Simple Germany

German Cover Letter Guide [With English Sample]

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Updated November 28, 2023

A cover letter ( Anschreiben ) might be the least important thing of the application in some countries; however, not so in Germany. Depending on the company and recruiter receiving your application, a German cover letter might be the most essential part after your CV.

A  survey  of HR Recruiters in Germany states that 42% ignore an application without an individual cover letter. The same survey also shows that for 71% of HR, a cover letter is an essential document in a job application. A job application letter conveys your level of professionalism, research capabilities, and ability to sell yourself without much fluff. 

Table of Contents

Simple German Cover Letter Sample In English

A cover letter in Germany ( Anschreiben ) needs to complement  your CV , but not repeat it. You can regard a cover letter as a letter of motivation filled with examples and facts. A cover letter in Germany is a very formal document that should follow a particular layout.

Related Guide: German CV Template in English

Our German-Style CV Template In English helps you to craft a killer CV. We have also created a German cover letter sample in English for you to understand what your finished document should look like.

cover letter for job application in Germany in English

To save you loads of time, you can download our German cover letter template . Simply go to ‘file’ and select ‘ make a copy ‘. You can then edit it to your needs.

How To Write A Cover Letter In Germany?

We will walk you step-by-step through the areas you should include in a German cover letter. You will also learn about what the content of the cover letter should convey. 

German Cover Letter Formal Format

As mentioned before, the German cover letter is a very formal letter that should follow the following format for it to look familiar to the German eye:

  • Maximum one page and don’t fill it up completely. Leave enough white space when glancing over it.
  • Put your full address, including email (ideally including your name) and phone number, in the top right corner.
  • Put the company’s full address on the left with one paragraph below your address. Include the name of the contact person in the second line.
  • Place the date of your application right-aligned underneath the addresses.

As you might know already, Germany has tons of rules, regulations, and guidelines. Naturally, there is also a guideline for professional letter writing and correspondence, the so-called  DIN 5008 norm . It states the following margins on a DIN A4 (standard German letter paper format):

Left margin: 2,5 cm Right margin: 2,0 cm Top margin: 4,5 cm Bottom margin: 2,5 cm

Please take this information with a grain of salt. Not following this layout does not mean that any German manager or recruiter will ignore your cover letter; however, the German eye is trained and used to reading this format. Anything appearing too much out of the ordinary might get noticed negatively. Again, you can shine with your cover letter’s content, but don’t try to stand out with the format unintentionally.

1. Subject Line

The subject line in a German cover letter needs to stand out. It needs to convey with one look what position you are applying for, and you should bold it. 

2. Salutation

The salutation is extremely important – the more personalized, the better. Reflect your understanding of the company’s culture by using the first name or last name; however it is appropriate. If you can’t find enough information or are unsure, always refer to the last name. If you can’t find the relevant person’s name, don’t be shy and pick up the phone to find out more. This shows initiative and determination.

When it comes to the cover letter’s main body, you should try to stick to four paragraphs. Remember to point out what value you will bring to the company, not what you can get from the company. Your cover letter’s content needs to reflect the expectations and requirements mentioned in the job ad. So make sure to connect the dots and position yourself ahead of other candidates.

Introduction (3 – 4 lines)

The introduction should answer why you are applying for the position and how you became aware of it (through a friend, an employee at the company, a job portal, etc.). Be confident in your word choice. Don’t use insecure words such as ‘I think I would be a good fit’ but rather ‘I am confident that I will contribute to …’.

Second paragraph (5 – 6 lines)

Now it is time to shine with your skills, experience, and qualifications. Never just list things, but choose the relevant achievements and prove them with results. Don’t only refer to achievements in your work life, but if relevant, also mention efforts with private projects. This will show your personality, drive, and willingness to learn and grow beyond what you get paid for. It is absolutely ok to also write in bullet list style in this part, as long as you don’t just list things.

Third paragraph (5 – 6 lines)

After you have showcased yourself, it is time to translate how these experiences and skills will contribute to the role and company. Convey that you have taken the time to research the company by referring to the company culture, possible awards the company has won, or projects that inspire and motivate you. Be authentic and confident.

