The latest Expat Insider Survey has been released and contains the winners (and losers) in the Best Places to Live and Work Abroad.
The Working Abroad Index covers various factors from three different subcategories: Career Prospects & Satisfaction, Work & Leisure, and Economy & Job Security. Each factor was rated on a scale of 1 (very good) to 7 (very bad). The index lists 68 countries with at least 75 respondents each.
The biggest winners in the Working Abroad Index impressed respondents with an improved work-life balance and better career opportunities, and the top 3 are listed below:
Expats in #1 Bahrain appreciate the country for its career prospects.
Bahrain has shown a significant upward trend: coming in 37th place in the first Expat Insider survey in 2014, the country steadily improved its position in the Working Abroad Index until it made its first appearance in the top 10 in 2017.
Expats are particularly happy with their career prospects in the Middle Eastern country, and 30% are even completely satisfied, twice as many as the global average. With oil prices recovering and the discovery of further oil and gas reserves in Bahrain, the economic future looks bright for the little country.
Average working hours are longer in Bahrain (an average of 45.2 hours a week, full time), and the vast majority of expats (94%) works full time. That being said, nearly six in seven respondents in Bahrain (85%) generally rate their job satisfaction favourably, which is 20 percentage points higher than the global average.
#2 Taiwan shows impressive results in the Work & Leisure subcategory.
Taiwan receives positive results across the board, landing in the top 10 of the Working Abroad Index for almost all factors. Over three-quarters of the respondents in Taiwan (76%) are generally satisfied with their job security. One survey participant from the Philippines points out that “it is easy to deal with employers there, as long as you do a good job.”
In the Work & Leisure subcategory, the East Asian destination also doesn’t disappoint: 34% are completely satisfied with their working hours, and more than three in ten (31%) give their work-life balance the highest possible rating. This might be connected with the fact that expats in Taiwan work fewer hours per week than the global average (39.9 vs. 44.0 hours in full-time jobs).
#3 Czech Republic does particularly well for job security.
Job security is also highly appreciated by expats in the Czech Republic: more than seven in ten expats (71%) rate this factor favourably, when compared to the global average of 59%.
31% of respondents are very satisfied with the state of the economy. “Freelancing is easy here, and a little bit of money goes a long way,” a US expat points out, while a French survey respondent is grateful for the career opportunities: “I actually have a job instead of being unemployed.”
In fact, economic forecasts for Czech Republic in 2018 predict stable growth as well as a lack of qualified employees in many fields. This does not only offer job opportunities for expats in various sectors, but it might also lead to a rise in salaries.
Outside of the top 3, the biggest winners are Ecuador, Japan, and Israel. The UK is ranked at #44, 10 places higher than the #54 rating last year.
The biggest losers in the index this year were rated as Romania, Kazakhstan, and Costa Rica.