Germany is one of the most inexpensive countries where you can choose to study abroad and an appealing country when it comes to student job opportunities. Germany is one of the top European countries in terms of the number of people who look for a well-paid and rewarding job.
Successfully graduating from a German university or college can open many doors on the German job market for international students. Graduates from the EU and EEA have free access to the German job market. Graduates from other countries have to extend their residence permit for up to 18 months after completing their academic studies for the purpose of finding employment. However, during this period, they are allowed to work.
Popular jobs in Germany and their average salaries
In Germany, the main sectors looking for international workers include fields like chemicals, engineering, electronics, IT, machinery, coal, vehicles, machine tools, food and beverages, shipbuilding, textiles. Areas with recent growth include telecoms, high-tech manufactured products, automotive industry, banking and tourism, so there are quite plenty to choose from.
Having the right university or college degree is an essential step in getting a high-paying job in Germany and the salaries are definitely worth it. Check out some of the highest paid jobs in Germany and what Master's degrees to study to qualify for them:
Sales expert – 116,000 EUR/year
Medical professional (including nurses) – 58,000 EUR/year
Scientific researcher – 50,000 EUR/year
ICT expert – 47,000 EUR/year
Engineer – 46,000 EUR/year
- Masters in Electrical Engineering in Germany
- Masters in Mechanical Engineering in Germany
- Masters in Power Engineering in Germany
Finance/accounting expert – 44,000 EUR/year
Teacher/Tutor – 40,000 EUR/year
Administrative job – 32,000 EUR/year
Hospitality industry professional – 25,000 EUR/year
The Federal Employment Agency (Bundesagentur für Arbeit, BA) is the largest provider of labour market services in Germany, having over 700 agencies and offices around the country. You can post your profile on the website of the agency or contact a recruitment officer that will help you get the kind of job you’re looking for, as long as it fits with your qualifications.
German universities with high graduate salaries
Here is a list of universities whose graduates now earn high annual salaries:
- Mannheim University – 85,000 EUR/year
- Goethe University Frankfurt – 140,000 EUR/year
- University of Cologne – 130,000 EUR/year
- Frankfurt School of Finance and Management – 105,000 EUR/year
- Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich – 95,000 EUR/year
- Technical University of Munich – 81,000 EUR/year
Work visa for Germany
EU citizens, as well as citizens of the United States of America, Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the Republic of Korea, don’t need to apply for a work visa in Germany. They will only have to apply for a residence permit for work purposes after entering Germany. Citizens of other countries are required to apply and obtain a visa for work purposes before they come to Germany.
The probability of receiving a residence permit in order to work in Germany depends on your qualifications and the field you want to work in.
If you join a member of your family that has permission to work in Germany, you will be allowed to work. On the other hand, German regulations state that citizens from countries outside of the EU/EEA/Switzerland can only work in Germany if the position cannot be filled by a worker from the EU/EEA/Switzerland – or if they are highly skilled/qualified.
Recently, Germany has introduced the EU blue card, dedicated to citizens from non-EU-states, as proof for their legal stay in the country for the purpose of working. To qualify for the Blue Card, an applicant must hold a university or college degree and provide evidence of a signed working contract with a German company that pays a salary of at least 49,600 EUR per year (2016). For some occupations that suffer from shortages of skilled labour, the required salary level is 38,600 EUR per year (2016).
How is the working environment in Germany?
- In Germany, you should expect around 38 working hours per week and a minimum of 18 days of holiday a year.
- German companies are hierarchical. The typical German culture at the workplace is based on carefully planned tasks and decisions are made according to actual facts.
- Meetings are efficient and always work on a strict agenda and a fixed schedule that is always respected.
- German punctuality is not a mere stereotype. Being late is considered as a sign of impoliteness and disrespect.
- Germans communicate very directly and explicitly; you won’t hear any small talk.
- Personal and professional life are always separate things and any discussion at the workplace that is not related to work is usually not appreciated.
To get adjusted faster to the German working environment, you might want to apply for an internship or a part-time job during your studies.