Irish IT success stories, from Russia to Ireland, Denis Sukhonin shares his story

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We’re delighted to share the story of Denis Sukhonin, who moved from Russia and eventually came to work here in Ireland. Software Placements have many jobs for which we are looking to fill with the best candidates possible, either from Ireland or all over the world. If you have the talent, we may well have the right next career move for you, drop us a line and see if we can help you. Below are Denis’s own successful story and insights into how he came to be working in Ireland (you can link in with him on LinkedIn here).

I’m Denis, software engineer, originally from Russia. Two years have passed since I moved to Europe. I spent nearly two years in the Netherlands and then moved to Ireland. Now, after three months in Dublin, I can share my first impressions. I believe, three months in is a good point, when you know who your landlord is, the first bills are paid, and the city centre doesn’t seem to be a tourist spot anymore — then it is possible to move beyond the tourist stereotypes.

I first went through this process in the Netherlands, even though I had no plans to settle down there. The first thing I learned was the weather. Fast moving clouds, really strong wind, and long drizzling rains. And all while pedalling a bike, fortunately, wearing a raincoat. The second thing I learned about was the people. Europeans are thought to be kind and smiling, and this is true, but not always, especially while negotiating something. There is much opportunity for miscommunication, so you need to be extremely precise, determined, and polite.
Since I am an amateur trail runner, I was always starving for a hilly surface with picturesque views to relax and relieve stress. I never focused on learning Dutch and felt alienated, not belonging to a place. Also, I didn’t find a project where engineering staff would be valued more than commercials. So that, I decided to move on, to the West side, either to the US or Ireland.

I remember the Netherlands as a country full of fields and canals and where more bikes than people, and you can easily get to anywhere by bike using a developed network of bike lanes. Before relocating, I dug into the website relocatingtoireland.com which covers almost all possible topics including the most important: two tap sinks and immersion; so that I can’t say I experienced a complete tourist shock afterwards.

The relocation process wasn’t complicated formally. It could have been a bit simpler if I had a longer Dutch residence permit. In my case, I had to leave The Netherlands and submit documents for a visa in Russia. First of all, we, my employer and I, made an employment permit which was sent to me by post later. Russian post is extremely slow, and we had to wait three weeks to get it delivered. Finally, I submitted my foreign passport with the original employment permit and other documents in Irish embassy, and just after four days got a visa. Note, after arriving everyone has to register in Immigrations and obtain a Long Stay Visa, PPS number, GNIB and PSC cards, so it is crucial to arrange appointments beforehand due to a very long queue. More information here: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/registration-work-permit and http://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/Public-Services-Card_holder.aspx#lef2 1f I learned it from my experience when wasn’t able to receive my Dutch salary three months because I couldn’t open a bank account without a Citizen Number.

When I arrived Dublin first time, it smelled of fried chicken, and I sort of thought “if Amsterdam smells weed, Dublin must have its own smell, too.” People around spoke English, and I felt like in motherland. Parks and grass where you can sit very casually: Irish people can sit and do sit everywhere. The same weather that I got used to in The Netherlands. No need to translate ingredients in grocery shops. Way more advanced online government systems, almost everywhere you can arrange an appointment online — the introvert’s paradise. I can’t say that medical services are worse or better; so far so good in my case, and I can get MRI done finally. The country itself is magnificent, and there are many places to relax and enjoy the Nature’s silence or sea waves.

In conversations, I sometimes hear that The Netherlands may be a better place to live, but I put it in this way using a Russian phrase, literally, “It is nice where no us” meaning there is no perfect place and country, especially if you never been there or been as a tourist.

The only things I miss are bike lanes and a respectful attitude to cyclists from drivers. And, of course, hot water!

We then asked Denis some follow-up questions based on his experiences described above.

What happened to the water? Is it better now?

Heh, probably, that was not the best way to end the tale. The thing is I have to wait for immersion now. and its capacity is quite limited; before that, I had instant hot water. 🙂

What is your current role? 

My current role is Software Engineer. I’m working in online ads market aiming to make it more useful and profitable at the same time.

What tips would you give to others thinking of relocating to Ireland?

My main tip is to always arrange an appointment beforehand even if you have not arrived at the destination country. Queues are often insane and open slots can be available only in 3 months.

If you had to do it again is there anything you would do differently?

Well, that is a good question. In the case of The Netherlands, I would rather better plan my registration in Gemeente (municipality in Dutch). In case of Ireland… the only I could do better is buying tickets for Cranberries and U2 beforehand by adequate prices. 🙂

Now that you are settled what aspects of Irish life do you like?

I love that I don’t have to go far for a magnificent view and read a book, it is easy availability. I like the fact Irish people are very friendly to LGBTQ and recognised same-sex marriages by a referendum. I like the Irish passion for board games and people in pubs not just drink, but also play.

What are your plans for the future?

That’s hard to say. Let’s put it this way: to run a first ultra marathon, buy a house, build relationships, and become an Irish citizen.

Is there anything else you’d like to add / we should have asked you?

Probably, what could have been done better in Ireland and Europe in general. Actually, a lot:

Public transport, especially buses, is pretty unreliable and slow, and I’m looking forward to appearing of subways in Dublin.

Wider roads, more dedicated bike lanes, and bike parking places.

More free running tracks.

More highly-skilled health professionals due to their deficit.

More modern or high-quality renovated building by adequate renting prices.

Thanks again to Denis for his interesting and insightful comments. If you’d like to share your insights with us on your experience of moving to work and live in Ireland, or if you are looking for your next IT position, please drop us a line and we’d be delighted to answer your questions or help you find your next job. 

 

For the latest information on Python Developer and DevOps Engineer job positions at Software Placements, contact Michael Diver on 01-5254643 or [email protected]

 



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