Working in Brazil

Expats working in Brazil are often attracted by its image as a fast-growing economy with a prosperous future and famously beautiful leisure attractions.

The unemployment rate remains moderate. However, job prospects have diminished and the competition for jobs has increased. This has partially been a result of structural problems, including a slow-moving bureaucracy, corruption and weak infrastructure.

The Brazilian economy is expected to recover though. The government has also put a lot of effort into boosting growth by investing in large-scale infrastructure projects as well as scientific and technological development. This has attracted an increasingly skilled workforce. 


Job market in Brazil

In 2017 the Labour Code in Brazil was updated. This update has made it harder for foreigners to get employment in Brazil. Employers now have to prove that they weren't able to employ a Brazilian worker before employing a foreigner. The majority of foreigners who find jobs in Brazil are highly skilled expats who work in industries with skills shortages. These include IT, engineering, construction, oil and gas. 

Qualified expats working in IT as software engineers, programmers and database managers are highly sought-after. Jobs in finance and engineering are highly competitive. Thus, a number of years of experience are needed even for entry-level positions in some cases. 

The majority of expats working in Brazil tend to be based in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. São Paulo is the home of Brazil’s stock exchange, while Rio hosts a number of thriving oil companies. 


Finding a job in Brazil

Expats wanting to live and work in Brazil can use a number of resources in their job search. Local publications are good for researching various industries and contain job listings in a range of sectors, though expats may need to enlist the help of someone fluent in Portuguese.

The safest and best-paying option for employment in Brazil would be to get transferred to the country through an international company. 

Online job postings are also a good place to look, although expats should be wary of possible scammers. 


Work culture in Brazil

The Brazilian work environment is known for appearing very formal on the surface with a much more casual atmosphere when it comes to personal interactions. Relationships are very important to Brazilians when doing business. Expats will have to put a lot of effort into networking if they want to be successful.

There are no set business hours in Brazil, though most businesses are open sometime between 8am and 6pm. Many businesses open from 8.30am to 5.30pm, while executives will often start and finish working later. Lunch is usually taken between 12.30pm and 2.30pm.

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