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Work as an engineer in Sweden

Non Swedish engineer

Foued
post 1.Feb.2013, 02:55 PM
Post #1
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Hello everyone,
I currently work as a senior mechanical engineer in a consultant company in Tunisia. I have more than 6 years of professional experience and I have worked for about a year in France as a consultant for an aerospace company.
I studied engineering in Tunisia so my engineering degree (or diploma) is from a Tunisian engineering school.
I am engaged to a Swedish woman and our wedding is planned next august.
We are considering to move out from Tunisia and live in a European country. Our primary choice is France because I already worked there and because I will not have equivalency problems with my engineering degree when applying for a work permit as an engineer. The problem being that my wife does not speak french and that she would rather prefer that we move to live in Sweden.
I have already visited Sweden (Stockholm to be more specific) and I must admit that I loved everything in it. Even though, I don't speak Swedish, communicating was easy because almost everyone speaks English. People were amazingly kind and I really didn't feel like a foreigner or a tourist (as weird as it may sound).
So for me, moving to Sweden isn't something that I dislike or disagree with. But, I have some concerns about my degree equivalency.
My question is "do I need to speak Swedish to work in Sweden and does my Tunisian engineering degree allow me to work as an engineer in Sweden?"
Thanks in advance for your replies smile.gif
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Bender B Rodriquez
post 1.Feb.2013, 03:00 PM
Post #2
Joined: 25.Mar.2006

Engineer is not a licensed occupation in Sweden, i.e. it is the employer who deems if your knowledge is sufficient for the job in question or not. However, knowledge of Swedish is very important for most employers unless you possess some very rare skills.
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Foued
post 1.Feb.2013, 03:42 PM
Post #3
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Thanks for the reply Bender smile.gif
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rafa1981
post 1.Feb.2013, 10:35 PM
Post #4
Joined: 19.Sep.2010

Better France.
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Elf_Moon
post 1.Feb.2013, 11:04 PM
Post #5
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 5.Sep.2012

You will need to learn Swedish, yes. Though networking is rather important.

Before learning the language I did a lot of networking and made a number of contacts. The more professional contacts on a professional or even friendly level you have, the more likely you are to find work regardless of your language skills.

So yes, maybe make a few contacts before moving, if you decide to move here. Try linkedin. You can 'link' up with other professionals and find some opportunities maybe.

However, as the others have said, you will find it much easier if you have a knowledge of the language, you may not be able to just get by with English alone.

Good luck though! And do join linkedin if you aren't already on there, it really is quite useful smile.gif
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Foued
post 2.Feb.2013, 12:28 AM
Post #6
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Thanks a lot Elf_Moon!
I'm already on linkedin. So I'll try and make some Swedish contacts smile.gif
Maybe it'll open up some job opportunities since it's pretty much the same problem as for France i.e. to first have an offer of employment wink.gif
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Elf_Moon
post 2.Feb.2013, 01:03 AM
Post #7
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 5.Sep.2012

Just one last thing, I've been offered quite a few opportunities through my efforts in answering questions in groups. So join lots of groups in your specialism and help people out with any questions. It's a great way to show your expertise to recruiters and sort of lets them know that you are there.

There are a lot of people on LinkedIn so you really have to try to stand out.

Look at this guy's profile:

http://phildub.com/

What makes this great really, is that it shows a good level of creativity and many other inter personal skills that employers like to focus on these days. Maybe start up a blog and talk about your hobbies on there, it's a nice way to tell recruiters a little more about yourself I think.