Closure (3 – 4 lines)

To close your cover letter:

  • Reemphasize your eagerness to join the company in the relevant position.
  • Describe your future goals and the value you can bring to the company.
  • State when you will be available to start work.
  • Emphasize that you’d be happy to answer any questions via phone or in a personal interview . 
  • Only mention salary expectations if they are asked for in the job ad.
  • Be sure to sign the cover letter with your name. 

4. Attachments

Add the word ‘Enclosure’ ( Anlage ) underneath your signature. List all the additional documents you will hand in with your application, like your CV, certificates and diplomas, reference letter, etc.

Further Cover Letter and Job Applications Tips

Don’t use the same CV and cover letter for different applications. As mentioned above, you must individualize your application to each company’s needs and requirements.

If you send your application directly by email, you have two options. You can either make the email body your cover letter. In this case, remove the address and date part from the email and place the subject line in the email’s actual subject. The body of the email remains a formal letter, though.

Or you can attach the cover letter to the email and briefly point out your application to the specific position in the body of the email, referring to the attachments. 

Ensure that any attachment always has the pdf format, regardless of whether you send it by email or upload it to an online application system. Also, pay attention to the naming of the attachments and keep it clear and professional.

Your job application, namely your resume and cover letter, should answer the recruiter’s main three questions:

  • Can you do the job? (Skills)
  • Will you do the job? (Motivation)
  • Will you fit in with the company culture? (Personality)

Be sure to evaluate your documents based on these questions before you hand them in. The goal of your CV and cover letter is to get an invitation for a job interview .

Related Guide: Job Interview In Germany [How-To + Tips In English]

We hope that you now have a better understanding of how a German cover letter looks and feels like. But never forget to adapt your cover letter and application to the style of the company you are applying for. There is a big difference in culture between a young international StartUp and a big traditional German enterprise. 

If this guide was helpful to you, and saved you time of research, please consider supporting this website by  buying us a coffee  as a small donation. It allows us to keep Simple Germany alive and striving.

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Employment guides & Tools

Cover letter in germany (anschreiben).

Cover letter in Germany (Anschreiben)

Together with your CV ( Lebenslauf ) , the cover letter is a key component of any job application in Germany. Far more than a mere formality, a cover letter is an important means of presenting yourself to a prospective employer. It would be difficult to land a job in Germany without one. This page walks you through the process of crafting a job-winning cover letter, with a few hints and tips about what is expected in the federal republic. 

Cover letter in German ( Anschreiben )

First things first: what is a cover letter? Although it may be tempting to send in your job application without one, a cover letter is an important part of job applications in Germany, and most hiring managers will expect to receive one, even if the vacancy listing does not explicitly specify this. 

A cover letter is a short (usually no more than one page) document that you submit together with your resume as part of your job application. Rather than simply repeating the information contained in your CV, its purpose is to expand upon it, summarising your skills and experience, explaining what makes you a good fit for the role, and (hopefully!) piquing the hiring manager’s interest. While a CV lays out the facts, your cover letter conveys more personality. You can expect to be asked about both if you make it to a job interview .

In Germany, a cover letter ( Anschreiben ) generally follows a prescribed format, which makes it easier to structure your own. 

Cover letter templates

Using a template can be a good way to get started, and will also ensure your cover letter is well-formatted. If you used a template for your CV, it’s a good idea to use the same design for your cover letter, to make your application look professional and consistent. 

The following websites offer cover letter templates: 

  • Novorésumé

How to write a cover letter in Germany

German cover letters are not fundamentally different to those in other countries, with the only possible difference being they are rather formal and matter-of-fact, with no credit given to pomp, exaggerations or overly flowery language. 

As with elsewhere in the world, your cover letter in Germany should be succinct - no more than one side of A4 in size 12 font. You also do not want to present the hiring manager with a dense wall of text, so make sure to break it up into sizeable paragraphs. 

It may be time-consuming, but you should also write a unique(ish) cover letter for each job you apply for. Recruiters don’t like to receive form letters - and sending off a generic letter is a sure-fire way to ensure your application ends up in the bin. You need to explain why you want this specific position , and what makes you particularly suited for it - so tailor your cover letter based on the responsibilities and requirements outlined in the job description, and what you know about the company. 

