Employment in Germany

Read the following useful information on employment in Germany

The current job market

  • German employees enjoy some of the highest salaries in the world, generous benefits and state-mandated job protection.
  • In some industries, working hours have been reduced to 35 hours/week and holiday of up 30 days/year is not uncommon.
  • On the downside, Germany suffers high unemployment (around 12%)
  • Employment levels are higher in the West of Germany than the East (with the exception of Berlin and the South of the former German Democratic Republic).
Find a job as a foreigner
  •  If you do have a formal qualification (such as for doctors, teacher and nurses, etc.), it will need to be certified by a competent German authority (usually a guild, trade or professional association).
  • The country has an apprenticeship system that requires most young workers to pass a 2/3 year training program before entering the real labour market, which ensures they have first-hand experience in the job. For foreigners this can mean you might be prevented from working in a job in which you have experience at home, e.g. electrician, computer technician, etc.
  • There is demand for "exotic" language skills, especially some Asian languages. Most Germans study English in school so the demand for English isn't as great.
CV/Resume information
  • The CV process is more extensive than in the UK. It is normal to require the following alongside your CV:
    • copies of school and university diplomas or leaving certificates (if possible translated)
    • proof of any professional training or further training courses
    • references from previous employers
    • passport photo placed in upper right corner of the CV
  • The actual CV itself has the same format as a UK CV but it is normal in Germany to sign and date your CV at the end.
  • The cover letter should include similar information as that in the UK, but German employers prefer brevity.
  • Bind all your information together in a folder. Presentation is key.

Resume Templates

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