There can be no denying that the ongoing coronavirus crisis has had a huge impact on the Spanish economy. This has impacted on many industries, and has left many people without jobs. But the message isn’t all doom and gloom: the labour market may well be weakened, but there are still job opportunities available for ex-pats looking for work in post-Covid Spain. Here’s everything you need to know:
Understanding the Bad News: The Story So Far
First, it’s important to understand the position of the job market you’re hoping to enter. The Spanish economy is certainly in a much weaker position since the onset of the COVID crisis, and around 1.35 million jobs (the vast majority of which were in tourism and related dependent industries) were lost as a direct result of the lockdown earlier in the year, according to a report published by Spain’s National Statistics Institute (INE) in July. Spain saw an unprecedented drop of 18.5 percent in its GDP in the second quarter of 2020, more so than any other EU country, and A further 3.4 million workers are currently receiving protection through the country’s temporary redundancy plans (ERTE), and until this furlough scheme is brought to an end, it will be impossible to ascertain the true number of jobs that have been lost in Spain as a result of this crisis. As a result, individuals approaching the Spanish job market should not do so with the delusion that finding a job will be a breeze.
But there is a silver lining to the dark cloud outlined above: remote working and teleworking have become much more available and acceptable as a result of the coronavirus lockdown, both for locals and ex pats. This means that if you don’t want to commute to a Spanish city, you may be able to negotiate remote working with your new Spanish employer. And, in certain industries, you may even be able to move to Spain and negotiating a remote working contract with your existing employer in the UK!
Seeking Out the In-Demand Jobs
There are industries where the Covid crisis has led to an increase in the number of available jobs, beating the trend of many other sectors. These are often essential, key worker roles and they are a great place to start if you are looking for a new position during the current crisis. A comprehensive list of these roles, for your consideration, is outlined below:
Commerce and distribution
Admin and secretary (languages wanted)
Help Desk technicians
Technical teams (app and web developers)
Care home workers
Specialised health workers: doctors, nurses, social service workers
In-person service at hospitals, care homes, canteens
If you already have skills in any of the above sectors then you are perfectly placed to apply for your next position: it's worth noting that in many of these public-facing roles, the ability to speak Spanish fluidly will be essential. If you’re thinking of moving to Spain, or are already living in Spain but don’t speak Spanish, then now is the perfect time to take a step back and reskill: whilst it isn’t essential to speak Spanish to live in Spain, it will certainly make working in the country much easier.
Focus on Your Unique Ex-Pat Qualities
Wondering what the likelihood is that you’ll find the ideal job for you in Spain right now, as a foreigner? The key is to look at positions which will appreciate, and which can harness, the unique skills that you have acquired by working outside of Spain. Whilst a good command of Spanish is a must for most companies, those same companies are likely to be attracted by your transferable skills and cosmopolitan approach. If you are able to speak both Spanish and English, don’t underestimate just how desirable those language skills can be. What’s more, Professional training is also highly sought after right now, in post-Covid Spain, so you may be able to give courses in your specialty area, helping businesses to diversify and to continue to thrive in a difficult economic environment.
Still haven’t found the right role to inspire you? Don’t worry! The current epidemic cannot (and will not) last forever, and once Spain’s tourism industry begins to recover, there will once again be a plethora of opportunities for English speakers and linguists in Spain. If you’re still looking for a role you can start right away, then schoolteachers are in high demand in post-covid Spain. The latest reports suggest that the country needs to recruit 160,000 additional teachers: some of these roles are in international schools, where the ability to speak fluent English would be viewed as a real bonus.
Are you thinking of moving to Spain? Or perhaps you’ve already found your perfect Spanish job, and just need the house to go with it? Our expert team of local property experts are perfectly placed to help! We have years of experience in finding properties for ex pats from all over the world, so why not get in touch today to find out more about how we can help you!