How to start an international career

06 May 2021
The City of London's famous skyscrapers, including the Gherkin.

An international career can mean working abroad, working for an international company within your home country, or even a career that requires global travel. Many young people strive for international careers. In fact, PricewaterhouseCoopers’s Talent Mobility 2020 report revealed that 80% of millennials want to work abroad. An international career will allow you to travel around the world while developing your skills and broadening your mind. Read on for our tips on how to start an international career.

Starting your international career

Study abroad

Studying abroad is a great start to your international career. You will get your first experience of living in a different country and working with people from many different backgrounds and cultures. You will also have the opportunity to network with academics and professionals which could give you a head start in terms of finding out about international job opportunities. The study abroad experience will set you up both personally and professionally for your career.

Gain an internationally recognised postgraduate degree

Holding an internationally recognised postgraduate degree will help to launch your international career. To secure a job in another country – or many different countries throughout your career – it’s important that you have a qualification that is understood and respected around the world. Postgraduate degree study will also give you opportunities to network with professionals from different countries or who work for international companies. Nurturing these contacts can help when you look for your first job after you graduate.

Learn new languages

Learning other languages will give you a competitive edge in your international career. Mastering the language at conversational level is vital when working abroad – you’ll need to understand your colleagues and feel comfortable presenting complex ideas. Outside of work, you’ll also find it much easier to network and make friends if you are proficient in the local language.

Study in an international city

To get your international career off to the best start, consider studying in a major city with international links. The United Kingdom remains one of the most popular study-abroad destinations, and studying in London will set you up with a world-class education. London is a multi-cultural, diverse city with links to many different countries. A degree from a London-based university is highly respected around the globe, which will give you a head start when it comes to job hunting after graduation.

Be open minded about where you work

When you’re first starting out in your international career, it helps to be open minded about your job location. Rather than narrowing your options to the most popular locations, be prepared to go elsewhere. In countries with emerging markets, you’re likely to face less competition and find your first jobs and see results more quickly. Being adventurous and considering other countries will also give you wonderful opportunities to see different parts of the world and experience other cultures and lifestyles. Once you have gained experience, you can reconsider living in a different country. Maintaining patience, flexibility and openness is critical in building your international career.

Do your research

You may have visited Paris or New York and gathered a sound impression, but a holiday is not the same as living and working in a new country or city. Therefore, research is vital in launching your international career successfully. Look into the job markets and how often suitable roles tend to come up in your industry. The cost of living is also important to establish – how much will you need to earn to pay your rent, food and transport?

Transferable skills

If you’re planning to return to your home country after a few years, or to move between countries throughout your career, try to keep your options open in terms of job roles and the skills you develop. If you take on a niche role with very specific, unusual tasks and skill requirements, you may struggle when the time comes to move on. Most international employers are looking for skills such as ecommerce, information technology and digital marketing, so these are safer areas to specialise in.

Keep your family involved

Studying or working abroad are both big steps, and even more so when you have family to consider. Try to involve your family in your choices and life events. Their support may be invaluable, whether they are joining you on your travels or staying home and supporting you from afar.

Technical knowledge

As Information Technologies continues to grow and influence all global industries, building your skills in this area will certainly help you make a success of your international career. Familiarity with programming, virtual whiteboards, wearables, or even artificial intelligence will be helpful. When planning for a long-term international career, research and ask academics and professionals what they think the future world of global work looks like.

Start your international career today with University of Huddersfield - London

Studying a postgraduate degree at University of Huddersfield - London will give you the best possible start to your international career. Studying your Master’s in London will allow you to benefit from the University of Huddersfield’s world-class reputation in teaching and employability success, but with all the benefits of living and studying in London.

Studying at University of Huddersfield - London will allow you to kick start your career straight after you graduate. The UK’s new Graduate Immigration Route is a two-year post-study work visa only available for international students. This visa allows you to work in the UK for two years following graduation.

What degree could I study?

Programmes at University of Huddersfield – London offer a high standard of teaching and globally recognised postgraduate degrees.

Start your Master’s degree today

To start your international career with a Master’s from University of Huddersfield – London, apply online. For more details, please visit our How to Apply pages.