I was quoted in BBC Capital’s article today. Feel free to check the article out. Meantime…..
Work in Australia (when living elsewhere)—a few tips
I’m not going to sugar-coat it. Applying for a job in one country when living in another is difficult. Many employers will automatically think that the application is “too hard”—the person will have to settle the family, or be sponsored by an employer (meaning a lot of paperwork) and the candidate will undoubtedly find it hard to arrive at short notice for a series of interviews over several weeks. If you are in one country and looking in another, a passive job hunt where you upload your resume, click submit and wait for a call is virtually impossible.
This type of job search (one may argue every job search) needs followup and talking to real people… and that could mean getting up in the middle of the night and getting on the phone. If moving to another country is worth an upheaval to your life, career and family, then it is worth putting yourself out in the middle of the night!
I remember a client a few years ago who was one of the world’s foremost authorities in a specific industry. When he saw an advertisement in Australia for a job in London that was virtually a cloned list of his experience and expertise, he immediately sent off an email to apply. A week went past, then two. He couldn’t understand why people would overlook his resume! I suggested he call them to see just who received his resume and get someone on the phone who would allow him to make his pitch and make that crucial connection with his reputation. He set the alarm for 3am, had a coffee to feel more human, freshened up, did some voice exercises to free up his croaky I-just-woke-up voice, and made the call.
A few days later he was in London interviewing, shortly after that, he was appointed.
Don’t expect someone to know you, don’t expect that the right person received the resume and that it will all magically happen without you. As an international jobseeker you have more to prove than any other candidate. You need to convince them to look beyond the easy appointments of qualified people locally and choose you. When searching in another country, you can’t be shy; you have to make things happen for yourself. Network, listen to industry ‘buzz’, get on the phone.
It’s worth it because you’re worth it!
Looking for a job in Australia?
- Do use A4 paper size
- Do use Australian-English spelling and punctuation
- Do develop a strategy where all skills, experience and knowledge points directly to the desired job.
- Do focus on achievements.
- Do ensure that the resume mirrors you—that is, it’s professionally presented and well thought out. A badly formatted resume that is boring and plain is going to be seen as what you like and stand for. Is that what you want?
- Don’t: Write a general resume that will allow you to apply to a lot of different types of jobs. Better to have a job-specific resume (even if you need more than one).
- Don’t include personal details or photo (unless the job requests one).
- Do set up an Australian LinkedIn profile.
- Do choose a local writer who understands the norms of the country.