How to Get a Job in the USA
Do you dream of living in America? There are plenty of reasons to make the move: a high standard of living, increased status, and a better pay scale.
It’s definitely a dream worth pursuing, but unless you plan to study in the USA, you’ll need to find a job in order to secure your visa. That won’t be easy, but we’ve collected some helpful tips to get you on the right path.
How to Choose the Right Visa
In order to increase your chances of securing a visa, you need to select the best one for your particular situation. Below are the most commonly used visas for work in the U.S.
The H-1B visa is for skilled workers with an advanced educational degree and a history of management-level positions in their home country. However, it also covers some entertainment professionals, such as models.
Choosing an H-1B visa is ideal if you hope to live and work in the United States indefinitely.
If your desire is to live in the States for only a short time, or else to get to America and explore your options for staying longer, look to the H-2B visa. It is for temporary or unskilled workers in non-agricultural positions.
Though the H-2B excludes agricultural workers, it can still be seasonal as the majority of employees in this category work in hospitality and tourism.
For temporary agricultural work, apply for an H-2A visa. The U.S. has great need of people to help with planting, tending, and harvesting crops.
One perk of life on an H-2A visa is that your American employer is required to provide you with housing and meals, as well as transportation to and from the work site.
Another visa for skilled workers, and perhaps the easiest to attain if you meet certain qualifications, is the L1 or intracompany transfer visa. This program allows foreign workers at companies with an American branch to simply transfer to the States and stay with their current employer.
However, your role at the company must be at the level of executive or management in order to be eligible for an L1.
Tips to Bolster Your Professional Qualifications
Even if you have an advanced educational degree, you may find that it doesn’t correspond directly with an American degree. So before you apply for your visa, determine whether additional education or a qualifying exam is necessary.
In any case, if you have been out of school for some time, it is wise to enroll in some continuing education courses in order to bolster your qualifications. The U.S. is looking for the best and brightest when it comes to the many thousands of applications it receives each year.
Finally, be sure to do plenty of research on what employers are currently looking for in candidates for positions in your industry. This can help guide your choices on new courses to pursue as well as ensure you speak the language of your preferred American industry.
Finding an Employer to Sponsor You
When it comes to your actual job search, you can be as prepared as possible and still struggle. The problem is that not so many U.S.-based companies are prepared to take on the expense and the red tape of sponsoring foreign workers.
Therefore, your best strategy is to seek out employers that have a history of sponsoring foreign workers. Another good idea is to research the industries in America that are currently experiencing labor shortages. Companies in those niches are more likely to go the extra mile to attract qualified workers.
The industries to explore right now include education, technology, telecommunications, media, and manufacturing. Great medical professionals are always in demand. Even if you don’t currently work in any of these industries, explore whether a case can be made for your skills to translate.
As mentioned earlier, if you are an executive or manager for a company that has a presence in the U.S., you could simply apply for an intra company transfer. It may still take some time for a relevant position to open up at the American office.
Keeping Track of the Timeline
It can be tricky to navigate the timeline of a visa application. You need to have a job offer in order to qualify for a visa, but many employers are going to want to see that you’re likely to qualify before offering a job.
Also, each visa has a different deadline for application, and these can change from year to year with no notice. In any case, it will take at least a few months to secure your visa, and in some cases, the process can stretch as long as a year.
Therefore, it is vital to be fully versed in all deadlines associated with the visa of your choice. For example, the H-1B selection starts up on April 1st of each year, so you’ll need to have all materials submitted for your application by then. If approved, you won’t get your visa until at least October 1st, which is the start of the next fiscal year.
Keep a detailed calendar for yourself as you navigate the process to make extra sure that you won’t miss any important dates. Doing so can set you back for a year or more.
A great resource for foreign nationals seeking work in the U.S. is the website run by the Department of Immigration. There you will find information on professional requirements, writing a resume, and evaluating a job offer. This is also a good place to learn about fees, deadlines, and qualifications for various visas.
The last piece of advice we can give you is to start saving money as soon as you begin your visa journey – or even sooner. While some types of visa require the employer to foot the bill, others assess fees directly to the applicant. But no matter how you go about it, moving is expensive. Be sure your savings are enough to support the move so that you don’t end up with a job offer that you can’t accept.
How to Get a Dream Job in Canada
If you’re wondering how to get a job in Canada, but not sure how, you’re in the right place. With focus and motivation, it’s possible to find the right job in Canada for you. But, it’s important to plan thoroughly.
These tips have been compiled for you based on our experience and lots of feedback from our loyal contributors. Please read them, understand them, and apply them, so you can plan for success and get a job in Canada.
