From asylum to work

Here you can see how the process runs from when you apply for asylum in Sweden until you have found work. Obviously you can look for work right away and do not need to wait to come to an introduction interview. In all parts of the process you have a responsibility for things turning out as well as you want and as well as possible.

Apply for asylum
Decision on asylum and residence permit
Assessment and inventory – introduction interview
Education, training and work placement
Civic orientation
Swedish for Immigrants (SFI)
Looking for work
Work or further education
 
 

Apply for asylum 

When you come to Sweden as a refugee, you have to apply for asylum. You apply for asylum to Migrationsverket (the Swedish Migration Board). While you are waiting for a decision, you can live with relatives or friends you have in Sweden. If you cannot arrange somewhere to live by yourself, you will get help from Migrationsverket.

Decision on asylum and residence permit

When a decision has been taken you will be called to the Swedish Migration Board for a debriefing interview. If your application has been rejected, you have to leave Sweden. You can appeal against a rejection. If your application has been approved, you get a residence permit in Sweden and have to get to work right away to get established in society and on the labour market. The first thing you should do is to go to the Swedish Tax Agency to register in the population register (folkbokföring) and get the last four figures in your personal identity number. In Sweden almost nothing works without a personal identity number.

Assessment and inventory – introduction interview

To start working as soon as possible you should visit Arbetsförmedlingen when you have come to Sweden and have been given your residence permit. Arbetsförmedlingen will support you with introduction activities that guide you on the path to a job. At Arbetsförmedlingen you talk to an employment officer in introduction interviews. These interviews will result in an introduction plan that you have agreed on together. This plan describes what you will do so as to be able to get a job that matches your skills as soon as possible. When you are a newly arrived refugee or have been given a residence permit as a close relative of a person who has been given asylum in the past two years, you are entitled to introduction benefit if you follow your introduction plan. This benefit is decided by Arbetsförmedlingen but is paid by Försäkringskassan (the Swedish Social Insurance Agency). When you come to Arbetsförmedlingen for your introduction interview, you will be given help to fill in the forms you must submit to Försäkringskassan. Read more about introduction on Arbetsförmedlingen's website. You can also read more about introduction benefit on Försäkringskassan's website.

​Education, training and work placement

Your introduction plan can include activities to enable you to use the knowledge you brought with you – what you have worked with or studied in the past. For example, you can get a work placement with an employer doing the tasks you did in your home country to learn the Swedish words that are special to your occupation. You can also supplement your previous training if it does not quite match the equivalent Swedish training. You will agree on these activities in your introduction plan.

Civic orientation

Sweden has decided that newly arrived refugees are entitled to instruction in civic orientation, i.e. to learn more about Swedish society together with others. It is the municipality that is responsible for civic orientation. The best thing is if there are courses in your mother tongue so that you can discuss what you been working on during the instruction with others. You can also find various sets of material for participants on the Internet. In this portal you will find that material under the Society tab. You may also be able to find other pages that have civic orientation.

Swedish for Immigrants (SFI)

When you come to Sweden as a new arrival, it is important to learn Swedish as soon as possible. This is the key to enable you to get established in society as soon as possible. Swedish for Immigrants (SFI) is a basic training in the Swedish language. The municipality is responsible for providing SFI. SFI instruction can be aimed at various occupations. It is given in various stages and when you have completed one stage, you can go on to the next one. There are four courses: A, B, C and D. You can start SFI at any time during the school year and you follow an individual study plan. Skolverket, the National Agency for Education, is responsible for the SFI syllabus. SFI in your municipality.

Looking for work

There are many ways of looking for work. It is always a good idea to have a CV when you are going to send in your application. You write down what education and training you have and what you have worked with previously. You can often get a job through contacts, people you know or people your friends know. You many not have that many contacts when you have just come to Sweden, and in that case it can be a good idea to take a work placement and show what you are capable of. You can apply for jobs at Arbetsförmedlingen's vacancies bank and you can register your interest with various recruitment companies. They work on finding the right person for the right job.

Work or further education

The activities in the introduction plan have to be conducted full time and last for a maximum of 24 months. After that the idea is that you will have a job or may be continuing your education or training.

 
 
This site contains information about the Swedish society and is run by the County Administrative Boards of Sweden
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