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Job hunting process

Language issue?

BL
post 21.Jan.2013, 03:56 PM
Post #1
Joined: 12.Aug.2008

Does anyone else with a solid work experience have issues job hunting (getting face time with agencies, interviews etc?) I am a UK national and have been in the country since July, I have over 10 years experience in the financial services sector. I am getting no interest from prospective employers or work agencies - no feedback whatsoever. Is it because I am not fluent in Swedish? Look forward to hearing from the audience.
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John.Smith
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:01 PM
Post #2
Location: Sweden
Joined: 12.Sep.2011

Yes and you have a non-Swedish Name.

A nicely written cover letter and CV in Swedish followed by a telephone call to the agency/employer in Swedish will give you a foot in the door. Otherwise you have an uphill battle.
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BL
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:02 PM
Post #3
Joined: 12.Aug.2008

Thanks John, interesting.
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Yorkshireman
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:20 PM
Post #4
Joined: 22.Nov.2011

QUOTE (John.Smith @ 21.Jan.2013, 04:01 PM) *
A nicely written cover letter and CV in Swedish followed by a telephone call to the agency/employer in Swedish will give you a foot in the door. Otherwise you have an uphill battle.

Though You may also give the wrong impression that You know Swedish by doing this, which can count against You.

If your experience is in the banking sector, then you need to understand that that sector has been shedding many jobs over the last few years, so You are most likely competing against many people that already have work experience in Sweden, most likely understands not only EU but also Swedish specific rules and regulations, and most likely the language.

In addition to that it is also likely that You are competing with other EU citizens trying to find work in Sweden, with just as good experience.

The key is to call, talk to them personally ...and make sure they know that You are from the UK, learning Swedish, You could even add that You are OK if they put into any contract an objective of learning Swedish over a pre-defined period.

The issue for employers that would like Swedish in the workplace, is that if they employ You knowing You do not speak Swedish ...if it is not specifically written into contract etc... about reaching Swedish to a specific standard, then they cannot later remove You using non Swedish speaking as part of the reason ...in the eyes of the employment law it was not a condition on original employment, so it cannot be made one without changing employment contract. In that case it is much easier to employ someone that already does speak the language.
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UKBA
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:28 PM
Post #5
Joined: 17.Jan.2013

I have been in Sweden, for 8 month's now. But I have had not one reply, from a Swedish company!! Lots of job applications go out, but yet not one bite of the cherry!! Your thoughts please? blink.gif
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Pursuivant
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:39 PM
Post #6
Joined: 12.Aug.2008

OK, so I go to London, have my CV in Swedish, and sit home waiting for recruiters to contact me... you think I'd need to wait for... until the Tesco burgers come home?
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PDX
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:40 PM
Post #7
Location: Stockholm
Joined: 2.Aug.2011

Spot on.. I have nothing to add rolleyes.gif

~~~PDX~~~
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UKBA
post 21.Jan.2013, 04:48 PM
Post #8
Joined: 17.Jan.2013

I sent a few applications, out to Denmark. I always got a good reply from them!! Is this a Swedish thing? Your thoughts please.
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Yorkshireman
post 21.Jan.2013, 05:01 PM
Post #9
Joined: 22.Nov.2011

Swedish companies/agencies get swamped with applications from all over the place, so in the majority of cases can only reply to those they are interested in. Never just send in an application, ALWAYS ring either before/after sending the application. How do they know You want THAT job and not just any job? Why should they respond? What have You offered them that they could see immediately (a few seconds), compared to all the other applications? CALL. wink.gif

Maybe Denmark is not the chosen destination for migrant workers, they certainly have tougher rules for non-EU, so easier for them to process applications! biggrin.gif
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UKBA
post 21.Jan.2013, 05:17 PM
Post #10
Joined: 17.Jan.2013

Many thanks for your thoughts. Och, Tack så mycket!! biggrin.gif
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BL
post 21.Jan.2013, 05:38 PM
Post #11
Joined: 12.Aug.2008

Thanks for all your comments, very useful. Yes - coming from a Wealth Management background, I am aware of the downturn in banking activity globally in recent years.
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CathySky
post 21.Jan.2013, 07:43 PM
Post #12
Joined: 8.Oct.2006

no i don't think you need the language if you work in finance. unless if you are working in the bank or in a position where you have to speak with customers occassionally. many companies have alot of people working in finance that don't speak a word of sweden! if i were you i would review my cv and coverletter, remeber that you are in sweden and you always have to be short and straight to the point. your cv should be 2-3 (max 4) pages long, and your cover letter should be half a page long. good luck smile.gif
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dgd
post 21.Jan.2013, 08:57 PM
Post #13
Joined: 16.Mar.2012

There's certainly plenty of Finance work around and not all of it requires Swedish, though most employers would assume that you have at least moderate level of Swedish.

When applying for jobs don't overplay your experience or qualifications, simply look to address the job requirements in the advert. They're not interested in how dynamic or technically brilliant you are.

Always phone the job contact for a chat before applying - this helps smooth the process. Don't expect a call back or rejection e-mail; if they're interested they'll get in touch, If they're not interested they will simply not contact you. Don't take it personally, that's simply the way it works.

Most agencies (Poolia, Michaelpage, Mercuri Urval, Meritmind, Aditro) are completely useless - they're simply used as a HR function for companies that don't have a recruitment function. They have no interest in marketing individuals, they only represent firms.

Also, the recruitment process can take months. Don't give up if you haven't heard anything in 2 months - they're very slow. Also, you can forget making any headway in summer (basically Mid June to Mid August) when the locals go on almost interminable holidays (5 weeks quite common).

An interview is usually a strong indication that you're being considered for the job.

Good luck
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Skugglegend
post 21.Jan.2013, 09:46 PM
Post #14
Location: United Kingdom
Joined: 8.Jan.2013

QUOTE (BL @ 21.Jan.2013, 03:56 PM) *
Does anyone else with a solid work experience have issues job hunting (getting face time with agencies, interviews etc?) I am a UK national and have been in the country since ... (show full quote)

This is not something specific for Sweden, coming to UK as Swedish It´s not easy although you can actually speak the language, they want you to have a UK experience on your CV.
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Mike Cy
post 21.Jan.2013, 11:39 PM
Post #15
Joined: 8.Jan.2013

Hi... Im originally from Cyprus but i was born in London (Edmonton) and lived there 10 yrs... I've just moved to Sweden in December and live in Ljungskile close to Udevalla. My fiancee is Swedish and we have a 4 yr old son. Im looking for a job if anyone can help me out. I was self employed in Cyprus - freelance Graphic designer + creator and installer of vinyl stickers on vehicles, shops etc. as well as t-shirt printing, promotion and event organising... If you can help, at least with some advice, please reply or email me. Any job will do. email: fusion_cyp@hotmail.com PS I speak fluent English & Greek
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