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Archive for the ‘Emigration’ Category

Live, work and play like a Kiwi

New Zealand’s been said to be more like England than England. I think what they mean by that is that we look a bit like England from the outside, but then things look different once you’re in. With an egalitarian outlook, manners take a back seat to practicality. There’s less interest in the school you went to, and more interest in your taste in craft beer. As a small nation, we value people who can do stuff. Call it a meritocracy.

Perhaps the greatest expression of the Kiwi passion for a fair go is expressed in the relations between Maori and Pakeha (i.e. non Maori). Although no marriage is without conflict, most New Zealanders of all stripes are proud of their connection with Maori culture. Sure, everyone knows the haka (war dance) performed by the All Blacks. But anyone who’s ever been lucky enough to receive a formal Maori welcome knows that it’s a rich, noble culture with the greatest respect for the human character (and a famous sense of humour).

As the old Maori proverb goes: He aha te mea nui o te ao, he tangata, he tangata, he tangata.

Which means: What is the most important thing in the world? It is the people, it is the people, it is the people.

The work scene

New Zealand has a strong employment market. Compared to the OECD average, New Zealand performs well on all employment measures: unemployment (6%) is lower than the OECD average (7%). 75% of the total working age population is in employment, significantly better than the OECD average of 66%. Elsewhere, independent analyses predict unemployment to be as low as 4% by the beginning of 2017.

The sectors predicted to show the strongest growth this year include

  • Finance, insurance & real estate (21%)
  • Mining & construction (21%)
  • Transport & utilities (15%)
  • Services (14%)
  • Other growth categories include wholesale trade & retail, manufacturing, and public admin and education.

In short: New Zealand is a natural playground, the people are friendly, and the economy is well on track for sustainable growth. Click here to find the right visa so you can work, play and live like a local.

The Best 3 Ways to Move to Canada

You’ve imagined tellng your current boss that you’re leaving for Canada. You’ve researched where you want to live. You’ve started the job search. But you’re still not sure how to actually make the move from the computer screen to Canada.

Sound familiar?

We’ve compiled our top three ways to make your move to Canada a reality this year.

canada lake

Work in an in-demand industry, and land a job before you go

An obvious start, but make sure you’ve researched what jobs are actually in demand in Canada. You’ll get extra points on your visa application if you have a qualifying job offer from a Canadian employer.

We’ve compiled a post about Canada’s latest skill shortages – check it out to see if your occupation is needed in Canada.

If your occupation is on there, start your job search. You can try Working In Canada’s job board which is frequently updated.

If your occupation isn’t on the list, there are other visa options available to you – see ‘Get clued up on Canadian visas’ below.

Meet Canadian employers face-to-face

Or, even better than a job board, you could visit the Working International Expo. This October we’re coming to London and Dublin (our boutique, Canada-only show) with Canadian employers recruiting for a range of job skills and industries.  Attending an expo is a great way to meet these Canadian employers face to face. You’ll get the opportunity to sell your skills and experience and you may even interview while you’re there.

consider a move outside the big cities

Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver are really popular with would-be Canadians, so think about making the move to some of the smaller provinces. The provinces experience critical skill shortages (meaning they’re more likely to look internationally for the skills they need) but still offer the incredible lifestyle and landscape of Canada’s major cities (arguably more so, as they’re less populated).

Canada’s Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) operates currently in these provinces:

  • Alberta
  • Manitoba
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Yukon
  • British Columbia
  • New Brunswick
  • Nova Scotia
  • Saskatchewan
  • Ontario

PNP applications are given preference over other skilled visa applications (like the Federal Skilled Worker stream) by Citizenship & Immigration Canada, as they look to find the skills the provinces really need.

Get clued up on Canadian visas

There are multiple visa options into Canada for skilled workers, entrepreneurs, business owners, students, family members, and more.

The best way to understand the different routes into Canada and the options available to you is to get specialist visa advice.  At the Working International Expo, we’ve got Canadian visa experts (like Brazolot Migration Group) on hand to guide you through your different options and the visa process.

You can also explore Citizenship & Immigration Canada’s website to determine your eligibility.

Show your commitment

Canadian employers want to see an understanding about what relocating to Canada will really mean to you – and they want to see your commitment to making your new life work.

Have you ever visited Canada?  Do you have family in Canada?  Will you be bringing all your family with you to Canada? Or will all of your family be back home? How will you adjust to your new life?  Are you in it for the long haul or will you turn around and head back home after only a few months?

Consider the above questions and be sure that a move to Canada is right for you.

…It is? Great, going to the Working International Expo is a good way to show your commitment and enthusiasm. You can research all your visa options, meet potential employers and sort your move – from arranging professional movers to opening a bank account.

Make the move to Canada this October

You can arrange your move to Canada this October without leaving the UK or Ireland. The Working International Expo is coming to London, Dublin (our boutique, one-day expo featuring Canadian employers only), and Manchester, starting in a fortnight!

See you there!

Aurora Borealis, Canada

Immigration news round-up – September 2015

As September slides around, it’s been a bit quiet on the visa news front from Australia, Canada and New Zealand. This is true for New Zealand especially – perhaps because the national focus is on that upcoming Rugby World Cup?

This month find out the financial benefits of moving to Australia for skilled workers; about two more visa schemes for Canada; and an upcoming snapshot of life for new Kiwis.

