Established migrants have really useful information to pass on to new migrants. These are some of their top tips.
1. Learn English before coming to the UK or sign up for English classes on arrival
‘I really struggled with different sarcasm over here, found the colloquialisms really difficult. [I had] a lot of trouble understanding it. Joined a lot of social groups which made it easier to learn when people were joking etc.
2. Practice speaking in English every day.
3. Spend some time getting to know the British-Bristol culture.
4. Lots of UK businesses have websites advertise jobs on them. Use the internet to seek work and make contacts before you arrive in Bristol.
5. Use Job Centres, agencies, local newspapers and radio, Facebook, Gumtree, employer websites, family, national and religious networks to seek job opportunities.
‘Get documents correct, up to date, e.g. CV, in order to get job.’
6. If possible, get UK recognition for qualifications through NARIC, The National Academic Recognition Information Centre before arrival.
“Before I even applied for the job I was finding out how to use my qualifications in England if they would be accepted, so I could get all that information online, so I sent my papers with some forms and documents and I got them converted into British ones …”
7. If possible, bring references with you as well as a CV, or find a respected person in Bristol to provide a reference if you are not able to bring one.
8. Do voluntary work to gain work experience and references, improve your English and get to know British culture.
9. Be proactive contacting or visiting potential employers and circulate your CV.
10. Contact potential employers directly by email or through webpages before or after you arrive in Bristol.
11. Use community advice services such as Citizen Advice Bureau regarding job seeking, financial advice, housing and legal services.