Discovering Sweden's job market as an Indian Finance Professional: Answering 7 FAQs to help you move
Interested in working in Sweden as a Finance Professional from India? Our FAQ section provides comprehensive answers to 7 commonly asked questions about getting a job in the country.
- Sweden has a highly developed and diverse economy with approx 50,000 Indians living in the country.
- The gross domestic product (GDP) was approximately 5.3 trillion SEK (about 632 billion USD) in 2020, according to Statistics Sweden.
- Here are 7 FAQs that will help you make the transition to the Scandinavian country.
1. How to get a Finance job in Sweden from India?
Securing a job in Sweden can be more challenging when applying from outside the country, than when you are already inside. Doing an MBA or Masters from an EU nation can make it easier.
The Big4s here such as Deloitte and KPMG are hiring talents extensively for Audit and Accounting roles. Secondment and internal transfer are great ways to land a job in Sweden.
If that doesn't work you can always apply directly from India or other countries and secure a job in Sweden. The Swedish government has recently made it mandatory for companies to hire expats only if their salary ranges from 32000 – 33000 Swedish Krona per month.
Here are several ways you can find a Finance job in Sweden from India.
- The Swedish Public Employment Service (Arbetsförmedlingen) supports people looking for work. It provides information and advice. There are many privately run job sites as well, to find a job in Sweden. These websites usually include job listings and functions where you can upload your CV.
- Another good starting point for job seekers is the EURES portal, a collection of public and private job listings from EU/EEA countries and Switzerland. The portal is run by the European Labour Authority to encourage labor mobility and facilitate the free movement of workers. Citizens of EU/EEA countries or Switzerland can turn to a EURES advisor for help when looking for a job in Sweden.
- You can search for finance jobs in Sweden on online job portals such as LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Indeed, and Monster.
- Many companies in Sweden advertise job vacancies on their websites. You can search for companies in your field and check their career pages for job opportunities.
- Look for recruitment agencies that specialize in finance and have connections with companies in Sweden.
- Networking with professionals in your field can help you make connections and learn about job opportunities. You can attend industry events, join professional organizations, and connect with professionals on LinkedIn.
It's important to note that as a non-European national, you will need a work permit to work in Sweden. You can check the eligibility criteria and requirements for a work permit on the Swedish Migration Agency website.
2. What Finance job roles are in demand in Sweden and what kind of salary can one expect?
The Swedish economy is going through a bit of a stagnant phase, but there is a promising future ahead for Finance Professionals.
Some of the most in-demand finance job roles for expats in Sweden include:
Financial Analyst: 31,100SEK - 86,900SEK Per month
Investment Banker: 15,400 SEK - 101,000 SEK per month
Accountant: 302k SEK - 498k SEK per year
Risk Manager: 42,000 SEK to 145,000 SEK per year
Data analytics, design thinking, or AI-related profiles are in great demand
Business Finance roles
3. What kind of Finance qualifications do companies in Sweden look for?
In Sweden, the most widely recognized finance qualifications are those offered by:
- The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
- The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute
- The Swedish Society of Financial Analysts (SFF).
These qualifications are highly regarded by many companies, particularly those in the financial services sector.
Other qualifications that may be accepted by companies in Sweden are Certified Public Accountant (CPA), and Master of Business Administration (MBA) among others.
Indian Chartered Accountancy qualification is also accepted, but if you are thinking long-term, your best bet would be to get a CFA or Financial Risk Manager (FRM) qualification.
If you decide to pursue an MBA, pick a well-recognized university (i.e. Stockholm School Of Economics) and specialize in data analytics, design thinking, or AI-related courses. They are already in demand in many European countries and are going to shape the next 5-10 years of the Swedish job market.
Please note that required qualifications may vary depending on the nature of the job, the requirements of the employer, and the company.
4. How can I get a work permit for Sweden from India?
To obtain a work permit you must have,
- An employment contract, signed by both parties (if the employment contract is in a language other than English or Swedish, it must be translated. A copy of the original document must also be attached)
- A valid passport
- Employment with terms of employment that are at least on par with those set by Swedish collective agreements or which are customary within the occupation or industry
- A salary that is at least on par with that set by Swedish collective agreements or which is customary within the occupation or industry
- Employment that will enable you to support yourself. In order to satisfy this support requirement, you need to work to an extent that will result in a salary of at least SEK 13,000 per month before taxes
- An employer who provides insurance covering health, life, employment and pension
5. What is the cost of living in Sweden?
The cost of living in Sweden can be high.
- One of the biggest expenses in Sweden is housing, as it can eat up half of your total monthly budget. Rent for a one-bedroom apartment in a city center can range from SEK 7,000 to SEK 12,000 per month. Rent prices, which rise by approx. 1% per year, account for a majority of your increased expenses. However, there are some more affordable options available in smaller towns or in the suburbs.
- Food and dining out can also be relatively expensive in Sweden. Groceries for one person can cost around SEK 2,500 to SEK 3,500 per month.
- Transportation costs can also add up in Sweden. While public transportation is efficient and widely available, fares can be pricey, especially for long-distance travel. Owning a car is also expensive due to high taxes on vehicle purchases and fuel.
- A monthly pass for public transport can cost around SEK 800 to SEK 1,200 per month.
- Utilities like electricity, water, and internet can also be quite costly. utilities, internet, phone, and leisure activities, and can add up to a few thousand SEK per month.
- There are no out-of-pocket costs for most medical services, as healthcare is largely funded by taxes.
- In Sweden, most people pay only local taxes on their annual income. This tax varies depending on the municipality and ranges from 28.98% to 35.15%. Sweden's average local tax rate is 32.34%.
- Earners above a certain income threshold set by the Tax Agency also pay 20% state tax.
Taking these into account, you would need around SEK 22,000 (EUR 2000) per month to live moderately.
Despite the high cost of living, Sweden offers many benefits to its residents.
Couples with newborn babies get 480 days of combined parental break, with an ensured 80% of their salary. Education for children is also free between the age of 6 and 16.
6. How to get citizenship in Sweden?
First, you would need to come to Sweden on a work permit.
Your work permit would get renewed for another two years and at the end of the last year, you would be eligible for permanent residency.
After living in Sweden as a permanent resident for 5 years, you can apply for citizenship.
Right now there are no requirements for you to speak their language or take up any tests to become a citizen of the country. But these rules might change after 2025.
You can check out this website for further information.
7. What points do Finance Professionals need to consider before deciding on Sweden?
Moving to a different country has its pros and cons. So it is better to weigh those before making the move.
- Being located in the far north of Europe, Sweden may not suit people who dislike winter. You’d only get 7-8 hours of sunlight each day from December to January.
- In many companies in Europe, restructuring happens every 2-3 years.
- Companies in Sweden may partly discount your work experience in countries outside of Europe such as India. So you have to be patient.
- The government has recently made it mandatory for companies to hire expats only if their salary ranges from 32000 – 33000 Swedish Krona per month.
But there are many advantages as well.
- You may be allowed to work there even if you are not fluent in Swedish. Residents and employees in bigger cities like Gothenburg and Stockholm are generally proficient or fluent in English. You can learn the basics of Swedish to join local professional networks.
- Apart from the public amenities provided by the government, there are unions to support employees in Sweden and Denmark.
This article was made possible by insights from Shrihari Venkateshwaran - Senior Finance Manager at Microsoft, Sweden. Shrihari is a Chartered Accountant from ICAI, India, and has an MBA from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.
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