Moving to the UK to work? Top tips to making it a smooth move.

By Ollie Cook, 12th March 2016

Moving to the UK is a tremendous opportunity for personal and professional growth whether you choose to move here for one year or permanently. However, there is a huge amount to consider so here's our top tips for making your move to the UK a smooth one.


What is your motivation?

Before you even start to contemplate the logistics and begin organising your actual move, you should consider how motivated you are to actually live and work in the UK.

If you’re considering multiple countries, do your research and then decide which one takes priority and the elements involved that will affect your decision to take a job. Is the job your key driver in moving to another country? And how perfect does the job have to be for you to make that decision?

Now we move onto some of the more practical considerations:

Do you need a visa to move to the UK?

If you’re outside the EU, you will most probably need a visa, find out more here:

If you live in a country within the Schengen Area, (one of the 26 European countries that have abolished passport and any other type of border control at their common borders), it mostly functions as a single country for international travel purposes, and has a common visa policy – the UK is currently not part of the Schengen Agreement.

How much will it cost you to get a job and then to relocate?

If you are not UK based you will have to consider the interview process. For example, are you going to move to the UK to start your job search, or will you travel over for interviews? Some companies will use Skype for initial face to face’ interviews now and a few will pay reasonable travel expenses for you to attend an interview in the UK but please confirm this before booking your travel to check if there are any payment limits, or if the cost needs to be met by you.

Some companies, as part of employing you, may assist you with relocation costs, however this will be communicated early on in the recruitment process and is definitely not offered with every job in the UK. Whether a relocation package, one-off payment or similar is available or not, you will need to have a certain amount of money saved to cover the cost of your move to the UK. To rent any accommodation through a reputable letting agency, you will need to pay a deposit plus agency fees associated with references. As a guide only this would be 6 weeks’ deposit + 1 month rent up front + agency fees to cover references, amongst other items This article will give you some actual figures on renting

What is the cost of living in the UK?

Earnings: What are your net earnings (after tax) right now? Consider how much you pay for accommodation and bills and how much disposable income this leaves you with each week or month. How does that compare with what your net earnings could be in the UK? (In the UK we quote gross salary, so you have to take into account that Income Tax and National Insurance will be deducted from this figure).

Accommodation: One big difference between the UK and the EU is that house prices and rentals here are very high, especially in London and the South East. Within many EU countries, owning a property is much more affordable, so it’s very important to consider how you want to live if you move to the UK. Typically single professionals share houses to reduce costs. If you are moving here with your partner/spouse then you will need to research how much renting or even buying your own property is likely to be, factoring in the UK council tax and also monthly utility bills eg. gas/electricity and water.

Find out how far your disposable income could go in the UK by visiting

Commuting to work: Public transport within the UK is not the cheapest and commuting into London can be very expensive. Buying/running a car could be a viable option but you’ll need to work out what your budget is for this and take into account car tax, a yearly MOT (required once a car is 3 years old), plus servicing and fuel costs too.

If you have a family, you will need to consider schooling: There are both private and government run education options for all school age children within the UK – check this website out to get a better idea of the options.

Other considerations:

Working hours: If you’re working in a role where you’re required to speak a foreign language, you may be working hours to suit the country or countries which your employer provides services/products to.

CV format should suit the UK market: Once you’ve decided you definitely want to come and work in the UK you need to amend your CV to the standard UK layout. It is worth using for UK results on CV styles. Here are a couple of tips for you:

  • Try not to use the generic ‘Europass’ layout as its not one generally used within the UK.
  • Always try to get a native English speaker to check your CV. It’s the first thing people see, so saying that you’re happy to work in a costumer rather than customer facing role will not fill a potential employer with confidence.

Interview Style: Many EU countries tend to have more formal interview styles with the use of closed or direct questions. Questions still focus on a candidate’s experience in previous jobs and do not include the usual style of competency or scenario based questions prevalent in the UK now. This means that UK interviews can feel slightly more informal and in particular, candidates from overseas often aren’t used to the more two-way, conversational style we have adopted in the UK and still think they can only ask questions at the very end of the interview.


These are just a few of the many elements you need to consider before making the decision to come and work in the UK. At Park Street People we have consultants who are very experienced in supporting candidate in making that move so please do give us a call and we’ll be happy to help.

Good luck!

Please note: All links within this article are to third party websites and we have no control of how often they update the information they provide, so you should check any facts are correct as part of your research.

Tags: languages, Park Street People, Nationalities, PSP, new opportunities, Candidate, welcome, candidate journey, candidate experience, job search, Candidates, Work, Question, London, candidate advice, Languages candidate, assign Ollie cook

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