Skip to main content

Entering the workplace as an immigrant

Applying for work

Workplace are becoming more and more multicultural. It's quite common to work with colleagues who have moved to Finland from abroad.

A good application will help you stand out among other hopefuls. Large employers use online application forms. It's important to fill them out carefully. As an immigrant, you'll want to give a thorough overview of your language skills and of the work experience you've gained in your home country and in international roles.

When filling out your application, it's good to consider which particular strengths and characteristics you have. Those are the ones that will help you succeed in the job you're applying for. For example, in your own country, it may be the norm to list "hardworking and honest" as your characteristics in every application. In Finland, it may not work because we think that diligence and honesty are the basic features of each employee.

Further information can usually be requested from the contact person listed in the vacancy notice. Try to call at the times listed or use e-mail to present additional questions.

Learn the language and maintain the skill

You'll come across the need to know Finnish when you browse vacancy notices. Most of our vacancy notices are in Finnish. International workplaces often advertise vacancies in English. This also applies to companies where you can get by without speaking Finnish. The notices also list other language requirements. You can compare your language skills to them.

If you intend to stay in Finland for some time, it pays to learn Finnish. To integrate into and enjoy living in Finland, you need to know the language. When you become better at Finnish, make sure to use it as often as possible both at work and during your spare time. Even a small vocabulary is enough to get started! Be brave, speak Finnish!

Networking

Networking is The Thing these days. What kinds of networks might you have? When you're just starting out, your network consists of your classmates. Later on, it'll expand with colleagues from your current and previous jobs. Your network can also include experts in your field, both in your area and farther away.

Training can speed up integration

Spring House provides integration training for adult immigrants based on the Act on the Promotion of Immigrant Integration. It's aimed at recent immigrants who have registered with the TE Office. The Monday to Friday integration training is very intensive. In addition to language lessons, you'll learn about the Finnish society and labour market and get introduced to working life in Finland. During work practice, you'll learn through on-the-job training and gets to practice your Finnish skills. Applications for integration training are handled at the TE Office.

Employed immigrants can study Finnish at, for example, adult learning institutions. Companies may also offer tailored Finnish language lessons.