Professional emigration - Part 1 - The problem of chicken and eggs and how to deal with it, as well as debunking myths

Hello, Habrausers.

With this post I would like to start a cycle (if time permits and it will be interesting to the audience) about professional emigration, especially without reference to the employer.

It is no secret that many residents of Russia, due to various well-known circumstances, wish to relocate to another country. For programmers, scientists, to a lesser extent, doctors, this is easier than the rest.

The scenario until 2008 was usually like this - you have reached a good level in the profession and knowledge of English, posted a CV on and after several telephone interviews and invitations to face-to-face interviews. Then, dancing with a visa, moving and working in a new place.

However, even in the pre-crisis times, this was not going smoothly, and now even more so. The reason is simple - the population of democracies requires governments to restrict access to the labor market for foreign workers, so the employer can either hire a limited number of foreigners, or strain hard and / or spend money or wait while applying for a permit to hire a foreigner. For these chores, he will pay the employee a salary below the market, and the employee will have to be super loyal to his slave ... to the employer until he receives a residence permit - a work visa is usually tied to the employer. Obtaining a work visa without an invitation to work is also impossible. There is no visa without work, there is no work without visa - chicken & egg problem.

However, there is a solution to this problem - you need to move to countries that have an independent professional emigration program. The essence of the program is that an invitation from the employer is not required, but it is necessary to convince the official that you can engage in highly skilled work for the benefit of the local economy, and not select work from the average skilled local population. This is done by collecting the required points, the rules are everywhere their own and often change.

Countries with such a program are the UK , Canada , Australia , New Zealand . Less well known are Denmark , the Isle of Man and Hong Kong . Going to run a similar programAustria and (separately) the European Union . Unfortunately, programmers can no longer get to the UK or Canada through these programs. However, with the improvement of the economic climate, the reopening of doors is expected.
Edit : Thanks to Cancel for the amendment , you can still catch up to Canada under the regional program.

There are a lot of myths on the topic of emigration, from which I would like to protect you, I will start with the simplest ones:
  • It is enough to buy real estate in a new country and a residence permit in your pocket . I haven’t seen anything like it, if anyone knows examples and can refer to the primary sources - write.
  • The main thing is to find a job, and everything else will follow. Work is important, but you need to clearly understand that your goal is the citizenship of your chosen country (we will leave aside the seliger-patriotic songs). This is now you - a valuable specialist, and now look at those who are now over 50, who can solder a TV from radio components from scratch or write by heart in machine codes, only their knowledge is not needed by anyone and if they offered them abroad, now would go home. But if you have a passport, then you will not have to return to your homeland under old age and get used to its realities again. One must clearly understand what leads to citizenship and what does not. For example, the Tier2 ICT UK work visa does not entitle you to a residence permit or switch to another category, no matter how much you work for it, Tier2 gives so far, but the law can be changed at any time, including for those already I arrived. And it is unlikely that your new employer will focus on this. Therefore, before you touch the suitcase, you should have a clear plan for obtaining a residence permit and then citizenship. How many years and under what conditions will you have to wait for this or that status? In addition, you need to find out what decisions the immigration authorities of the country of your dreams made and how it affected those who had already arrived.
  • It is enough to come on some kind of visa, and there, on the spot, we'll figure it out . The most dangerous misconception is that you risk spending years of your life in hard work (the natives do light work), then leave with nothing.
  • Going to the "second tier" countries is easier . Unfortunately not. Usually the labor market is less, the attitude towards foreigners is, let's say, more wary, the language is special (if you didn’t succeed with the “H1B slave visa” in the USA, you can go to Australia, Canada, New Zealand or the UK, the language is almost the same, and where will you go after learning Czech, Danish, or even German or French?) and usually wait longer for citizenship.
  • My friend successfully became a citizen of% CountryName% five years ago, I will go to him, I will do the same . Immigration law changes all the time, almost always for the worse, you cannot enter the same river.
  • I will find a good immigration lawyer and I will succeed . The lawyer is not interested in the result, but in the payment. You, and no one else, should know immigration law. Immigrant forums will probably help you more, although each answer is worth checking out.
  • To go abroad, you must be a Nobel laureate . No, you just need to study many sources of information, develop a plan and act.
  • Now I’m not ready because (add your reason yourself), and in five years I’ll go. The faster you pack, the better. There is a global tendency to close doors for immigrants, and the older you are, the more difficult it is to adapt and learn a language.

Now the most interesting, in my opinion, links:

Please, if you know more countries with independent immigration programs or interesting links - write.

About the author - I moved from Russia to the UK three years ago, I work for a company whose name is familiar to most on Habré.

PS Dear Habr’s administrators, well, finally make the IT immigration hub already. See how many posts about this topic, but no hub.

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