Australia

Moving to Australia pays off?

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has, for the first time, released some data on the personal income of Australian migrants. If you’re wondering about the financial implications of a move to Australia, have a look at some key figures:

  • The total income of migrant taxpayers in the 2009-10 financial year was $37.7 billion
  • Employee income contributed 92% to total income, of which $25.5 billion was reported by migrants from the skilled visa stream
  • Skilled visa holders’ average employee income was about $5,000 higher than the national average of $48,907 for all Australian taxpayers

So moving to Australia under the skilled visa stream means you could have an income higher than other Australian taxpayers.

Read all the data on the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ website, or start looking for that skilled job in Australia.

Canada

Quebec Immigration Investor Program reopens

If you’re keen on Canada, you’ll be pleased to hear that Quebec’s Immigration Investor Program has reopened. One of the world’s most popular immigrant investor programmes, this visa scheme allows qualified investors and their dependent family members the chance to gain Canadian permanent residency through investing CAD$800,000 risk-free, through an approved financial intermediary.

Applications opened on 31 August 2015 and will close 29 January 2016 – although it’s expected that the application quota of 1,750 will be reached before then.

Find out more about the requirements at Quebec’s official immigration website.

British Columbia needs skilled trade workers

Fort St John, in the north of the Canadian province of British Columbia, has recently announced the establishment of a pilot programme to bring in skilled international workers.

They are looking especially for skilled and experienced trade workers, such as electricians and welders.

No further details are available yet, but we’ll update you as soon as they become available.

New Zealand

Migrant Survey

Immigration New Zealand has begun the process of collecting data for its 2015 Migrant Survey. It’s an annual survey, sent out to a random sample of people who’ve been through New Zealand’s immigration process, that asks for feedback on topics including jobs, education background and levels of happiness.

Immigration New Zealand then takes on board the feedback to work out how new Kiwis settle into New Zealand and whether they can improve their services for future new migrants.

As the survey has just been sent out, we don’t have details of the results yet but it’s sure to be an interesting snapshot of life in New Zealand for new Kiwis. We’ll make sure we post the survey results when they’re released – if you haven’t already, sign up to our newsletter.  We’ll then email you this survey data when it’s available – easy!

Maid of the Mist VII, Niagara Falls

Canada’s Express Entry System Simplified

We really like this little infographic on Canada’s new Express Entry system.  It makes migrating to Canada look easy!

infographic-expressentry

It can be almost this easy – find your dream job with a little help from Working In Canada, and breeze through the immigration process with the help of one of our immigration experts (like Canada Immigration Partners).

Infographic supplied by Mathew & Miho at Canada Immigration Partners, Vancouver

Immigration News Roundup – July 2015

We keep a lookout for recent immigration changes in Australia, Canada and New Zealand so that you don’t have to. This month discover Australia’s migration trends over the past year, and see whether you’re in demand in South Australia.  Find out about two new Canadian immigration schemes, and see how a licensed immigration adviser can help with your New Zealand online visa application.

Australia

Australia’s Migration Trends 2013–2014

The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection has recently released a new report called Australia’s Migration Trends 2013–2014. Some of the key statistics from the report are that in the 2013–2014 programme year:

  • 207,947 permanent migration visas were granted – a decrease of 4.2 per cent on the previous year.
  • This included 190,000 places under Australia’s migration programme.
  • Of the migration programme’s 190,000 visas:
    • 128,550 visas (or 67.7 per cent) were granted through the skill stream.
    • 61,112 visas (or 32.2 per cent) were granted through the family stream.
    • 338 visas (or 0.2 per cent) were granted under the special eligibility visa category.
  • The place where most people moved from was India, with 39,026 places (that’s a 20.5 per cent share).
  • This was followed by the People’s Republic of China (26,776 places) and the UK (23,220 places).
  • Demand for the Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) visas decreased significantly. Grants for these visas fell 22.0 per cent which may be due to the government’s February 2014 review of the 457 process.

Check out the full report for further details.

Revised South Australia State Occupation List

On 1 July 2015, Immigration South Australia published a revised State Occupation List. Visit Immigration South Australia to view the new list. This list gives you an idea of what skills and jobs are in demand in South Australia. New English requirements for South Australia There have been some changes to the English requirements for some occupations on the South Australia State Occupation List including:

  • ICT occupations – Proficient English is required in each band score (or an overall score of Proficient Plus, i.e. IELTS 7.5 overall).
  • Engineering occupations – Competent Plus English (or an overall score of Proficient, i.e. IELTS 7 overall).

The State Occupation List contains the changes to the English requirements for other occupations.

Canada

Express Entry points requirement decreasing

The new Express Entry system for skilled migration to Canada involves creating a pool of potential applicants, who are invited to apply for a visa through a regular draw. Applicants are awarded points based on certain criteria, like their skills, experience, language capabilities, work history, etc. Two recent draws in June 2015 have seen the level of applicants’ points decreasing yet the number of invitations to apply for a visa increasing. This means meeting the requirements for skilled entry to Canada may be getting a little easier.

