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Is it really that impossible to find a job?

New in Sweden

post 1.Sep.2015, 08:09 AM
Post #76
Joined: 19.Dec.2013


I sincerely believe its hard to find a job in sweden, but it depends on which sector and what kind of job you are willing to take. There is a lack of english speaking jobs but we also have a lack of teachers so you got that going for you. Then again I am not sure if you can convert your qualifications into the Swedish teacher system, you should probably look that up. Since its a 5 year education here.

I suggest you contact the English speaking schools in Kalmar and tell them about your situation and that you are looking for work as a teacher, ask if they have any vacancies available even if its just temporary or part-time/on call.
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post 1.Sep.2015, 12:38 PM
Post #77
Location: Västra Götaland
Joined: 5.Jul.2012

Much boils down to the fact that more and more Swedes can speak English.
Back in the sixties and seventies there was a considerable need of English speaking folk, as teachers, translators and interpreters. All the adult education societies were offering a wide range of courses in English.
Today they might offer one or two at the most. It is a sign of the times. Today, the need for immigrants to speak more and more Swedish is clearly apparent, or should be. That is one of the reasons that job-seekers have such a hard time of their language skills in Swedish are poor. You simply cannot make it here today without speaking the lingo. Sure - there are a few who get by with only English, but they are in the minority, and sadly also miss out on quite a lot due to their lack of Swedish.
We try to tell folk on these forums that they need to really get their Swedish up to scratch in order to secure employment, yet still many seem to think that they are god's gift to Sweden simply because they have letters after their name but no Swedish.
This is Sweden.
The people are Swedish (well -most as yet).
Their language is Swedish (mainly).
Accept that fact.and adapt, or move elsewhere where your 'skills' will be appreciated.
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post 1.Sep.2015, 07:31 PM
Post #78
Joined: 7.Oct.2013

You will probably have no problem finding work, but finding a normal full time job might take a while. You will get a job working as a vikarie in preschools, fritids and the likes with no problem, but for an actual full time teaching job you will need fluency in Swedish. But I wouldn't worry if I were you. If you want to be a teacher, the shortage in Sweden is such that there will be ways to get you into a fast track to getting a Swedish license. People who encounter problems are people who come from professions that are highly dependant on language and personal networks and that are highly coveted by thousands of Swedish youngsters. For example people with degrees in marketing, PR, development studies, people wanting to work as project managers for international NGOs, etc. That is the profile of 90% of people in a recent publication I saw, telling the story of sad and discouraged highly educated immigrants. It's sad and discouraging, yes, but it's the sad truth that there are far more people wanting these jobs than paid roles out there and being a recent immigrant with limited language skills and local knowledge doesn't exactly make you a frontrunner. But for people with skills and interests in nursing, teaching, IT etc the market looks far better.
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post 5.Dec.2015, 02:02 PM
Post #79
Joined: 29.Nov.2015

QUOTE (magg @ 1.Sep.2015, 07:31 PM) *
You will probably have no problem finding work, but finding a normal full time job might take a while. You will get a job working as a vikarie in preschools, fritids and the l ... (show full quote)

Hi, what do you think about current job market of pharmacist/pharmacy in Sweden? How GOOD Swedish does it needs to take to get hired?

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post 5.Dec.2015, 02:26 PM
Post #80
Joined: 25.Jun.2009

Wouldn't want to mix up a prescription due to my poor Swedish.
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post 5.Dec.2015, 05:49 PM
Post #81
Location: Västra Götaland
Joined: 5.Jul.2012

There have been cases of Swedish pharmacists reading prescriptions incorrectly, maybe due to the usual illegibility of doctors scrawl, so in truth any errors language-wise could also make matters worse.

Especially when you contemplate the many 'false friends' that exist between languages.
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post 19.Mar.2016, 12:52 PM
Post #82
Joined: 19.Mar.2016

To find success in your job search, you can't have any false assumptions. Too often, talented people find themselves upended because they were surprised about something they didn’t know or expect. Here are things you should keep in mind throughout your job hunt:
1. You need to have the necessary skills and experience to get a job.

2. Just because you have the required skills and experience doesn’t mean you will get the job. From an employer’s standpoint, the hiring process is about much more than matching candidate skills and experience with a job opening’s stated requirements. They also carefully consider that elusive quality called “fit.” While it isn’t a very satisfying reason to hear when you are rejected, “fit” can include personality, temperament, career progression and a host of other legitimate elements.

3. You will likely be asked the salary question in your first conversation. Be prepared for it.

4. Employers are interested in your key accomplishments and how you attained them – not your job description.
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post 18.Apr.2016, 08:27 PM
Post #83
Joined: 18.Apr.2016

So I thought I might update this thread with my own tale of woe.

I am, of course, an ex-pat looking for work, this time in southern Sweden. I have been unemployed for almost 2 years now, and I am staring down the possibility of a life time of menial work.

