Having a desire to join the job industry in Scandinavia is one thing and getting to actually work there is another. For an expatriate, the thin line that separates the worlds is a properly pitched application.
As the work environment continue to change, employers increasingly focus on the soft skills and technical skills that an applicant is likely to bring to the office.
Getting an extra degree, a long resume and several documents in your application nay just count as fluff which do not necessarily give you any clear advantage in getting a job.
For every job opening in the Scandinavia, the employers are very sensitive to identify, interview, settle on and retain only employees who show the potential of driving the workplace to the next level.
No employer wants an average employee in a serious organisation especially in the current space where corporates are become more agile and responsive to dynamic market forces.
What makes your application stand out in Scandinavia
Something striking about the job environment in Scandinavia is that there are a lot of goodies that come with it. Once in the labour market there, you will really enjoy a reasonable level of job security, minimum living income and flexibility at work. The unemployment benefits and pension fund makes Scandinavia a good place tow work and retire.
Due to the accommodative and fancy work benefits in Scandinavia, a lot of highly qualified people target some of the best jobs there. Cases of brain drain in developing countries can actually be traced to transfer of competent skills to the Scandinavian countries. It only means that you will have to literally up your game if you want to stand a chance of getting employed.
Although not a panacea to getting a job, we believe that the first important thing is that you put forth a compelling application. What makes a compelling job application in Scandinavia?
Tailor you application to meet the areas of focus listed in the specific job description
Every job advert its own job description which tells what the employer is looking for. Of course, you may not be having all the aspects that are listed in the job advert. But, its wise to check out the most important job skills and academic requirements.
The highlighted job description should not discourage you. You just need to be a little smarter in this way, redefine your skills set to match up with the wording on the job description. You will realize that you already have the requirements.
Focus on demonstrating the skills which you feel really matter for the job
At the time of deciding to apply for whatever job, it is because you have particular abilities, knowledge, skills and job experience. In most cases, the job description will not directly mention skills that you have listed in your c.v.
Take a second look at the job description against what the job description requires. On areas where you see any relatedness between the two, rewrite the c.v in a way that is more in consonance with the advertised job.
All in all, it is important to focus on demonstrating the skills which you feel really matter.
Focus on skills that matter to the job
You may have many years of job experience which is a good show. Every employer wants a person who has a practical experience in the industry. However, each job has particular set of skills that matter.
So as a rule of the game, the rest of career experience which are not so much in line with the advertised job posting should only be mentioned in passing. Yes, the skills are good enough, yes but not for the job at hand.
Avail all your supporting documents
Ensure that all your supporting documents are attached alongside the application. Do not second guess the need to convince the employer that really you are the best candidate.
Observe formal language in your application letter.
The format of your resume should be professional and explicit enough to make it easy for the assessment panel to identify whatever they may be looking for.
Give a proper chronology and account of your education, career experience, certifications if any and associations.
In case you were referred to the job by someone, you should be honest enough to declare it in the application. It may just work some magic that the person recommending has an outstanding reputation in the would be employment.
Targeted job applications in Scandinavia
As an expatriate from Africa, Asia or Eastern Europe where corruption and incompetence undermine the operations of the job market, you may think that it is difficult to get a job in Scandinavia.
To your surprise, you will realize that nobody cares so much about where you come from to employ you in Scandinavia. If you really demonstrate that you are to the task, is dedicated and ready to take up the organisational goals, it is an easy sailing for you in Scandinavia.
Since the job market in Scandinavia is so open to everyone with required competency and skills set, all you need to do is identify what company has a profile which matches your career expectations. It is actually a good idea to always sign up for notifications about jobs or newsletters from your targeted company,
Whenever a company makes a job advertisement and you are signed up with them, you will be among the first people to get an alert. Because you had this firm in mind from the beginning, probably you had already drafted some application as well. So all you need to do is reword the application to match the advert and send it in among the first ones.
Alternatively, you can as well do old pitching in which you send in an application to a company even if they have not advertised a job opening. Such unsolicited applications are often kept by the employer in a database from where they contact likely applicants for interviews whenever a relevant vacancy comes up.
When are you likely to get a new job in Scandinavia?
Scandinavia is really a region with boundless opportunities for all. But, to get a foothold of the Scandinavian job market there may not be so fast. Therefore, you need to really master the art of manoeuvring with the dynamics of the job market.
First, there is no strict time which one stands the surest chance of getting a job in Scandinavia. In practice, employers advertise openings as vacancies arise on a rolling basis.
Although not cocksure there are some periods in the year when a lot of turnover happens in the job market and employers may find themselves scampering to get a new recruit for a vacancy.
Summer period is a very good time for an expat to gain entry into the job market in Scandinavia. Typical of any summer, Scandinavians take holidays to travel the world.
During Summer all across Europe, most companies need new employees. The notorious employers during Summer include food production, hospitality, cleaning, farming and many more find themselves lacking enough labour force to meet demand.
A calculative expat should be very active during summer to get more jobs and more money. In fact at such time, the employers are so desperate to the extent that your experience may not be so much a consideration.
A god employer may well employ and let you learn on the job or do some little training you. In such a case, you benefit in many ways; you have a job, training, entry into the job market and payment. Isn’t that tactical? I guess it’s an amazing thing!
Job portals in Scandinavia
Job portals play an incredible role in linking job seekers with potential openings and employers in Scandinavia. The internet of things has really transformed how you an expat gets to know whether the next company in a row is in need of an employee or not.
From the comfort of your couch or bed, you sign up to a job site, fill up your information including attaching relevant documents and wait for a contact, probably by email or phone.
Once you sign up to a job site, all you need to ensure that the contact details are up to date and that you keep checking email in case of any communications. Also, some job sites send alerts every time a new job that matches your profile comes up.
The secret to getting a job in Scandinavia through job sites is signing up to multiple sites at ago. You never know which one will be your best. Just widen the net in your job search and that works everything for you.
Social media and job search in Scandinavia
Previously social media was thought of as a tool for just chit chatting and having some easy time with friends, relatives and colleagues. That is not the same case today. In Scandinavia, social media platforms have been over time leveraged to post available job openings.
You will meet very sweet people on your social media pages and platforms who from time to time post new jobs. On a good day, you will get many jobs that match your skills.
You can join Facebook groups and pages for jobs. As much as possible, just become a member of every social media platform which advertises job openings.