New immigration schemes for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia

Two eastern Canadian provinces, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, have recently announced new immigration schemes that are looking for skilled newcomers from overseas. The streams are aligned with the federal Express Entry systems. Although you don’t need a job offer from a Canadian employer to make an application, you must be eligible for either the:

Follow the links to find out more about the New Brunswick Express Entry Labour Market Stream or Nova Scotia Experience: Express Entry.

New Zealand

‘Apply on behalf’ now live

Immigration New Zealand has launched a new service called ‘Apply on Behalf’. This means that licensed immigration advisers and other people exempt from licensing, like lawyers, can now apply for visas online on your behalf. This means they can:

  • Start a new online application for a Student, Work or Visitor visa
  • Complete the application in much the same way as you can
  • View submitted applications and upload supporting documents

This means you could benefit from expert support when it comes to completing your visa application online – and it’s one less thing for you to do. Visa-and-Passport

Five Very Good Reasons to Move to Canada

Canada has 33 million inhabitants and is a world-class country that offers a vast array of scenic, cultural, and intellectual wonders. Even so, it regularly flies its maple leaf overseas to let the world know that it needs more skilled and experienced people to make it really hum.

So why would you pack your bag and make the move?

vancouver2

  1. Everyone wants to live there

If you move to Canada, you can live in one of the world’s most liveable cities. Three Canadian cities appear in The Telegraph’s list published last week: Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/property/pictures/9477990/The-worlds-10-best-cities-to-live-in.html?frame=2311063

  1. Job opportunities

Canada needs skilled people which means that there are many interesting and challenging job vacancies.  The Canadian jobless rate has been unchanged at 6.8 percent for the fourth consecutive month in May 2015. And in May 2015, the economy added 30,900 full-time jobs and 27,900 part-time jobs.

  1. Clean air, green surroundings

The air quality in Canada is amazing according to the World Health Organization which put forward a report on the global air quality. Despite being one of the largest countries in the world, Canada enjoys a very low population density. Huge tracts of land are covered by forests, and its population is largely concentrated towards the more temperate south of the country. Clean air is all you will breathe in their nation, which takes great pride in the preservation of its wildlife, and he enormous forests act as natural air filters. http://www.insidermonkey.com/blog/the-10-countries-with-the-cleanest-air-in-the-world-331264/#Cfe7gsc7dTQgfYPP.99

  1. Be part of huge scenery

Consider the Nahanni National Park Reserve which spans almost 12,000 square miles. At the 62nd parallel, it is the land of the midnight sun in Canada’s Northwest Territories. It covers the vast plains and limestone karst lands of the Ram Plateau in the Mackenzie Mountains. You can descend into Canada’s deepest ancient river canyons, reaching 3,000 feet, untouched since the last ice age.  (http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/canada/keith-bellows-favorite-canada-places/)

Nahanni National Park

5.  Canadians are really polite

Experience Canadian nice as soon as you reach customs: the US border guards are gruff and all business, the Canadians, by contrast, are unfailingly polite. The Canadian press is rife with examples of niceness in action. For instance, the National Post reports that when second-year law student Derek Murray left the headlights on all day Wednesday in his silver Acura, he returned to his parked car to find the battery drained and a note on his windshield. “I noticed you left your lights on,” the note said. “The battery will probably not have enough charge to start your vehicle. I left a blue extension cord on the fence and … a battery charger beside the fence in the cardboard box. If you know how to hook it up, use it to start your car.” The note went on to explain exactly how to jump-start the vehicle. “Good luck,” it said.  http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/edmonton-stranger-leaves-kind-note-and-battery-charger-for-student-who-forgot-to-turn-car-lights-off




Sounds amazing.

Working In can help you move there.

http://www.workingin-canada.com/

The Top 10 Best Reasons to Move to Australia (the June 2015 list)

Last week we posted some fantastic reasons why you should definitely move to New Zealand.  But if you have your heart set on moving to Australia, you’re in luck because we have written a Top 10 list for Australia as well!

So here’s our Top 10 Best Reasons to Move to Australia list – compiled by the staff here at Working In, especially for this blog.

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lifeguard

Reason #1 – Employment Prospects

Australia has good job prospects, over most industries.  Here’s a great place to start searching for your new job Down Under:  http://www.workingin-australia.com/jobs 

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CampingTips2-450x337

Reason #2 – Lifestyle

People living in Australia generally have a good work/life balance – that means more time for yourself, and more time with your family.  T

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generic beach AU Reason #3 – Climate

Australia’s climate has to be one of the best in the world.  Queensland is known as The Sunshine State because of its approx. 300 days of sunshine per year.

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multicultural australia Reason #4 – Society

You’ll find Australia is one of the most multicultural nations on Earth.

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Reason #5 – Nature

You can be close to water, the city and the bush in nearly every inhabited location in the country.

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Xmas AU Reason #6 – Opposite Seasons

You get to have Christmas on the Beach!  You don’t need snow to have Christmas .. it can be just as magical in the sunshine.

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bunyip

Reason #7 – Culture

Has some of the best slang words ever invented. Do you know what Ankle Biter, Rip Snorter, or Bunyip mean?*

(Don’t worry, we’ve given you the answers at the end of the blog post)

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melb Reason #8 – And more culture!

The food, wine and coffee are some of the best in the world. Australians really take pride in these – check out The Coffee Experience in Sydney this September, or why not take a Self-Guided Tour of the Barossa Valley?

