Ukrainian refugees in Germany: there are chances to find a job, but… | Economy in Germany and worldwide: news and analysis | DW

In Germany, various industries are experiencing an acute shortage of workers, and therefore, after the admission to Germany, almost 900 thousand refugees from Ukraine, of which 350 thousand registered in employment centersthe question is very topical, what are their chances of finding a job – and, accordingly, to what extent they could satisfy the personnel shortage of the German economy. A new survey shows that Ukrainians can expect employment, but it is not only the lack of knowledge of the language that complicates it.

The main barrier to employment in Germany is ignorance of the German language

The survey was conducted in the 2nd quarter by the Munich research economic institute ifo. On assignment from the German branch of the Dutch recruiting company Randstad, he regularly interviews about 1,000 human resources managers in German companies from various industries and sizes. This time, one of the topics was the integration of Ukrainian refugees into the German labor market.

Employment Center of the German Federal Labor Agency

350,000 citizens of Ukraine registered in the employment centers of the Federal Agency for Labor

As expected, 55.5% of HR managers indicated difficulties in hiring those who came from Ukraine. Another figure is rather surprising: 44.5% do not see any big obstacles for the employment of Ukrainians.

Of those HR professionals who indicated difficulties, 83% cited lack of knowledge of the German language as the main barrier to employment. Only 6% consider insufficient qualification of applicants as the main problem. The bureaucracy of German government agencies most of all complicates the employment of Ukrainians, according to only 4% of respondents.

The best chances for qualified personnel with a desire to stay in Germany

During the survey, however, it turned out that German personnel officers are often concerned about the question of how long refugees from Ukraine will stay in Germany. At the same time, HR managers rather proceed from the fact that Ukrainians will sooner or later want to return to their to the homeland. And this consideration, in turn, apparently strengthens doubts about the advisability of hiring Ukrainian workers.

After all, German firms tend to avoid staff turnover, especially qualified personnel. In conditions growing shortage of workers enterprises, as a rule, are not interested in temporary solutions, but in stable labor relations with a long-term perspective.

A restaurant in Munich is looking for employees with experience in catering

A typical picture: a restaurant in Munich is looking for employees with experience in catering

The Ifo survey showed that qualified workers who came from Ukraine have the best chances for employment in Germany. Their prospects are considered by 40% of respondents to be medium or high, and 47% – insignificant or low. Personnel officers are more skeptical about the prospects of unskilled workers: according to 30%, the chances are medium or high, from the point of view of 50% they are insignificant or low.

However, the greatest doubts are caused by the prospects of young Ukrainians, who theoretically could work at enterprises in Germany. vocational training under the German dual system. Here, 27% see medium or high potential, while 53% believe that it is insignificant or low. It can be assumed that this attitude of HR managers is mainly due to language problems, since knowledge of the language is especially important in the learning process.

Ukrainians are especially welcomed by industrial enterprises of medium business

According to the survey, it is easiest to find work in industrial enterprises: in the industrial sector, only 9% of human resources managers do not see the potential for employment of Ukrainian refugees. 14% do not see such a potential in trade and services, which is most likely due to lack of knowledge of the language.

April 2022. Minister of Labor of Germany Hubertus Heil in the reception center for Ukrainian refugees in the town of Peine near Hannover

April 2022. Minister of Labor of Germany Hubertus Heil with Ukrainian refugees in the town of Peine

The ifo Institute also concluded that the greatest employment opportunities open up for skilled Ukrainian workers in those German firms that employ between 250 and 499 people. There are especially many such enterprises in the engineering industry and in general in the manufacturing industry in Germany, the basis of which is not large, but medium-sized businesses.

However, most often such highly specialized companies, often working mainly for export, are located in small and medium-sized cities in Germany, while the main flows of refugees from Ukraine went mainly to the largest cities of Germany.

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