All About Working in South Korea

Have you ever considered working in the Land of The Morning Calm?

South Korea opens its calm land for brighter opportunities for job seekers. Locals as well as foreigners can find a lot of resources in how to start a career here in Korea. A high percentage of job openings include teaching while there are still a section for technology related jobs such as programming, software engineering and web design.Korea

Whether you choose to work in short term or long term, you must undergo a strict process that could further evaluate your competence for the job. And this blog post aims to teach  how this process happens from start of your job hunting till the day you arrive in Seoul.

The Working visa

South Korea requires a working visa in order to take up employment. Work visas are usually valid for three years starting from the issuance date. There are visas available for different types of work and the list includes:

  1. Short-term employment
  2. Long-term employment or Professional employment
  3. Special occupations
  4. Foreign Language Instructor
  5. Professorships
  6. Technology Transfer
  7. Research

Per protocol, you need to specify in your visa the type of work you can do. In a case where a company that resides in South Korea offers the job to you, the Korean employer should be the one responsible to file a work permit application on your behalf. If you are taking it upon yourself then naturally you need to process your visa via the nearest Korean Embassy in your country.

A Certification of Confirmation of Visa Issuance must be submitted as well as the Visa Issuance application to the Korean Embassy afterwards. Those who will stay for a long-term basis must register in a local immigration office within the first 90 days of the stay in South Korea.The Working Visa application usually takes up to two to four weeks depending on how well the process flow is executed.

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Choosing Where to Work

It’s always important to go with a job where you have education expertise and employment experience in . Take note that there is a strong competition going on in the job market especially for foreigners. It is nice to make your credentials  stand out.

Jobs in the blue-collar industry such as automotive, chemical, electronic, steel and mobile telecommunications are of high employment need. As said earlier, language professionals will find it easier to land a job as well as those in the science and technology field. South Korea is known as the home of Samsung, Hyundai and Daewoo so you may want to take a risk and apply for a job.


Typical Work Life

The average working hours in South Korea is of 40 hours a week or 8 hours a day. Compensation depends on the industry you belong to, the job that fits you and work experience you have but the minimum wage per hour is 5,210 KRW. There are up to 15 public holidays in a year that includes Sinjeong (New Year’s Day), Chuseok (Mid Autumn Festival) and Hangeul Lal (Hangul Day).


Getting that Job

The application process on a job may take longer than applying work work visa as some companies have strict hiring regulations. It is again recommended to go with a work that you have prior experience in. Your networks can help to build up your application so make sure to have good contacts in your resume. Though Korean is the first language, English is highly used especially in multinational companies. Have your resume and cover letter updated and list necessary details that could help you up get the job. You will also undergo an interview screening process and this can either be on the day you arrive at the country or an interview through Skype to help assess first whether you are worthy for employment before coming. 

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Additional Tips

Consider enrolling in a short Korean Language course just to familiarize yourself with the language.  If you are a recent graduate, you might need to check out Job websites such as to the latest job offers. Other sources of information in regards to employment are local newspaper’s classified ads and bulletins.



Working in South Korea is one of the best choices you could ever make in your life- career-wise. Yes, the step by step process can be daunting and time-consuming, but experiencing the work ethic of the South Korean people will teach you a lot of lessons in life.

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