Sorry.. I think I'm moving away from your original question >.<
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Foued
post 2.Feb.2013, 12:05 PM
Post #8
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Thank you very much for your advices Elf_Moon!!
You are absolutely right about everything you said smile.gif
In fact, I have already joined a lot of groups in my field of activity and I already got some contacts and even job offers but always from French companies and recruiters. Gotta find out how to be noticed by Swedish recruiters maybe wink.gif
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EBA
post 2.Feb.2013, 01:43 PM
Post #9
Joined: 2.Feb.2013

Foued,

I think for the engineering job you better stick to Sweden. There are many engineering jobs opportunities and the life prospect is better then in France. You need recognise your university diploma through the swedish validation agency (UHR) the webiste below: http://www.uhr.se/sv/Bedomning-av-utlandsk...rken-i-Sverige/

Sine your profession is not in the regulated list so it is easier and quicker to get validated. Stick to Sweden man. Most engineering jobs can be handled with english but knowing swedish is always a bonus. Since you are going to live together with a swedish woman, the visa and work permit is much easier and straightforward. If you wanna have kids in the Sweden is amongst the best to raise a child.
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Bender B Rodriquez
post 2.Feb.2013, 01:53 PM
Post #10
Joined: 25.Mar.2006

There is absolutely no need to get the diploma recognized. It may be beneficial, but in my experience most employers are not really interested in seeing your grades or diploma at all; they will ask you questions about your knowledge, experience and previous jobs and try to determine your skills from that. References are much more important than a diploma.
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Foued
post 2.Feb.2013, 05:10 PM
Post #11
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Thanks everyone for your replies.
Many of you guys are saying (even in other topics) that there are tons of engineering jobs in Sweden but it seems it depends of the field of activity. For example there's not so much of job offers for mechanical engineers. Or maybe I do not look in the right places? smile.gif
Any tips?
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redblue
post 2.Feb.2013, 05:51 PM
Post #12
Joined: 27.Jul.2007

http://jobb.monster.se/jobb/?q=mechanical-engineer&cy=se
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Foued
post 19.Feb.2013, 11:05 AM
Post #13
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Hi everyone!
I left this topic stalling a little because I was busy working and other stuff.
Thank you redblue for the advice.
In fact, I already looked through the Internet for mechanical engineering jobs and all I found was oil&gas related (a field in which I have no experience at all sad.gif ).
I emailed many companies for open application (saying that I am willing to take a step backward in my career and accept lower positions) and I got not as many answers tongue.gif (which is understandable) and most of the answers were negative (which is also understandable since I have no experience at all in oil&gas and construction). I received only one positive reply but from the German subsidiary of a Swedish company I've contacted.
The impression I got after some time is that there's not so many opportunities for mechanical engineering positions in my field of expertise (I've worked in the automotive, aerospace and consumer devices industries mainly to design equipments and products). Maybe there's no shortage of engineers in these fields and I think also that not many recruiters want to go through the struggle of recruiting a foreign worker (plus if he's not Swedish speaking wink.gif ).
I also read somewhere that not so many work permits are delivered to Arab and African nationals (I am absolutely not implying that there's racism behind this. As I already said that I visited Sweden and the people are lovely).
My point is that maybe I should look for consulting companies which operate in my field of expertise (automotive, aerospace, consumer devices) to increase a bit my chances.
Does anybody have any idea about such consulting companies?
Thanks in advance
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Boondockzaint
post 19.Feb.2013, 06:24 PM
Post #14
Joined: 4.Feb.2013

Hi!

I imagine a good way to find out about possible companies would be;

1) Mail the arbetsförmedlingen and ask about a list of companies, if such is available (www.ams.se)

2) Contact some CAD companies and ask for a list of companies that has bought their license. A few people I know has got their summer internships and later post-grad job this way.

Pro/E, AutoCAD, Solidworks are the most common ones that I've come across. Also try CATIA and IronCAD.

You would also want to contact the major heavy-industries companies, such as ABB, Sandvik, Scania, SAAB Aero, Volvo, Electrolux, Vattenfall. Also try the non-swedish ones such as GE Healthcare, Siemens, Bombardier.
For at least some of these you could benefit greatly for knowing Arabian and French. Also, not being able to speak Swedish for the first couple of years should not be an issue in these large companies.

As for major consultant companies that employs lots of mechanical engineers, check out SEMCON, ÅF, XDIN.

BR,

Boondockzaint, M.Sc. Mechanical Engineering student.
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Foued
post 21.Feb.2013, 01:36 PM
Post #15
Joined: 1.Feb.2013

Thanks a lot Boondockzaint!
A truly useful advice smile.gif
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