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Jobs in Spain - What you need to know

By Susan Pedalino

You've finally decided where to live, you've found your ideal home and all you need now is a job. The problem is that it's in another country, Spain.

Finding a new job is difficult and stressful enought at the best of times, but when you're trying to find work abroad from hundreds of miles away your job hunt can start to become extremely frustrating.

The first thing you'll notice when looking for jobs in Spain is that there aren't many employment agencies like there are in the UK. In fact there are few and far between. Employment/ recruitment websites in Spain are still in their infancy and many companies recruit either by word of mouth or in newspaper classifieds.

There's also the language factor to take into account. If you don't speak Spanish (Castellano in the south and Catalan in the Barcelona regions) then you'll be at a disadvantage and your options become limited when looking for work in Spain. Here on the Costa del Sol it seems thtat the majority of English-speaking jobs tend to be for commission-only sales people, and yes, generally in the cut-throat real estate market. For most paid jobs in Spain there is fierce competition and salaries are much lower the in the UK.

Yes, you won't get rich in Spain working for someone else. For example, if you have a good IT job in the UK earning say, "20K per year, you would expect the same jobs in spain (around costal regions) to pay about 12K Euros per year. Quite a come down and you'd be lucky to get it! And despite common belief, the cost of living is not that much lower that in the UK.

Looking for TEFL jobs in Spain to teach English? Then join the queue. Again, although the Spanish are keen to learn English, they don't like to pay too much for it and for many of the teaching schools you don't even need to have any qualifications...just speak English! Again, pay is very poor and job vacancies are few and far between.

Most people who move abroad do so to improve the quality of their lives. You have to be careful you don't get stuck in a low-paying job in spain, working long hours just to enjoy a bit of sun at the weekends.

We see many people arrive in Spain and leave a few months later realising that back in the UK they could be earning much more money doing a job that they actually want to do.

If you seriously want to look for employment in Spain, you'll need to be flexible and not so fussy. Jobs don't come along very often so you need to be available when the opportunities arise.

So what should you do? Moving abroad is a big move with an associated risk. If you've got a little money in the bank (which you should as it's crazy to move abroad without some safety money) you should seriously consider starting up your own business in Spain. It's not as crazy as it sounds! For example, on many of the coasts there are new developments giong up everywhere. Many of the properties will be bought by investors or for holiday reasons and many will need their properties looked after, e.g., cleaning, furnishing, painting, key-holding, maintenance, etc. There is a big need for good property management companies as some areas are seriously lacking in this. This is just one example of the many possibilities that you could consider, and if you us a little imagination you'll think of many more.

Still want to look for jobs in Spain? Maybe think again and broaden your mind.

About The Author
Susan Pedalino is Masters degree qualified in Intercultural Communication and teaching English as a foreign language. Susan regularly writes for Eye on Spain ( Having moved to Spain to set up a business and buy property, she has gained invaluable experience in buying off plan property in Spain.

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