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Jobs in Germany After Graduation - Salaries, EU Blue Card, Citizenship, Work Visa

Risha Sinha Risha Sinha
Content Curator

Germany offers a good work-life balance with an average employee working for nearly 1,371 hours per year, or an estimated 26.3 hours per week - lowest in the world. It is yet among the world’s top 10 productive countries.

It boasts a graduate unemployment rate of 2.3 percent - lowest in Europe. Out of 350,000 international students, 69.2 percent choose to stay and work in Germany after completing their studies. Only 16.5 percent immediately return home after their studies are completed and rest travel around Germany before returning to their home countries.

Top graduate jobs in Germany

ProfessionAverage Annual Salary
EngineerUSD 56,126
Medical professional (including nurses)USD 66,900
Hospitality industry professionalUSD 45,260
Teacher/TutorUSD 50,574
ResearcherUSD 60,336

Working in Germany after studying in Germany

If you have a German university degree, it will be much easier for you to obtain a residence permit with the right to engage in the German employment market.

After finishing your studies in Germany, you can apply for a residence permit which will be valid for up to 18 months for the purpose of finding a job. In order to be eligible, you have to produce proof that you can cover your living costs and you are sincere about seeking employment corresponding to your level of academic qualification.

While seeking a permanent position, you are permitted to work part-time for as many hours per week as you want. If you are successful in finding a job within the stipulated time, you can continue to stay in Germany.

Your new position must be related to your university degree. Also, you should not be overqualified for the position. For instance, a Medicine graduate is not right for the job of a software engineer. Similarly, a graduate who studied Pharmacy is overqualified to take a job of waiting tables at a restaurant.

Universities in Germany with high graduate incomes

German UniversityAverage Annual Salary
Mannheim UniversityUSD 95,000
Goethe University FrankfurtUSD 150,000
University of CologneUSD 140,000
Frankfurt School of Finance and ManagementUSD 115,000
Ludwig Maximilian University of MunichUSD 105,000
Technical University of MunichUSD 91,000

German work visa

EU citizens, as well as nationals of the United States of America, Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the Republic of Korea do not need to apply for a work visa for Germany. They have to apply for a residence permit for work purposes after arriving in Germany. Citizens of other countries are required to obtain a German work visa for working in Germany.

Permanent residence permit

You can apply for a permanent residence permit (Niederlassungserlaubnis) after two years of qualified employment.

You are eligible for German citizenship after eight years of legal residence in Germany. You may also need to meet other criteria such as proficiency in the German language. Most German states include the time you spent studying in Germany in the eight-year residence period.

Job opportunities in Germany

With an entry-level salary of USD 131,000 per year, Executive MBA graduates are the highest earners. Those with a Masters of Arts degree are seen to have the lowest entry-level salary of USD 63,000 per year.

Germany requires young and skilled employees to keep its economy going. International students bring a lot of economic benefits to Germany during their studies and after graduation. They having a strong association with Germany for future business collaborations and networking.

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with less than 500 employees play a crucial role in the country and are called Germany’s job motor. They accounted for 99.3 percent of Germany’s companies and 60 percent of all jobs in Germany are offered by 2.5 million SMEs. Chances of finding employment are more if you consider positions in such small- to mid-sized businesses.

German companies are looking for highly qualified candidates. A recent survey by the Cologne Institute for Economic Research reveals that Germany has more than 40,000 job vacancies in STEM fields, namely Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. So tech graduates stand a high chance of bagging a  job in Germany.

How good should be your German?

A good command of German greatly increases your prospects. You probably did not need the knowledge of German when you studied at a German university if you were in an English-language degree program. Try improving your language skills - during your studies and afterward.

Most German companies insist on having fluency in German. The German level B2 is considered good. The only exceptions are positions offered at research centers and at big international corporations. Impeccable English skills can make up for some of your deficits in German lingual ability.

EU Blue Card

  • It is for citizens of non-EU countries.
  • Allows highly-qualified individuals to live and work in Germany.
  • Eligibility: A German or recognized foreign university degree and an employment contract with an annual income of at least USD 57,210. For some professions including scientists, mathematicians, doctors, and IT specialists, an annual gross salary of USD 44,620 is enough.

You can visit to avail extensive information and guidance on living and working in Germany as a foreign professional.

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