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adventure collage 2Reason #9 – There are things to do

There are so many things to do in Australia – whether you like relaxing, adventure, or family fun, there’s something for everyone.

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tree

Reason #10 – Because you have always wanted to live and work in Australia..

..and why shouldn’t you?

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We hope our list helps you with your decision to move to Australia.

There will never be a ‘right time’ to move country, so don’t spend your life waiting for that moment to come along. Make it happen for yourself!

All the best,

Working In Team

* Wondering what those words mean?  Child / something fantastic / a mythical Outback creature

Our Brand New Top 5 Reasons to Move to New Zealand

Young Girl on Rope Swing under Pohutukawa Tree, Whangapoua Beach, Coromandel, North Island, New Zealand

Whangapoua Beach, Coromandel, New Zealand

After a quick break from blogging, it’s really good to be back.  We’re sure our blog will be just as informative, inspirational, and educational as it ever was!

To kick things off again, today we’re sharing our Top 5 Reasons to Move to New Zealand.  As the Working In office is in Auckland, New Zealand, it’s a location that we know pretty well.  It’s not a fluffy, feel-good Top 5 list (we’ll do one of those next week though!) – it’s a solid, sensible set of reasons to move here, that may influence you if you are seriously considering moving country.

  1. The New Zealand economy is strong post-recession, with solid domestic consumption demand coupled with low inflation, and a low unemployment rate of 5.7%.
  1. NZ has 10% more land mass than the UK – but the population hasn’t even hit 4.5 million yet. That’s a lot more space for you, and your children, to make the most of.
  1. In 2014, New Zealand was ranked by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as the #1 place in the world to raise children. 
  1. NZ has one of the lowest personal tax rates in the world, with 70% of its residents on a 19.5% tax rate. Also, the GST is 15%, compared to 20% VAT in the UK, and 23% in Ireland.
  1. Kiwis are renowned for being laid back, chilled out people – which reflects the relaxed lifestyle people in New Zealand enjoy!

Just five reasons why we love living here!  We do hope to see you over here at some point soon.

All the Best,

Working In Team

Sources:  Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (New Zealand), Lonely Planet, Emigration Group (UK)

What expats miss the most

Firstly, let’s get something cleared up. This could seem like quite a scary article. If you’re beginning to plan your move overseas, you’re probably in the hugely excited stage when you’re thinking about all the new things you’re going to discover and experience – rather than thinking about what you’ll miss.

So, a quick straw poll of Working Inners (most of us whom are migrants ourselves) about what we missed the most from our home countries, revealed that the overwhelming response was… food based. Yep, it turns out we’re creatures of habit and associate happy memories of home countries with tucking into local delicacies:

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Now that we’ve established this is really not scary at all, here are the top five things expats miss:

Number one: family and friends

Friends and familyAn obvious choice and probably something you’ve already considered, whether you’re moving to the same hemisphere or an entirely different time zone.

What you can do

Technology is the expat’s best friend. Now you can still literally see your nearest and dearest thanks to Skype via regular catch-ups over the internet – and it won’t even cost you.

Emails will allow you to send pretty instant communications as often as you like so mum won’t feel like she’s missing out on your everyday life.

Living overseas means you can embrace one of the best ways to communicate – personal handwritten letters. Rediscover the thrill of an actual letter in your mailbox, rather than a bill or advertising flyer.

If you’re missing an important event – a wedding, christening, birthday – you can still feel involved. Send a card, a parcel or record a video message.

Make sure you plan your next visit back home and when your family will visit you in your new home so that you have something to look forward to.

Number two: your old salary

SalaryIf you’ve researched your equivalent job or already been offered a job and your salary doesn’t match what you’re used to, don’t despair.

What you can do

Remember why you’re relocating – better job opportunities, better career progression, better and bigger projects, better lifestyle, better weather… all of which are, literally, priceless.

Number three: food

FoodAs we’ve already established – especially around the Working In team – you could find yourself craving local tastes that you just can’t get your hands on in your new home.

What you can do

Plenty!

  • Rope mum and dad, family or friends to send you care parcels stuffed full of the food you’re missing.
  • Check out whether there are any suppliers in your new home town. For example, New Zealand has plenty of British grocery shops available throughout the country that stock all the British favourites.
  • Leave a bit of space in your suitcase when planning a trip back to your home country and bring some goodies back with you.
  • Order your favourite treats online – there’s bound to be websites available that will ship you what you’re missing.

Or, even better, you can embrace change (come on, you’ve emigrated – you’re ok with change) and try the local alternative or equivalent. You never know, it may even be better than you’re used to.

Number four: shopping

ShoppingIf you’re used to popping out to a crowded high street and picking up the latest fashion at a wallet-friendly price, it can be a shock to wave goodbye to your favourite labels – whether it’s trusty M&S undies or Topshop threads.

What you can do

Hop on the internet – a lot of major retailers will ship internationally, and some will even do free international delivery.

If you’re more of a browse the racks and try on plenty of stuff type of shopper, it’s time to explore local suppliers and find new favourites.

Number five: weather

WeatherSounds weird but there’s a phenomenon called the bouncing Pom where Brits migrate to perpetually hot and sunny climes only to return to rainy Britain because they miss the occasionally bad weather.

