Application process in Germany
In Germany the following documents make up a job application:
- a covering letter
- a CV
- one or more references or “Letters of Recommendation”
- this also includes certificates of internship
- all professional qualifications and academic degrees (graduate degrees) you have
- all certificates of any other qualification you haven
In the covering letter you can tell why you want to work in the profession for which you are applying. If you have already worked in this profession, you should give an example of a job or project you have done well. You should also say why you want to work with the company you are sending the application to. It is always a good idea to point out your individual strengths. Try to match your strengths to the job you are applying for.
You CV should have a covering page with the following information:
- a portrait (photograph) of yourself
- your place of birth
- your date of birth
- your civil status (say if you are single, married, etc.)
- the title of the post you are applying for (“Application for the post of …”)
Enter your name, address and contact details in the header on the next page. It is best to
follow the order described below:
- Work experience (starting with your last employer) including the name of the employer, the place of the company and the position of employment and a brief description of your duties
- Your studies/professional training including the date you started, and you finished your studies or your training. Please also include the final grades of the highest completed level of education you have achieved
- The internships you have completed
- The continuous training and development measures you have completed
- The IT-Skills you have
- All the Languages you speak
- Any periods of time you have spent abroad
- Any hobbies you have and/or voluntary work you do, or you have done
- Place, date and your handwritten signature
Certificates, especially job references, are very important in Germany. That is why you should list all your certificates in the same order you have listed your education and employment in your CV (the newest first and the oldest last). All the certificates you have gained abroad should be translated into German and be included in the application along with a certified
copy of the document.
If your application was successful you will be invited for a personal interview. It is important to look at the company in detail and research it well before the interview. Look for information on the company’s website. Have a look if there are any pictures of employees and find out what kind of dress code is in place. You should not go to an interview “overdressed” or “underdressed”.
Print out a full set of your application documents, prepare them in the same way as the documents you sent and take them to the interview with you. Be honest, even when somebody asks critical questions. You should also be able to identify yourself, so it is best to take your ID-Card or Passport along.