Recently named the Happiest Country in the World, Norway is one of Northern Europe’s most popular working destinations. The Scandinavian country is one of the wealthiest in the world. Its population of about five million enjoys one of the highest GDP per capita and hourly wages worldwide. Still, a good economic situation is not the only reason Norway is known for. Its beautiful coastline of fjords and islands stretches over ten thousands of kilometers and is on the bucket list of many nature lovers.
Where to find jobs as a graduate in Norway
Industries: The oil from the North Sea, and gas and petroleum fields are major cornerstones in the country’s economy. Other major industries are fishery, pulp, and paper, forestry, mining, manufacturing, and shipping.
Cities: Norway’s capital is Oslo where the Nobel Peace Prize is given out each year. The city has a great importance in terms of maritime technology in Europe and is home to approximately 2000 companies within this sector.
Our Top Tips
- While most job seeking graduates focus on the capital Oslo, the second largest city Bergen is the national center for education, tourism, and finance. It offers job opportunities in aquaculture, shipping, offshore petroleum industry, and subsea technology.
- Once only available at multinational companies, internships are now seen as a general entry point for university talent, also to small and medium-sized companies. Make sure to search and apply for an internship early, as last-minute spots are often hard to get! (If you can read Norwegian, this internship guide may be for you).
Preparing your Norwegian CV and cover letter
Our Top Tips
Your cover letter should be personalised and tailor-made for the position - but not longer than 1 page. Remember that your work experience is on your CV, so no need recount it all in the cover letter.
Your CV should be easy to read and not too cluttered - focus the work experience that is relevant for the position you are applying for. For a graduate in Norway, the ideal CV is maximum 2 pages long.
By the way, a CV in Norway doesn’t necessarily have to read “CV” in the title. Some Norwegian career experts recommend putting your name in the title instead.
Getting in touch with employers in Norway
Our Top Tips
Language: As in all of Scandinavia, it is extremely easy to get around Norway without speaking the local language - English is good enough to start. However, learning and being able to communicate in Norwegian will give you a competitive edge in your job search (and also make your social life a lot richer). You can start practicing by reading our tips for successful job applications in Norwegian.
The job interview: It’s good to be self-confident and highlight your personal strength in job interviews. However, with Norwegians, you shouldn’t overdo it. As most Scandinavian’s, they put emphasis on collaboration and frank conversations - the job interview is your chance to show these qualities in you, rather than turning it into a “me, me, me”-show.
Contacting companies: According to some research done in Norway, 6 out of 10 open positions never get published in Norway. Therefore, it’s important to network to be kept informed about job opportunities. You can also try out an unsolicited application (“åpen søknad” in Norwegian).
Working and living in Norway
Our Top Tips
- For finding visa information: Norwegian Directorate of Immigration
- For finding housing: Portals such as Finn, Hybel or dedicated Facebook groups
- For starting another university education: Study in Norway
- For a chance at understanding their dry sense of humor: A Frog in the Fjord Blog or Heart my backpack
Held og lykke!
P.S.: Do you have other countries on your wishlist for work life? Let us know!