How Working Abroad Can Help Your Career

Working abroad is being recognised as a valuable asset to employees in increasingly competitive job markets. The White House recently held a summit with travel bloggers and digital outlets to discuss initiatives that would encourage American students to consider spending time studying or working abroad. Working abroad isn’t just for students though, many graduates and mature professionals are realising that time abroad can be an advantage in terms of career development.

Building Your Professional Experience

Whether you’re a medical graduate wanting to practise your skills in Dubai, a millennial looking for opportunities to advance in business in China, or an architect who wants to contribute to Bangkok’s skyline, there are opportunities out there.

A change of country offers opportunities to test skills in different ways and can often provide quicker career progression than in your home country. These experiences can expand your career options, enhance your abilities and be an excellent asset to your resume.

Those at the top of their game know the importance of facing new challenges to boost productivity, creativity and your ability to tackle unexpected changes and challenges in the future.

Is Working Abroad Important To Your Career?

When considering opportunities abroad, only pursue ones that are relevant to your career. Will the job abroad improve your professional network, help you to reach new clients, or give you access to more advanced job roles? Ask yourself how an opportunity will help you to advance and achieve your goals – and if it won’t then pass on it and keep looking.

There are endless career opportunities abroad, and looking for programs through your current college or workplace is a good place to start. If your current workplace is flexible, consider asking to work remotely while abroad for a short period of time. If this isn’t an option, look for programs sponsored by think tanks, non-profits and governments.

If you have already established a career in a specific field, niche job boards and sites like LinkedIn can be useful places to search for job vacancies in other countries.

How To Present Working Abroad On Your CV

How you market your time abroad on your resume depends on the work or program that you were part of. In many instances, working abroad will mean a new job that can be included in your previous work experience.

Highlight how the job abroad increased your professional knowledge, led you to take on new challenges and the achievements you made. Discuss projects you were involved in, and any clients or industry professionals that you networked with.

Look also at the soft skills which you gained that will apply to workplaces back home. Those who can successfully live abroad for extended periods of time will be better able to adapt to new environments, more comfortable with change, independent, dedicated and self-motivated.

Ron Stewart has worked in the recruitment industry for 30 years, having owned companies in the IT, Construction and Medical sectors. He is currently running the Jobs4Group, including Jobs4Medical.