This guide will provide you with useful information and up to date advices which will help you to find a job in Russia.
Are you looking for some adventure and self discovery by making a move to another country?
Well you have come to the right place.
Russia is a great place to work and live with countless opportunities there for young nomads and seasoned expats. However the web is filled with lots of wrong information and outdated guides which only give you some general overview and incorrect information.
We have gone through countless publications, websites, official online documentation and even contacted local companies and recruiters, in order to provide you with an up-to-date and credible information on finding a job in Russia.
We will walk your through each step from the current job market overview, visa questions and we even give you some tips on how to write a good resume to find a job in this beautiful country.
The important part here, is that you have to read everything here from top to bottom. While Russia is a great place to live and work, you can’t be careless here. There are many news online where expats/tourists ran into problems with gangs and government, so please don’t be that guy. We would hate to see an expat story like that.
Ready to dig in? Well continue to read below to find out everything you need to start applying for a job in Russia.
- Overview of The Russian Employment Market
- Legal requirement to work in Russia
- Top paying jobs in Russia for native english speakers
- How to find jobs in Russia
- Overview of the Russian Employment Opportunities for Expats
1. Overview of the Russian Employment Market
Well, unemployment in Russia is still relatively low if compared by Western standards, what’s more important is that there is a big shortage of english-speaking, customer-facing, experienced people on the market.
If you look into popular job boards like indeed (www.indeed.com) you will see lots of aged positions for english speaking candidates which are yet to be filled, although the salary packages can run as high as $10,000 per month not including other benefits (housing, insurance, flight tickets etc).
Although Russia is the biggest country in the world, most of its population, 75%, is concentrated in the european part with cities like Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Volgograd.
Western as well as local companies have their HQs and Regional Offices in Moscow. So it makes Moscow an attractive destination for many expatriates as multi-national companies and local corporations often look for candidates who are native english speakers or candidates with a specific in demand skill.
2. Legal Requirement to Work in Russia
Like few other countries in the world, Russia follows strict legal requirement when it comes to hiring foreign employees and issuing work permits. If an employer wants to hire a foreign national first they would need to demonstrate that the positions can’t be sourced locally and fill in a “Declaration of Need” form to the Directory of Migratory Affairs.
Relevant authorities will review the submitted form, if approved, they will provide the quota of foreign nationals that can be employed in the company and state the positions which can be filled with foreign nationals. Note that, the government can request that the company only hires certain foreign nationals.
Therefore, in order to find an employment in Russia, you would need to find an employer in Russia who has a permitted quota and that the exact position you are applying for can be given to a foreign national.
Well, sounds quite challenging and impossible, isn’t it?
Not really, as Russia’s economy continues to grow despite the sanctions, local and foreign companies operating in Russia need a high number of foreign experts who have extensive experience in demand fields like Gas, Technology, Banking etc. Candidates with lesser experience also can be hired, however the demand is mostly for High Quality Specialists.
There are two types of work permits for an expat applying for a english speaking job in Russia. Local company representatives need first make a formal application to the Interior Ministry and request from them a Letter of Invitation (LOI).
The LOI will specify the period a foreign employee and his/her family will be in Russia, which will be according to the employed spouse’s contract term. Generally, Russian government issues two types of visas for foreign employees:
Standard Work Permit – issued to foreign employees with any salary levels
Highly Skilled Specialist Permit – issued to foreign employees with an annual salary of at least of RUB 2,000,000
Once all documents are submitted it will take around a month to issue a visa to an expat. As was mentioned above, you are not required to submit lots of documents, below are just listed some (note that you employer might request more if needed)
Passport Size Photo
Receipt of Payment Fee
Again, above is just for the general reference, if you have an offer to work in Russia check with the hiring company what documents you are required to provide.
3. Top Paying Jobs in Russia English Speakers
Well, depending on the role and the industry, expatriate salary varies as in any other countries. Usually an expatriate will receive a starting a salary of RUB 150,000 – 200,000 ( $2800 – $3700) note that this amount only includes salary.
Other benefits will be given separately under the package, to lure in experienced professional into Russia, companies will also offer to pay for international school fees, traportaion and housing allowances, insurance, relocation and other benefits which can sum up to a really good amount.
A CEO for a leading local company might make anywhere from $15,000 to $20,000 while an Oil & Gas engineer in Sakhalin can make around $8,000 to $12,000 in salaries.
Another good point of working in Russia for a MNC, is that they have a policy there where they have to compensate expats for a “hardship location» – meaning an expat is sacrificing his good life in London for a grey Moscow.
The company will give you additional monthly bonus of 1.20 if its Moscow or 1.80 if its Sakhalin. Some companies might not practice it, but if its an internal move you should check with your HR.
Well a native english teacher, should expect anywhere from $1000 – $1500 depending on the hours. Some teachers can make even more by offering private classes to businesses and individuals. If you are a teacher in an international school you can make anywhere from $2,000 and higher (heard that teachers make $5000), where you will mostly teach expats’ children.
4. Expat Tips for Finding Jobs in Russia for English Speakers
Do I need my CV translated in Russian?
I think one of the most questions people have when applying for job in Russia, is whether they need to send two types of CV, one in english and one in russian. Since English is not widely spoken here as in other popular expat destinations like Malaysia or UAE. Well, luckily for you, my suggestion would be no.
You will be surprised to know that Russian companies post jobs in english language even if they want to hire a local russian candidate. If you want to check, just go to HH.ru (a local russian job board) and type a vacancy in english i.e finance and you will see a lot of postings where companies require to send in CV in english only.
So if you are a native english speaker and you want to find a job in Russia like teacher, senior manager you will definitely have to send a CV in English. Of course if the employer request that you send a CV in Russian then you might have to, but it most likely will only require a CV in english.
The format for your resume is the same, if you are applying to a global corporation, you will have to fill out the forms manually through their internal system (i.e taleo).
One of the best tips for expats to find a job in Russia is to apply through recruiting agencies. Why? When a company needs to a hire a local russian candidate they usually will advertise the job themselves, but when a company needs a foreigner for a job they will usually go through a recruiting agencies.
Below are just some of the useful websites to apply for a job:
Linkedin Jobs (English & Russian)
Headhunter (English & Russian)
The Guardian (English)
TEFLSearch (English, Teaching Jobs)
UN Jobs Russia (NGO Opportunities in Russia, English)
Nanny Jobs in Russia (High Paying Nanny Jobs 300-1000/wk, English)