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You need to apply for a work visa to move to Germany as a software engineer. The first step is to find a job offer, as your employer needs to complete part of the application process. 

How to immigrate to Germany as a software engineer

Step 1. Find a job offer from a German employer

The first step in applying for a German work visa is to find a job offer from a German employer. You may not move to Germany without a job offer if you are from a non-EU country. 

The EU countries don’t need a visa or residence permit to work in Germany. Also, some of the non-EU countries don’t need a visa to work in Germany as well: 

  • The US 
  • Australia, 
  • Canada, 
  • Israel, 
  • Japan, 
  • New Zealand, 
  • Switzerland 
  • South Korea 

If you are not from the above list of non-EU countries, you definitely need a job offer before moving to Germany. 

How should you find a job offer in Germany? There are websites that advertise such job positions in the country. You need to look for a job through them: 

  1. Indeed
  2. StepStone
  3. Arbeitsagentur
  4. LinkedIn
  5. Meinestadt.de
  6. Jobrapido.de
  7. Kimeta
  8. Xing Stellenmarkt
  9. Monster Deutschland
  10. Stellenanzeigen.de

The above list of websites will help you find a job offer in Germany. Type them on Google, and you will find the link. 

When you talk to the employer that is willing to hire you, it’s a breakthrough in your application process. 

Step 2. Sign a work contract with the German employer

 The employee and German employer need to sign a work contract together. It must contain the terms of the employment, including: 

  • Working hours 
  • Duration of employment 
  • Salary 
  • Tasks and responsibilities 
  • Location 
  • Perks and bonuses 
  • Compensation
  • Benefits 
  • Paid Time Off
  • Unpaid time off 
  • Non-Competition and Confidentiality
  • Etc. 

The more details of the employment there are in the contract, the better. If you think of terms necessary for your working conditions or the type of job you will do, you would better include them in the contract. 

Step 3. Apply for a work visa 

When you get the offer and sign the employment contract, you can begin applying for a work visa. 

You must complete the application form on the VIDEX website for the first step. It’s an online application form for people who want to move to Germany. You must complete it with care and according to your documents. Be careful with the spelling and numbers of your personal information, particularly your passport. 

You must complete each part of the application and include the relevant information until the end. There is the summary part that you need to save to submit to the German embassy. 

Step 4. Gather the supporting documents 

There is a list of supporting documents with the German work visa. You need to gather all of them and submit them to the embassy. Start gathering all of them. But you might have to submit further documents. It’s up to your nationality and case. 

A list of supporting documents is like this: 

  • Two passport photographs
  • Valid national passport
  • Health insurance
  • Proof of residence
  • An employment contract
  • Proof of Qualification
  • CV 
  • Proof of a clean criminal record
  • Proof of paid visa fee.
  • Declaration of Accuracy of Information.

The above list is not complete, and you need to submit further documents. You can get familiar with the list of requirements from the work visa article on the right sidebar. 

Step 5. Book a meeting with the German embassy or consulate 

Now, find the nearest German embassy, consulate, or visa application center responsible for visa processing in your home country or a neighboring country. 

You should schedule a meeting with them and visit them on the booked date. 

Bring the list of requirements, submit them to the officials and pay the fee for visa processing. You need to ask the embassy how much the visa costs you and how to pay it. The price and way to get it is with the embassy. 

Step 6. Wait for visa processing 

After completing the procedure with the embassy, you must wait for visa processing. It takes time until the embassy works on your application and decides to issue it or not. It takes one to three months until the embassy works on your application and issues a visa. 

The embassy informs you of the results and how to get your visa. 

Step 7. Moving to Germany and completing the registration 

When you arrive in Germany, you need to visit the Foreigner’s Office in Germany in the city you live in. it gets called Ausländerbehörde in the country. 

You often have to book a meeting before getting there. Visit the mand bring some supporting documents as they ask to get your residence permit. 

Your permit is valid for about two years, but you can extend it as long as you keep a valid employment contract with a German employer.  

Benefits of moving to Germany as a software engineer 

When it comes to immigration to Europe, the first country that comes to mind as an option is Germany; there is no explanation why it’s a good idea to move to Germany as a software engineer. But you might have your preferences and interests. 

So the below options can guide you on why it’s a brilliant idea to move to Germany as a software engineer.  

