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Nine tips for finding a job in Norway

Nine tips for finding a job in Norway
Photo: Green Chameleon on Unsplash
The process of finding work as a newcomer to Norway can be time consuming and lead to a number of dead ends. But don’t be discouraged, writes Agnes Erickson.

There are plenty of methods to try and some of them can lead to making new friends. Here are a few tips that are specific to Norway and finding work. 

The right type of CV

Your CV tells potential employers a bit about who you are and provides them with important information like your education and work experience.

The Norwegian Labour and Welfare administration (NAV) notes that when writing a CV for employers in Norway, it’s advisable to keep things short and relevant: one to two pages maximum.

State your personal information such as your name and email and telephone number at the top, followed by your education, work experience, and extra courses or skills you have at the end. Keep it clean and use a normal font and size.

Remember, it is important to make your CV most relevant to the job you are applying for, so it may require a few adjustments before sending it in.  Get a family member or friend to proofread your resume before sending it into a company or making it available online. This is a future employer's first impression of you so try your best to make it error free. 

It is common for employers to ask for references in Norway. You can list them directly on your CV or wait until you are asked. Either way, have them readily available in case you find a job opportunity quicker than expected. 

Use your contacts and hobbies

Networking is key in this country! This is true for both Norwegian speakers and non-Norwegian speakers.

Utilise your existing relationships to make new contacts. Using your hobbies as a springboard could be an excellent way to get started. If you are interested in squash for example, become a member of the local club and initiate matches with other members. Not only will you be more relaxed in making connections because you’re doing something you love, but you’re also opening the door for job opportunities. 

If you are a student

People granted study permits in Norway are allowed to work part-time for up to 20 hours per week in addition to their studies. That is increased to full-time work during holidays.

As the University of Oslo points out, job opportunities may be limited for students without knowledge of Norwegian. But that doesn’t mean there’s no hope at all.

READ ALSO: Do you really need to speak Norwegian to work in Norway?

Luckily, you don’t have to look too far if you are a student on the hunt for a job. Your campus is most likely an excellent job searching arena. There are many jobs based on campus that are available just for students. They’re convenient and likely easier to attain if it is a position strictly available for those who are studying. 

Familiarising yourself with your campus’s career centre can provide a great resource. Not only do they post jobs and host career fairs, they can also help you tailor your resume and offer interview help. 

Finn and other job recruitment websites

Finn.no is by far the most popular website used for job hunters in Norway. There is no English version, but it is easy to navigate even if you don’t understand Norwegian. If you type in your desired job in English or Norwegian in the search key, it will most likely show up.

The site may be in Norwegian, but there are job listings posted in different languages and positions available in other working languages besides Norwegian.

Other job recruitment sites worth trying are jobzone.no and arbeidsplassen.no.

According to NAV, arbeidsplassen.no is where you will find the most complete overview of vacancies in all of Norway. 

Municipality websites

There are a lot of public jobs within municipalities (local administrations) that only get posted on the municipality’s own website. Oslo Municipality has over 50,000 employees and promotes a broad range of available positions on its jobs page. This is not just particular to Oslo. Many municipalities choose to only advertise certain jobs through their own websites. 

Keep your CV on the public setting

When you make an account with job recruitment websites like Finn and Arbeidsplassen, make sure and have a CV uploaded or filled out along with the rest of your account details. This makes for a quicker and more efficient job application process and comes with another bonus: many recruitment websites, like the two listed above, have the option of making your CV public or private.

If you make your CV public, then you are more available for job recruiters to find you!  A lot of companies will hire recruitment agencies to find the best possible candidate for them so be public with your CV.

Company websites

Companies sometimes take a while to advertise a new job opening. You may have a better chance if you make contact before a listing has been posted. Even if they do not have an available position, you have put your name and CV in the right place, making you more memorable for future positions. Perhaps you can even get a dialogue started with an associate working there.

Any response is better than no response! If you get a message back saying there are no current openings, respond with your appreciation for the update and take the chance to reassure them on why you are the perfect candidate.  

Talk to people

Talk to your friends, neighbours, the person you were chatting about the weather with on the bus. Be vocal about your hunt for work. If people are aware you are looking for work, they will naturally think of you if they hear of an opportunity. There is no taboo or shame in this country in admitting that you are arbeidsledig or available for work. If people see that you are actively searching for a position, most are willing to help.

Social Media

Social media has become a major player in the job-hunting game in many countries and this goes for Norway's society as well. Check your Facebook for specific groups posting available jobs, including on groups like English Speaking Jobs in Norway, Babysitting and tutoring in Oslo, and Jobb i Oslo.

Linkedin is also a popular website for both employers and employees in this country. And just like in your personal life, make it known in your online presence that you are looking for a job.

READ ALSO: What are the perks of working in Norway?

Jobs in Norway

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