Finding a job
How to Apply
It is not just in public life that Germany tends to be more bureaucratic than the English-speaking countries; applying for a job is generally more taxing a process as well. In addition to the CV/resume and cover letter usual to applications in the United States or Britain, applications in Germany are often accompanied by copies of school and university diplomas or leaving certificates, proof of any professional training periods or further training courses, references from previous employers and a passport photo of the applicant, normally affixed to the upper right corner of the CV. This sort of comprehensive application is known as a Vollständige Bewerbung, as opposed to the shorter application consisting of CV and cover letter, which is called a Kurzbewerbung. Some positions may require an Aussagefähige Bewerbung, i.e. an application containing certain information specific to the position like patents held, publications, or samples from a portfolio of work.
Unless you´re applying specifically for a position where knowledge of German isn´t important, it´s probably wise to submit your cover letter and CV in German. If you´re uncertain of your language skills, get a friend or a professional to help you with your written application. After sending it in, wait a week or two, then call up and inquire whether your target employer has received your application. If it should come to an interview, you should find it little different than an interview in the US or Britain. Interviews tend to be quite matter-of-fact, but you may be asked a few more personal questions than you might expect. Your interviewer may not ask you whether you are pregnant; though if asked this, you have grounds for complaint.
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