DEKRA 2016 German Job Market Report:

Refugees with a Great Need for Qualifications

10. Jun 2016

DEKRA Arbeitsmarktreport

  • Still a long way to go until refugees can help to overcome skills shortage
  • Companies cautiously optimistic about labor market integration
  • Electronics technicians have the best prospects in the jobs market
  • Plenty of job offers in sales, IT and engineering


Over the past year, more than one million asylum seekers have arrived in Germany. Many employers that have difficulty in finding skilled staff had high hopes of the new arrivals. One year later, companies are cautiously optimistic, as a survey of selected company representatives for the DEKRA Akademie German Job Market Report reveals. However, it is clear to everyone that in the short term, refugees will not close the gaps in the ranks of skilled staff. The current report indicates the areas where employers currently have the most pressing need: skilled staff in the fields of sales, IT, engineering and administrative processing can take their pick from a particularly long list of job market vacancies. Electronics technicians have made it to number one in the list of the top ten professions.

The DEKRA German Job Market Report has been analyzing developments and trends in the job market since 2008. The current report incorporates 13,869 job vacancies, which were announced by employers in February.

Networked industry and “smart” products are changing the nature of jobs
Electronic components that communicate with each other are now indispensable in industry, trade and end products. This gives electronics technicians a rosy outlook in the job market. In particular, the electrical industry and the fields of construction and mechanical engineering are currently seeking employees with this training. Electrical engineers also already have a firm place in the ranking. In the electrical professions, the borders with the neighboring disciplines such as IT or mechanical engineering are becoming blurred due to digitalization, which is why skilled staff with these specializations are also finding interesting job offers outside of their respective core industries.

In IT, software developers have the greatest choice of job vacancies. Furthermore, almost every fourth job is for an IT expert, such as a system administrator. In addition, IT analysts and consultants are particularly sought after: For 15.6% of the IT vacancies, candidates must have business know-how combined with expertise in data analysis (2015: 11.5%).

Personal customer relationships remain important
Increasingly digital communication channels cannot replace personal contact in sales and marketing. Customer consultants and account managers are ranked second in the job market. Alongside managerial staff for sales management, this year recruiters are particularly focusing on future sales partners. At present, financial services and insurance providers are intensifying the search for candidates with experience in local sales. Call center agents do not feature in the ranking for the first time since the survey began, however; this year, they share twelfth place with sales employees and assistants.

Care professions: Bottleneck worsening and requirements increasing
Healthcare professionals and nurses have this year “only” taken third place in the ranking. Nevertheless, there can be no talk of an easing in the healthcare sector. The number of job vacancies for nursing assistants is at a record level, for example: This year, the job climbed to thirteenth place. Similarly, carers for the elderly are again represented in the top 25 professions after a fall in the previous year. The in-depth analysis of the care professions has also revealed that the duties of nursing care professionals are more demanding today than they were five years ago, and employers are therefore looking for people with greater expertise.

High demand for employees in warehouse logistics
In the field of warehousing and logistics, employers especially need hard-working hands for tasks in goods receipt and dispatch. Up until now, warehouse and transport workers have only once been in the ranking of the most sought-after professions. Furthermore, forklift truck drivers are currently also in great demand. In contrast to this, the job market in the area of transport is cooling slightly.

The job market remains stable, although economic prospects have dimmed. “Given the difficult situation with skilled staff, politicians and businesses are rightfully placing high hopes in the predominantly young people who have recently arrived here,” said Jörg Mannsperger, Managing Director of the DEKRA Akademie, when presenting the report to parliamentarians in Berlin. “However, in most cases it will not be possible to integrate them into the job market in the short-term. Refugees often lack the necessary languages skills, or it is difficult for employers to assess their qualifications. Asylum seekers and employers need support quickly, as entry into training or a skilled position is only possible with adequate language skills.”

Content of the DEKRA 2016 German Job Market Report:
Job adverts in eleven German daily newspapers, two online job sites and one social network were analyzed during the survey period from February 22 to March 6. The report contains the following:

  • An overview of the development of professions and fields of activity
  • An in-depth analysis of care professions
  • An in-depth analysis of the work of professional drivers
  • A supplementary report on the subject of “integration of refugees into the labor market”
  • Expert comments on labor market trends


For more information:
DEKRA Akademie GmbH
Dr. Peter Littig
Tel. +49 (0) 171 7617400

Press contact:

Dr.  Torsten Knödler

Press officer Finance

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