Working in Houston
The city is home to over 20 Fortune 500 companies, over 5000 firms in the energy sector, the world’s largest medical centre, a prestigious aerospace facility and a wide array of multinationals. Needless to say, there’s an assortment of positions available across any number of industries.
Expat employment in Houston
Historically, Houston has been known as the oil and gas capital of the world. Although its economy has diversified in recent decades, its backbone is still built with “black gold”, and those looking for a job in this sector would do well to move west to this former frontier.
Otherwise, the healthcare industry is burgeoning, and forecasts predict that over 5000 jobs will be added in 2011. On the other hand, construction, which has typically been an industry mainstay in Houston, will shed jobs, as will the civil sector.
Regardless of which economic sphere expats are interested in, Houston is home to a diverse population of local transplants and internationals (it has an especially large Hispanic population), and foreigners won’t find themselves limited by their ethnicity.
It may take some adjusting to the “good ol’ boy” attitude adopted by many, a traditionally conservative outlook that aligns with Southern American values of the past; but otherwise, the general belief seems to be that if you work hard in Houston, you’re bound to be successful.
A strong can-do attitude prevails in the city, and a well-maintained infrastructure and transport system eases the difficulties associated with settling into a new workplace.
For those expats looking to start a business in Houston, there are a fair amount of state and local incentives available to support new endeavours, and to encourage expansion in already-established companies. Furthermore, the state’s tax structure (there’s no individual or corporate income tax levied by the state of Texas) makes it an appealing place to “open your doors”.
Finding a job in Houston
As was the case with the greater US, Houston was affected by the economic downturn, and many of its companies were forced to dismiss employees. That said, by the end of 2011, the city is predicted to replace most of the jobs lost during the recession.
There are a large number of staffing specialists and employment agencies present in the city that can help expats find a job, as well as a multitude of listings, both in online and print media, for those who would rather find a position themselves.
Job fairs are held throughout the year, and offer great networking opportunities for those who thrive off face-to-face interaction.