than others? They are also the ones that might be hiring. Digital industries such IT and e-commerce are becoming ever more important, as are science, health, education, care and public services. Keep in mind that sectors like tourism and hospitality have been hit heavily by the pandemic, but may still be looking for seasonal workers to help them rebuild during peak season.

Be open to different opportunities

If you have not yet found the right opportunity, try to keep an open mind. You may have to widen your search further than usual, but opportunities will come. Although most of us want a stable, long-term position, shorter-term contracts may be a route into a permanent role. If you show you can offer valuable skills to your employer, you might quickly become an essential part of what they do. Stay open to opportunities in various countries, too. Even if a particular country currently has travel restrictions, this could quickly change. Our main piece of advice would be to use Re-open EU to follow the latest travel guidance.

Demonstrate your flexibility

In your applications, focus on soft, transferable skills such as creativity, communication and problem solving, especially if you do not have direct experience of the role. Emphasise your transferable skills from previous jobs, focusing on how you can apply them to the role, then pinpoint any additional skills that make you stand out as a candidate. Remember that all experience is valuable experience. In these uncertain times, flexibility, adaptability and a willingness to learn are particularly important traits for employers. Many employers will also be seeking employees with strong digital skills who are able to work remotely if required.

Be prepared for online recruitment and telework

Even if you are moving abroad, your interview might take place remotely. Most employers will use well-known, free-to-use software such as Skype or Zoom, but make sure you know how it works and test it out beforehand. You will need a reliable internet connection, too.

A video interview is also a good opportunity to demonstrate your digital skills, as mentioned above. Performing well will give your prospective employer confidence that you can work effectively in a remote setting if needed. This process will also give you an idea of what to expect if you have to start your new job remotely.

You can find more helpful tips in our previous articles on online job interviews and preparing to work from home.

Get support from EURES!

Finally, do not forget that there is plenty of support available through EURES. The EURES portal contains nearly 3 million vacancies across Europe and is updated on a daily basis. You can also get personalised support from your local EURES Adviser, who will be happy to offer career guidance, recommend opportunities, improve your CV and advise on administrative aspects.

Find out more about how EURES can help you here.


Related links:

Re-open EU



How to stand out in an online job interview

Five things you need to start working from home
EURES portal

Search for EURES Advisers

How EURES can help you find a job in Europe


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Articles are intended to provide users of the EURES portal with information on current topics and trends and to stimulate discussion and debate. Their content does not necessarily reflect the view of the European Labour Authority (ELA) or the European Commission. Furthermore, EURES and ELA do not endorse third party websites mentioned above.