How to Find Work in Austria (With Job Requirements)

Updated 23 March 2023

If you want to work abroad, one country you can consider moving to is Austria. There are careers in a variety of industries available there, so you can find one that suits your skill set and experience. Learning more about the available opportunities and requirements to secure a job abroad can help you decide whether to move to Austria.

In this article, we describe what it is like to work in Austria, discuss the factors to consider when moving there, list the different work permits available to Indian citizens, tell you how to secure a job, and explain the skills Austrian employers may be looking for in foreign candidates.

What It Is Like To Work In Austria?

Work in Austria can vary according to your role and employer, but generally, you can expect to work eight hours a day from Monday to Friday. Some jobs allow you to work 10-hour days across four days a week to create a more flexible schedule. Others require you to work Saturdays as well, but you can earn an overtime pay rate of 1.25 times your normal rate for anything over 40 hours per week. As of March 2023, employers can ask you to work up to 60 hours per week, but you are allowed to refuse anything over 50 hours.

Austria has 13 paid public holidays a year that you can enjoy. If you work from Monday to Saturday, you are entitled to 30 days of paid annual leave. After 25 years of service, you receive an additional six days of leave. If you work from Monday to Friday, you are entitled to 25 days of paid annual leave. Your paid holiday entitlement starts once you complete your first six months of work. Here are some other entitlements you may have:

  • Women are entitled to 16 weeks of paid maternity leave

  • Men who exclusively dedicate time to taking care of their children within 91 calendar days of their birth are entitled to a family time bonus

  • Parents are entitled to take leave until their child turns two

  • Employees are entitled to six weeks of paid sick leave

  • Employees can take between two to twelve months of unpaid leave to take care of sick children or family members

  • Jury duty leave, bereavement leave, and military leave are not specified by law, so employers can set their own policies

Related: What Is PTO? Definition And Types Of PTO To Know More About

Factors To Consider When Moving To Austria For Work

Here are some factors to consider when applying for jobs in Austria:

Transferring your qualifications

Austria has an agreement with 55 countries that allows students from these countries with a bachelor's degree, master's degree or PhD to keep their qualifications. India is not one of the included countries, so employers may not recognise your qualifications. This means you need a nostrification in Austria, which validates your foreign degree. To get this, you can apply to a University of Applied Sciences, a public university or a University of Teacher Education for a notification, as long as there is a comparable degree in Austria. It can take three months to receive validation of your degree, so try to apply for nostrification early.

Related: How To Share Your Education Background

Career and skill shortages

Getting approved for a work visa in Austria may be easier if you possess the skills or training that the country needs. You can check the government's website to see what occupations are in demand when you are ready to move abroad and determine whether your skill set aligns with their requirements. Here are some of the Austria-wide shortage occupations for 2023:

  • Engineers for agricultural machinery

  • Roofers

  • Metal turners

  • Black toppers

  • Ophthalmic opticians

  • Electrical fitters

  • Welders

  • Carpenters

  • Physicians

  • Payroll accountants

  • Machine fitters

  • Wood machine workers

  • Accountants

  • Billing clerks

Meeting language requirements

Although many people in Austria speak English, German is the official language. This means most employers require candidates to be proficient in German. Some employers may hire English-speaking employees for more specialised roles, such as professor, English teacher, software developer or marketing specialist. Employers may ask you to obtain the Austrian German Language Diploma to show proof of your written and spoken German proficiency. To get this diploma, you can take a state-approved examination at an accredited centre in India, or do so when you arrive in Austria.

Related: Language Skills: Definition, Examples And How To Improve

Work Permit Categories In Austria

According to the Austrian government, as of March 2023, the most common work visa third-country nationals, including Indians, apply for is the Red-White-Red Card. It is a 12-month work visa for people belonging to one of the following groups:

  • Very highly qualified workers: If you score 70 points or more on Austria's eligibility criteria, you can apply for this visa. Eligibility criteria include having a four-year degree, relevant work experience, and German or English language skills.

  • Skilled workers in shortage occupations: Every year, the Federal Minister of Labour and Economics creates a list of shortage occupations and if you have training in one of these careers, you may be eligible for this visa. You can also apply for this visa if you have a minimum of 55 points according to the eligibility criteria for skilled workers.

  • Start-up founders: If you have a company that can launch products, services, or processing methods in Austria, you may be eligible for this visa. You also need at least 50,000 euros or 4,342,290 rupees, and an equity share of at least 50% in the business.

  • Graduates of Austrian universities and universities of applied sciences: If you have a student visa, you can renew it for another 12 months when you graduate. This gives you the chance to apply for relevant positions, making you eligible for the Red-White-Red Card.

  • Regular workers in tourism, agriculture and forestry: If you have at least seven months of recent experience in one of these industries and receive a job offer for a similar position in Austria, you may be eligible for this visa. You also need German language skills at an A2 level to be eligible.

  • Self-employed key workers: If your self-employed occupation creates macroeconomic benefits, you may be able to apply for this visa. For example, if you invest at least 100,000 euros, or 8,686,129 rupees, into the Austrian economy, you are eligible.

  • Other key workers: If you receive a job offer for a key worker position, you may be eligible for this visa but there are minimum earning requirements. For example, if you are under 30 years old, you need a salary of at least 2,610 euros or 226,707 rupees per month.

Related: What Is Self-Employed? Benefits, Types And Examples

How To Find A Job In Austria?

Here are the steps you can follow to find a job in Austria:

1. Assess your strengths and weaknesses

Before looking for jobs in Austria, consider your strengths and weaknesses. This can help you determine whether your skills align with the shortages the country has, making it easier for you to get a work visa. Conduct a self-assessment or ask your current manager and colleagues for feedback. They can help you learn more about your work ethic so you can determine what skills to highlight on your job applications.

Related: What Is Self-Awareness? (And How To Become More Self-Aware)

2. Search for jobs

After conducting a self-assessment, you can apply for jobs that align with your skills and experience. Consider your network and determine whether you know anyone living in Austria already. Past colleagues, friends or family members that live there may be able to discuss job openings they know of or suggest ways to find availability better. If you do not know anyone in Austria, you can look on local job-search websites, company pages or social media platforms for job openings. Review the job posting to determine whether the company hires people from other countries.

3. Enhance your CV

If you find a role you are interested in that hires foreigners, you can submit an application. To do this, you need a unique CV that is tailored to the position. Austrian CVs typically include the following information:

  • A professional photo of you

  • Your first and last name

  • Contact details

  • Personal information, such as your birthplace, marital status and children

  • Education history

  • Military or civil service if applicable

  • Employment history

  • Foreign languages

  • your signature

Use an Austrian CV template to create your document, ensuring you include all the necessary details.

Related: CV Template: Importance, Components And Example

4. Apply for a work permit

If your CV impresses hiring managers in Austria, they may invite you to interview for the position using a video conferencing platform. Then, they may contact you with a job offer. If this happens, you can apply for a work permit to move to Austria. Your new employer can help you with this process, improving the chance of you receiving approval. They may even pay the application fee on your behalf. Ensure you provide all the necessary information and documentation, such as your passport, proof of your language proficiency and proof of adequate funds.

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