Working in Spain
Working in Spain is a great way to experience a high quality of life in a great climate whilst experiencing a distinct culture. Despite being seen as a place to retire to, Spain has great options for those who want to really not just their work but also their lifestyle outside of work. Below you can find an overview of what you can expect to find if you were to move to Spain.
Spanish Job Market
Although Spain was one of the countries hit hardest by the global financial market of 2008 it is now beginning its recovery. The growth rate of GDP is one of the highest in Europe meaning that finding work is becoming easier. It is common for people in to start working in Spain in consultation with their current job therefore finding a job is not an issue but something that it may be important to bear in mind is that in bigger cities it such as Barcelona, Madrid, Seville and Valencia it will be easier to find work, many large companies are based in Barcelona and Madrid and offer English speaking jobs. Outside of these larger cities there are less jobs. Furthermore the level of English people speak here is worse.
Due to the fact that Spain is also a member of the EU there is freedom of movement of goods and labor meaning it is not necessary to apply for a work permit.
In Spain you are more likely to be employed through someone you may know than in the UK where there tends to be a formal employment process.
Working in Spain
The working culture is differs to the UK for several reasons. The first noticeable difference is that many Spanish companies still stick to the famous siesta. Often siesta takes place from 14:00 to 17:00, so the work days are very long, sometimes until 19:00.
Furthermore Spanish companies tend to be more autocratic and make decisions from the top down so be aware that when it comes to negotiations you need to be speaking to the boss.
Another important Spanish business custom is that planning isn’t taken as seriously as in the UK, there is a belief that no-one can predict the future therefore the strategy is the focus of the managing director or owner and they should use their instinct.
Once you have found a job, it is important to apply for an NIE number. Your employer is also uses this number to sign up for the social security authority, something which is vital when it comes to Spanish healthcare. Although it is mandatory some employers may not take it as seriously as others although it is still important to have as it is necessary to have to do many things in Spain.