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Build Your Career Get the Job

The Top 10 Skills You Need to Land an International Job

job search, skills, international
LinkedIN has uncovered the top skills employees need to relocate internationally. / Credit: Relocating overseas image via Shutterstock

If you're interested in taking your talents overseas, you need to put your tech skills front and center.

Skills in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) make up nearly half of the 10 abilities most commonly found among professionals who have moved to other parts of the world to pursue career opportunities in the past year, according to new research from LinkedIn. Specifically, life sciences, mechanical and aerospace engineering, Java development, and software engineering all ranked in the top 10.

The study, which analyzed LinkedIn members who have moved to new countries for jobs, revealed that some skills were twice as likely to be found on a mover's profile compared to a non-mover's. The top 10 skill categories that tended to be unique to movers in the past year were:

  1. Social media marketing
  2. Mechanical and aerospace engineering
  3. Java development
  4. Life sciences
  5. Military, defense and national security
  6. Foreign language translation
  7. Public policy and international relations
  8. Software engineering management
  9. Retail and wholesale
  10. Management consulting, business strategy and analysis

"If you're looking for a career that will allow you to see various cities around the world, you might want to focus your studies in a STEM discipline," Lindsay Ahearne, insights manager at LinkedIn, wrote on the company's blog.

In addition to those skill categories associated with international relocation, the study uncovered the specific job functions that were most and least likely to lead to an overseas move.

Those job roles included business development, marketing, research, media and communication, and product management. The job functions that were least likely to entice an employee overseas were ownership and entrepreneurship, administrative positions, security and protective services, health care services, and accounting.

The study found that as a percentage of the country's total workforce, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) saw the most talent from around the world coming into the nation.

"This might reflect the region's fast development and the increasingly busy skyline," Ahearne wrote. "We noticed that the vast majority of members who moved to the UAE (75 percent) came from outside of the Middle East."

Overall, just 3 percent of the U.S. employees in the study who moved in the past year went to an international location. That's considerably less than Switzerland, which saw 69 percent of its movers leave the country.

"So, what can we conclude from this?" Ahearne wrote."Well, if you want to work all over the world, you might [need to] have a strong set of STEM skills, be a social media marketing expert, and/or aim for [a] business development role in a technology company with offices in the UAE."

The study was based on the analysis of 300 million LinkedIn members worldwide and the 20 countries that saw the most migration activity.

Originally published on Business News Daily

Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer who has nearly 15 years' experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.

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