For most of us who have lived here in Madrid a while, we know that finding a job isn’t always easy. When I moved to Spain in 2014 the unemployment rate was a staggering 25% but fast forward 5 years and that number has nearly been cut in half to around 14% today. In order to combat the high costs of labor, many companies have resorted 6 month temporary contracts. If you aren’t one of the lucky ones that already has a job when they arrive, this can make it tough for an expat looking to establish a new life or break-in to a new career.
Salaries are much lower around half of what you would make in the US or a two thirds in the UK on average so you will need to keep an open mind because despite the lower salary, you can lead a very comfortable life with a range of benefits that come from full-time employment.
Be proactive with your job search. Relying on job sites and LinkedIn won’t get you very far and make it very hard to stand out from the crowd. Focus more on local ads and be willing to go in-person to visit potential companies you are interested in. Even if they don’t have positions posted you would be surprised by the opportunities that arise from a face to face meeting.
Learn Spanish if you want a full-time job! English speakers are able to find jobs reliant on tourism in the big cities and coastal hotspots but you won’t find a lot of full-time opportunities without it. Not only does it show that you are committed to your position long-term, but the majority of co-workers and day to day interactions are going to be made much easier if you can communicate. There are also ample opportunities for bilingual speakers in customer service, hospitality, sales and other customer facing positions here in Spain.