Job seeking within Germany for EEA country passport holder?

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Job seeking within Germany for EEA country passport holder?


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Old 20th March 2017, 05:02 AM
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Default Job seeking within Germany for EEA country passport holder?

Hello,

My wife, Norwegian, but living in the US, has been looking at the job forums, Linkedin, etc. for job opportunities in Germany. There appears to be a lot of jobs, and many which don't make any mention of being proficient in German.

What is your opinion about these job postings which don't mention speaking/knowing German as a requirement? If a German company required it, would it be safe to assume they would indicate it in the job description? She has seen as many mention that it is a requirement, BTW.

Since she does not see it on many of the postings, she is wondering if the postings she sees are just bait. ?? She has been taking German lessons all year, and would have been taking German lessons for about seven months before she considers applying for jobs (she has yet to apply for any).

My wife, though Norwegian, was born and raised in Spain, she does not even speak Norwegian. Spain does not (or did not) grant citizenship just because someone is born in Spain, and so she had to pick up her father's nationality when born... 'just in case anyone is wondering.

We already know she does not face as many hurdles to live and work in Germany, and we do not have quixotic ideas about moving to Germany. But we are seriously considering it.

We visit Europe every year, usually for a month, and travel, always ending up in Spain of course. This year my wife is considering just staying in Germany and applying for some of the jobs. We figure she might have a better chance since at least she'll be there in case there are any possibilities of interviews.

Do you think doing this is worthwhile, or should she still to just using Linkedin, or other job forums while in the US? The kids like Germany, so staying in Germany is not a problem for us.

I hope I provided enough information; 'looking forward to your replies.

Thanks


Last edited by Dionysus; 20th March 2017 at 05:04 AM.
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Old 20th March 2017, 09:04 AM
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Norway is a Schengen country, so your wife has every right to live and work in Germany if she so chooses.

However, there IS the little matter of speaking German. Most job ads for Germany make no mention of the need for German language because in many cases, it's kind of assumed. She certainly can apply for jobs listed in LinkedIn or Monster or any other online job listing service. And her resumé/CV should include a section indicating what languages she does speak, read and write and at what level (including indicating her "mother tongue").

It will depend on the position, the company and her qualifications whether the employer will be interested in someone with no or little German, but let them make that decision. She should, however, orient her CV to showing what "unique" skills she has that she can bring to the position. (And the languages she has already may well be of interest.)

Like they say, nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Cheers,
Bev

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Old 20th March 2017, 02:31 PM
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Default Jobs and language

Thank you, Bevdeforges, for the information. My wife does only look at those positions where they are looking for English/Spanish speaking requirements. She is an accountant by degree, with an Executive MBA and is mid-career at this point, I'm wondering if this will hinder her chances since a lot of the positions seem to be geared to new recruits, or people fresh out of college.

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Old 20th March 2017, 02:44 PM
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Don't know what the job market in Germany is these days, but I basically came over to Germany (25 years ago) as an MBA/CPA accountant with 15 years experience in the US, speaking English (natively), German and French. Wound up with a job as plant controller for a US company with a small manufacturing plant in the south of Germany. Depends on what jobs are coming open - and there's always the approach of applying for anything for which you're vaguely qualified. Sometimes there's something else coming open soon and they'll consider you for the job not posted.
Cheers,
Bev

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Old 20th March 2017, 04:06 PM
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In my field I've found that online job ads are pretty clear about language requirements. If they need German, it will say so, or the ad itself will be written entirely in German.

I think that if your wife has the opportunity to spend some time job-hunting in person, that would be worth doing. Or at least using the time to connect with people via various professional networking events etc. It's possible to be hired through an exclusively online process but that seems to be more common for software developers than in other fields. In your wife's case it could be quite different. I would use online (and don't forget Xing, the German equivalent of LinkedIn) to make contact with firms and do research but plan on an eventual trip as well.

In my own case, any jobs I've found have been while living in Berlin, though as we were only staying for six months at a time I was only looking at contract work.

One thing I never sorted out was whether it was necessary to do the full German "Bewerbungsmappe" instead of a normal North American CV. A regular German applying for a regular German job sends in a bloody great book, with all their various diplomas and statements from the conclusion of previous jobs and all that. I figured that since I wasn't a regular German I could get away with a two-page CV. It seemed to work, but then I wasn't applying for contracts to do software and web design work, not the management track at Siemens. I suspect that you're okay with a simpler CV as a foreign applicant, but it's something to consider.

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Old 20th March 2017, 06:46 PM
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When I was job hunting in Germany, I used a UK style CV in English - and more or less limited my applications to job postings in English (or German ones that said they wanted excellent English). I was applying from the US, so I included a statement in my cover letter saying that I would be in Germany "in the near future" and would like the chance to discuss this opportunity face to face (yada, yada, yada...).

When I got back the first positive reply (basically asking when I would be in the area), I ran out and booked flights and hotels and whatever and was over there within a couple of weeks, IIRC. (I also had a headhunter working for me who got me a few additional interviews once I had my travel dates set up.)

For someone without much German, I'd stick to the resumé/CV format you're most comfortable with. After all, you want to find an employer who is perfectly happy to hire a foreigner.
Cheers,
Bev

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