So if you’re used to rain, you may find endless sunny days a bit wearing. If you’re used to plenty of sunshine, different seasons could be a shock.

What you can do

Again it’s about remembering why you made the move and embracing your new lifestyle – come rain or shine. Take the opportunity to be out in the sunshine as much as possible or to rug up against the seasonal chills and rain.

It’s also the chance for a new wardrobe. Donate your old unsuitably seasonal stuff and buy the local alternatives. Once you’re dressed like a native and appropriately for whatever the weather is doing, you’ll feel a lot more settled in your new life. Now’s the time to finally buy a rain jacket, polar fleece or numerous pairs of flip flops, even if you’ve never owned any before.

In conclusion

Yes, there are going to be things you miss but you also know now how to combat your feelings of longing for these commonly missed things.

Plus in the grand scheme of things, they’re all pretty miniscule. If we made a list of what you wouldn’t miss about your home country, we’re betting it’d be quite a bit bigger – traffic jams, rain, people not speaking to you on public transport, queues…

Been there, done that?

What do you miss the most about your home country and how do you deal with it? Leave us a comment below and let us know!

Fight or flight: what to expect when you arrive in a new country

You’ve been excitedly planning your move for months but now you’ve landed and you’re not feeling so sure. Don’t worry – these feelings are absolutely normal and part of what’s known as the settlement curve.

In fact, there are six distinct stages most people go through as they settle in a new country – here’s what to expect over your first 18 months to two years.

The settlement curve

 

Diagram source: Immigration New Zealand Settlement Services.

Stage one: forethought

This stage is all about the excitement of planning with lots of positivity about your move to your new country. It’s important to have realistic expectations about your new home country, however, so now’s the time to look into jobs, get an idea of cost of living and research where you’re going to settle.

Stage two: fun

You’ve arrived and it’s brilliant fun. New people, new places and new experiences mean you’re feeling really positive about your new home.

Stage three: fright

Uh-oh. Something’s happened. It might be something major (a family member has fallen ill) or something small (you’re stuck in traffic for the fifth day in a row) – whatever it is, it’ll make you feel frustrated which in turn makes you feel unhappy.

Stage four: flight

Ok, something has happened – and you don’t have a strong network of friends or family to call on yet in your new home country. This is the point that you may decide to move on or return to your country of origin.

Stage five: fight

Time to embrace your inner Rocky. This is your turning point – you become realistic about what it’s like to live in your new country and make a conscious decision to stay and build your life here.

Stage six: fit

Welcome to everyday life. By this stage, your challenges are more about the usual day to day stuff people think about, rather than being about living in a new country. You’ve now decided to stay which helps you to feel like you ‘fit’ in. Congratulations – you’ve made it!

Dealing with the six stages

First off, remember that everyone who has ever been in your position will have experienced these emotions at some point. Understand that it’s completely normal and natural and try some of these tips to help you deal with your emotions:

  • Keep talking – to your other half, your family or your employer. Sharing your fears will help you deal with them.
  • Get out and about – the couch may be calling but that’s not going to help you feel more settled. Go for a walk, get some fresh air, make the most of that new lifestyle you were after. Remind yourself why you wanted to move.
  • Get involved – join your colleagues at the next social gathering, sign up to a gym, research local clubs – anything that gets you mingling with people and involved with your new life. Say yes to every offer that comes your way.
  • Research settlement services – there’s organisations dedicated to helping new migrants feel happy in their new homes. Check out Settlement Support New Zealand, find settlement services in Australia or search for immigration services in Canada.

Have you made the move? Did you experience a rollercoaster journey through the settlement curve? What helped you?

Top 10 most broken New Year’s resolutions

Scrabble tiles spelling out Happy New YearAs January kicks in down here in the southern hemisphere, it means only one thing – summer. Yet for northern hemisphere-ites, the tree and tinsel is down yet winter is still firmly hanging around. So it makes sense for anyone hoping to work and live overseas to take advantage of the New Year and make a resolution to make the move.

Which brings us onto this post and a look at the most commonly broken New Year’s resolutions – now, you don’t want to see your work and live overseas resolution on here in a year’s time do you? If you recognise any of these, don’t worry – you’re clearly in good company.

  1. Get fit and lose weight
  2. Give up smoking
  3. Learn something new
  4. Eat healthier and diet
  5. Get out of debt and save money
  6. Spend more time with the family
  7. Travel to new places
  8. Stress less
  9. Volunteer
  10. Drink less

If you need any motivation to stick to your New Year’s resolution, check out this quote by poet Edith Lovejoy Pierce:

“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called ‘Opportunity’ and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.”

Hopefully see you here in 2013 – get here by checking out an expo near you!

“I’m skilled and want to move country – what next?”

Plane flying over green grass against a blue backgroundHere, Caren, one of Working In’s migration consultants, recounts a real-life story as experienced by a colleague in the office as they planned their journey from the UK to New Zealand. See if you can use any of their helpful hints in planning your own move:

“We knew we wanted to move from the UK, but where to was the big question! So we decided to buy a round-the-world ticket and took ourselves off to Australia and New Zealand on a six-week ‘look-see’ holiday. This ticket allowed us to fly to several cities in both countries. We very quickly came to decide on New Zealand as we loved both the lifestyle it could offer us and the culture of the people. In fact, it felt very similar to what we were used to.

