Working in Denmark

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The Danish labour market has long been associated with the idea of 'flexicurity'. This means that there is a good deal of labour-market flexibility – hiring and firing is relatively straightforward and job mobility is more or less taken for granted.

Denmark's egalitarian ideals can be seen in many of its labour and employments policies. For example, there is a great deal of support to help the unemployed access the labour market – not to mention the fact that the gap between the lowest paid and the highest paid in Denmark is one of the smallest in the world.

Working in Denmark comes with its fair set of challenges but once expats have overcome the hurdle of finding a job, they should be able to get into the swing of things with relative ease.

Job market in Denmark

Many expats move to Denmark to take up public sector jobs in science, research and higher education teaching. In the private sector, Denmark has established a worldwide reputation for innovation in 'cleantech' energy production – and internally produces nearly half of its energy from wind power.

Finding a job in Denmark

Networks are an established and necessary part of finding a job in Denmark. There is a high level of mobility in the job market, which is often facilitated through networking. Historically, Danish culture has had a high level of social engagement, with most people at some point being involved in sports or interest clubs. These often provide the foundation for networks; foundations that are obviously not available to expats. However, there are many other networks to utilise – Linkedin is the most obvious example, and there are both business and social networking groups in most towns and cities.

Many large companies in Denmark have put measures in place to recruit and retain highly skilled expats. Many large companies have also adopted English as their company language, which makes life easier for expats.

Work culture in Denmark

Most Danish businesses are characterised by a relatively flat structure and relations between different levels within an organisation are usually quite informal. The downside of this is that decision lines are less obvious and it might be difficult for expats to know who to talk to about particular issues.

Considerable importance is placed on discussion and reaching consensus; expats will be expected to make a positive contribution to discussions and decisions. Teamwork and co-operation are valued in all sorts of businesses, and employees are expected to be motivated and committed to doing their best.

While not unheard of, relationships at work do not usually carry over into private life – there tends to be a clear distinction between work and home.

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