Cover letter format

If you’re not sure where to start, it can help to break the letter down into a few sections. Almost all cover letters are structured around the same tried-and-tested format: 

  • A header with your contact information
  • A greeting to the hiring manager
  • An opening paragraph that will grab the reader’s attention
  • A second paragraph that explains why you’re the perfect fit for the job
  • A third paragraph that outlines why you’re a good match for the company
  • A formal closing

How to start a cover letter: With a header

Writing your contact header is a good way to ease yourself in, and ensure you’re not staring at a blank page. As with a CV, it’s important to include some basic contact information on your cover letter. You should include: 

  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Name of the hiring manager
  • Name of the company you’re applying to

You might also consider adding your social media profiles or the address of your personal website, if these are relevant in your field and to the job you’re applying for. 

Address the hiring manager

This is where you can score some easy marks. You’d be surprised how many people open their cover letters with, “Dear Sir or Madam.” That’s one way to turn off a hiring manager. It’s much better to address your letter to them personally. That means you need to do some research. 

If you’re lucky, this information is included in the job description. You should also check the “Team” or “About us” page on the company’s website. Alternatively, you could turn to LinkedIn to find out who’s head of the relevant department. If in doubt, call up the company and ask who you should address your application to. It might make your name stick out when it comes to sifting through CVs. 

As a last resort, if you really can’t get hold of a name, address your cover letter using one of these greetings:

  • Dear [Department] Hiring Manager
  • Dear Hiring Manager
  • Dear [Department or Company Name] Team

Write your introduction

This is worth taking your time over. Companies typically receive hundreds of applications for single positions, and so they’re not going to be reading every cover letter from top to bottom. You need to grab their attention from the first paragraph. 

The key here is to not be too generic - most applicants will probably have similar work experience and interests. Instead, you need to explain what makes you unique. What is your bottom-line USP? That’s what the recruiter wants to know. 

Explain why you’re a good fit for the job

Next, it’s time to get into the meat of your letter, by outlining your professional skills, and explaining why this experience makes you better-qualified than the other applicants. It’s a good idea to have the job description to hand when you write this section. Match the requirements listed by the company to elements from your own skill set and work history, and elaborate on them. 

But there’s no way you’ll have space to cover every single detail. Instead, pick two or three of the most important requirements and use them to spin a couple of compelling stories from your own experience. 

Explain why you want to work for the company

The final section of your cover letter is just as important: explaining why you want to work for this specific company. Hiring managers want to know that you’d be a good fit for the company culture - that you want this job, not just any job - otherwise you’d be a risky hire. 

This might require you to do some extra research - what do you know about the company and its products or services? What’s the work culture like? What about that enthuses you? It pays to be super specific. 

Wrap things up

That’s it - you’re almost there! Now you need to finish with a conclusion that wraps up your letter. If you have anything else you want to say, now’s your chance. Finally, thank the hiring manager for their time (it’s only polite). 

Then, it’s time to sign off with a formal closing. You could use: 

  • Best regards
  • Kind regards
  • Yours sincerely

Once your cover letter is finished and proofread, you’re ready to send off your application. Put your feet up and wait for a response. 

Should I write my cover letter in German?

Whether or not you should write your cover letter in German depends on a few factors, namely: 

  • The language requirements of the job
  • What is specified on the job description
  • Your own language ability

If a job description specifies that applications should be made in German, it’s best to follow this advice. If your language ability isn’t up to the task of writing a CV and cover letter in German, it may be that the job itself is also beyond your language capabilities. 

However, an increasing number of companies in Germany, specifically international companies , are now offering English-speaking roles, although some still require you to apply in German. In this instance, it’s worth submitting your documents in German (you can ask a German-speaking friend to help, at least by checking your finished CV and cover letter over). To really show off your language skills, you could submit both English and German versions of your application. 

Cover letter examples

Not sure where to start? It can be a good idea to read some example cover letters to give you an idea of what is expected. But don’t be tempted to copy them word for word - you want to convey your own, unique personality, not someone else’s.

English cover letter sample

The internet is full of examples of cover letters written in English. Check out popular websites like Novorésumé,, Reed, Indeed, and LiveCareer. 

German cover letter example

Checking out a German cover letter example can also be a good way of getting started, especially if German is not your native language. Look at websites like Karrierebibel, and Staufenbiel, or simply search “ Anschreiben Beispiel ”, to get a good idea of how German cover letters are structured. 

