Finding overseas jobs is something which can be a reality for those who are brave enough to do the work necessary to achieve that goal. While it's tough, very tough, here in the US for those out of work the reality is there are many, many jobs to be had overseas. That may seem like a contradictory idea, especially when we watch CNN or listen to news about the 'Arab Spring' and how it was brought about by disenfranchised and unemployed young people. That is very true but one must pause a realize as an American we have a lot things going for us that employers all over the world want. Number one is that we all speak English and we understand the motivation and behavior behind the American consumer. This may seem like nothing to you but realize that America is the number one consumer in the world and everyone wants a piece of that demand. The next important thing we have is education. It's true our education system has slipped and is in much need of repair but those Americans who have a degree or diploma and experience in the work force are head a shoulders above the rest of the world.
A Career Abroad isn't Easy
Before I paint too rosy a picture it's important to realize that working overseas is a challenge and a huge life changing experience. It's not for everyone but it can be for many. Here are a few tips to make your journey to the ex-pat lifestyle and an international career a bit easier:
- Make sure to visit the country in which you plan to work ahead of accepting a job. It is best to research and choose a country in which you’d like to live, then begin applying and interviewing for jobs in that country. I like to say, Design your life. Then find the career that fits into it.
- Moving overseas is a huge decision and not one to be made based on photos or statistics on a website. Even Hades can be made to sound appealing on the internet.
- Look to our own government first. Again, this is somewhat counter-intuitive but realize that while our government is slashing and cutting at home they are continuing to spend ast amounts of money abroad. Instead of being the scape goat for your employment woes the US government could become your saviour.
Overseas Government Job Opportunities
- Diplomatic jobs such as Foreign Service Officer, Civil Service Officer, Diplomatic Security, Foreign Service Specialist and many others. These are jobs which support peace, prosperity and U.S. interests in overseas regions along with ensuring the safety of U.S. citizens visiting or living in the country to which these officers are assigned. Working in Embassies offers great opportunity of jobs overseas for Americans, but you must be legally eligible to work in the country where the embassy is located and typically you must have a work permit and residency visa for that country. Something that that takes a little work but is certainly doable.
- Since the United States is currently supporting democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan there are several positions which are available to U.S. citizens on a temporary basis. Housing and accommodations are of a basic nature and these are not jobs in which a family can join the employee but for single people this can be a great way to see the world while earning some money.
- The Peace Corps is a very worthwhile organization which has been around for 50 years this year. While working for the Peace Corps is primarily a volunteer position, it is a huge resume builder. Volunteers make a small salary for needs while abroad and the food and housing are provided by Peace Corps. When working for Peace Corps you have the ability to make a difference in the life of people less fortunate than yourself and will learn a lot from the experience. These jobs are typically for young people ages 18-25.
- Peace Corps also has permanent jobs relating to placing volunteers, securing jobs for volunteers and the administration of the program. To be eligible for these jobs you must meet the eligibility requirements and complete an online application.
- Overseas Job hunting Tip - Many great jobs and resources can be found at the state department website.
- D.o.D. - The Department of Defense hires civilian employees for many jobs at overseas American Military bases. Teaching is one of the positions for which the DoD recruits. Candidates must have 3 years teaching experience. Working on a military base can be the best of both worlds. Jobs are secure and pay better than most teaching jobs state side. On the base you have the security of the United States way of life, while outside the base you can explore the country in which you live.
Non-Government Job Opportunities Overseas
- Middle/Upper management in manufacturing: While manufacturing appears to be a dying industry in America many places overseas are just getting into the game. Management jobs are available in the manufacturing industry since all of our manufacturing jobs have moved overseas. These jobs usually pay well and it is expected that your family would accompany you.
- Construction jobs are available overseas but there are scams so beware. Do not forward anyone a fee. Go through reputable sources, such as the USAJobs.gov - the Federal Governments official job site. Private employers post jobs on websites such as USA Jobs. You do not have to be a government employee in order to work overseas safely. The Ladders headhunting company states they have careers abroad paying $100K + a year.
- Greenforce.org is a non-government sponsored volunteering opportunity. It operates only at the invitation of the host country and its goal is to help protect and increase indigenous people’s food sources and help sustain wildlife and the ecosystem.
Jobs overseas can be temporary or permanent. Assess your goals, needs and desires before deciding what kind of job to choose.
Back in March I blogged for a few days about opportunities overseas for Americans who are having trouble finding work at home. I did a couple posts you may want to refer back to as there was some good, valuable info in those posts - check out Overseas Jobs for Americans and International Jobs for US Citizens. Both will provide you with some useful information
Ready to learn more and make the jump to living overseas? Checkout this fast track way to make it happen - 52 Days To Your New Life Overseas