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Project Expat
  • Project Expat
  • May 06, 2022

Working in Germany – How to Find a Job in Germany

For expatriates coming to Germany, it can be a difficult task to locate employment. Furthermore, the process of attempting to find work here (applying for jobs, multiple rejections and so forth) can be quite stressful. Luckily, we are here to provide you with any and all resources that will assist you in your job search within Germany, ensuring your success. Don’t lose faith – it’s not as hard as it seems.

What are the requirements to work in Germany as an expat?

The regulations regarding the employment of foreign citizens in Germany will depend on the individual’s country of origin; typically, this is divided into those that come from EU and non-EU nations.

No visa or work permit is required for an individual from the EU/EEA countries, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Iceland to be employed in Germany; only a valid ID card or passport is necessary to register upon one’s arrival.

Residents from the United States, Japan, Australia, Israel, Canada, South Korea or New Zealand must acquire a residence permit to enter Germany; however, a work permit is not mandatory for them to be able to take up employment in the nation.

For all citizens from countries other than Germany, a work visa is essential before entering the country. Basically, to be granted this visa, there must already be an accepted job offer or contract in place.

Can I find a job in Germany without speaking German?

Yes, it is possible to find English-speaking jobs in Germany. According to the German Federal Employment Agency, foreign workers made up 12% of Germany’s workforce in 2018. Having a basic knowledge of German could help expats speed up the job search process, as openings are available in various sectors.

How can I find a job in Germany as an expat?

In today’s digital world, the best way to look for a job in Germany is to utilize online job sites. Stepstone, Indeed and LinkedIn are some of the most widely used platforms in the country. For those not familiar with the German language, we have compiled a list of top English-speaking job websites that will be useful during your search:

It is highly recommended that you have a well-constructed LinkedIn profile. There are an increasing number of businesses publicizing job openings on the platform, enabling applicants to apply directly. To make the job search more straightforward, use the keyword “English” when searching for offers.

Besides these platforms, the Federal Government of Germany published an up-to-date list with figures of the current available job occupations across the country depending on the sector that you might also find useful. It is worth taking a look at the job postings, even though the majority of job titles are written in German. Several positions only necessitate English fluency and many of the job descriptions are provided in English.

Which jobs are in demand in Germany?

Job openings in Germany that require engineering, software development and digital communications skills are in high demand, according to recent statistics. In addition, there is a high demand for IT specialists, physicians, nurses, scientists, analysts and sales managers, among others. Don’t lose hope if your qualifications don’t line up with the positions available; there are plenty of job opportunities in Germany. In fact, Germany has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Europe (3.1%) so you have a good chance at finding a great job.

Highly Demanded Jobs in Germany
Infographic showing job categories in high demand in Germany

What is the minimum wage in Germany?

In 2022, the minimum wage in Germany experienced an increase on two occasions. This resulted in a per hour rate of 9.82 euros, which amounts to 1,571 euros if one holds a full-time job of 40 hours per week. Consequently, already among the highest in the world, German salaries were further bolstered by this change. From July 1st, this amount went up again to 10,45 euros per hour (1,672 €).

Additionally, the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) increased minimum wage to 12 euros per hour in October 2022.

If you wish to know more about what your average salary in Germany would look like given your qualifications, check out the salary tool offered by StepStone here.

What is a normal working day in Germany?

Just in like most countries, working in Germany offers the possibility to work in full-time or part-time positions. In general, the typical working week for full-time positions is between 36 and 40 hours. On average, people work seven or eight hours per day, five days per week. The German Labour and Employment law states that working hours must not exceed 48 hours in a given week if someone has multiple jobs.

Additionally workers are legally allowed 24 days of annual leave yearly; however, many businesses provide their personnel with 30 days of paid holiday time.

Is insurance a requirement for employment in Germany?

Yes, health insurance is mandatory for everyone who wishes to work in Germany, without any exceptions. However, exploring the possibility of working as an expat can seem daunting. There are various sources providing help and guidance. If you need any more information regarding health insurance or the type of insurance that you need, do not hesitate to contact our partners from MW Expat, they will advise you on what is the best option for you depending on your personal situation and find the best solution.

We hope that you found this guide about working in Germany useful for your job search. We wish you all the good luck in the world!

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I think that would be a great initiative and an added value service for expats like myself.

Leonardo

What a great idea to set up a website for English-speaking ex-pat's in Munich to help with everyday challenges.

Loana

I am looking forward to your services in the mentioned topics in the survey.

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Sounds exciting and we would definitely use it for a myriad of reasons. Particularly as we are getting ready to move to Germering and require all of these services. Specifically, sometimes it is hard finding doctors who speak English. And both Cecilia and I work with auslanders who do not speak German, either (and would as well be interested).

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