Did you know that ‘jobs in Spain for English speakers” became one of the most searched keywords for our visitors? Some of them already started or are about to onboard for their new international jobs in Barcelona. There’s a very solid reason behind that: Cross-border job seeker mobility has been increasing rapidlyafter the recession of the global pandemic and the second quarter of 2022 became the hiring peak for many international companies. This is why many professionals in Europe who are looking for a new career challenge are typing “English-speaking jobs abroad” if they are not looking in the local languages of the country they would like to move to or for jobs in their native languages.
Let’s now talk about where people are looking for English-speaking jobs in Europe and how to find the best opportunities.
Top English-speaking countries in Europe
There are approximately 50 English-speaking countries in Europe including the ones where English is the predominant language. Overall, the English language knowledge in Europe is quite high. In fact, a majority of Europeans report being able to hold a conversation in English. Therefore, it is easier to encourage mobility within Europe than anywhere else.
As a consequence of the mobility and cross-border markets of global companies, there are many opportunities to work in Europe with English. Many multinational companies with operations in Europe require English speakers for a variety of positions. Some popular choices among English language jobs include customer service, teaching English as a foreign language, and working in the hospitality industry.
Ireland - The Emerald Isle is renowned for its friendliness, and this extends to the workplace. English is the first language of the majority of the population, so you'll have no problem finding a job where you can use your native tongue.
Malta- Malta is a small island nation in the Mediterranean Sea. English is one of the official languages and it's a great place to work if you're looking for an English-speaking job abroad.
Cyprus- Cyprus is a popular tourist destination, and English is widely spoken on the island due to its historical connections and education system. You can easily find a job in the tourism industry, forex or in any other sector where English is used.
Luxembourg- Luxembourg is a small country in Europe, but it's a well-known financial hub hosting many big company headquarters. English is the primary language of business as well as French and German.
The Netherlands- People of the Netherlands are known for their English fluency even though they appreciate speaking Dutch with new learners. As the country attracts many tourists and startups, it is safe to say that finding an English-speaking job would not be a big concern.
Belgium- As the de facto capital of the European Union, Belgium stands out as a small country of international opportunities. English is a common language in business alongside French, Flemish, and German.
The list can be continued with the Scandinavian countries such as Denmark, Sweden, and Norway where English is widely spoken due to high education levels and immigration policies.
Can I live in Spain or Portugal if I only speak English?
As Barcelona and Lisbon became popular destinations for European job seekers we get this question a lot. The answer is yes! In fact, according to EF Education’s English Proficiency Index, Portugal is in the top 10 English-proficient countries in the world, while Spain is 33rd with an intermediate score in proficiency.
However, finding a country with a higher-level English proficiency does not necessarily mean that it should be your first choice when looking to move abroad for a job. Instead, checking the number of international openings on job boards and contacting international recruitment agencies to get more information on the market can give you a better idea. For instance, even though Spain is relatively lower on the list for English proficiency, in Barcelona English-speaking population is higher than in other cities and quite a high ratio of jobs actually require English proficiency as the primary or secondary language. You can easily find jobs in IT, Marketing, or Finance in Barcelona with English.
Similarly in Lisbon, as the international market is growing the demand for language speakers is increasing. Even though the volume of opportunities for only English-speaking professionals might be lower in Lisbon than in Barcelona you will find a great portfolio of opportunities if you speak another European language at a native-like level or even only in English if you have time and the right network.
You want to move to Portugal? Find out all about the Top In-Demand Jobs and the economic situation in Portugal here.
How to find an English-speaking job in Europe?
Considering all the information given above you probably already figured out that there are many ways to find an English-speaking job in Europe. One way is to search online job boards or company websites for open positions. Another way is to contact companies directly and inquire about English-speaking job openings. Finally, many recruitment agencies like Blu Selection specialise in finding employment for English speakers in Europe.
Some places where English is not an official language but where English-speaking jobs may be available include international organisations; multinational corporations operating in global markets; embassies and consulates; tourist destinations; and language schools.
Read more about: 10 Best Pieces of Advice You Need Before Going to Work Abroad
Search online job boards and recruitment agencies
Many online job boards, such as Indeed, Monster, and Glassdoor, list language-specific job openings in Europethat focus on English-speaking jobs in non-English-speaking countries.
There are many recruitment agencies that specialize in finding employment for English speakers in Europe who also post their offers on job boards as well as their own websites. Some companies may not advertise open positions but they use recruiters to headhunt for these positions or may be willing to hire English speakers for specific roles. Therefore, it's always a good idea to get in touch with a recruitment agency and get right to the source of international jobs abroad.
Find a job abroad
Network with other English-speaking communities who live in the country
Attend industry events or connect with professionals in your field to learn about job openings. Join expat group, people there may have information about companies that are looking for English-speaking employees just like themselves. Make sure you check with your local English language school as they may have information about companies that are looking for English-speaking employees as well. If English is your first language or you are certified to teach English, many individuals and organizations in Europe are looking for English teachers.
If you are planning to move to Barcelona or are already there, the site "Barcelona Expat Life" might help answer all your questions.
Be flexible, patient, and stay positive
There are many opportunities for English speakers in Europe, but being open to different types of jobs and locations will increase your chances of finding employment. Don’t forget that the job search process can take time, so be prepared to continue your search for more than just a month. In general, the job search can be challenging, but staying positive and persistent will eventually lead to success.
Are you ready to kickstart your job search in Europe with recruitment experts who happen to be expats as well? Here we are, ready to help you land your new career challenge with your language skills.