Finland Works open online course introduces Finnish working life and career building

The Finland Works open online course has been created as a starting point for understanding Finnish working life and building a career in Finland. The course is designed especially for international students and job seekers and those who wish to know more about Finnish working life. Aalto University Career Services experts, work-life professionals from the field and researchers from Aalto have collectively produced the course content. The course is part of the Future of Work open online learning module.

Finland is known as the happiest country in the world and many characteristics of Finnish work-life speak for a healthy work-life balance. Nevertheless, for many international workers getting that first chance in the Finnish labour market can sometimes be tricky. The course offers Finnish working life perspectives from societal, organisational and individual levels as well as practical know-how for career building.

Finland Works is a self-directed open online course with five chapters. Each chapter consists of several sections that end either with an open-ended question or a quiz. The assignments alongside the course materials are designed to help students navigate through Finnish working life and reflect on their future careers. The course materials are available both in text and podcast format. In each chapter, there is a video of Aalto alumni sharing their experiences on Finnish work culture, work-life balance and building a career in Finland.

The course contents are supported by academic research as well as recent reports by global organizations such as OECD and WEF. The learning materials are authored by Visiting Lecturer Peter Kenttä, Recruitment Expert Saku Tihveräinen from Marbles Oy, Work-Life Specialist Niina Pitkänen, Program Director Laura Sivula, Senior Manager at Aalto University Career Services Tanja Makkonen, Manager for the International Talent Program at Aalto University Kaisa Paasivirta and Senior Program Manager for the Information Technology Program at Aalto University Regina Casteleijn-Osorno.

‘For a long time, Aalto University has recognised the needs and challenges of employment of our international students. We offer our international students many possibilities to network and get acquainted with employers throughout their studies. The sooner a student begins to familiarise themselves with Finnish working life, the better.’ says course author and manager at the International Talent Program at Aalto University Kaisa Paasivirta.

The new master’s students starting in Aalto this fall come from no less than 111 different countries. Migration and the mobility of international talent are extremely important issues for Finland’s well-being and competitiveness, which is why it is crucial for Finland to attract and retain international talent in the Finnish work-life.

‘We need skilled workers, and there’s no point in ignoring the existing expertise of international students who already are in the country. The Finland Works course can increase our students’ possibilities to stay in Finland to work and integrate into society.’ Kaisa Paasivirta continues.

One of the drivers behind the Finland Works course is the international job seekers’ need for resources to get acquainted with Finnish working culture. Adapting to a new way of working requires efforts both from the employer and employee’s side and with this course, we aim to ease the adjustment process for both sides.

‘When you’re looking for a job outside your country of origin, it might be unclear what the employer is expecting and wishing from the applicant – beyond the official requirements. What are the strengths that I should highlight as an applicant? It’s essential to show international job seekers that there are no secret handshakes or code languages you would need to succeed in landing a job in Finland. The employer’s expectations and wishes are most of the time sensible, regardless of whether you’re working in Finland or any international company. Of course, Finland has some specialities like all other countries, but these are more additional ‘spices’ than hindrances.’ comments course author and lecturer Peter Kenttä.

The course is launched in English on 10th September 2021.

Register for the course:

Finland Works, https://futureofwork.fi/courses/finland-works/

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