4 Tips for applying a job in Germany

cheerful african american employee sitting at work

Getting a job is one part of being an adult many of us would rather skip. There’s the submitting of applications, going through interviews, and the painful part of getting unfavourable feedback. 

We can all agree landing a job isn’t the easiest thing in the world. Trying to find a job in another country is even more challenging as you don’t know what exactly to expect and how best to position yourself. 

However, finding a job in Germany as a foreigner isn’t something that you should find overly challenging. The key is to know the right way to go about it. And this article aims to show you how.

It should encourage you to know that Germany has one of the largest economies in the world, and also one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe. Even with the advent of the coronavirus pandemic, the German job market is still in full bloom.

Here are some steps to take if you’re trying to find a job in Germany while abroad:

  1. Have an idea of what you want

You might not have everything figured out, but you should have an idea of what kind of jobs you want and qualify for in Germany. The best way to be sure about this is to do some research. 

Although Germany has one of the largest economies in the world, the pandemic has also impacted job opportunities strongly. You’ll have better chances of securing a job if your skill sets fall within specialist fields. If you’re not sure what kind of jobs are in demand right now, you could check out the Make it in Germany website. 

You should also look for sites and social media platforms where job vacancies and other relevant information are posted. For instance, if you’re looking for English-speaking jobs, you could check sites like Indeed, Stepstone, Glassdoor, and many others. The important thing is to be proactive in your search.

  1. Make sure you have the right qualifications and that they are recognized in Germany

Not all jobs require a specific qualification, but in Germany, regulated professions do. Job descriptions like Nurses, doctors, teachers, lawyers, and some specific types of craft require recognition. For non-regulated Profession, you may or may not require recognition.

Even though you may not need recognition, you might need a statement of comparability from a university or higher education. 

  1. The application process

The process of applying for a job in Germany is not so different from many other countries. So now you have an idea of what you want and where to look. Congratulations! It’s now time to apply and to do it right guarantees chances of better success. 

To apply for a job, you’ll be required to submit:

– A CV/ resume. A German CV is called a ‘lebenslauf’.

When writing your CV, stick to experiences relevant to the role. No need to puff it up with unnecessary details. Germans like to deal with hard facts so they’ll only be on the lookout for relevant stuff. Aim to stand out but do not attempt to do so by making your CV long. Anything longer than two pages for a German CV might be too long.

– You should attach a high-quality and recent photograph.

– Also, you have to attach other relevant qualifications.

– You also need to apply or start processing your work visa.

However, not all internationals need to apply for a German Job seeker visa to start working in Germany. For instance, citizens from the European Union countries, EEA or Switzerland don’t need to apply for a job seeker visa. Also, people from the USA, South Korea, Australia, Japan, and some other countries don’t need to apply for a job seeker visa but need to register for a residency permit to work.

 Other internationals who want to work in Germany must get a job seeker visa, though. This type of visa lasts for six months.

  1.  Secure your health insurance

In Germany, insurance generally is a big deal. Health insurance is an even bigger deal. In fact, obtaining some form of health insurance is quite mandatory for everyone who lives in Germany. You could be liable to pay a heavy amount of money as a fine if you don’t own any form of a health insurance policy. 

For internationals coming from another EU country, you can get your health insurance once you arrive in Germany and register for your residency permit. However, if you’re not from an EU country, it would be wise and advisable to get your health insurance before arriving in Germany.

If you want to work as a freelancer in Germany, this is possible as well. However, to freelance in Germany, you have to meet some requirements. You must ensure your profession can be freelanced in Germany.

 To operate as a freelancer in Germany your work has to qualify as a ‘liberal profession’ and you must also be working independently. Note also that freelancing in Germany differs from working as a self-employed person. Examples of liberal professions include Dentistry, veterinary practice, engineering, law, patent law, accounting, and many other professions. As a freelancer though, one of the requirements you’ll need to fulfil is that you must show proof of financial stability. You’d also need to apply for a German Freelance visa. It is called a ‘Freuiberufler’.

Though there are many English-speaking jobs available, especially digitally-related or tech jobs, it would still be a very useful skill to know the German language. The reason for this is that most people in Germany communicate in German and this would make it easier to understand your team members, coworkers, and others in your organization. It also helps because several documents you’d be required to read and understand will have German phrases or may even be written in pure German.

Germany offers so many job opportunities for international students. Whichever option you choose, ensure you have researched the requirements and are ready to give it your best.

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