As the capital of the autonomous region of Andalusia in southern Spain, Seville is an economic hub, attracting both local and foreign workers to find employment here. The city contributes a significant proportion to the region’s GDP, and expats working in Seville are employed in various sectors.
The main factor to consider is the language barrier; while international companies operate in Seville, Spanish proficiency is essential for most jobs.
Job market in Seville
Seville hosts a wide range of job opportunities. Thanks to the presence of multiple tertiary education institutions and universities, academia and research and development are major sectors in which expats can find work. This industry strives for technological innovation across areas from biotechnology and telecommunications to eco-friendly renewable energy and the aircraft industry.
A large number of expats work as educators in Seville, teaching English as a foreign language. Private language academies are generally preferred to the public school system because wages are higher and the workload is more reasonable. Though not essential, teachers with a TESOL or TEFL qualification may have a better chance at working for a decent organisation that provides training and support.
Expats can find work in engineering and manufacturing, sales and marketing, and architecture, while there are also frequent job openings in IT for software developers. Seville draws in expat architects; the city has a reputation as a paradise for artists and architects as it is home to historical Moorish buildings and Gothic cathedrals as well as modern designs and structures.
Thanks to this and its rich cultural heritage, tourism is a booming sector. Seville is always bustling with tourists, so bars, restaurants and guide companies take on expats.
Finding a job in Seville
Job hunters should start their search online by looking for work in Seville on platforms such as Glassdoor and LinkedIn. A working knowledge of Spanish is an advantage when applying for work in Seville. Milanuncios.com is also a great resource as it includes classified adverts and job listings, and expats can also search for accommodation using this website.
Some expats may move to Seville with a job in hand, others may start their search after arriving. Networking and making local connections should not be discredited, and it can also help entrepreneurs when starting a business.
When looking for employment, note that wages are lower in Seville than in Madrid and Barcelona, but expats can benefit from a lower cost of living. Nevertheless, expats should research the salaries and working conditions they would expect from their sector to make sure they don’t get taken advantage of with low pay and awkward working hours.
Additionally, the economy has been hit by the coronavirus pandemic, which has made securing a job more difficult, especially for non-EU expats who must apply for an appropriate work visa.
Work culture in Seville
Working hours vary according to the job, although could extend from 8am or 9am until 2pm, and then from 4.30pm to 8pm or 9pm. Sevillanos often work these long days, taking a decent lunch hour or siesta, though not all companies operate like this. Expat teachers working in private organisations may teach from mid-afternoon till the evening.
Consequently, the long working day in Seville can take its toll. Fortunately, the work ethic is normally quite relaxed.
►Thinking of relocating to Seville? Read our list of Pros and Cons of moving to this Spanish city.
►Read Doing Business in Spain for more on the work environment and business culture.
Seville Expat Experiences
"I consider myself fortunate to work for an American boss but with the benefits of a Spanish company like vacation and paid healthcare. In previous jobs, there was always an air of, “if you don’t like the conditions, there’s the door” that makes changing jobs or asking for a raise so difficult.
Another large difference that comes to mind when comparing it with the U.S. is the siesta culture – businesses operate at odd times of the day (i.e., banks are only open until midday) or shut entirely for the month of August. Working from home before the pandemic was unthinkable. One benefit? Your work hours are your work hours, and very rarely do people do any work outside of the office hours.
The culture surrounding work is becoming more flexible and globalized, I’d say." Find out what else Cat has to say about her life in Seville in her interview with Expat Arrivals.
Are you an expat living in Seville?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Seville. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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