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Want to move abroad for your next role? The skills and experience that will help

Want to move abroad for your next role? The skills and experience that will help

Hannah Taylor

Moving abroad for work can seem a daunting prospect at first. Aside from the uncertainty surrounding visas and work permits, questions over your suitability for the role itself will always loom large.

But did you know that many of the skills and experiences you already have can stand you in good stead for making the move? After all, organisations are increasingly looking to recruit based on skills as opposed to specific experience - and firms are always willing to go the extra mile for the right candidates.

So aside from the obvious language requirements, here are some of the skills and experiences that can help you take the plunge.

Working for a multi-location organisation

Most organisations that are open to recruiting from abroad work across multiple locations, and may even have members of the same team located across different sites.

Being able to demonstrate your experience of working with the challenges and opportunities this presents is key. For instance, how have you dealt with any scheduling issues time zone differences present?  Or perhaps there were public holidays that you had to take account of when planning a particular campaign?

Whatever the challenge, you need to explain how you adapted your approach so as to achieve the best outcome.

Exposure to international clients and projects

Having experience of working with international clients or working on international projects is a huge advantage. Not only does it demonstrate exposure to global business and different countries’ working practices, but it also shows an interest in and willingness to contribute to any expansion plans.

And if you can show how you put yourself forward for these projects and the specific impact you had, then even better.

Market knowledge in the country

Just like applying for any other job, you need to do your research when considering the move abroad.

Familiarise yourself with the organisation’s competitors and market position. Take the time to understand the market’s direction of travel, if there are any external factors driving change or if there are any challengers to the incumbents.

Remember that organisations are always looking to hire the skills they need to remain competitive - so the greater your market knowledge is, the greater the case you can put forward for your particular skills and experience.

Sector experience

And finally, although there is a move away from recruiting solely from in-sector, it is an advantage to have sector or near-sector experience when moving abroad.

You probably don’t need to have specifically worked in an accountancy firm, but exposure to partner-led organisations would be a real advantage.

As always, consider your skills and experience and how they transfer to the role you’re interested in.