Understanding & Negotiating Employment Contracts in Germany

Imagine you received your first employment contract in Germany (for internship, master thesis, full-time job or any other part time job). But during our personal sessions, we got to know that most of you are unaware of the things to be cross-checked and negotiated. The same exact problem that we faced when we received our first employment contracts in Germany. Let’s sort out this issue via today’s post.

Most important things to check & negotiate in an employment contract:

1. Personal details: Full Name, Address & Date of birth

2. Designation at the company & Location of work

3. Description of Tasks & Responsibilities

4. Start date & End date (if limited period contract)

5. Probation period

6. Notice period for employees & employers during probation & after probation

7. Working hours (hours per week)

8. Salary details (monthly Brutto)

9. Vacation days

10. Company pension schemes (if any) or old age pension benefits (AVWL)

11. Company car & fuel costs (usually for management roles)

12. Additional benefits like Relocation expenses, Employee stock options, Performance bonus, Christmas bonus (13th month salary), Vacation bonus, Profi-Card/mobility allowance (subsidized public transportation)

13. Costs related to External Trainings, Certifications & Language classes

14. Secondary employment conditions (if you plan to work on any side business during full-time employment)

15. Signatures & Date

Do make sure that your employment contract not only includes the agreed starting salary, but also any agreed increase after the end of the probationary period. Same goes for variable salary components or other benefits such as ESOPs, mobility allowances and relocation packages.

Let us know if you have anything else to add to the list.

Do reach out to us for a personal session, if you would like to know more about each of these components & how to negotiate them with your HR/Hiring Manager.

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