The Republic of Indonesia is the largest island state in the world, located in Southeast Asia, is washed by the waters of the Pacific and Indian Oceans. For more than a hundred years, the economy of the country was dominated by agriculture, today it is actively developing service industries, especially tourism, which employs about half the local workforce.

Indonesia is a very colorful and exotic country, rich in natural resources and great potential. Many foreigners not only want to visit the famous beaches of Indonesia and see the local attractions, but also come to work.

Jobs in Indonesia for foreigners in 2024 are primarily related to the field of tourism in the famous resorts of the island of Bali or the field of skilled labor in the economic and financial center of the country – the capital city of Jakarta.

Work in Indonesia

Next, let's look at the specifics of employment, job search options, available jobs and salaries in Indonesia in 2024.

Labor migration to Indonesia

Indonesia has very strict laws related to employment of foreigners. First of all, local authorities guarantee the right to take a vacancy to local citizens, and only if there are none on the Indonesian labor market, the job is given to a foreign applicant. For successful labor migration to Indonesia, it is important to familiarize yourself in advance with some of the features and socio-economic indicators of this country.

Religion, culture and climate. The ethnic composition of Indonesia includes more than 15 groups, each with cultural diversity and traditions. About 87% of the population is Muslim, so speakers of other religions will need to adapt to the local customs and rules of social behavior. This is especially true for women. Most of the territory is very humid and has a hot tropical climate, which is not suitable for all Europeans.

Language. The official language in Indonesia is Indonesian (a modified form of Malay), with local dialects being used in some areas. The colonial past has contributed to the widespread use of Dutch, and English is often used in business. Jobs in Indonesia without knowledge of the language, a minimum of English skills, are virtually inaccessible.

Competition. Indonesia has a population of about 278,9 million in 2024, the fourth highest in the world. The labor force is up to 122.4 million, with an unemployment rate of only 5–6%. Most often qualified foreigners with a profession in short supply for the local labor market can apply for jobs in Indonesia.

Challenges. Along with big cities with modern skyscrapers and offices, Indonesia is full of overpopulated slums with absolutely poor residents. Overall, more than 11% of Indonesians live below the poverty line. The problems of corruption, crime, infrastructure construction, education, and health care are not completely solved. The threat of terrorist attacks persists.

Nevertheless, Indonesia is developing, democracy is strengthening, the government is carrying out competent economic and financial reforms, foreign investments come into the country. It is recommended to work in Indonesia only legally. Illegal employment threatens a foreigner with up to 5 years in prison or a fine of 500 million Indonesian rupiahs (about 35 thousand dollars).

How to go to work in Indonesia

Labor migration to Indonesia

The process of labor migration to Indonesia can be quite lengthy. The main requirements are a mandatory work permit (IMTA) and work visa. The lion's share of responsibility for executing these documents for a foreign specialist lies with the Indonesian company that concludes an employment contract with a foreigner. Finding an employer in advance is the main concern of a job seeker and a prerequisite for legal employment in Indonesia.

Work permits in Indonesia are issued by the local bureau of the Ministry of Manpower (Kanwil Kemenakertrans), which pre-publishes a list of open positions, including technical, teaching, and managerial positions for which foreigners can apply. Each contract undergoes a rigorous review, after which a decision is made as to whether it is appropriate to hire a worker from abroad.

As a rule, work permits in Indonesia are issued for a short-term period. Usually for one year, less often for 3-5 years, depending on the vacancy. Moreover, the company is obliged to conduct special professional training for local citizens, who in the future will be able to replace the foreigner in the workplace. Indonesian immigration laws change frequently, which creates additional challenges for migrant workers.

After obtaining a work permit, a foreigner receives a work visa from the Indonesian Consulate. After arriving on Indonesian territory within 7 days, one must apply to the regional immigration office for a temporary residence card (KITAS), in other words, a residence permit. The document is usually issued within two weeks and is valid for one year. After 5 years of continuous residence in Indonesia, a permanent residence permit (Kitap) can be issued.

How to find a job in Indonesia. Job Search.

How to find a job in Indonesia

Indonesian companies are significantly limited in the number of foreigners that can be hired, which is strictly controlled by the local authorities. In addition, the country has special taxes ($100 per month) for each employee from abroad, the proceeds of which are used to train local professionals. In most cases a diploma of higher education and work experience of not less than 5 years are required. The only exceptions are teachers of English and volunteers of international organizations.

Therefore, qualification and skills of a foreign worker, as well as knowledge of English and Indonesian language are crucial. It is absolutely not recommended to come to the country with the hope of finding a job already on the spot, if only for an interview or for tourist purposes, which is only welcome. Working in Indonesia without intermediaries requires patience and maximum coverage of all possible sources of information.

Most jobs for foreigners are concentrated in the capital Jakarta. Pay attention to the major cities – Surabaya and Bandung, as well as the island of Kalimantan and the province of Papua, where you can find positions in the oil and gas and mining industries. Jobs and open positions in Bali for foreigners are available in the tourism industry. Next, let's outline the main ways to find a job in Indonesia.

Popular job search website in Indonesia

International job portals in Indonesia

Website of a famous Indonesian newspaperJakarta Post

Professional Social

If you can't find a job in Indonesia on your own, contact a recruitment agency. Preferably in an international one with the protection of friends or relatives. For example, here is a link to a British recruitment company specializing in the Asian region, including Indonesia.

Jobs and wages in Indonesia

Jobs and wages in Indonesia

About 48% of Indonesia's workforce is employed in the service sector, 13% of Indonesians work in the industrial sector, and in the region of 39%, agriculture is still one of the main sources of income for locals. The average wage in Indonesia in 2024 is around 8-9 million Indonesian rupiah per month, equivalent to $510-570. The official minimum wage depends on the region, for example, in Jakarta the rate is 5.1 million rupiah or $325 monthly.

If we compare with neighboring regions, working in Malaysia brings an average of $620 per month, while employment in Singapore is about $4,000. The level of wages in Indonesia depends largely on the profession. Most often, foreigners tend to find work in international companies or industries at the positions of highly qualified specialists, where you can count on a salary of 2-3 thousand dollars and above. For example, financial managers get from 1.5 to 2.5 thousand, and experienced engineers up to 5 thousand.

Available jobs in Indonesia for 2024 by key industries:

  • Finance, insurance, and banking

  • Automotive industry

  • Petrochemicals and mining

  • Tourism

  • Logistics

Job opportunities in Indonesia for foreigners are in information technology, electronics, biomedicine, and engineering. Younger migrant workers can find jobs as English-language teachers. True, priority is given to British and U.S. citizens as native speakers. A TOEFL or IELTS certificate is a requirement for foreigners from other countries.

There are jobs in Indonesia in health care, telecommunications and advertising. Jobs in Bali will find professionals in the tourism industry.Each year, more than 4 million people visit this island. Often, you need hotel staff, tour guides, massage therapists, diving and surfing instructors, and so on. The main condition is a good command of English.

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