A highly demanding job 

There is always a need for IT engineers and software engineers in Germany. If you take a look at the websites introduced in the above section, you can see that there is always an ad for a software engineer position. It’s no surprise as an industrial company like Germany, with developments in IT and technology, there is always a demand for such a position. 

So you can ensure your job position and safety in Germany. 

Below list are some of the fastest-growing tech companies in Germany. You can always find a position with them: 

  • GotPhoto, 
  • Getsafe, 
  • Elinvar, 
  • FINN, 
  • Vimcar,

A good balance between work and life

Why do you work so hard? Of course, you like your expertise and skills, but to get money to enjoy leisure activities and fun outside of work. But what if you can’t do them due to the situation? 

Germany is famous for having a work-life balance, and people get to spend time with families and on fund things they want. 

There are 26 countries around you that you can visit without a visa and easily. On one weekend, you can travel to the furthest country in the EU and enjoy a new experience. You’re gonna need a lifetime to visit all of them and enjoy their wonders. 

Top high-ranking companies in Germany 

Think of Germany as a hub for startups and companies gathered in one country. There are big companies that are working on large and innovative projects. By 2019, there were 6.000 tech startups in Germany. 

Some of the large companies in Germany are as follows: 

  • BMW, 
  • Allianz, 
  • Amadeus, 
  • IBM, 
  • Microsoft General Electrics, 
  • Google, 
  • Amazon, 
  • Ingram Micro

You can visit their website and follow the staff on LinkedIn. You will get a good perspective on what they do and the skills they need to hire people.

Hamburg and Munich are the two cities that hold these large companies. Each city has its features, and you can pick the one appropriate for your conditions. 

Versatile Programming Languages and job opportunities 

The language of programming is not limited to Germany, and the variety is good. One of the most famous and used programs is Java. If you are a Java developer, Germany is your option, but there are other programs as we: 

  • C, 
  • C++, 
  • C#
  • PHP  

Social Security benefits

 Germany has made a name in the world of immigration for social security benefits. It will let you get unemployment benefits and cover some of the medical costs. 

The government always supports and backs up the employees. It is not that because you are an immigrant, the German employer can pay you less or treat you unfairly.

Infographic How to immigrate to Germany as a software engineer

Software engineer salary in Germany

According to Payscale, the average salary of a software engineer who has moved to Germany is about 55.000 EUR per year.
This is while the Glassdoor website indicates the average salary is about 60.000 EUR per year.
However, your salary is up to various factors:

  • Company
  • Language proficiency skills
  • Work experience
  • Degree
  • Position
  • The language program you work with

Different skills can affect your salary. The below programming languages are among them. The percentage of the skill that affects your salary is also provided:

HTML547%
MongoDB20%
Spring17%
Amazon Web Services (AWS)10%
Scala4%
Java3%
SQL3%
Ruby on Rails2%
Development Operations (DevOps)2%
Oracle2%

Do I have to learn German to move to the country as a software engineer?

It’s quite a privilege if you are fluent in German to move to the country as a software engineer. You will have much more job opportunities and face less challenging dealing with people.
But it’s not that you cannot move to Germany without language proficiency. You might be able to get a job in English, but you will have to look further. So you would better start learning German today if you are determined to move to Germany.

Can I bring my family when I move to Germany as a software engineer?

When you move to Germany as a software engineer, you are allowed to bring your family to the country. The visa you need is a German family visa. You can learn more about it from the link in the right sidebar.
You must have enough money or earn enough to cover your expenses for your family. It is required to have an appropriate palace that your family can live in.

Is it hard to find a job as a software engineer?

The answer to this question is up to your conditions. There are no two applicants with the same conditions. Also, no two job positions are the same, and every day things change.
You would better improve your conditions, skills and work experience, and language proficiency and try as much as you can.
Try different websites and various job positions. In the meantime, you would better begin learning German as you don’t know how in it will take to get the offer. Also, the work visa application process could take time. So when you get to the country, you will be able to speak some German.

Frequently asked questions about moving to Germany as a software engineer.

Can I move to Germany as a software engineer?

Yes, you can as long as you get a job offer.

What is my first move to immigrate to Germany as a software engineer?

You must get a job offer from a German employer.

How long does it take to immigrate to Germany as a software engineer?
 
When you get the job offer and apply for a visa, the processing time takes about1-3 months.

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