If you’re moving to London and looking for job opportunities in the UK then the good news is that there are lots of them. The UK has the second strongest economy in Europe after Germany and the sixth lowest unemployment rate after Czech Republic, Malta, Germany, Hungary and the Netherlands.
The UK also has an increasing number of its workforce being born overseas so it is a market well set up for foreign workers.
Jobs in London for expats are easier to find than in other parts of the UK. In London and the South East there are ten times more jobs than in any other part of the country. It is harder to find jobs in the North of England, Wales, Northern Ireland or Scotland where unemployment is higher.
Types of Jobs Available
As with any other country, the UK has requirements in some sectors more than others. There is always a high demand for the following professions.
- IT workers
- Healthcare workers
- Environmental professionals
Jobs in the retail sector and hospitality have a high turnover of staff and therefore have vacancies consistently available.
How to Find Work in the UK
There are many job agencies in London. Many of these recruitment agents specialise in specific industries such as hospitality, retail, education or IT. Look up the agency that is best suited to your expertise or use a large agency who doesn’t specialise.
Some agencies speciality is finding temporary or part-the work so these should be approached if this appeals.
Jobs are still advertised in major newspapers in the UK. The London Evening Standard and Metro are free London newspapers which can be picked up at train and underground stations which have London centric job sections.
For professional positions, the Financial Times, The Times, The Telegraph and especially The Guardian should be consulted. This includes the printed newspapers as well as the online versions. The latter obviously shows the most up to date advertisements.
The most prevalent way for employers to advertise their jobs. Make sure you have some sort of online profile and ensure you have an electronic version of your CV that you can email at a moments notice. Ensure it is in a PDF format so that it can be read universally.
Create a LinkedIn profile and ensure that your details are with every major online agency.
Applying for a Job in the UK
This usually requires two things, a short covering letter and a copy of your CV. Always ensure that both have been specially adapted to suit the job you are applying for. Never send out a standard copy for either.
If you’re asked to fill in an application form, do that too and provide any other items that have been requested, such as qualification certificates or photos.
British CV requirements can be quite particular. They should NEVER be more than two sides of A4 paper. They should include:
- Personal details
- Employment history (in reverse order)
- Interests (be brief)
- Two references
If you get to the interview process then there are a number of scenarios you might face.
You might have a series of interviews or you may only have one or two. It may be in front of a series of individual people from different departments or it may be in front of a panel.
Questions asked will vary. Often they ask you how you would deal with certain situations that may arise within the job and give examples. There may be questions about your CV or there may be set psychometric tests.
One thing that always seems to happen in a British interview is that it ends with the question,
“Do you have any questions for us?”
ALWAYS have some questions prepared!
Requirements to Work in the UK
If you speak English you have a big advantage over your overseas competitors but this is not necessarily a requirement for every job.
However, to get a UK work visa you will need to prove some sort of competency in the language.
If you have come from the European Union, Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Norway then you will not need a visa to work in the UK, as long as you hold a valid passport.
If you don’t come from any of these countries, the chances are you’ll need a visa. Acquiring a visa may require you to achieve a certain score which is made up of your language skills, as well as your qualifications, area of expertise, skills and age. Visa requirements is one of the vital things to know before moving to London.
In order to gain employment you will also need a permanent UK address. Thesqua.re offers long term accommodation in London in many locations. Consult the website for possible options.