Start off with this webinar from recruitment expert and Moving2Canada founder, Ruairi Spillane, about how to create the best resume for the Canadian jobs market:
1. How to get a job in Canada: It starts with your resume (or ‘CV’)
Ensure you have carefully read our resume format in Canada guide before sending your resume to employers in Canada. Poorly-written resumes — as well as resumes that list duties rather than personal or team achievements — will hinder you from making an impact and stop you from getting a job in Canada before even reaching the interview stage. Read these tips carefully, ensure you understand the objective, and apply these simple concepts to help your resume impress an employer. Your resume is the all-important first impression, so don’t fall short at this crucial first step when applying for jobs in Canada.
When you’re called for an interview, prepare using our article on the 57 interview questions you could be asked.
2. Be selective
In many professions, responding to online job ads is not a truly effective way to find jobs in Canada. Be selective in your job search. Do not blanket bomb 30 companies with the same resume and cover letter, as managers in companies talk to each other. This is a common mistake. Networking, cold calling, and informational interviews are much more effective ways to distribute your resume.
Check out our guide on creating targeting job applications.
3. Be enthusiastic
Always ensure you have a contact for the company and follow up within a week of submitting your resume to show your interest. “Thank-you” emails after an interview set you apart from other candidates applying for jobs in Canada. These marginal gains can add up to getting a job in Canada.
4. Get strong endorsements
It’s easier to find jobs in Canada if you have strong references. Try to obtain employment references from previous employers in your home country or other countries you have worked in, but only if relevant to the role.
5. Use the tools available to you
Leverage LinkedIn. This social media tool for professionals is effectively your online resume and network. Recruiters and employers are using this tool every day to source candidates for jobs in Canada.
Learn tips and tricks on how to be successful with LinkedIn.
6. Learn how to network
Effective networking allows you to gain useful insight and gain crucial contacts, both socially and professionally. Research networking events for your profession or ask contacts how best to meet more people in your field.
Remember, most available jobs in Canada never get advertised publicly — this is the so-called hidden job market — so don’t sit at home waiting for that job to come and find you. Networking is crucial to finding jobs in Canada. Read our networking in Canada article or tips on how to use informational interviews to expand your contacts. You need to get your name out there across your industry so that when a job comes up, you are in position to be called in.
Get the word out to all of the local contacts you have that you’re looking for work, and always look to build new contacts as it’s crucial to your success in a new city.
One way to expand your local network of contacts (and get that all-important Canadian work experience on your resume) is to volunteer. Visit GoVolunteer.ca to find volunteer opportunities where you can meet people across all sectors of society.
Keep an eye on our Facebook page and our Outpost Recruitment website as we post upcoming networking events that may be of interest.
7. Be open to help
Never turn down an offer of help when finding a job in Canada. Be proactive and determined. Send an email or pick up the phone to thank the person who offered you help or guidance.
8. Get accredited
Your profession may require your foreign qualifications to be accredited in Canada. Professions such as teaching, physiotherapy, nursing, and social work, among others, usually require additional accreditation. This process can take a while, so be prepared.
- Advice on getting your credentials to work in Canada.
9. Be confident – you deserve to be.
Moving to a new country is a challenge. Finding jobs in Canada when you have to build your support network from scratch is also tricky, but you can accomplish this too!
It’s important to believe in yourself throughout the process – and to make sure others know you believe in yourself too. Watch this useful TED Talk on how small adjustments to your body language can help.
10. And finally…
Remember our advice about not turning down help? Check in with your local library, as many host regular sessions with tips for getting jobs in your area.
For more help you can avail of right now, register and download our free Getting Started Guide magazine. You’ll be able to read our 6 Steps to Job Success in Canada – our proven techniques to help anyone finding jobs in Canada. You will also receive access to a Canadian-style resume and cover letter template!
Jobs in Canada for foreign workers
Foreign workers can, and do, get jobs in Canada — sometimes even before they arrive in Canada. It takes focus and motivation, but you — someone looking for jobs in Canada for foreign workers — can achieve success too.
Here are some more resources to help you win interviews and find jobs in Canada.
- Visit the Moving to Canada Jobs Board
- 57 interview questions you could be asked
- Adapting to the resume format in Canada
- How to master networking
- Canada Job Bank
Remember also that not all recruitment is done through formal interview processes. Find out how to use an informational interview as a tool to develop your network in Canada.
As a worker in Canada, you have the right to be treated fairly and with respect. Learn more about your rights as a worker in Canada and How to Get Canada Work Permit.
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