How It All Started
It takes a lot of determination to move abroad. Some make the move with a sense of security and opportunities lined up, and some take a leap of faith and create their own opportunities.
Craig Latouche took the leap after he graduated university, deciding to move from Ireland and the economic crisis in 2010 to Korea.
He settled in Jeonju, while exploring the surrounding cities across Korea.
After a year, he landed a job at Peace Boat, an NGO in Japan, and sailed around the world advocating peace, human rights, and sustainability through intercultural communication.
He loved the work, but wanted to settle back in Korea. He moved back, but this time he made moves to settle his roots by enrolling in a master’s program at Seoul National University to study International Relations.
Graduating in 2015, he applied for jobs at various Korean companies, and found the process grueling. Coming across visa issues, Korean-English miscommunication, and a lack of suitable positions, Craig began to formulate a solution for foreign career seekers in Korea, like himself.
His idea coincided with the first year the Seoul Global Startup Center opened its incubation program. Craig applied, and in June 2016 through the support of the center, he began building the platform that would become Jobfindr, an online and face-to-face handshake space that connects local Korean companies with international employees.
The creation of a seamless online platform took many iterations, and by June 2017, Jobfindr launched to the public.
Building solid business relationships take time.
Craig connected with local companies to find out their needs, and how he could provide the additional support needed to hire a foreign employee.
Throughout his network, he realized that some companies were seeking to expand their global reach, not only through international employees, but through a global culture.
Based on this feedback, Jobfindr provided additional services such as a curriculum tailored to each company on how their business can be conducted abroad.
On the other end, Craig found that foreign job seekers were frustrated by career fairs, which exposed them to various companies, but lacked in networking opportunities.
Craig then added another element to the Jobfindr platform, Connector.
Connector is a multicultural professional community in Seoul where its members can share information, find opportunities, and build networks.
Jobfindr, through its Connector events, has provided its professional community with topics on the skills needed to lead in their industry and with speakers from prominent local companies providing their insights on how they built their vision.
Jobfindr continues to listen to the needs of its audience – job seeking foreign professionals and local companies – to create a platform that can connect its users into an organic community.
Their focus is to expand into other Asian job markets, such as Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Beijing.
Jobfindr is also expanding their candidate reach and connecting with international universities to provide not only entry level international professional careers, but international university scholarship opportunities.
Craig is also listening to local Korean professionals who want to work abroad, and creating a program that can provide them the tools to make the necessary first steps to venture into the international market.
Once Craig decided he wanted to settle in Korea, he realized: “I have to build my future.”
He built Jobfindr and Connector to do just that, and he’s continuing to help other foreign nationals build their future abroad, too.