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Job seeking

Working abroad and international job search resources

If you're attracted to the idea of working in another country there are a few things you should consider for your chosen location or locations.

  • Research the local labour market.
  • Find out where to find and apply for jobs.
  • Learn what it may be like to work in that location, including tax arrangements.
  • Know visa and language requirements.
  • Find out how to get your OU qualification recognised.

Prospects is a good place to start your research.


The OU cannot advise you on how Brexit may affect your status or career plans. However, the United Kingdom having left the European Union could affect you if:

  • you're an OU student or graduate with British nationality considering career opportunities within the EU
  • you're an OU student or graduate and citizen of an EU country outside the UK but currently resident or planning to reside in the UK

The UK government provides regularly updated information about current policy and changes as a result of an EU exit.

International recognition of your OU qualifications

It’s a complex process to get official recognition of qualifications gained outside the country in which you wish to work or study. Each country has its own legal and administrative framework, with which you must comply. There are also supra-national directives which often add to the complexity. This is a fast-changing area, and so any advice is temporary.

Only seek academic recognition if you need official recognition for your career outside the UK. The process can be slow and costly.

Looking to work in the private sector

It is not always necessary to seek official recognition of your degree, but you should check with prospective employers whether or not this is required. Many international organisations employ OU graduates and understand that an OU degree is equal in academic standard to a degree from any other British university. Smaller employers may be less familiar with the OU and in these cases you might need to provide additional explanatory information.

Looking to work in the public sector or academia

If you wish to use your degree to work in the public sector or gain entry to another academic institution, you will often have no choice but to seek official academic recognition. Check this before you start your studies since the OU is unable to guarantee recognition in all circumstances.

Needing professional body membership or status

Your degree might not always be enough and you may also need professional body membership or professional status, for example, Chartered Engineer jobs. In such cases, you will need to find out if your chosen degree will allow entry to the next qualifying stage. This could include additional professional examinations and/or a period of accredited work experience.

International job search engines and directories

These are a few job search engines to help you get started.



  • Job Rank

    Employment directory web rankings of job websites in 200 countries.

  • Exec Appointments

    Executive-level job search website offering worldwide opportunities.

  • iHipo

    International jobs and internships searchable by industry and location.

  • StepStone

    Worldwide network of recruitment agencies.

Last updated 1 year ago