There are always some practicalities when moving to work abroad. If you are heading to Finland for working or searching a job, these tips are for you!
Finding a job
Many of the job opportunities are so called hidden jobs, which means they are not advertised as an open position. In many organizations a task is fulfilled if a suitable person walks in through the door and happens to offer his or her talent for the organization. Read more on how to find a job in the hidden job market here.
Residence Permit and necessary registrations
You need a residence permit to work, start a business or study in Finland, unless if you are a citizen of the EU, Liechtenstein, Switzerland or the Nordic countries. If you are from these countries, you don’t have to worry about the residence permit.
Otherwise you must already have a job in Finland in order to be granted a residence permit for an employed person. You must apply it in advance while still in your country of origin. If you did not do this already in your home country, apply for a residence permit as soon as possible at your local police department in Finland. Residence permit is needed if you want to stay in the country longer than three months. Remember that visa does not give you the right to work in Finland, except in some special cases.
If you are planning to stay in Finland at least a year, also register your residence and submit a notification of move at the local register office.
If you are a citizen of the EU, Liechtenstein, Switzerland or the Nordic countries and planning to stay in Finland longer than three months, you must register your residence. You can do the registration at the police department of your Finnish municipality of residence.
Citizens of Nordic countries must submit a notification of move within seven days of the date of the move. You can submit the notification to the local register office of your municipality of residence.
You can find the worker’s residence permit application here.
Important things about employment
When you find a job, always make a written employment contract. It should contain at least your duties, salary, working hours and the duration of contract. It should also contain the manner of determining annual holiday, the period of notice and the grounds for determining it and the applicable collective agreement. In the collective agreement you find collective terms and conditions determining the minimum level that your employer must comply with.
In Finland most employees belong to a trade union. You can also join one. Members of trade unions get for example unemployment security, legal advice and other support in employment-related matters. Trade unions also negotiate collective agreements for employees.
Read more about employment matters here.
You must apply for a tax card at your local tax office, and give it to your employer. Your employer needs the tax card in order to withhold the taxes from your salary.
Demand always a payslip for your work and check that all your work is registered on your tax card. This is highly important in preventing grey economy activities.
For the tax card you need a Finnish personal identity code. You can get it at the local tax office at the same time when applying for the tax card, if you are staying in Finland less than a year. If you are going to work here longer, you must obtain it at the local register office.
Read more about taxation here.
Other matters to take into account
Remember also to take care of other necessary matters when moving abroad, like taking insurances, opening a bank account and finding an apartment. Get to know the country’s culture and maybe learn some Finnish.
Read more info about moving to Finland here.