A little about my profile
First, languages. I do in fact speak Swedish as well as English and German. I can also read and understand some Danish but it's still a work in progress.

How good is my Swedish? Well, the word fluent gets bandied around a lot so I'll stay well away from that even though by my own estimation I am not fluent.

Spoken I would say I can understand most people most of time and can always express what I need to. Sometimes I have difficulty understanding what people say on the phone, particularly if they have an accent I'm less familiar with. TV is tricky to understand a little more often. For example, I had to give up watching svt's documentary on the 'uppgörelsen' just recently as I wasn't picking up enough. Also if there is a conversation going on which I have not personally initiated, I can be really slow to get the jist of what is going on.

Written is much better. I read the broadsheets daily often with the help of a dictionary for specific terms. All email traffic I do in Swedish and all my applications are made in Swedish. I would also feel completely comfortable expressing myself in an interview in Swedish -- if I ever got invited to one.

Next, qualifications. I have an M.Sc in Environmental Science, a B.Sc in Geography and the CELTA. Good but not excellent grades from respected, but not the most prestigious, European institutions.

Lastly, experience. I have a little over a year of environmental government work from outside Sweden and a 2-month sommarvikariet from within. I also have about 6 months voluntary, of what I would call, sustainability, project-based work from both within and outside Sweden. As for teaching, I have a little over 4 years TESOL-teaching experience. I have references which sing my praises to back all this up, particularly in teaching. I also worked a couple of years in the financial sector but it's too long ago to be relevant.

As I mentioned at the start, I've been unemployed for almost two years, and applied to countless jobs in the environmental sector to just be ignored. (In total, I've been invited to one interview.) I understand this is a competitive sector but I've seen equally qualified but less experienced, and I have to say it, Swedes find jobs after 6 months or less.

Recently, due to my spectacular failure in the green-job market, I have had to accept that it might be a return to teaching for me. I find this regettable but it is offset by the possibility having the opportunity to live and work in one of Sweden's more bucolic settings, which was in fact one of a few initial reasons for moving here.

However, it is becoming clear that the CELTA might not suffice to teach English at komvux despite teacher shortages (at any one time at least 6-10 open teaching positions for a small kommun and 15+ at larger ones).

My frustrations (and woes)
I sense something is awry. I look around and see a lot of poor-quality workers, in my sector as well as elsewhere. Given the chance, I know I could do a better job. Furthermore, I am underwhelmed by the profiles of those who have the jobs I want to do. They regularly match my own and the rest are about a 50-50 mix of both weaker and stronger profiles. All of this, together with being gnawed down by having been unemployed for two years sends me into these funks where I cannot get the most basic daily tasks done.

What next?
So I'm unsure of what to do next. I've been looking today at PhD courses at the SLU. (Most would consider this a step forward but I'm unsure if I do.) I've also been brushing up on Danish, perhaps there are some opportunities there (Själland, Fyn, Bornholm). As many have said, Sweden has a large pool of unskilled labour, Malmö comparatively more I would guess, so I don't fancy my chances there. I suppose I could look for admin positions but these are really targeted at people without university degrees. At least that's what I ascertain from the job postings, and I would most probably be considered a riskier hire, as I would have half an eye out for a better opportunity -- and they'd probably be right.

So: Any ideas? Or consolation, perhaps? Or criticism?
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post 18.Apr.2016, 08:59 PM
Post #84
Joined: 25.Jun.2009

I quickly determined that I would be employable in my chosen field of teaching in my location in Sweden. a) I did not speak the language sufficiently and would not without at least 2 more years of study and practice, and cool.gif the schools were shedding personnel in my area due to population loss. So I took a job working for a moving company. I actually enjoyed it but decided, after awhile, that I had much better chances back home. So we moved back.

I totally understand what you are going through and empathize completely. However, sympathy does pay the bills. At some point, you may have to make a tough decision. Good luck.
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post 18.Apr.2016, 09:02 PM
Post #85
Joined: 25.Jun.2009

For some reason, point b turned into an emogi. My apologies. .
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post 19.Apr.2016, 07:13 AM
Post #86
Joined: 17.Jan.2011

QUOTE (chuanya @ 5.Dec.2015, 03:02 PM) *
Hi, what do you think about current job market of pharmacist/pharmacy in Sweden? How GOOD Swedish does it needs to take to get hired?. Thanks.

