Going to Finland for White Workplaces – Real IT Employment for Immigrants – CNET Japan

I’ve heard that finding work for immigrants in Scandinavia is a tough job. Of course, it depends on the type of job and the region, but if you don’t have great skills other than your ability in the local language (or English), you can’t beat locals and EU citizens. Even if you have a bachelor’s degree from a local university, it doesn’t seem to be uncommon for you to be unable to find a job.

This serialization of the “state of the evolving Scandinavian innovation” is delivered from the field. This time, Shinichi (33), who moved to Finland in search of a white work environment with a good work-life balance and worked as an engineer at a local financial company after graduating from a local university, has real local work experience. heard.


  • 2013-2014: Worked as an English teacher in a public high school in Japan
  • 2014-2015: Australian Working Holidays
  • 2015-2017: Temporary employee at a Japanese private company
  • 2017-2021: Studied at the University of Orlando, Finland
  • May 2021~: Worked for a financial company in Helsinki, Finland

Stockholm trip, Sweden.with a Swedish friend I met there

Stockholm trip, Sweden.with a Swedish friend I met there

I think the only way to work in a white environment is to move

Around 2010, when Shinichi came up with a job, he started hearing a lot about black companies online and around. At the time, there was little information about the white company itself and related information, and he thought he had no choice but to go abroad. My country of choice is Finland.

“I picked two criteria to choose a country for immigration: a good work-life balance and a loose hierarchy. It’s well known that in Scandinavia you can work without overtime or on holidays, and you are aware of gender equality. A higher sense of equality means less hierarchy in the workplace.”

In Scandinavia, we often see men pushing strollers. In Denmark (photo by the author)

In Scandinavia, we often see men pushing strollers. In Denmark (photo by the author)

After the decision, I thought about how to move and decided to study at a Finnish university in the local language. This is because foreigners are tuition-free when enrolling in Finnish universities in their local language.I spent about 4 years teaching myself Swedish while working

, and attended a local university. During these four years of study, I saved money to study abroad by working as an English teacher in Japan, working and vacationing in Australia, and working as a dispatched employee.

* In Finland, in addition to Finnish, Swedish is also an official language, and nearly 300,000 people speak Finnish-Swedish as their mother tongue (from the official tourist information website of the Swedish Ambassador to Japan).

“From my experience learning English, I learned how to learn a language, because Swedish has a very similar grammar to English, so I could study for an hour or so a day for almost four years, and then I went to university. I learned To a degree. Swedish.”

The problem is that due to the small language, there are very few teaching materials on the market, but it requires skills such as converting the pages of

The teaching building of the University of Orlando where Xinyi is studying

The teaching building of the University of Orlando where Xinyi is studying

Undergraduate IT major. It’s not “because I’m interested”, it’s “getting a job locally”.

“Originally I became an English teacher because I was interested in education, but my primary goal was to go abroad, so I thought I should prioritize being able to find a job locally over my interest. I chose a major without hesitation. .From my experience, I think it takes good relationships and atmosphere at work, not the type of work, to be happy at work.”

Shinichi has a history of not being able to enjoy his favorite track and field because the track club he belonged to in high school had an air of power harassment. Also, during my working holiday in Australia, I had the experience of working happily because I had a good relationship with people who were not interested in work. That’s why he chose the IT department without hesitation.

Promoting successful employment is a roadmap for engineers to change jobs

Math is not very good Shinichi graduated from a local university and stumbled from time to time. After some hard work, I landed a near-ideal job as an engineer at a local financial firm. How did you find work despite immigration barriers?

Status when participating in a hackathon locally

Status when participating in a hackathon locally

Around the same time he started his job search, he joined the “omnivorous engineer salon” run and produced by engineer Kenta Katsuamata. This is to answer the question, “Am I working on it now?”

“I need to create a job portfolio, but I want to know what kind of jobs IT companies will evaluate. I prepared according to the “Engineering career transition roadmap” taught by this salon. I was able to get very good reviews from local companies. “

In addition to attending salons, you can also learn Finnish, urge you to speak Finnish, find tutors who can advise you through the “MENTA” service, and advise Finnish engineers you meet locally. I got it too. As a result, he sent resumes to about 20 companies, interviewed 3 of them, and received offers from 2 companies.

Both of them were paid internships and they decided to work for a company in Helsinki that had an early offer, not a condition. Internships started in May 2021 and promoted to full-time staff in September of the same year. This intern is known locally as a “summer job” and is supposed to work during the summer. Afterwards, some were promoted to full-time employees, while others were not.

“From my own experience and the stories around me, there seem to be three types of internships in Finland, one premised on promotion to full-time staff, and one that is seen as cheap labor, which may tend to be there In this case, a week after I started my internship, I was asked “Would you like to continue as a full-time employee after the internship ended? “

“Wide facade” is the top priority of local employment

As mentioned earlier, I have heard that it is often difficult to find work for immigrants in Finland. However, Shinichi said, “In the IT industry, I don’t feel that being an immigrant is a disadvantage.”

“It is true that there are not many full-time jobs in Finland, and it is a game of rushing for chairs, but I think it is easy for immigrants to find jobs if they have a wide range. From my own experience, the demand is very high. I think it is difficult for immigrants in the IT industry to feel, There are too many people and there is a shortage of human resources.”

In Finland, you do not need to write down your date of birth or age when creating your CV in any format.

Shinichi strategically majored in undergraduate school and won long-sought local employment with the aim of moving overseas rather than learning what he loved. He is said to be able to work comfortably in work-life balance and weak relationships as needed. Next time, I want to dig deeper into current work and consumption patterns, relationships and career prospects.

(Reporting cooperation, photos provided by Mr. Shinichi)

Kobayashi Kaori
Freelance writer/Scandinavian innovation researcher

Yearning for a “free lifestyle”, in 2016 he changed from an office lady to a freelance writer. Author of[innovation, career, overseas culture]and other articles. Moved to Scandinavia in 2020, spent 6 months in Denmark and about 1 year in Helsinki, Finland. Covers many local startups and conferences. From March 2022, he will return to his Tokyo base to continue his research on Scandinavian innovation.

Formula HP: https://love-trip-kaori.com

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