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Let’s work in Germany
The EURES portal contains lots of information about living and working in the EU, with country-by-country facts and figures just a click away. EURES wants to be your first point of contact for support in finding a job in another EU country, and can direct you to the most appropriate sources of help.
A good information source beside the EURES website for jobseekers who want to find work in Germany is www.make-it-in-germany.com, the German federal government’s website for foreign qualified professionals.
It has versions in English, French and Spanish, with limited information in 10 other languages, including Italian and Portuguese. The website contains background information on training, taxes and employment, as well as case studies from international skilled workers who have moved to Germany.
Further questions can be asked via a telephone hotline, e-mail or text chat. One of the agencies behind these contact options is the International and Specialised Services (Zentrale Auslands- und Fachvermittlung, ZAV) of the German Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit). A part of the EURES network, the ZAV is the central body for all questions about living and working in Germany. ZAV staff are also present at international job fairs and information events in your home country and organise frequent European Online Job Days concerning working and living in Germany.
German employers have a great demand for highly qualified personnel, especially engineers and technicians, IT staff, physicians and nurses. In addition, the logistics and construction sectors are looking for skilled workers. Well over 90% of all German companies are small and medium-sized enterprises, which account for two-thirds of all jobs and more than half of Germany’s economic output. It’s important to note that a lot of these companies – despite some being market leaders in their sector – are situated in small towns or rural areas, not necessarily in big cities.
The most common type of employment in Germany is an open-ended, full-time contract with a working week of about 40 hours. However, this has become less common and new types of employment, including fixed-term, part-time and temporary work, have become more frequent.
Forms of self-employment have also become increasingly important in recent years, and the number of self-employed people has grown sharply. Anyone who wishes to start a business must register with the Gewerbeamt (Business Registration Office) of the local authority where it will be headquartered. Self-employed people must register instead with the Finanzamt (Tax Office). Chambers of industry and commerce, chambers of skilled trades, professional associations and financial institutions are all able to provide advice on procedures.
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Disclaimer: Please note that neither EURES nor the European Commission endorse any of the third party websites mentioned above.
"Focus on…" articles are intended to provide users of the EURES portal with information on current topics and trends and to stimulate discussion and debate. They do not necessarily reflect the view of the European Commission.