Cover letter tips

  • Make sure your cover letter is correctly formatted and free of spelling and grammatical errors - ideally, have a friend check it over for you before sending it. 
  • Include your personal details at the top of your letter.
  • Do your research to address the hiring manager by name.
  • Always tailor your cover letter to match the job description.
  • Use specific, concrete examples from your work history to back up your points.
  • End with a formal signing-off.
  • Make sure your letter is no longer than one side of A4. 

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Cover letter

How to Draft a Perfect German Cover Letter [Format, Guide]

In Germany, the employment market is highly competitive. Many qualified and skilled individuals are looking for jobs in Germany, so it's critical to make an excellent first impression with your cover letter.

A well-written cover letter can differentiate between securing job interviews and being overlooked when submitting a job or visa application. A great cover letter demonstrates that you are serious about the position and have what it takes. 

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Table of contents

What is a german cover letter, german cover letter format, what not to include in a german cover letter, keep the following in mind while drafting a german cover letter, german cover letter template ideas.

Read on for a guide on how to write the ideal German cover letter and an example format , plus some pointers and shortcuts to ensure that your cover letter is flawless.

You may submit a one-page cover letter ( Anschreiben ) from Germany when applying for a job or an internship. The cover letter introduces you to the potential employer and explains why you are the ideal applicant.

The German cover letter should be formal and polite. The tone should be positive and professional.

Tip: You may submit your resume ( Lebenslauf ) and cover letter in English or German when applying for a position . If the employment opening is in German, it is advisable to write your cover letter in German.

It is critical to use the correct format for your cover letter when applying in Germany. This implies that you should include your contact information (name, address, phone number, email) and the date at the top of the page. The letter should be addressed to the person in charge of hiring at the firm (if you do not have a name, you can use something more general, such as " Dear Hiring Manager ").

It is essential to keep it professional and easy to read regarding font style and size for your German cover letter. Times New Roman or Arial font in size 12 should be sufficient.

Begin your letter with a brief introduction and explain why you are interested in the position. Then, go into detail about your qualifications and accomplishments that make you the perfect candidate for the job. Be sure to emphasize any skills or experience relevant to the position.

In the second section, underline the skills and accomplishments that make you the perfect candidate. Be sure to emphasize any skills or work experience relevant to the position. Finally, in the third part, thank the company for their time and consideration . You may also include a statement of availability for an interview or mention that you will be in touch soon.

Close the letter with a professional sign-off (" Sincerely," "Best regards ," etc.), followed by your full name and signature.

Tip: If you've studied German , say so in your cover letter. This will demonstrate to the employer that you're serious about the position and have taken the time to learn more about their culture and country.

When writing your German cover letter, there are a few things that you should avoid doing.

  • Do not repeat information from your resume or CV verbatim.
  • Personal information such as your age, marital status, or the number of children should not be included. This data is irrelevant to the employer and may lead to your being discriminated against.
  • Do not use informal language or contractions . The phrases "I'd want to," or "I'll be" are examples of informal language.
  • Avoid a generic cover letter . Make sure that your cover letter is tailored to the position you're applying for. This will demonstrate to the employer that you are genuinely interested in working for them.
  • Do not include a photograph of yourself.
  • Do not use humor or try to be witty in your cover letter. This is a formal business correspondence; therefore, keep it serious unless stated otherwise.
  • Do not make any negative comments about your current or previous employers.
  • Do not reveal your salary expectations or demands during the interview. This may be discussed at length during the hiring process.

A German cover letter should be concise and direct, as stated in the job description.

There's no need to include details about your interests or hobbies. The emphasis should be on your abilities and qualifications rather than your personality.

Employers may not be familiar with overly formal or technical language, so avoid it. Stick to simple, straightforward speech that anyone can comprehend.

Finally, double-check it for spelling and grammatical errors before submitting your cover letter.

Finding the ideal German cover letter template may be a challenging task.

The internet is your best friend for locating the perfect German cover letter template. Several excellent, free websites provide templates for various letters, including German cover letters.

Some of our favorites include:

Novoresume   is a website that provides free templates for various letters, including German Cover Letters. The website offers several templates for different types of letters and varying levels of experience.  is another website that has compiled the best German cover letter examples and templates to help you land your dream job.

Zety  is a website that provides cover letter templates for various professions. The website offers both free and paid templates.

