“As long as I remember, I always wanted to live abroad and discover another culture,” says Aurelie, from France. “Scandinavian countries were at the top of my list. I like very much the Danish mindset; it’s a combination of being relaxed and thinking efficiently. So when my boyfriend got a call for a job interview in Aalborg, we took the opportunity – and it all went well.”
Transferring unemployment benefits
Aurelie was in a somewhat unusual position at the time of her move, as despite having worked for nearly 10 years previously, she had left her job and was receiving unemployment benefits in France. Thanks to the EU’s policy on transferring unemployment benefits, Aurelie was able to carry on receiving benefits for a further three months to help her during the job search in Denmark. As Aurelie puts it: “Just the right time to find my job!”
To activate her benefits, Aurelie needed to visit Workindenmark to get registered as a jobseeker who has arrived with the right to unemployment benefits from another EU/EEA country. In Aalborg, Workindenmark is represented at the International Citizen Service (ICS), therefore she visited their office to finalise the transfer of her unemployment benefit. At the ICS centre, she could also carry out an array of registrations and receive guidance from different public institutions in Denmark.
“Being able to transfer unemployment benefits gives a further incentive to move to another country [even when unemployed], as you know you will have benefits for a certain period and thus have a safety net for moving abroad and trying to find a position,” explains Lars Rungø from Workindenmark. “Aurelie was also carrying out freelance work so we pointed her towards the Danish tax authorities so that she could get registered correctly,” he recalls.
Seminars for international jobseekers
To support with her job search, Aurelie attended a job search seminar in Aalborg organised by Workindenmark, which is part of the EURES network.
“The job search seminar is targeted at international citizens who would like to get some inspiration for their job search in Denmark,” explains Lars. The seminars also provide advice on preparing effective CVs and cover letters, with free feedback sessions offered to participants afterwards.
Due to her background in IT, international mindset, and French and English skills, Lars knew that Aurelie was a strong candidate, particularly as Denmark is currently experiencing labour shortages in its IT sector. Aurelie found a job as a Data Scientist at Trackunit, a leading supplier of Internet of Things solutions, at its headquarters in Aalborg. Her role involves collecting and analysing data to provide valuable business insights for customers.
Preparation the key to integration
“For me the key to good integration in another country is to be well prepared. We can feel so easily lost in another country because everything is new: the administration, the language, the culture, the procedures, the labour market… EURES can help from a professional perspective and it’s a big part of the integration,” Aurelie advises.
“The EURES portal is a gold mine,” she says. “I found plenty of resourceful information specific to Denmark, but also generic tips on how to find a job abroad. It helped me be prepared even before I was in Denmark.”
“People ask me how long we plan to stay in Denmark,” Aurelie says. “There is no answer,” she admits. “We love our family and friends and miss them, that’s for sure. But life here has a taste of hygge and we love it!”
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