Finding a Job in Russia
Where to Find a Job?
The best places to look for work (mainly targeted towards expats) are www.expat.ru/vacancies.php (for jobs in Moscow, mainly teaching, nannying and editing), the Moscow Times career center (www.careercenter.ru), the jobs section of the St Petersburg Times (www.sptimes.ru), a major Russian job vacancy website Headhunter (www.hh.ru) and Kelly Services (www.kellyservices.ru).
There are also several Russian-language job search portals. These have much more audience and if you can at least read Russian, you could post your ad in English there and have a much better exposure. Websites such as http://joblist.ru or http://job.ru or http://superjob.ru are all very popular. If you're interesting in working in a local tech community, try http://habrahabr.ru which is the local tech blog with programming and web 2.0 job listings.
If you're thinking about doing some random work in a bar or a club – forget about it. The pay is too little and the venues already have so many problems with authorities that it's very unlikely they will go through the pain of obtaining your work permit or risk hiring you illegally.
In case you want something less binding, your best bet is teaching or nannying jobs, as well as freelance work, such as translation or copy-writing. Also, working as a journalist for the local English-language Moscow Times newspaper may be an option.
What's the Average Salary in Russia?
The average salary has increased significantly during the past years. As of 2010 the average Russian salary is about $500 - $600 US per month throughout Russia and $1000 US in Moscow. However, if you're thinking about highly qualified jobs, such as graphic designers, programmers, senior management, etc. – noone will work for less than $2000 US / month, even outside of Moscow.
How to Secure a Job
As for whether to secure work before heading to Russia or just taking the plunge and hoping for the best, it really depends on your own courage. The fact is that even if a company does offer you work before you come, in most cases it will still be difficult to get a contract or visa support from them. Really, the most prudent option is to try to get several expressions of interest from different companies and then head to Russia assuming that one of them will work out. Above all, when looking for work in Russia you must always remember that the mere fact you are a native speaker of English makes you in demand. There is still a lot of opportunity for the foreigner in Russia, even if they are no longer king.
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