As the capital of the autonomous region of Andalusia in southern Spain, Seville is an economic hub that attracts professionals from all over the world looking to take advantage of the city’s fine weather, stunning beaches and gentle cost of living.
The city contributes a significant proportion to the region’s GDP and has several strong industries with plenty of opportunities for skilled expats.
While the Spanish economy holds no major culture shock, particularly for European expats, the language barrier is something to take into consideration, as most Seville companies will require their employees to speak Spanish.
Job market in Seville
Seville offers a wide range of job opportunities. Thanks to the presence of multiple tertiary education institutions, academia and research and development are major sectors in which expats can find work. This industry strives for technological innovation in several fields, including biotechnology, telecommunications, eco-friendly renewable energy and the aviation industry.
A large number of expats work as educators in Seville, teaching English as a foreign language. Private language academies are generally preferred to the public school system because wages are higher and the workload is more reasonable. Though not essential, teachers with a TESOL or TEFL qualification may have a better chance at working for a decent organisation that provides training and support.
Expats can also find work in engineering, manufacturing, sales and marketing, while there are frequent job openings in IT, especially for software developers. There are opportunities in architecture too; Seville lures architects from all over, as the city’s iconic historical Moorish buildings and Gothic cathedrals make it a paradise for artists and architects.
Indeed, it is thanks to the city's wonderful architecture combined with its rich cultural heritage and great weather that makes Seville’s tourism a booming sector. Expats are therefore often able to find work in the city’s hospitality and tourism industries.
Finding a job in Seville
Job hunters should start their search online by looking for work in Seville on platforms such as Glassdoor and LinkedIn. A working knowledge of Spanish is an advantage when applying for work in Seville. Milanuncios.com is also a great resource as it includes classified adverts and job listings, and expats can also search for accommodation using this website.
Some expats may move to Seville with a job in hand, while others only start their search after arriving. Networking and making local connections are valuable avenues, and it can also help entrepreneurs when starting a business.
When looking for employment expats should note that wages are lower in Seville than in Madrid and Barcelona, but Seville residents benefit from a lower cost of living. Nevertheless, expats should research the salaries and working conditions in their sector to make sure they don’t get taken advantage of with low pay and awkward working hours.
The infamous Spanish bureaucracy can make life difficult for job seekers. Additionally, a fairly unstable inflation-hit economy makes securing a job even more difficult, especially for non-EU expats who must apply for the appropriate work visa.
Work culture in Seville
Working hours vary according to the job, although they could extend from 8am or 9am until 2pm, and then from 4.30pm to 8pm or 9pm. Sevillanos often work these long days, taking a decent lunch hour or siesta, though not all companies operate like this. Expat teachers working in private organisations may teach from mid-afternoon till evening.
Consequently, the long working day in Seville can take its toll. Fortunately, the work environment is normally quite relaxed.
►Thinking of relocating to Seville? Read our list of Pros and Cons of moving to this Spanish city.
►Read Doing Business in Spain for more on the work environment and business culture.
Seville Expat Experiences
"I consider myself fortunate to work for an American boss but with the benefits of a Spanish company like vacation and paid healthcare. In previous jobs, there was always an air of, “if you don’t like the conditions, there’s the door” that makes changing jobs or asking for a raise so difficult.
Another large difference that comes to mind when comparing it with the U.S. is the siesta culture – businesses operate at odd times of the day (i.e., banks are only open until midday) or shut entirely for the month of August. Working from home before the pandemic was unthinkable. One benefit? Your work hours are your work hours, and very rarely do people do any work outside of the office hours.
The culture surrounding work is becoming more flexible and globalized, I’d say." Find out what else Cat has to say about her life in Seville in her interview with Expat Arrivals.
Are you an expat living in Seville?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Seville. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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