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Work in Barcelona


Are you looking for a job in Barcelona? You should first inquire on its economic situation and labor market? Here is an overview.

Barcelona, which is found in the Barcelona province, is Spain's second largest city. It is also Catalonia's administrative and economic center. Its population amounts to some 1,6 inhabitants, including a large number of expatriates, particularly from European countries. Barcelona is also one of the European Union's most densely populated cities while continuing to attract students, young professionals, as well as foreign investors from across the globe.

In fact, Barcelona is a land of opportunities for young professionals wishing to join its labor market. Moreover, local authorities have doubled their efforts over the past few years in order to make the labor market more dynamic and competitive.


Barcelona is Catalonia's most developed city. Being Spain's major economic centers, it has managed to overcome the European economic crisis. It has one of the country's biggest airports and one of the Mediterranean's main sea ports. Barcelona's economy is primarily based on the automotive field, services, industry, electronics, chemicals, textile, food and agriculture. Subsidiaries of automobile companies Nissan and Volkswagen, as well as other brands such as Mango, Decathlon, IBM, IT, Carrefour, etc., are located there.

Barcelona is also considered to be a Spanish investment haven. It features among the 30 global destinations for investment or business creation. These efforts are supported by local authorities, including the municipality of Barcelona which continuously invests in innovative projects in order to attract more foreign companies.

 Good to know:

Barcelona also hosts an innovative zone, including university campuses, research and training institutions, as well as companies specializing in information technology and communication, design and bio-medicine, etc.

Popularity with expats

Since many of Barcelona's inhabitants moved, many expatriates have expressed their interest for working there over the years. Indeed, Barcelona is deemed to be a top destination for foreign professionals, especially thanks to its cost of living which remains affordable and lower than in many other major European cities. 

Labor market

Barcelona is known for being one of the cheapest Spanish cities. Hence, unemployment rate is rather low compared to other cities. In the 3rd quarter of 2015, around 659,600 unemployed had been recorded in Barcelona, which is quite surprising as the number of job seekers had not gone beyond 700,000 since 2010. Unemployment rate, for the same period, turned around 17.2%.

 Good to know:

Despite its pleasant atmosphere and the vibrant lifestyle, Barcelona is also the city where salaries are the lowest.

However, foreigners are likely to be hired in various sectors such as the industrial, automotive, information and communication technology, research, chemicals, financial services fields, etc. Health care and education fields are also open to qualified and skilled foreigners.

A good command of other languages such as English and French can be a valuable asset although knowledge of Spanish is recommended. Note that Spanish and Catalan languages courses are provided free or charge at the town hall. You may be eligible following selection after submitting your application.

Spanish courses and Catalan are taught at the town hall for free, on selection after submission of a dossier. For more information, contact the Ajuntament de Barcelona. Companies that are more open toward foreign expertise also provide Spanish courses to their new recruits. 

Find a job

You can start your job search by browsing job offers in Barcelona on the Internet and in classified ads in local newspapers. Public organizations such as the Servicio Publico de Empleo and foreign Chambers of commerce can also help. Consider sending spontaneous job applications to companies operating in the region, particularly if you are looking for an internship. Otherwise, you can seek help from a recruitment agency.

 Useful links: - Jobs in Barcelona
Linked In
Xpat Jobs
Barcelona Trabajos
Info Jobs
Ajuntament de Barcelona
Chamber of Commerce of Barcelona

Recommend Your favourite team
Member since 01 June 2008
Small earth, Mauritius
1 Comment
2 days ago

Great place to work :)


See also

Madrid's labor market has been facing a shortage of qualified and skilled workforce since some time. Hence, it is open to young foreign professionals.
Malaga has been one of the most affected Spanish cities by the global economic crisis. Hence its high unemployment rate during recent years.
Sevilla's economy is recovering gradually after having been seriously affected by the global economic crisis. Unemployment rate has also been in decline.
Tenerife Island and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, its capital city, are known to be tourist destinations. But there are also jobs opportunities in many fields.
Valencia, which is the Valencia Community's capital city, offers various job opportunities to qualified and skilled young professionals.

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