The Hungarian Job Market

Prospects for expats

Ever since Hungary joined the EU in 2004, the country is becoming more and more popular for international enterprises to do business there. However, finding a suitable, well-paid job isn't that easy.

The unemployment rate has been rising for the last four years; it stood at 8% in 2008 Due to the economical slum which takes part nowadays through the whole world it is hard to find a job in Hungary as not even those who just finish the school trying to find jobs but also those who lost their jobs because of the economical situation.

In general, there is an oversupply of job seekers for certain professions - especially for marketing and economics graduates - but a lack of employees in the IT and technology sectors. For example, lots of expatriates are working as programmers since Hungary lacks workforce in this field.

Employment opportunities for expats

Besides the high demand for foreign employees in the IT and telecommunications sectors, the following positions (due to the necessity of knowledge of foreign languages) are also very popular: project manager, auditor and ACCA international certified accountant.

If you want to go to Hungary and are lucky enough to already be working for a company with operations in there, a transfer might be the easiest way. Another approach is to see if there are companies from your country operating in Hungary as they will probably be more interested in hiring you. Help desk positions are popular among foreigners as many do not require higher education, but English and an additional foreign language. Also, many expats make a living in Hungary by teaching English.

However, there is one stumbling block for foreigners wishing to work in Hungary: According to law, a non EU citizen cannot be employed unless the company can prove they cannot find a Hungarian to do the job. For EU citizens, this will prove less of a problem as legislation will give equal rights for labour mobility. For non EU citizens this may prove a problem with some potential employees as some Hungarian companies will be reluctant to go through the paperwork to get a work permits organized and the position approved by the authorities.

However, there is one stumbling block for foreigners wishing to work in Hungary: According to law, a foreigner cannot be employed unless the company can prove they cannot find a Hungarian to do the job. For EU citizens, this will prove less of a problem as legislation will give equal rights for labour mobility. For citizens of other nationalities this may prove a problem with some potential employees as some Hungarian companies will be reluctant to go through the paperwork to get a work permits organized and the position approved by the authorities.

Also note that it's very common to be employed as a subcontractor when taking on a job in the IT sector. However, most other professions and jobs, notably management positions, come with standard employment conditions and benefits.


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