WORK IN HUNGARY
Ever since Hungary joined the EU in 2004, the country is becoming more and more popular for international enterprises to do business there. However, finding a suitable, well-paid job isn't that easy.
The unemployment rate has been rising for the last two years; it stood at 7.5% in 2006. However, this is still well below the EU average of 8.5%. Despite the increase in unemployment, 29,000 new jobs were created in 2006; meaning a total of nearly 4 million employed people in Hungary. During the last 10 years, about 34,000 work-seekers from abroad have settled in Hungary. The situation is much better in the country's capital, Budapest, where unemployment stands at just 3%; much less than many Western European cities.
The Hungarian job market varies seasonally. In summer, the number of job hunters increases due to the school leavers, but by the end of the year only a few people are looking for work/seeking to change workplaces, so there may be more positions available.
In general, there is an oversupply of job seekers for certain professions - especially for marketing and economics graduates - but a lack of employees in the IT and technology sectors. For example, lots of expatriates are working as programmers since Hungary lacks workforce in this field.
Besides the high demand for foreign employees in the IT and telecommunications sectors, the following positions (due to the necessity of knowledge of foreign languages) are also very popular: project manager, auditor and ACCA international certified accountant.
If you want to go to Hungary and are lucky enough to already be working for a company with operations in there, a transfer might be the easiest way. Another approach is to see if there are companies from your country operating in Hungary as they will probably be more interested in hiring you. Help desk positions are popular among foreigners as many do not require higher education, but English and an additional foreign language. Also, many expatriates make a living in Hungary by teaching English.
However, there is one stumbling block for foreigners wishing to work in Hungary: According to law, a foreigner cannot be employed unless the company can prove they cannot find a Hungarian to do the job. For EU citizens, this will prove less of a problem as legislation will give equal rights for labour mobility. For citizens of other nationalities this may prove a problem with some potential employees as some Hungarian companies will be reluctant to go through the paperwork to get a work permits organised and the position approved by the authorities.
Also note that it's very common to be employed as a subcontractor when taking on a job in the IT sector. However, most other professions and jobs, notably management positions, come with standard employment conditions and benefits.