1. Where are you located and what do you do?
I am a freelance journalist currently living in and working from Vienna. Among my recurring customers are two Austrian IT consulting firms, the Austrian magazine Ecommerce Alive (http://www.ecommerce-alive.com/), the Brazilian news aggregator BrazilPost and The Local. Besides writing features, I also create and manage social media and online marketing campaigns. Journalists don't know routine: we are often on the go, write about different things at the same time and get to know a great number of people. That is a precise description of the work environment of the few of us who remain connected to a single media outlet or company, but even more so of the freelancers' life.
2. What brought you to Austria and how long have you been here?
When asked why I came to Austria, I usually reply with the quirky remark "Let me get back to you on that". I have been living here for five years now.
3. How did you land your job and do you have any tips for someone looking for a similar work?
I am a geek and landed most of my jobs thanks to online platforms. Besides LinkedIn, which is slowly gaining traction among recruiters in Austria, I scout for job opportunities on various companies' job boards and on Facebook. Dedicated Facebook groups are quite popular in Austria and you can find freelance work and positions on start ups by joining them.
Of course, networking helps too. I recommend anyone who relocated or plans on doing so to invest as much time and care in creating a peer network in their new dwelling as in keeping strong their connections in the country of origin.
4. Is it important for you to speak German in your position?
Obviously the more languages you speak, the greater your opportunities. But speaking German proved to be less important than I expected. Vienna is an international city and you will find companies and media outlets where English is the working language. Besides, thanks to the internet, you needn't be bound to the place you reside: you can offer your skills and promote your work anywhere in the world.
5. What are the best and worst parts of working in Austria?
Gathering experience in a foreign country, getting to know a different culture and work environment are the main attractions for me in the expat experience. But finding and keeping a job in Austria can be tricky due the amount of paperwork necessary to secure a residence or a work permit.
6. Do you plan on staying?
As Garfield, I used to like change. But I've changed. So for the time being, I am staying.