Greece - why work abroad?

Country: Greece
Official languages: Greek
Government: Parliamentary republic
Population: 11 million
Capital: Athens
Currency: euro (EUR)
Member EU or EEA: EU
Phone code: +30
Internet code: .gr

Why this country?

Small Greece is huge in its influence, from its historic contributions to civilisation to the variety of sights/activities that it offers today, including more than 2 500 islands, captivating beaches, lush gorges and romantic ruins.

The debt crisis, starting in 2010, led to stringent austerity measures and financial reforms. Unemployment is high, particularly among the young. Labour mobility is low with a large number of people working in family businesses. Migrants (most from Albania) account for 9.4 % of the workforce, a quarter of them in construction. Shipping and tourism are Greece's two biggest industries. The greatest demand for workers is for office and accounting staff, shop workers, followed by construction workers and personal services staff (hairdressers, cooks and waiters).

Looking for work?

Besides looking on the EURES portal, follow the Links page to find the Greek national employment service, the OAED, which is managed by Manpower Employment Organisation. You can get contact details for all the local employment offices via the PES index link on the OAED website. Private recruitment agencies are not allowed in Greece.

Tips for job applications?

The normal procedure for applying for a job in Greece is to send a CV to the employer by e-mail or hand it in in person, or to phone them. A covering letter signed by the applicant and giving the reasons for applying must accompany a CV.

Is it standard to include a photo on the CV?

A photo is standard but not obligatory, except in the tourism sector, where employers in hotels and restaurants may require one.

Is there a preference for handwritten applications?

No, it is better to send a typewritten letter.

Is the Europass format CV widely used and accepted?

In general, a Greek CV is no longer than two pages; however, the Europass format is known and may be used. The employer is more inter-ested in the skills, work experience, personal¬ity and passion for work of the applicant than in the CV format. Make sure your CV is detailed and correctly structured, with all the references available and validated, when required.

Making contact by phone

If you call the employer, be polite, serious, show that you are interested, listen carefully and be honest.

Do I need to send diplomas with my application?

Not unless asked specifically to do so. However, candidates should have all the necessary documents (diplomas, certificates, letters relating to job experience) available and validated for when they meet the recruiter.

Should I supply references, letters of recommendation or proof of good conduct?

It depends on the employer. These are not normally needed, but a previous employer could be a referee. They are expected to strengthen the applicant's position by confirming the quality and skills of the applicant.

Letters of recommendation are not usually required, but must be available at any time. Proof of good conduct might be necessary for security and high-level jobs.

Usual length of time between publication of the vacancy and start of the job

This is usually up to 1 month.

Preparing for the interview

Before attending an interview, it is a good idea to find out as much as you can about the company.

In the event that you cannot attend the interview, you must ask for a new appointment 2 to 3 days in advance, if there is a valid reason.

Dress-code tips

Check your appearance, and make sure you are clean, shaved and well dressed, according to the standards of the company

Who will be there?

For an individual interview, you could be alone with the interviewer. There may be two consecutive interviews with different people. For an interview with a committee, there will likely be three to five people. For a group interview, many candidates are invited to participate in a conversation.

Do we shake hands?

Yes, it is polite and professionally acceptable to shake hands before and after an interview.

Is there a typical interview structure?

During an interview, the recruiter wants to learn about the skills of the applicant and the possible terms of recruitment. The department manager or the HR manager is in charge of the meeting. There may be two to four meetings and tests before recruitment.

In general, the atmosphere during interviews or tests is relaxed, friendly and exploratory. The ratio of non-professional to professional items addressed during the interview is about 30:70 % respectively.

The applicant must play an active part in the interview and listen carefully to questions. He/ she should show professionalism and dignity. If the applicant has to relocate for the job, the recruiter will expect them to deal with language issues as well as accommodation and family issues.

When is a question out of bounds?

Questions about your political position and personal life are considered strictly private.

Negotiating your pay and benefits

Standard contracts include terms of duration, general remuneration and holiday pay. It is advisable to let your employer make the first step. You can then negotiate your pay and any possible annual bonuses separately. In cases where there are additional benefits, these might include extra salary at the end of the year, extra medical coverage, a company car and commission. These should be negotiated with HR staff or a department manager.

Is a trial period likely?

You are under no obligation to agree to a work trial if the employer requests this.

How long is the standard probationary period?

There is a 12-month paid probationary period. If the contract is terminated within this period, the dismissed employee is not entitled to compensation.

Will the employer cover my costs for attending an interview?

It depends on the employer.

When will I hear the result?

The whole procedure generally takes about a month.

Getting feedback and further follow-up

Normally the employer takes the initiative in organising follow-up to the interview. It is not common for candidates to ask for feedback.

How early should I arrive for the interview?

The applicant must be punctual. It is advisable to arrive 10 minutes early for the inter¬view. However, you should not expect the same punctuality from the employer’s side.

last modification: 2014-09-01 16:00:21
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