International staff guide

Moving to a new city, or even a new country, is always a significant change. University of Oulu provides support for internationally recruited staff members and their families. To facilitate a smooth entry into the University of Oulu community, we have gathered all the helpful information on this webpage.

Visitors and grant-funded researchers can also find helpful information on this page, including their own section at the end of the page.


We have gathered a lot of information on this webpage about different topics related to your relocation to Finland and the University of Oulu.

The page consists of six (6) information areas that you should follow:

  1. Immigration formalities
  2. Practicalities before arrival
  3. Obligations after arrival
  4. Practical information about living in Finland
  5. Family matters
  6. Information for grant-funded researchers and visitors

In order to make sure that you are always ahead of the process, we have gathered a simple general process description for you to follow based on your citizenship:

Immigration formalities

To prepare for your arrival, we advise you to read the instructions carefully. The immigration process will be smoother if you have followed the process correctly and made sure that all documents are correct.

Practicalities before arrival

Moving to a new country has several different aspects to consider. Mandatory immigration formalities is one thing, but there are also a number of issues that are good to take care of prior to your arrival in order to make things smoother after your arrival.

Obligations after arrival

Right after arrival, there are a few things that should get done. In this section, you can find information related to local registration (DVV), tax card, social security, and other local obligations that you should take care of. As a foreigner, most of the authorities require a personal visit at first, but after that most matters are handled online by using strong electronic identification credentials.

It is recommended to complete these actions in the same order as listed here. However, please read each section carefully, as there might be some exceptions and some of the matters can be handled in parallel.

NOTE: Your employment contract and payroll can´t start before arriving to Finland.

The employer is obliged to ensure the validity of the residence permit when paying salaries to non-Finnish staff members. Please bring your passport and residence permit card to your faculty´s HR assistant as soon as you have received your residence permit. You should also notify HR after each time your permit is extended.

Please check our guide for new employees regarding general information regarding your employment with the University:

Practical information about living in Finland

This section contains information about practical information about living in Oulu and Finland from housing to the social security system.

Family matters

Moving with the family has its own things to arrange and consider. We have collected here some of the most important topics to support your family’s smooth settling into Oulu.

The University of Oulu is gathering together the spouses of our international staff and researchers to help spouses settle in Finland and tackle the challenges with a help of a supportive community. The network will aid one’s professional and social aspirations, with customized programs and events.

Grant-funded researchers and visitors

Grant itself does not constitute employment and the grant recipient without a work contract, is not entitled to employment-related insurance, non-legislative occupational health care services such as treatment of sicknesses and other benefits based on employment contract, or employment legislation on collective agreement.

We have gathered here some information on the most important topics that impact our researchers that are not in an employment relationship with the University of Oulu as well as information on the grant researchers' possibility to have a part-time work contract.

See also