There are lots of old threads about this and other HCP issues.
If you are non-EU trained you need to pass a language exam as part of the registration process.
If you have pharmacist registration and speak Swedish there is a big demand for pharmacists at the moment, you can see that on ams.se
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post 19.Apr.2016, 07:16 AM
Post #87
Joined: 17.Jan.2011

QUOTE (Hisingen @ 5.Dec.2015, 06:49 PM) *
There have been cases of Swedish pharmacists reading prescriptions incorrectly, maybe due to the usual illegibility of doctors scrawl, so in truth any errors language-wise cou ... (show full quote)

Basically almost all prescriptions are electronic (or printed on a printer rather than handwritten) these days (exception: vets tend to handwrite prescriptions).
Dispensing errors are usually due to other factors these days.
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post 10.May.2016, 06:45 PM
Post #88
Joined: 8.Apr.2016

Well, get ready, you are indeed walking in non-europe here in Sweden. As an European with two bachelor degrees, I can tell you my experience has been nothing but a nightmare. From health insurance to employment to social security number, I have had nothing but polite incentives to leave.

I have lived in Sweden for a year and a half now and I still don't have a Swedish social security number despite having requested it (and being entitled to it legally), I still can't go to the doctor/dentist/etc and pay the same as a Swedish person would (even though I am legally entitled to), I still do not have a fixed Arbetsförmedlingen number (which, guess what?! I am entitled to) and I still am not registered in my region as a citizen (same story). Not to mention the bank spiral they put you in. Yea, I still can't open a bank account here! As absurd as that may seem. To open one you are requested to provide a social security number, which you can't get. Worth mentioning that you DON'T legally need a social security number to open a bank account, but they will laugh at you and still not care.

I have sought legal help, too, in order to pursue my rights as an European citizen within the EU. To no avail, obviously. I was told by lawyers that what Sweden is currently doing to me is illegal, but there were no legal steps to be taken. At most I could send a letter of complaint to someone...

I can't even find a job as a storage worker in Sweden. They all "require" that you speak Swedish and, even when they don't, the hiring person will casually "prefer" candidates that do. Meaning you need Swedish for almost every job out there, of every level. The higher the level, the higher your Swedish must be. And even if you have it, they will most likely choose a Swede if possible. If you are competing with Swedes for any position you might as well kiss it goodbye, no matter how underqualified they may be in comparison to you. It doesn't matter how little or non-existent the necessity for Swedish is.

Don't believe what others say about the fact that most swedes speak "good or great" English and, thus, as employers, they pick people who speak both languages instead of those who speak only one for the betterment of the company. That is nothing but bull. Truth be told, most Swedish people don't speak good English at all. Some of them speak English to an acceptable degree at most. But mind you, most middle-aged (aka people who hire you) have either great English or terrible English. The majority has terrible English and is usually just not comfortable at all speaking with you and, thus, will not hire you. The lower the qualifications for the job you are looking for the bigger the chances that the person who is hiring does not speak English well are. The higher the qualifications for the job you are looking for, the higher the chances that you will be required to speak Swedish fluently. Either way, you lose.

Bottom line is that Sweden won't stop you from coming in, but they won't lift a finger to get you to stay. Basically they want you to leave, but will never say so. They'll just make your life extremely difficult until you decide to leave yourself.
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post 10.May.2016, 08:11 PM
Post #89
Joined: 26.Feb.2014

in order to get a personal number you either study, you have a work contract that will last for more then a year or have sufficient funds.
just a work contract will no suffice. if you have to contract and one says no you go the next day and talk to some else.
employers take ppl that can communicate with the rest, and while swede might understand you more or less there are both swedes and foreigners which dont speak english as a second language but another one.

Most industrial work requires you from the unions that you can swedish as a sfi d level both for communicating and for being able to read information provided to you like a work contract, health and safety regulations and a couple more stuff that you should be able to read and understand. If they hire you and you just sign and you cause an accident you will be liable because you said you understood.

Ppl refuse to understand that every job has some regulations that you should be following because you will get sued if you make a big mistake and if the company works with ppl both of you get sued for your mistake.

It took me exactly a year to get from no swedish to swedish 2 so sfi basic, was sent directly to sfi c since i had uni studies, after 2 months was moved to sfi d, next semester started with basic swedish grund svenska som andra språk, moved after 2 months to Swedish one and started with the stuff for swedish 2 but cant official be moved until the semester is over and most likely i will be taking the test fo swedish 2 and 3 if my application will be approved.
Need the grades for work.

On the other hand employers pick ppl that come with a ny start job in which case they only pay 20 % and the rest is payed by Arbetsförmedlingen.

You also need a drivers license and a car if you will get employed by a staffing company since you will not work at the same place or there is no transport.

Then it also matter how much you struggle for getting the job. if you call or email a couple of times their are more likely to give you a job. I used to call 1 or 2 days after applying to ask if they go my application, after the job ad is closed to the end of applying and after 4 5 days after the application time ended.

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post 10.May.2016, 08:38 PM
Post #90
Joined: 25.Jun.2009

Anyone thinking of moving to Sweden should read what littleviking has written. He is NOT exaggerating. And, unless you have some crazy good skills in a highly desired field, this will be your experience as well.
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