Work In Finland: What Is It Like, Requirements And Careers

Updated 1 August 2023

Working abroad can be exciting for candidates looking for better career opportunities and growth, seeking new life experiences and developing cultural intelligence. Finland, a country in Northern Europe, provides exciting career prospects with excellent work-life balance and professional development opportunities. If you are looking to apply for a job in Finland, you can benefit from learning about the work culture, lifestyle and the job application process.

In this article, we provide insights into what it is like to work in Finland, discuss the language requirements, list jobs with skill shortages, provide a detailed guide on how to get a job in Finland and share steps to explain your qualifications to an employer.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are associated with Indeed.

What Is It Like To Work In Finland?

If you are applying for jobs abroad, you can benefit from knowing what it is like to work in Finland and whether it aligns with your interests, skills and professional goals. Here are some factors you can use to evaluate:

Work culture

Companies in Finland have an open culture and offer flexible work environments and good employee benefits, such as paid holidays, pension, healthcare, caregiving benefits and leaves and unemployment benefits. They also practise a flat hierarchical structure that encourages open communication, employee feedback, autonomy in decision-making, creativity and innovation. Finnish companies also focus on collaboration and teamwork through various team-building exercises, informal social events and hobby clubs. The average work week is about 37.5 hours over five days, but this may vary based on the industry and position. Workdays usually start at around 8 a.m. and end by 5 p.m.

Related: 10 Skills You Need For Team Building (And How To Develop Them)


Finland has a rich culture of arts, music, literature and sports. It also has a strong technology ecosystem that promotes research and development and innovation. It has an effective welfare system that supports healthcare, social security, family benefits and housing. If you take an interest in snowboarding, cycling, trekking and other outdoor activities, Finland is a great place to pursue your interests.

Language Requirements For Working In Finland

Finnish and Swedish are the national and official languages of Finland. Most companies operating in Finland prefer using English as their business language. Knowing basic Finnish or Swedish can help you interact with colleagues, helping you maintain positive relationships at work. It can also provide you with a competitive advantage when applying for roles such as customer service, sales or marketing, which require you to interact with local clients and customers. You can review the job requirements or ask the employer about specific language requirements.

You can take online language courses or attend integration programmes to learn Finnish. You can also take private lessons from tutors or join language meetup groups to learn the language in a fun and engaging manner.

Related: How To Feature Language Proficiency Levels On Your Resume

Jobs With Skill Shortages In Finland

Here are some in-demand jobs in Finland:

IT engineer

With technology developments in different sectors, there is a high demand for skilled IT engineers in Finland. Some areas of demand include software engineering, computer science, robotics, artificial intelligence (AI) and cloud computing. As an IT engineer, your daily duties may comprise configuring and maintaining software and hardware, setting up networks, troubleshooting applications and providing training to junior IT staff.

Related: IT Technical Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)

Business consultant

With Finland's thriving business sector, companies look for individuals to help improve their operations, strategies and performance. They look for people with proficiency in finance and business management and team management and leadership skills. As a business consultant, your daily duties may include analysing client requirements and determining their feasibility, improving business operations, assisting in financial planning and accounting and overseeing project implementation and delivery.

Related: Business Consultant Job Description: Duties And Skills


There is an increasing demand for nurses in the country's healthcare sector, with good compensation, benefits and an opportunity to further their skills and education. As a nurse, your daily duties may include supporting, caring and rehabilitating patients with different illnesses, maintaining patient records and administering treatment and medicines under a doctor's guidance. Finland also has an ageing population and a shortage of healthcare staff to provide care in elderly homes. If you have experience providing senior care, you can also consider applying for a job in the field.

Related: What Does A Staff Nurse Do? (Skills And Responsibilities)

How To Get A Job In Finland?

Here are some steps to follow if you want to work in Finland:

1. Research the job market

Begin by researching the industry and position that aligns with your skills, interests, work experience and qualifications. Use job boards to refine your search by considering factors such as industry, location, job type and salary. Some companies may post job openings on their career web pages. Recruitment agencies can also help connect you with potential employers. To stay informed about job demands, job listings and how to find employment opportunities in Finland, consider visiting the government website.

2. Identify jobs that align with your skill set and experience

Consider taking assessment tests to identify suitable career opportunities that match your interests and skills. If you have any work experience, you can contact potential employers to enquire about job vacancies and specific requirements. Having an active presence on social media platforms can help find job opportunities by networking with recruiters, employers and people already working in similar roles in Finland.

3. Prepare your resume and cover letter

Examine the job description thoroughly to identify relevant keywords, including skills, experiences and qualifications required for the position. Include those matching your skills and work experience on your resume and cover letter. Highlight your accomplishments using strong action verbs and quantifiable outcomes to show the impact of your work and the value you brought to previous employers. If you have career breaks or changes in your career path, you can include these details in your cover letter.

As a recent graduate seeking job opportunities in Finland, you can include your educational details, projects, internships and volunteering experience in your resume and cover letter. You may also include your interests and extracurriculars.

Related: How To Review A Resume (With Helpful Tips And Benefits)

4. Update your social media profile

The hiring team may review your social media profiles during your hiring process to conduct a background check with your consent. Before applying for jobs in Finland, ensure your social media is safe for work and does not contain insensitive information. You can also use privacy settings to manage your posts' visibility to the public. Since Finland's culture promotes creativity and innovation, you can consider adding posts that showcase your interests at the top of your profile.

Related: What Are Language Skills On A Resume? (And How To Add Them)

5. Apply for a work permit

You can apply for a work permit by submitting your application to the online portal of the Finnish Immigration Service. The employer adds the required documents, such as a contract of employment and a job description, confirms your employment and pays the application fee. The verification may take between one and three months. You need a residence permit if your employment contract is over three months. You can apply online or through the Finland embassy or consulate in India.

Related: Types Of Jobs In An Embassy (With Salaries And Duties)

How To Explain Your Qualifications To An Employer?

The Finnish National Agency for Education is responsible for recognising foreign qualifications. This is to ensure that your qualifications align with Finland's educational standards and comply with laws and regulations. For example, they may want to verify if your bachelor's degree in computer science in India is equivalent to the one that Finnish universities issue. Positions in engineering, healthcare, education and architecture sectors require candidates to get recognition for their credentials. Here are some steps you can follow to get your credentials recognised:

1. Research the requirements

Review the job description carefully to list relevant skills, work experience and qualifications for the role. You can talk to the employer or the hiring manager to learn more about the recognition of your qualifications and if there is any additional training required to be eligible for the interview procedure. In Finland, employers can also assess a candidate's qualifications independently.

2. Prepare the documentation

After gathering the requirements, prepare your documentation to submit to the board. Sometimes, you may also require providing details on the coursework, grades and certifications. Some standard documents necessary for getting your qualifications recognised include educational credentials, identity proof, resume and cover letter, work experience certificates and language proficiency certificates.

3. Submit your application

After preparing your documentation, you can submit your application online through the board's website. There is a fee associated with submitting your application, which can vary based on the industry and profession and the complexity of the evaluation. The process usually takes about two months.

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