You've identified your ideal job description and no more than a few potential locations; now where do you go from here? First, thank your lucky stars that you live in the age of the Internet. In some ways, seeking out job openings halfway around the world is no more difficult than finding opportunities halfway across town.
We've all heard the adage that "it's not what you know, it's who you know," and the same holds true in an international job search. The expatriate job site Expat Careers estimates that 75 percent of international jobs are unadvertised, so if you have personal or professional contacts in the country or industry you hope to work in, begin with them [source: ExpatCareers.com].
Set up a LinkedIn profile if you haven't already, and reach out to connections in your extended network to let them know that you are looking for positions in the field and geographic region you've identified. If you are a college student or recent graduate, ask your career services center if they can help you locate internship programs or entry level jobs abroad. No matter when you graduated, your school's alumni network can be a terrific resource for worldwide connections in any number of professions [source: Morgan]. More than 6.32 million U.S. citizens live and work abroad; with any luck, at least one of them will be in your network [source: Association of Americans Resident Overseas].
While you continue to network, take advantage of the many job search Web sites that focus on international jobseekers, such as ExpatCareers.com, ExpatJob.net or Expatnetwork. All three list international jobs, and they can also be great sources of information about whatever country you're considering. Sites like Monster.com and CareerBuilder.com also offer international job search engines that let you filter by industry, job title and location, just as you would for a U.S. search. If you've been able to identify the major employers in your target area, look for openings posted in the careers sections of their corporate Web sites. One other trick is to go to the Google site for the country you're targeting; for example, search "engineering jobs" on google.co.uk to find local job listings in the United Kingdom.
Of course, finding job openings is one thing. Landing an interview -- not to mention the job itself -- from 5,000 miles away is quite another.