The first sign that we were really serious about this was when I walked into WH Smith and bought a book on New Zealand. After reading it cover to cover, we targeted a few areas that looked interesting.

Having done extensive homework prior to getting on the plane, we knew exactly what we wanted to see and check out for ourselves. We had shortlisted a few cities in New Zealand, and even done our homework with regards to the best schools and suburbs in those cities. This allowed us to drive past these schools and drive around these suburbs during our fleeting visit. We picked up as many real estate magazines as we could and soon the Property Press became the most read magazine in our house! We even went through a few open homes to get an understanding of what we could and couldn’t afford. When we visited a town/city on our shortlist, we made sure that we stayed for a few days, interacted with the locals and spent many hours picnicking at the local parks and beaches. This gave us a small taste of the culture and types of people in the town.

We were lucky enough to have friends in New Zealand who were able to give us their feelings and experiences about life in New Zealand. They also gave us an up to date household budget so that we could effectively compare it to how we lived at home. This gave us a good indication that our quality of life would significantly improve in New Zealand, as we would be in a position to afford a bigger home, live near good schools and have the means to enjoy life.

When we got back home, we had a renewed desire and determination to get our relocation underway. We put our house on the market, told our friends and family and started our immigration application process. We were lucky enough to have an occupation on the Long Term Skills Shortage List and could apply for residence without a job offer. Many friends thought that moving to a strange country on the other side of the world without a job offer was completely mad! But we never waivered from our plans and pushed on regardless.

We also spent a day in London at an expo called Opportunities New Zealand [what our early Opportunities Overseas Expos were called]. We were surprised by how many other people (like us) were on the same mission! This was an amazing experience as we managed to find a lot of information all under one roof.

I bought a book called ‘Where to Live in Auckland’ at the expo, which turned out to be one of the best buys regarding New Zealand. It became like my ‘New Zealand bible’ as it describes everything there is to know about each suburb, including who lives there, what schools are in the suburb, what the median price is for houses, what streets you want to avoid, etc. – invaluable if you are thinking of living in Auckland! If anything, the most we got out of our trip to London was that we were not alone on this quest to find a better life.”

The top 10 things you need to know about moving to New Zealand

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Nassim, one of Working In’s migration consultants, was born in the USA, raised in Australia and moved to New Zealand in 2009. Here she shares her top tips for making the move overseas. 

Moving country can be a daunting exercise and sometimes you don’t know where to start with your plans. I may have only moved across the Tasman, but as a migrant myself coming to New Zealand, the 10 things that we needed to organise and wished we had done some further research on before the relocation were:

  1. Shipping of goods – there are tax implications based on your visa status. If you aren’t a permanent resident or have a work visa for longer than 12 months you’ll be liable to pay customs tax and duty.
  2. Where to live if you have a child attending school – ERO reports, zoning, deciles… Once you’ve decided where a good school is, you’ll normally have to live within certain boundaries making housing rentals in certain areas hard to come by.
  3. Brush up on your Te Reo – lots of signs and words used in everyday life are in Te Reo Maori. Knowing a few basics will make life much easier!
  4. Driving licence requirements – you need a current and valid driver’s license to drive in New Zealand. If your license isn’t in English you may also need an international driving permit or translation. You can do this for 12 months from the date you arrive. After this time you’re required to apply for a New Zealand driver’s license.
  5. Have your bank accounts set up before you arrive – CBA/ASB can help you sort this out and help with transfer of funds that you’ll have easy access to once you land, meaning there’s no need to worry about how you are going to access cash or EFTPOS. However, not all New Zealand outlets accept credit cards. More information on this can be found here.
  6. Bring your original documents with you – this will make applying for certain things possible and it’s much easier than asking someone back home to forward you your documents!
  7. A furry friend – if you’re planning on bringing a domestic pet with you, then you need to start planning this well in advance of leaving. There’s more information about this at MAF Biosecurity.
  8. Set up a New Zealand post box or a private bag for your mail – you can do this online at New Zealand Post‘s website. Many organisations, including banks, will accept a post box or private bag as your official address until you find somewhere to live.
  9. Brush up on your lingo – even though they speak English, you need to review commonly used terms (such as “sweet as”, “hard case”, “biff” and “trundler”) if you want to follow a conversation with a Kiwi!
  10. Obtain insurance for the move over – not everyone realises that travel insurance doesn’t cover you when you’re moving. Read more about MigrateSafe.

Above all, adopt the Kiwi attitude of “no worries”; expect that you won’t be able to control everything; and that it will all fall into place!

Note: All of this is based on Nassim’s personal experiences, she doesn’t endorse any of the products listed above (or get paid to mention them!).

Top five tips to tailor your CV for Australia

Close up of a fountain pen nib against a white backgroundAs with any job search anywhere in the world, the vital thing is to write your CV in the style and format of the market you are applying to – not the market you’ve come from. Here are five things you need to watch out for:

1. Don’t forget your contact details

Name, phone number, postal and email address. You would be amazed how often these details are overlooked.

2. Keep it concise and to the point

Ask yourself – what do I do for a living? If you’re an engineer, for example, that should be the first thing on your CV. Aussies are a straightforward bunch and they like to know what you do and if you will be a good fit for the job they are advertising. A great way to construct your CV is to look at the advertisement and address some of its requirements up front. If they are looking for someone with a qualification and 5+ years experience, make sure your length of experience and qualification are on the first page of your CV and not buried further on.

