JOB SEARCH / JUN. 20, 2014
version 18, draft 18

How to Land a Job in Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro Statue
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The beautiful city of Rio de Janeiro welcomes highly skilled workers in various capacities. Experience in consulting, English language teaching, tourism or development work are seen to be highly sought after, however expatriates wishing to work in Rio should find a job prior to their arrival. This article will identify the key points to review when seeking out a new career in Rio including; CV format, best places to search for jobs and what documents are required to live and work in the country; with some helpful pointers along the way.

Step 1: Check your Resume

Please note the two essential rules:

(1) In Brazil/Rio de Janeiro it is typical to have two resume’s which you send as part of your application (a summary resume and a long version resume).
(2) There should be a Portuguese and English version prepared. Below are the minimum pieces of information a recruiter in Rio would come to expect:

Contact Information: How they can get in touch with you, email/fax/home and mobile numbers

Optional Photo: This is not obligatory, which indicates that while the recruiter would prefer to see who you are in an image, it is not a legal requirement.

Professional Experience: Your role title, company, dates and description.

Education: Anything considered further education such as college or university should be included.

Certificates & Diplomas: Courses, seminars, congresses or conferences that are relevant in relation to the position.

Languages: List which languages you speak indicating: advanced, intermediate or beginner including the level of written and oral abilities you have.

Computer Skills: Programs, applications, word processing, database, internet; the expected software competencies.

Recommendations: References are incredibly important in Brazil, recruiters expect the correspondent’s full details; name, contact information, role, time known and how you know them.

It is quite common in Brazil for professionals to prepare two resumes, a one page resume giving a brief overview of personal details, educational background and professional experience - seen as somewhat as an advertising tool to showcase the best of the best offers you have as a candidate. A secondary longer CV is then used to collaborate what is showcased, with relatively the same information although detailed and pedantic including descriptions into actual daily job duties, the classes you studied in higher education, the precise results you achieved etc. However, the secondary and longer CV is normally presented upon request. Offer both resumes even if it is not requested in the job listing; it is best to be sure to present everything they need in one place, positioned with a supporting cover letter.

Step 2: Best places to search for jobs in Rio

When searching for a job in Rio de Janeiro, consider the two main tools at your deposal.

Leading websites used to find jobs in Rio include:

Various professional search agencies may be an alternative solution to finding a job; these outfits offer help and support known locally to be “middle and upper” class jobs. Below are the 2 largest worth considering together with full contact details: 

Step 3: Hours & Working Conditions

The average working hours in Brazil are usually 40 to 44 hours per week depending on a 5 or 6 day schedule. Under Brazilian Labour Law, workers receive an annual vacation of 30 days. What separates this from almost every international holiday entitlement is employees must either takes these days all at once or at least divide the days in two parts, with one sitting no less than 20 days.

Step 4: Visa Options

Depending on your circumstances, you may have several options to accommodate your stay; different classifications can adjust the visa best suited to you:

Foreign students travelling to Brazil to attend study courses – including theological and technical studies must have a Student Visa.  Applicants must lodge their request in person ensuring:

  • First entry into Brazil must be within 90 days from the date the visa is issued
  • Within 30 days of arrival in Brazil, bearers of a ‘Student Visa’ must register with the Brazilian
  • Immigration authorities (DPMAF) and submit the second copy of the visa application form, which will have been stamped and returned to them by the Consulate General
  • Length of stay in Brazil is up to one year, extendable, at the discretion of the Brazilian Federal Police
  • An Embarkation/Disembarkation card, provided to all visitors by the Brazilian Immigration authorities (DPMAF), must be filled in and signed appropriately and submitted to authorities upon arrival and when leaving Brazil

Keep in mind student Visa holders are not allowed to engage in any paid activity in Brazil.

Tourists travelling to Brazil or Rio de Janeiro must have a Tourist Visa abiding by the following regulations:

  • First entry into Brazil must be no later than 90 days after the visa is issued
  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to make sure the application is lodged accordingly
  • Length of stay in Brazil
  • First granted period: up to 90 days 
  • Extensions (once in Brazil): up to another 90 days, making up a maximum of six months in any twelve-month period
  • At least 2 weeks before expiration of the first granted period, tourists may apply for a single extension of up to 90 additional days. 
  • Paid or unpaid employment of tourists in Brazil is strictly prohibited.
  • An Embarkation/Disembarkation card, provided to all visitors by the Brazilian Immigration authorities (DPMAF), must be filled in and signed appropriately and submitted to authorities upon arrival and when leaving Brazil.

It is necessary to secure a job offer from a Brazilian company or government department based in Brazil/Rio, for expatriates looking to apply for the right to live and work in Brazil; when accepted they will then be granted a temporary residence visa. The new employer will need to apply on the workers behalf to the Immigration Division of the Ministry of Labor, on the worker’s behalf. To be eligible you must prove/hold the following:

  • Employment contract with a corporation or other legal entity based in Brazil
  • Technical assistance services arising from a contract, cooperation agreement, services agreement, or similar instrument signed with a foreign corporation or other legal entity
  • Professional training, without an employment relationship, immediately after the completion of vocational training or university education
  • Medical residency in an educational institution accredited by the Ministry of Education
  • Employees of foreign companies admitted to work in Brazil as trainees or interns at a subsidiary or Brazilian branch of the foreign company, provided that they are paid exclusively outside of Brazil by that foreign company
  • Foreign instructors or professors who intend to travel to Brazil for a period of training in foreign language instruction
  • Foreign scientists, professors or researchers that are holders of a work contract or have passed public competitive examination for work within a Brazilian institution for education or scientific research and development
  • Crew members of foreign vessels traveling to Brazil to operate in waters under Brazilian jurisdiction, as required under a charter, services, or risk contract entered into with a Brazilian company

More information regarding this can be found by visiting the Consulado Geral Do Brasil.

Step 5: Research Locations within Rio

What is known to be the flat side of the city is normally the most popular. The city of Rio is stretched out over mountainsides and elevated cliffs, and coastal regions such as the wealthy (labeled) Zona Sul located in the south of Rio are sought after. According to Neighborhoods of Rio the districts which build up Rio de Janeiro are somewhat classified as either; poor, middle, upper or extremely wealthy classifications. International buyers have been seen to prefer the neighbourhoods of Leblon, Ipanema, Jardim Botanico and Lagoa, while middle-income residents buy or rent in Copacabana, Botafogo, Flamengo, Laranjeiras and Largo do Machado.

We hope the following guide has been of help should you choose to find a job and relocate to Rio de Janeiro. The sun, sea and sand comfortably places the city as one of the well-liked and admired destinations in the world. 

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