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Work in Italy

The Italian economy is a special case. Although the Italian economy is one of the largest economies, namely number five of the G8 (the richest countries in the world), it's also the country with a large government debt. This is mainly because a lot of money goes to the south of Italy. There is a real dichotomy in France: the north is rich and prosperous with a booming economy. In the south, however, there is a lot of unemployment and the age-old problem must always be dealt with: the mafia. This dichotomy is something that you have to take into account if you want to work in Italy .

Apply for a work visa

It's very important that you have the right papers in your pocket. You no longer need to apply for a residence permit since 2007, but you do have to register with the population register, the anagrafe. For this you need: a valid passport, health insurance and proof that you work or study in Italy. You must also be able to prove that you have sufficient resources, such as a fixed income. When you work independently, other rules apply. You then need a VAT number, a Partita IVA. You can request this number at the local VAT office.

Social security and benefits

If you want to work in Italy, you must ensure that your social security is in perfect order. Before you start work, you therefore take out health insurance. This still differs whether you are employed or whether you are self-employed. If you are employed, your employer will register you with the INPS, or the National Institute for Social Security. If you are self-employed, you don't have an employer who can do this for you and you'll therefore have to take this step yourself. For a health insurance fund you have to meet a number of conditions if you want to register for this. For example, you must be able to prove that you pay premiums to the social insurance system.

The following benefits apply in Italy: the Sickness Benefits Act, WAZO, WAO, WAZ and WIA.

Work culture in Italy

Italian corporate culture is very different. Firstly, the Italian corporate culture is very hierarchical and bureaucratic. This has an explainable reason: Italy has many more small and medium-sized businesses. These are often typical family businesses with the head of the family, the padrone, at the top. That means that the boss takes care of everything there. "Delegation" doesn't appear in the Italian dictionary.

Sectors in Italy

Although industry is still a very important sector for Italian industry, the country is increasingly shifting towards a service-based economy. Sectors where it's fairly easy to get a job for foreigners, are tourism, education, communication and media and do business internationally.

Vacancies in Italy

It may be clear that vacancies in Italy aren't up for grabs. Finding a job in Italy is a big challenge. However, if you are university educated, it's much easier to find a job. The big question is: where can you find the fastest job in Italy? In Italy, personal contacts are very important when it comes to finding work. However, that's difficult if you are moving to Italy and know very few people there.

There are several ways to find a job in Italy. First of all, you can get a job through newspaper vacancies, this way is still often used in Italy. You can also place an advertisement yourself. Internet can also help, specially websites like Clicca Lavoro, Trovit Lavoro can help. But what you can do and what is greatly appreciated in Italy is the 'open application'. This is generally greatly appreciated by Italian employers.

Tips for a cover letter, CV and job interview

If you make a letter of application and send your resume, then these tips may help you:

  • Keep your letter of application short (about half an A-4 piece) and use formal language
  • Be patient: the application process in Italy takes longer and therefore you have to wait longer for an answer
  • With a CV you have to send a passport and your studies are very important. When Italians see that you have studied at a university, for example, that will be extra appreciated. They are sensitive to that.
  • If you speak many languages, you can take advantage of this, so always state this on your resume.
  • The best period to send your resume is in February and March. That is, after all, the period that the company decides whether to recruit new staff.
  • Italians can also ask you for personal information during the interview, which we aren't really used to. Be prepared for that.
  • Never start in the first interview about the salary.

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