3. Watch the length – about four pages is the norm

The broadly accepted UK standard is two pages, no more, while a typical South African CV can be anything up to 30 pages long and include a wealth of detailed information. The general rule down under is somewhere in between. Generally, we would not expect to see more than four pages, but as long as you are including concise and relevant information, it does not matter how long it is (within reason).

4. Keep it simple

Try and remember that while a flashing yellow border might be right up your alley, it may not be the personal preference of those reading your CV. Steer clear of fancy fonts and pictures (unless it is relevant to your application – all you aspiring models out there!).

5. Check the spelling and have a friend proofread it

Check, double check and then get someone else to check your spelling, punctuation and grammar. It can be very off-putting to read a CV with easily fixable spelling mistakes. Microsoft Word automatically picks up on spelling errors, which stand out like a beacon. Keeping your CV objective and relevant can be quite tricky. If you have someone able to give you honest, constructive feedback, use them. It is better to hear from a friend that something is not relevant or does not make sense than from a potential hiring manager.

Happy writing!

In the news: Australia, New Zealand and Canada

Letters of the alphabet cut out and pinned to a notice boardHave a look at how Australia, New Zealand and Canada have been making the news this week:

Why highly educated immigrant parents choose Canada

For anyone thinking about a move overseas, you might consider the work opportunities or the lifestyle the country offers – this article from the Globe and Mail shows how some parents make the move based on the educational chances offered to their children. Not surprisingly, as this article explains:

“Immigrant students in this country [Canada] outperform their native-born peers.

They post stronger scores on standardized math and science tests and are more likely to go on to postsecondary education. The same does not hold true for immigrants to other countries, including the United States and the United Kingdom.”

Rebuilding Christchurch

More than a year on from the Christchurch earthquake, in which around 60% of the historic city centre was damaged, Christchurch is still working hard to rebuild – even as it’s been rocked by more than 11,200 aftershocks since the very first earthquake struck in September 2010. Watch Earthquake Recovery Minister Gerry Brownlee talk about the challenges of rebuilding Christchurch in the wake of criticism about the slow pace of recovery. See how Christchurch looked in February 2012 with this BBC News article.

Demand for skilled workers grows in Australia

The Clarius Skills Index, released on 3 September, shows that the demand for skilled workers has risen to its highest level in 12 months, with a shortage of 2,300 skilled positions. Additionally, “the index, based on 20 occupations representing 2.6 million skilled Australian workers, found nine occupations were in shortage – an increase from two in the previous quarter”. The most in demand workers were engineers. Read the full article on The Australian.

Flight attendants confess

Anyone considering the long flight across the world to Canada, New Zealand or Australia may be interested to hear flight attendants’ top tips to stop passengers annoying them.

Australia mining: boom or bust?

Mining truck on the red sands of Australia against a blue skyThe Australian mining boom has dominated the press lately, both in the southern hemisphere and on a global level, polarising opinion over whether it really is booming or is bust. Having enjoyed an unprecedented surge of success, reflected in high salaries, a thriving economy and towns springing up to accommodate the high volumes of workers, fears are growing (or perhaps just media coverage) that Australia’s mining boom is slowing down. Here’s a look at what’s been in the news:

The mining bubble has burst…

It all seemed to kick off when Resources Minister Martin Ferguson announced that “You’ve got to understand the resources boom is over” – a bold statement that opened the floodgates to a rush of similar comments and fears.

The mining bubble is booming…

Yet, on the back of this came comments from Australia’s central bank chief saying there’s no sign the mining boom is over and that the resource-rich economy was growing at its potential (as reported by Reuters). This was swiftly followed up by Treasurer Wayne Swan assuring reporters that Australia still has a resources investment pipeline of half a trillion dollars and “That pipeline will be there creating wealth and in the future creating exports for Australia and we will see an export boom following this investment boom”. Business spending plans appeared to back this statement up.

So what’s going on?

Media around the world has been keen to weigh in with their thoughts, from the BBC to The Age. The opinion pieces show cautious optimism for the long-term impact of the resources projects planned in Australia – highlighting how it’s not all doom and gloom in Australia. If you’re interesting in finding out more, The Herald Sun has done a great breakdown of what’s happening with Australia’s mining boom.

In the news: Australia, New Zealand, Canada, migration & industry

Letters of the alphabet cut out and pinned to a notice boardHere’s what’s hit the news about Australia, New Zealand and Canada this week – including industry and migration updates.

Oil industry pay still rising worldwide

Data released by oilcareers.com and reported by Reuters show that “oil workers are enjoying strong growth in pay thanks in particular to a shortage of the most experienced engineers, a trend that shows no sign of easing.”

Headline stats include:

Average salaries by sector and region in oil and gas (in pounds sterling)

  • Australia 186,914
  • Canada 157,049
  • United States 125,722
  • Norway 103,665
  • Middle East 88,723
  • United Kingdom 78,288

Good times for all in boomtown Perth?

According to the BBC News, “Perth is Australia’s fastest-growing major city, in the state with the lowest unemployment. Average household income has risen 35% in five years.” But “though Perth is growing and getting richer, not everyone is earning a resources sector salary”. Read more about the two sides of the Perth story using the link above.

