Whahooo! My visa has been approved and I am traveling to Sweden at the end of the week. This is such great news and I am very excited.
I went from months of this…
I ended up waiting three months for the work and residence visas to be approved. Depending on who you talk to, this is either a short amount of time or a long amount of time. The waiting time was supposed to have been shortened after some immigration reform in 2008 but there seem to be other snags in the process now.
In the end it took a great amount of political pressure and the CEO of the company really went to bat for me. This is discouraging because not every company can do that. Also, not every company can wait three, four, five months for an open position to be filled. Not every CEO knows someone at the Migration Board. And even though we had a giant “in,” at times it almost seemed like it worked against us (which is to say, government employees not wanting to be pushed). As I mentioned in a previous post, my application also got held up because we failed to get the union’s permission along the way and we had to hurry to do that at the end. In other words, we were not able to skip any steps or anything.
A reader of this blog asked how one goes about finding a job in Sweden. Here are 5 tips:
#1 It’s the usual story. Network, network, network. Tell anyone you know with the slimmest of connections to Sweden that you are looking for work.
#2 Learn Swedish. Many job announcements want you to be fluent in Swedish and English.
#3 Subscribe to job alerts at job websites (you can customize what sort of jobs you want to receive alerts about). For example, I receive a daily alert about Monster.com jobs located in Uppsala, Sweden. Sites I have used include:
#4 You can translate any job announcement into English (or your native language) using Google Translate. Either click the link right in Google Search to translate the page or paste the content into Google Translate directly.
#5 Create a spreadsheet and keep careful track of where you have applied and what the response was. Don’t give up! Keep trying!