There are few career prospects that can be as simultaneously exciting and daunting as an offer to take on a role overseas. As well as taking on new responsibilities with a fresh group of people, you will be expected to move your life to another country entirely, often for years at a time.
The prospect of working abroad might seem to be one filled with a sense of adventure and opportunity, but you should make sure you really take the time to consider the following four factors.
- Cost of Living vs Salary
One of the problems with taking a job abroad is that it can be very hard to work out how much money you’ll really be making. You’ll need to consider the cost of taking occasional flights home, schooling your children, and the basic expenses of food and shelter. These figures can all differ significantly depending on where you live, so make sure you iron out the details as much as possible before accepting your new role.
- Your Healthcare
If there’s one thing you really need to be careful about, it’s your health insurance. It’s unlikely your current provider will extend overseas, and you probably won’t be able to rely on local services. Look into the costs and coverage plans offered by dedicated expat health insurance agencies.
- Your Family
If you have a family, moving overseas is going to impact their lives. It could be that your partner doesn’t work, but you’ll still have to consider how they will spend their time. You should also look into the type of schooling options available for your children. You will often be forced to go private, in which case you need to carefully consider your costs, and you’ll want to ensure that there will be more than a couple of other international students for them to make friends with.
- Your Career
When you’re offered a role abroad, it tends to mean that you are viewed as a trustworthy and effective part of the company. Most of the time, a move abroad will be an excellent career opportunity. That said, don’t let the glamour of the move cloud your judgement. If you feel like such a move would alienate you from key contacts or set you down a path you aren’t interested in following, don’t be afraid to politely decline.