Finding work overseas

Working overseas can be advantageous in many ways. You can gain practical skills in a different environment, be exposed to diverse cultures, and make contact with a wide range of people.

It can also demonstrate your ability to be independent, your willingness to take on new challenges and your ability to work with people from a variety of backgrounds. These are all assets that will enhance your CV.

Deciding where to go

You may have a particular area of the world in mind when you are considering overseas experience.

Things to consider:

  • Culture - is this something you would be able to cope with and enjoy? For example, you may feel more able to adapt to an Asian culture, or you may want to challenge yourself by stepping outside your comfort zone.
  • Language – are your language skills developed enough to live and work in the country of your choice?
  • Visa requirements – do you need a visa to work in the country? Are there any restrictions on the sort of work you can do and for how long you can work? (You’ll need to look at embassy websites for the country you want to work in to find the answer to these questions. Try the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Diplomatic and Consular list).

Students may choose casual, voluntary or temporary work or a graduate position when working overseas. With graduate positions, you’ll be competing with graduates from the country you want to go to, so you should identify the extra skills, qualities and experience you have to offer.

A number of graduates choose to work in New Zealand initially (perhaps for an international company) for a year or two before working overseas. Some international companies offer overseas secondments to employees who want to travel and see the world.

Resources covering many countries

  • Prospects country-specific information
    These pages, written for UK graduates wanting to work overseas, provide info on the job market, language requirements, job application process, contacts, links to further information for around 52 countries, and more.


  • myfuture
    Australian government careers site including useful info on work and employment.
  • Graduate Careers Australia
    Australian graduate careers and employment website with career planning information, resources and research. Visit their Graduate Opportunities site for their job board and additional information for job-seeking students and graduates.
  • Careers OnLine (COL)
    Australian job search and career development website.
  • Australian Government - Department of Home Affairs
    Includes information on the right to work in Australia.
  • Job Outlook
    A careers and labour market research information site. Job Outlook is an initiative of the Australian Government Department of Jobs and Small Business.


  • Pacific Island Jobs
    Online job portal for sustainable development opportunities in the Oceania region. You’ll also find details about volunteering, internship and scholarships.


United Kingdom and Europe

United States of America and Canada

  • CareerOneStop
    American careers and job vacancy website. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor.
  • HigherEd360
    Advertises opportunities available at colleges and universities across the United States and Canada.
  • Riley Guide
    Curates online employment opportunities and job resources.

International organisations

International working holidays

  • Raleigh International
    A charitable organisation which enables young people to grow volunteer on team-based community, environmental and adventure projects.