Don't lose sight of your target groups

When recruiting foreign employees, it is crucial to define your target groups and targets. You can find qualified professionals in other countries, but you might just as well make use of the potential of foreign graduates of German universities. That is a way of filling job vacancies, or finding apprentices or interns. Find out what you need to know when addressing the different target groups here.

Don't lose sight of your target groups © istockphoto / sturti

Qualified professionals from abroad

Qualified professionals from abroad © istockphoto / monkeybusinessimages

Are you an entrepreneur and have had vacancies for long periods for which you have been unable to find suitably qualified professionals? In that case, it might be worth your while looking abroad.

Of course, you need to take certain things into account. We can show you how to go about it, step by step, from recruiting to employment right through to integration in your company. You can get support and advice on this from the Federal Employment Agency (BA) by phoning +49 (0) 228 713-1313.

Nursing and care professionals from abroad

If you want to employ nursing and care staff from abroad in particular, you have the support of the Federal Employment Agency. You will find further information about employing nursing and care staff in the section “Admission to the German labour market for specific groups of individuals”.

Triple Win is a joint project of the International Placement Services (ZAV) and the GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internatioanale Zusammenarbeit) that aims to attract and pre-qualify caregivers for the german labour market coming from particular countries outside of the European Union. Employers who join this project are supported during the integration process.

The Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy offers further information about recruiting staff for the nursing and care sector.

In need of further encouragement?
KOFA, the centre of excellence for securing qualified professionals, offers detailed information on the issue of recruiting abroad.

Example of best practice

Find out how a care provider company successfully recruited care workers from Portugal.

Foreign students in Germany

Foreign students in Germany © istockphoto / Rawpixel

Foreign students studying at German universities represent an especially important source of potential qualified recruits. The advantage they offer is that besides their specialist qualification, they are usually already familiar with German culture and the German language. Moreover, by recruiting foreign students, you can save time, as they are already in Germany and under current regulations are entitled to take up employment immediately after graduating here.

To contact this target group, post job vacancies in the universities in your region, or attend career fairs there. You will find detailed information on recruiting foreign students for your company at KOFA, the centre of excellence for securing a supply of qualified professionals.

Apprentices from abroad

Apprentices from abroad © istockphoto / shironosov

Do you have a vacant apprenticeship post and can’t find anyone to fill it? Germany’s Dual vocational training system is highly respected abroad and interest from young people there – especially those from EU states – in taking a dual training course is keen as a result. You could recruit some yourself – and offer them the prospect of a career in Germany. You can find out how by consulting the website of KOFA, the centre of excellence for securing a supply of qualified professionals.

The program "Passgenaue Besetzung" supports small and medium-sized enterprises in recruiting and integrating young trainees. More information about the program can be found on the website

Example of best practice

Find out here how a medium-sized company secured its future recruits by taking on foreign apprentices.

Interns from abroad

Interns from abroad © istockphoto / monkeybusinessimages

Would you like to offer a student from abroad the possibility of an internship in your company or factory? That is possible as long as you comply with a few requirements regarding visa and residence regulations and labour legislation, for example. You can find out what these are and which interns from abroad are admitted to the German labour market from the fact sheet for employers published by the Federal Employment Agency, entitled “Studienfachbezogene Praktika für ausländische Studierende” (“Study-related placements for foreign students”).

The Federal Employment Agency also provides concise information that you can give potential interns about gaining admission to a work placement in Germany in a fact sheet in English entitled “Work Placement Admission”.

International staff exchanges within a company

International staff exchanges within a company © istockphoto / monkeybusinessimages

Is yours an internationally operating company and you wish to employ a staff member from abroad in Germany? Like many other countries, Germany has preferential regulations for recruitment with a corporate group. For example, employment of up to three years can be agreed without any need for testing to see whether there are job applicants with preferential rights. You can find out what the procedure is and which documents your company needs to submit from the information booklet for employers published by the Federal Employment Agency, entitled “Internationaler Personalaustausch und Auslandsprojekte” (International staff exchanges and projects abroad), or contact the responsible agency directly. You will find the competent contact on the webpage of the Federal Employment Agency.

Information on this portal

Find out how some companies successfully recruited qualified professionals from abroad

Find out here how you can make qualified professionals feel welcome in your company

Information on visas and admission to the labour market

Information on the World Wide Web