When you arrive you should visit your Airman and Family Readiness Center (AFRC). They can assist you in writing your resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV). You must be command-sponsored and have a vignette to work in the United Kingdom. They can also help you with gaining employment on-base. The bases are located in a very rural area so opportunities may be limited.
Curriculum Vitae (CV)
When preparing a CV, make sure that you format it to fit A4 paper which is the paper size used in Europe. You can buy this paper at any local stationary shores (Staples) or large grocery stores (Tescos, Sainsbury). When you are spell checking your CV, remember to use British–English, this should help you use the correct spellings used here.
It is not mandatory but you can add personal details such as marital status, age and hobbies. If you are an American citizen, it may be wise to add “No Work Permit Required” otherwise, some employers will discard your CV without giving you second thought.
Also include a cover letter or letter of application which are a short letter attached to your CV whereas; a letter of application is a longer letter stating why you are suitable/applying for the job.
I would suggest googling CV templates so that you can get an idea of what kind of information is put on a CV. In the US, CVs are used for teaching and research positions but this style is used by everyone in Europe.
For jobs on base, keep an eye on USA Jobs- (make sure to click the radio as a current federal employee- these jobs are open to military spouses). If you are a military spouse, you have spouses preference, read more about it here.
Keep your eye out for job ads. They could be in the local paper, in shop windows or on-line, below are some places to look for jobs.
If you have any questions about working laws, wages or anything else, you can find more information at www.gov.uk
Recruitment agencies are more like staffing/temping agencies in the US. You can sign up with a recruitment agency for free and they help to place people in jobs. Some agencies specialize in certain fields, so if you are highly skilled or have niche market, look for agents that know your industry. In general, this is how a lot of people get work in the UK.
They work with business to fill vacancies but also work for you. You can get a variety of work through them, flexible, part-time, temp-to-perm or permanent. Often the agency will pay your salary (they are paid by the company for your work and their fee).
If you are looking for administrative work, I recommend Pure Resourcing. I have found great assignments through them.
National Insurance Number (NIN)
You need to contact the Job Centre at 0345 600 0643 and apply for a NIN.
If you are looking to running your own business the HM Revenue and Customs has a lot of information, their website is www.hmrc.gov.uk. You must inform them within 3 months of opening your own business.
Unfortunately certain qualifications do not transfer over to the UK. If you are in this situation such as nurses, dental hygienists and other fields, you may just need to take an exam to convert over.
You may be asked for the original copy of your qualifications so this is something that you should have with you when you go for an interview.
Defense or Security Related Industries
UK companies do not know the rules regarding ITAR and DDTC , so contact the US Department of State before you accept any offers of employment.
The UK does not make everyone file their taxes every year. It is calculated automatically and is deducted from your paycheck if you are to earn more than the threshold. Only self-employed and high earners over £50,000 need to file annually.
If you fit in either of these categories, you should contact an accountant to help you file. If not always use the HMRC (Her Majesty Revenue and Customs) as your point of reference.
Even though you are working overseas, you still need to file your US tax form even if you earn under the threshold. The U.S. and Eritrea are the only countries that require their citizens to do this. Find out more information from the IRS here.
I personally use these two website to help me file mine but every case is different. I am told that the HR Block on base does not have a lot of experience when dealing with US taxes on Foreign Earned Income.