So you have decided to look for career opportunities in Germany? Congratulations! You are one of thousands of people around the world competing for employment in Europe’s largest economy. This may sound daunting, but do not fret. You’re already taking an important step today by reading this post. Knowledge is power and these tips will help you set yourself up for success.
Here are the top 5 things to know when looking for a job in Germany.
- Start Early
Finding a suitable job in Germany won’t come overnight. Germany has a longer recruiting process than other countries, meaning companies recruit summer interns in the fall and winter. Careful planning, patience and understanding of German companies are key for this journey.
Recruiting Days is ESCP Berlin’s largest recruitment event. This event is from September to November so you have enough time to apply for summer positions. This is the perfect way to interact with companies directly and really figure out the best way to stand out from the crowd.
The first round of Recruiting Days starts on September 21. Here, each participating company will hold their own virtual presentation. Take advantage of this unique chance to network, ask questions and learn more information to optimize your application materials.
Write a German-style CV
Each country has their own CV format and Germany is no exception. You should apply this standard formatting to your CV so it's easier for recruiters to read it. Remember, recruiters only take 5 to 10 seconds to review your CV so it’s a good idea to use a clear and standardized structure.
Your CV should clearly say who you are and what you can do. German employers typically look for your education, professional experience, skills and extracurricular activities.
Learn more about writing German CVs from this comprehensive guide.
Attend Career Events
Career events are your chance to connect directly with German employers and to learn more about their organization and opportunities. Recruiting Days offers a series of networking events where you can connect with professionals and HR staff to get closer to a career in Germany. Join more than 30 diverse participating companies like BCG, Zalando, L'Oreal, and P&G.
Find out more about Recruiting Days here.
Knowing German is crucial for your professional success and helps your application stand out. While some companies are open to hiring non-German speakers those positions are limited and very competitive. One third of the companies at Recruiting Days are looking exclusively for advanced or native German-speaking candidates, and many of the remaining companies generally prefer German speakers.
Start learning German as early as possible so you can increase the number of positions you can apply for and so you allow yourself enough time for this tricky language. Take advantage of ESCP and tech resources to support you along the journey.
Here are a few resources to get started:
- ESCP language courses
- DW Deutsch lernen
This may sound cliché, but knowing yourself is key when looking for a job. What really helped me was reflecting on my strengths and weaknesses, and using these to optimize my application plan. For example, if you know that you are good at socializing, then really take advantage of networking activities. Knowing your strengths will also help you answer questions more confidently in an interview or round table during Recruiting Days. Recruiters have a lot of experience with different prospective talents, and they value candidates who understand and can utilize their strengths.
The ESCP Berlin Career Development Office is there to help you discover yourself as a candidate. They can also assist with your CV, search resources and working in Germany. Contact them at any point for support!
Landing a job in Germany requires a lot of patience, self-esteem and hard work. You can set yourself up for success by thinking and acting smart - do your research, prepare your application materials and use the connections you make at ESCP Berlin’s Recruiting Days this fall.