One big concern I had when I accepted the offer from University of Turku, Finland was how to find a job once I am in Turku. I had already been working as a Senior Business Analyst in an IT and Software company back in Sri Lanka, by the time I received the offer. When I moved to Finland in August 2022, I had to resign from it.
When I came to Turku, I found that the job market, even if it is ICT related, is still quite competitive. I started applying to related jobs via LinkedIn etc. with my old CV but I soon realized the need for some guidance about the job market in Finland. Then, I started looking for available UTU career services in the university and found Rekry. Yayy!!
- Tip 1: Bookmark the Rekry (UTU Career Services) website.
Image 1: Rekry website (as of June 2023)
What is Rekry?
The site provides students of the University of Turku with career related information and guidance. You can apply to internal jobs published within the university and external jobs published by the companies. To do so, you will be required to create a profile, including your education level, related experience, and updated CV.
- Tip 2: Check the complete list of services offered by Rekry
Image 2: List of services offered by Rekry (UTU Career Services) for students (as of June 2023)
My focus was on getting proper personal guidance for my career in Finland. Therefore, I find the below list of 4 services of utmost importance.
Why are they important?
Because, in these 4 services, you can book one-on-one sessions with a UTU career specialist.
‘Hot 4’ services offered by Rekry (UTU Career Services)
Your CV and cover letter are critical components of your job application. They serve as your personal marketing materials and must convince potential employers that you have the necessary qualifications and experience for the role. By booking an appointment, you can receive certain valuable input on your CV. Also, note, you can either upload your CV when you are making the appointment, or you can email your CV to the career specialist directly well before the date of the appointment.
I, myself, was able to make some positive makeover to my CV with the tips I received during my CV clinic like shortening my CV to one page and adding a portrait photo to it. More personalized feedback based on your skills and accomplishments will be given by the career specialist.
If you have been invited to an interview and would like to rehearse your responses to common interview questions and obtain advice on the process, you can arrange an interview practice session. When making an appointment, it is required to include your application, CV, and a screenshot or link to the job posting, so that the relevant career specialist can offer a more suitable interview practice session.
Speaking with a career advisor can involve an exploration of your personal circumstances, inquiries about your professional aspirations and discussions about your employment. Rekry provides tailored career counseling services for students and recent graduates. Again, you are required to upload your latest CV
, at the time of booking an appointment.
The career specialist, with whom I had the discussion, provided me with several insights after analyzing my past job experience, my CV, and my education level. Those insights helped me fill in the gap of knowledge I had on the job market in Finland. I also learned how to make better job applications.
Planned job search course: feedback discussion
You can make an appointment and have a course feedback discussion with a career specialist. Here, it is required to upload your prospect job search plan, CV and the application.
- Tip 3: Visit Rekry’s page to book appointments.
Image 3: Appointment booking view (as of June 2023)
Planning your career during your studies can help you gain clarity about your career goals and aspirations. I, myself, did not start looking for a job immediately because it took me some time to adjust to the new setting and I had to focus more on my coursework
, at the beginning of the master’s program. However, I believe, if you plan early, you can acquire the skills and experience necessary for the career you want by seeking out relevant courses, internships, and extracurricular activities. It will help you to be more proactive in pursuing job opportunities and building a professional network. Most importantly, you can avoid settling for a job that doesn’t align with your interests or career goals.
- Tip 4: Read more about career planning during studies, career planning after studies, and finding part time jobs.
One thing I have heard frequently about the job vacancies here in Finland is that most of the job opportunities are not publicly advertised and are hidden from plain sight. Networking can provide access to these hidden job opportunities since it helps build professional relationships with people who work in your desired industry or occupation. Such relationships may provide you with insights on the job market, help you learn about different companies and industries, and lead to future job opportunities, references, and referrals.
- Tip 5: Explore if you are interested in startups and read about the power of networking in your Finnish career life.
These events often feature guest speakers, alumni, or other industry professionals who can provide valuable insights and advice on current job market trends and opportunities. It will expose you to different career paths and industries that you may not have considered before. Some career events and workshops may also provide job search support, such as resume and cover letter reviews, mock interviews, or job search strategy sessions. Also, it is a good place to build your network!
Rekry hosts workshops and events on job search strategies, networking, interviewing, and more. I have attended a few of them, all online, which gave certain insights about job opportunities.
- Tip 6: Check upcoming events on the websites of Rekry, Turku Business Region, and Shift Business Festival.
It will not be easy for every international student to get their hands on a proper job as soon as you relocate to Turku. Be patient and continue your efforts. All you need to have is an undying motivation and Rekry at hand!
And That’s me, while hiking Kurjenrahka National Park!
Here are some links to popular career sites in Finland, so you do not have to search again!