Canada celebrates its Come to Canada Wizard

Citizenship and Immigration Canada are celebrating – “One year after Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) launched the Come to Canada Wizard, the popularity of the Web tool continues to rise and is reaching new heights with over 1.6 million visits.” The website tool helps people determine if they’re eligible to live, work or study in Canada – find out more about it on CIC’s website.

Christchurch rebuild picks up pace

The latest data released by Statistics New Zealand shows that “building consents approved in Canterbury in the first half of 2012 valued almost the same as all consents issued last year”, highlighting how non-residential building activity is starting to grow in Christchurch. The New Zealand Herald has the full story.

Dads down under & other differences between the UK, NZ, Oz & Canada

This weekend, dads around New Zealand and Australia are preparing to be spoilt – Kiwis and Aussies celebrate Father’s Day on the first Sunday in September (might be a bit of a problem if your UK-based dad is used to getting Father’s Day love on the third Sunday in June).

So, what other things might you have to get used to if you swap a home in the UK for life in New Zealand, Australia and Canada?

Public holidays

You can wave goodbye to your UK spring and summer bank holidays – but move to New Zealand and you gain Waitangi Day, Anzac Day and Labour Day while certain areas of Australia enjoy Labour Day and Melbourne Cup Day too. Not forgetting that New Zealand and Australia are patriotic too – they even get Queen’s Birthday as a public holiday. Canada doesn’t do badly either with Canada Day, Labour Day and Thanksgiving Day.

‘isms’

By that we mean the little dialect differences between the countries. In the UK and Canada, every summer you drag out your flip-flops. In Australia, it’s your thongs (conjuring up all kinds of potentially embarrassing situations) and in NZ it’s your jandals. Should someone compliment you on your pants in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, they haven’t suddenly developed x-ray vision and you haven’t had an acute attack of forgetfulness – that’s their equivalent of trousers. While we’re on it, pack your gum boots for life down under (Wellington boots) and your runners for Canada (trainers). A pair of orange flip flops stuck into a beach

The seasons

Luckily, Canada’s in the northern hemisphere too so it’s easy to adjust to summer in June-August and winter in November-February. However, head down under and prepare to get Christmas on the beach and when you’d traditionally be enjoying some summer sunshine in the UK, to be embracing winter sports in Australia and New Zealand instead.

Time difference – or how not to annoy your mum

Judging by the phone in your pocket, bag or lovingly placed on the table in-front of you, you like to be connected. But catching your first midday wave in Oz or trying your first eggs bene brekkie in NZ is not the time to call your nearest and dearest back in the UK – unless you fancy rousing them from their slumber that is. However, if you come across your first moose in Canada you don’t have to wait too long to let your mum know – it’s only a four or five hour time difference.

Over to you

If you moved overseas, what do you reckon you’d miss most about home?

Canadian cities in world domination

Girl jumping with the Canadian flag against backdrop of blue skyNot only does it have Mounties, maple syrup and free-roaming bears, Canada’s now got another reason to be smug – three of its cities make up the world’s top five most liveable cities.

Dominating the top of The Economist magazine’s 2012 list were Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary. The survey ranks 140 cities based on a number of important factors, like health care, stability, culture and environment, education and infrastructure. The maximum score a city could receive was 100.

So how did Canada fare?

Well, Vancouver was the highest-ranked Canadian city, taking the third spot with a score of 97.3. Close on its heels was Toronto in fourth with a score of 97.2, followed up by Calgary in fifth place (tied with Adelaide in Australia) with 96.6.

With its reputation for an outdoorsy lifestyle, welcoming and friendly people and jaw-dropping natural landscape, it’s not really surprising Canada can compete on a global scale.

The full list

According to The Economist, the top 10 most liveable cities 2012 are:
1. Melbourne, Australia
2. Vienna, Austria
3. Vancouver
4. Toronto
5. (tie) Calgary and Adelaide, Australia
7. Sydney, Australia
8. Helsinki, Finland
9. Perth, Australia
10. Auckland, New Zealand

Over to you

What do you think – do you agree with this list? Are there cities you think should be in the top 10?

What is FIFO?

Fly in Fly Out – or FIFO as it is more commonly referred to – is a method of employing people for remote country locations which is very commonly used in Western Australia. As an alternative to relocating entire families to often remote locations, the employee is flown to the work site for a number of days, and then flown home again.

Why FIFO?

Employers prefer their workers to be FIFO as the cost of transporting employees to site is far less than it would be to build, maintain and develop long term communities. Employees may prefer the FIFO opportunity as their families are often reluctant to relocate to small towns in remote areas.

What should I expect?

Mine Workers in Bengalla

Mine Workers in Australia

Rosters dictate how long you are on site, and how long you are home. Most rosters offered are 4 weeks on site and 1 week at home – 4:1 however these rosters vary depending on the project and the site.

Usually a FIFO position involves working a shift of 10 hours each day for a number of continuous days. When on site, you will be supplied with all meals, accommodation, house-keeping – some camps also offer swimming pools, tennis courts, gyms, cable TV and unlimited internet as a way of attracting and retaining skilled staff.

Read on for more on what’s driving the industry here in Australia and how you can get your FIFO job:

(more…)

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