While I’ve worked primarily in the US as a hiring manager, I have friends in Europe and Australia who consider Americans for premium entry level jobs and paid internships quite often. It’s not the easiest way to apply for openings, but going abroad can offer a wealth of professional and personal opportunities that you wouldn’t get at home. Here are some things to keep in mind if you want to work abroad.
Consider the country
This might seem obvious, but I’m not talking about picking a country with beautiful beaches or historic landmarks – you need to consider the realities of living in this new setting. Things like the average cost of living, state of the economy, industries available, work visa requirements, language barriers and overall living conditions can help you narrow down the most viable destinations for business.
Prepare for background checks
If you thought background checks were rigorous in the US, try going to a foreign, non-English speaking country. I’ve known friends who were subject to intense physical and security examinations along with lengthy visa application processes before they ever heard a final offer from an employer abroad.
Learn the language
Unless you’re going to the UK or Australia, chances are you’re going to need to brush up on the country’s language. Even if you aren’t fluent already, you should at least have a conversational understanding that will get you through most daily interactions. If you can find an American company overseas, this might be a good middle ground for learning the language and culture.