Austria is a German-speaking country in Central Europe, characterized by mountain villages, baroque architecture, Imperial history, and rugged Alpine terrain. Vienna, its Danube River capital, is home to the Schönbrunn and Hofburg palaces. It has counted Mozart, Strauss, and Freud among its residents. The country’s other notable regions include the northern Bohemian Forest, Traunsee Lake, and eastern hillside vineyards.
A convenient geographical location in the heart of Europe, economic stability for decades and a high standard of living make Austria one of the most attractive countries for labor migration. The country has a moderate level of unemployment (about 8%), average wages are comparable to German and Belgian, and local authorities and the population are quite loyal to labor migrants.
Austria is famous for its castles, palaces, and buildings, among other architectural works. Some of Austria’s most famous castles include Festung Hohensalzburg, Burg Hohenwerfen, Castle Liechtenstein, and the Schloß Artstetten. Many of Austria’s castles were created during the Habsburg reign.
Austrian culture has been greatly influenced not only by the Habsburg imperial family but also by its neighbors. Vienna has long been considered the music capital of Europe and is home to world-class music schools.
Austrian Labor Market Rules
Austria is characterized in general by the same approach in matters of migration policy, which is also practiced by other Western European states. Jobs here by default must be filled with local citizens and citizens of other EU countries. And only if it is impossible to hire an EU citizen (which the employer has yet to prove), a citizen of a “third country”, that is, for example, Ukraine or Russia, can be employed.
It is relatively easy to move to Austria except for scientists who are sufficient for this agreement with a local certified research institute. All the others must go through the whole procedure of legalization with proof of their relevance in the Austrian labor market and the impossibility of hiring a local resident.
To obtain a work permit, a foreign specialist must meet Austrian qualification requirements. There is even a special website for checking them – berufsanerkennung.at. Each administrative region of Austria has its own quota for foreign specialists, so the total number of foreigners employed in a certain part of the country during the year, in any case, should not exceed the statutory level.
You should not forget about the language issue. In most cases, the job will require proficiency in German or at least English at a level sufficient to fulfill the job duties. For many professions, a prerequisite for obtaining a work permit is the presence of certificates confirming proficiency in the language.
Types of Work Permits in Austria
A foreigner who wants to work in Austria must obtain permission from the state. For citizens of CIS countries, such permissions are of interest:
- EU Blue Card (Blue Card EU). It is issued to highly qualified specialists from “third countries” for a period of up to 2 years. Gives the right to work for a specific employer, who must first prove the impossibility of filling a vacancy by an Austrian citizen or a citizen of another EU country. The applicant must have a higher education, meet qualification requirements, sign a working contract for a year or more with a salary at least 1.5 times higher than the average annual indicators in Austria.
- Red-White-Red Card (RWR Card). It is issued to highly qualified specialists, representatives of deficient professions, graduates of Austrian universities, businessmen who run their own Austrian company, and hiring managers and top managers. The card is issued on condition that the applicant gains a certain number of points that are awarded for meeting various criteria (age, education, work experience, language skills, etc.) At the time of application, the applicant must have a contract with an Austrian employer.
Popular Professions and Salaries in Austria
In terms of wages, Austria is one of the leaders of the European Union. This year, this figure is 2.2 thousand euros per month after taxes. There is no official minimum wage in Austria, but the government can apply the minimum allowable rates for individual industries.
On average, after deducting taxes, Austrian residents make the following income:
- Doctors – from 3 thousand euros;
- Engineers and skilled builders – from 2.3-2.5 thousand and more, depending on qualifications;
- Office staff – 2-2,2 thousand euros;
- IT-personnel – from 1.8-2.2 thousand,
- Managers of IT-projects and highly qualified IT-specialists – 3.5-4 thousand euros.
- Low-skilled personnel in the workplace and in the service sector from 1.2–1.3 thousand euros.
Successful job search in Austria depends on the city and the qualifications of a foreigner. First and foremost, of course, one should pay attention to the major cities and tourist centers – Vienna, Salzburg, Tyrol, Graz, Innsbruck.
Currently, the Austrian labor market is experiencing a shortage of engineers in the field of mechanical engineering, metallurgy and energy, skilled construction workers (especially roofers), certified nurses and certified social workers in the field of care for the elderly and sick. In addition, there is seasonal demand for support staff at numerous ski resorts and in agriculture.
General Job Search Engines and Classifieds in Austria
http://www.jobsinvienna.com : If you are an English speaker who is interested in doing something other than teaching English, check out Jobs in Vienna. They have multiple job opportunities across a number of different disciplines.
https://jobs.derstandard.at/jobsuche : Der Standard is the job search arm of the newspaper Der Standard.
https://www.karriere.at : Simple, clean interface that has a bunch of job vacancies posted.
https://www.monster.at : The Monster job search brand has been around since pretty much the dawn of the internet era.
https://www.careerjet.at : I’m sure you’ve heard of Career Jet. They have job search options for Austria.
https://at.indeed.com : The Austrian version of the big U.S. job search site Indeed.com.