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Cover Letter in German: Everything You Need to Know

Whether you’re applying for a job in Germany as a German native or a foreigner, understanding how to write a cover letter in German is crucial for job success. In Germany, the cover letter is typically the first thing that a prospective employer will read. It’s your chance to make a great first impression so that you can land an interview and ultimately the job.

In this guide, we will cover the essential components of a German cover letter and how to structure it effectively so that you can stand out from other applicants.

Key Takeaways

  • A cover letter is essential for anyone applying for a job in Germany.
  • The cover letter should be tailored to the position you are applying for, highlighting relevant skills and experiences.
  • Always address the hiring manager by name and be sure to explain why you are the best candidate for the role.
  • Research the company you are applying to and tailor your cover letter to align with the company’s culture, values, and mission.

Structure of a German Cover Letter

While the content of a cover letter in Germany may differ slightly depending on the profession and industry, there is a general structure that you can follow:

Header and Salutation

At the top of your cover letter, include your full name, address, email address, and phone number. If you are applying via email, you can skip your physical address.

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Next, address the hiring manager by name. If the name is not mentioned in the job listing, research the company’s website or LinkedIn to find the right name. Additionally, you can call the company and ask for the hiring manager’s name.

Opening Sentence

The opening sentence of your cover letter should grab the hiring manager’s attention and make them want to continue reading. Consider starting with an impressive accomplishment or a unique, attention-grabbing statement that relates to the job you’re applying for.


In the main body of your cover letter, you should explain why you are the best candidate for the role. Highlight your relevant skills and experiences and why they are a good fit for the position. Use bullet points to make the information easily readable.

Additionally, show the company that you have researched them and understand their values and mission. Explain why working for this company means something to you.


Before closing your cover letter, make a strong statement about how much you look forward to the opportunity to discuss your qualifications further with the hiring manager. Thank them for considering your application and consider adding a sentence expressing your eagerness to meet in person or by phone.

End your cover letter with a closing salutation and your name.

Useful Tips for Writing a Cover Letter in German

  • Keep your cover letter concise and to the point, no longer than one page.
  • Mention your interest in living and working in Germany, particularly if you’re a foreigner.
  • Always customize your cover letter based on the role you’re applying for.
  • Provide specific examples of your skills and how they would be an asset to the company.
  • Show enthusiasm for the job and interest in the company’s values.
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Q: Can I apply for a job in Germany without a cover letter?

A: While it’s technically possible to apply for a job in Germany without a cover letter, it’s not recommended. The cover letter is an opportunity for you to showcase your qualifications, enthusiasm, and interest in the role and the company. Plus, many hiring managers in Germany expect it.

Q: Do I need to speak German to apply for a job in Germany?

A: It depends. While there are some companies in Germany that communicate in English, knowledge of the German language is often required. If you don’t speak German, make sure that you mention your language skills in your cover letter.

Q: Should I translate my English cover letter into German?

A: Yes. While some German companies may have employees who speak English, a cover letter in German shows that you’re prepared to work and communicate with Germans. If you’re not confident in your German language skills, consider hiring a professional to translate your cover letter.

In conclusion, a cover letter is a crucial part of the job application process in Germany. It’s important to understand how to write a cover letter in German to increase your chances of landing your dream job. Keep your cover letter concise and tailored to the position and company, and use specific examples to demonstrate your qualifications. With these tips, you’ll be well on your way to crafting a compelling cover letter that will impress potential employers.

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