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Work for Migrants

Many people ask if it is easy for immigrants to find work in Australia . To answer this question depends on many factors. First of them is the English Language: Clearly this is the number one problem for immigrants. Any qualified work demands English to be spoken by Australians. Non qualified jobs such as a bricklayer, may not demand a lot of English but also will not lead you to any career. Put it this way, imagine you in your own country dealing with a person that does not speak your language very well or in a very broken way, would you give him a job in your business?

The Australian government offers free English Classes (English as Second Language ESL) for immigrants and such classes are recommended to be taken. Without a reasonable English all the professions and careers requiring contact with the public are out of reach, and they are the majority. Another point is that many immigrants find out that their home qualifications are not valid in Australia. Even if you’ve worked in the best company in your home country it may not mean anything for the Australian employers, whom had never heard about this company. The exceptions are multinationals companies with branch offices in Australia. This fact does not have any relation with the immigration process where your work experience could be officially recognized.

The Qualifications obtained in Australia in general is preferred other than those obtained in other countries. It’s a little easier for people coming from some countries with the same working system as Australia, for example England, but even for them there are many requirements such as to be registered and recognized by the related union. That’s why a course completed in Australia has much more value than those done in other countries, as employers have less knowledge about it. A useful tip is to have an Australian Qualification before immigrating, or either to undertake a University or Vocational course in the Australia. The other advantage of doing that is you can gain points in the process of skilled Immigration. There is a list of professions that shows how many points you could get towards your immigration according to the demand of the professions. Those professions with a higher demand in Australia will give more points (check the website of Australia immigration). As a permanent resident you it will be able to pay the same amount Australian pay for the course but you will not get the educative credit in first the 2 years of residence.

Work Experience has a similar problem in relation to qualifications. If you don’t have work experience in Australia, then there is no advantage to have worked in the number 1 company that Australians employers have never heard about. In your CV, It could help to include links to the company websites and/ or a small profile of the company. The disadvantage of not having any experience in Australia is a serious problem that must be planned in advance how. There is an Australian department that offers professional recognition of careers or work experience. They will assess you, and sometimes even submit tests to certify your knowledge. One option is to try to get jobs which are not very well paid but with possibilities of getting professional experience and then later trying for more qualified work. Of course it could take time and may require you to have a bit of money to support yourself until you are able to get a higher paid job.

Talking about the classical question of which is the best city to get a job, this is a very popular and also very difficult to answer because depends on a series of factors. Here are some points to analyze: What kind of city you like more, if is close to the beach, big city, small city, etc. The kind of work experience you previously have is another point when looking for a city so that you can better match it. To make decisions about that, a starting point could be searching in local Australian newspapers, Australian statistics, Australian job internet sites, basically do a little homework. For a more serious professional opinion, a good option is to contract a consultant in Australia to make this research and if you have plans to open a business it will be extremely helpful. Have a look at Australian newspapers in each city on the Internet and search for jobs and business advertised online. You will have some idea of the size of the market and the chances in those areas. As in any other part of the world, the biggest urban centres offers more work and of course much more competition, not only for immigrants but also for unemployed Australians (those ones with perfect English and local experience). Melbourne and Sydney are the biggest metropolises but other cities and capitals with strong tourism will offer many opportunities of work in hotels and restaurants. Melbourne is a city more characterized by manufactures and being the headquarters of the majority of Australian and international companies. Sydney is more related to the financial sector, but also have many manufactures. Some capitals such as Brisbane have a little of everything. Gold Coast, Adelaide and Perth have medium to small industries offering a low cost of life (the Gold Coast has the best climate between them) and practically all cities have commercial centres with franchise of the big retail chains.

The Australian government is giving an extra incentive for qualified immigrants to live in less inhabited areas, remote areas such as the Outback are regions where not many Australians want to live. Do not forget the cultural shock; Cultures differ from your in your country, ways of doing things differ etc. Living in different places will always lead to some cultural shock. You will need to adapt to the way thing are done in each place. Through a lot of observation and many good and bad experiences you will slowly discover how the Australian way really is.

Be prepared to be rejected. Before you’ve finally got a job, it is likely that you will received or heard a lot of “I am sorry” and “no”. This is the reality of the Australian Market and you are not different from other Australians competing for the same vacancy. It is important to differentiate yourself from others, focusing on why you are better for that job than anyone else. Make a very professional CV in the Australian way and maybe some of your special skills or interests could be a good starting point to outline. Make a deep evaluation about your professional area and in what you have more experience.  The contacts made in the city are very important and are one of the best ways of obtaining work. Tell people that you are looking for work and especially try to talk with people related to that profession. Make sure you prepare a business card with your name and mobile number and carry it around where ever you go.


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Photos Courtesy of Queensland Tourism and Yes Australia



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