Cover letters can be tricky, but following a specific format can make the time to research much more accessible and help you get your dream job. Remember to personalize your letter for each job application and highlight relevant qualifications and experience.

Need help with your German CV?

Don't worry! Check out our German CV guide below to know everything you need to create an outstanding German CV

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How to write the perfect cover letter

Are you applying for jobs in Germany and don't know what your cover letter should look like? Cover letters have special requirements in Germany and cause many applicants considerable headaches. In the following, we have collected the most the most important points concerning formatting, style and structure of the cover letter for you:

General facts:

Maximum length of your cover letter: 1 - 2 pages

If there is a motivation letter requested then you only need 2-3 sentences in the cover letter

Cover letters consist of fully written text and should not include any bullet points (the CV in contrast should only include bullet points)

Check out the website/social media channels to better understand the company you are applying for

In case the job ad specifies that you need to include your salary expectations: Get information on or about salary structure

Formatting and wording of your cover letter

Job ads in Germany are very particular and personalized applications are expected: Make sure to match your application with the contents and wording used in the job ad

Use the same layout for your cover letter and CV (colors, font style, font size)

Follow formatting standards (there is a DIN letter format in Germany)

Only use written out text passages, avoid bullet points and the use of abbreviations

Keep it formal, don’t be too emotional

If possible, write it in German and get it proofread by a native speaker

How to structure the contents of your cover letter

Here is an example of a cover letter:

Cover letter example Germany

Include your address and contact details in the upper part of the cover letter

Include a subject line with a reference to the position you are applying for

If a contact person is mentioned address it to him/ her

First part: The opening

Express your interest for the job opening you would like to apply for. If you have already talked to the recruiter on the phone, met him/her at a job fair or know someone else in the company, a reference to this can be a good start

Express your motivation to work for this particular company (optional, you can also include this in another part of your cover letter): The corporate website or social media channels usually provide good inspiration for this

Second part: Introducing your skills and your motivation

what is cover letter in german

Need help brushing up your cover letter?

Outline your qualifications and motivation: Why are you the best candidate for the job? Be careful not to simply recount your background. Talk about soft skills that you have and which are particularly relevant to the job.

You can usually find out which qualifications are particularly important to the employer by carefully going through the details in the job ad. However, this is not simply a matter of listing them. Avoid general formulations such as: "I am a motivated and highly dedicated team player…” Instead, give an example from your career to date that shows how you have used your ability to work in a team or that underlines your sense of responsibility.

It is also good to establish a direct link between your past performance and your future goals and to relate your qualifications and skills specifically to the employer and the job you are aiming for. The question to be answered here is: What added value do you bring to the company? For example according to the motto: “I would like to use my experience in the field of X to help your company achieve goal Z.”

Third part: The closing

Keep in mind: Since the conclusion is the last to be read, it will also be remembered particularly well.

Mention your availability and optionally your salary expectations and/or visa status or other important factors

Close with a friendly Call-to-action e.g. “If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at 0111/23456. Apart from that I am looking forward to a personal conversation.”

Check out our YouTube channel for more content on job application writing.

Make sure that your Cover letter is ATS-friendly

Are your application documents ready to send? There's one last step you should take before submitting your application: Make sure your Cover letter and CV are ATS-friendly so they can make it through the first round of review without being filtered out by automated screening programs. Find out how by reading this article .

Get your cover letter reviewed by a German HR expert

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Germany Is Calling

Sample cover letter for job application in Germany

A sample cover letter for a job application in Germany can be a critical component in your quest for employment in the country.

Crafting the perfect cover letter involves understanding the expectations of German employers and adapting your writing style and content accordingly.

In this blog post, we will provide you with comprehensive guidance on creating an effective cover letter tailored for the German job market.

We will cover the importance of structure, cultural nuances, best practices, and common mistakes to avoid, ensuring your cover letter stands out to potential employers.

A cover letter, known as an “Anschreiben” in German, is a crucial element of your job application.

It is your opportunity to make a strong first impression and demonstrate your motivation and suitability for the role.

In Germany, cover letters are often seen as equally important as the CV, if not more so.

Employers use cover letters to assess not only your writing skills and attention to detail but also your understanding of the company and the position.

This is why tailoring your cover letter to the specific job and company is vital to your success.

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover the following topics:

Key Components of a German Cover Letter

  • Sample Cover Letter for a Job Application in Germany

Cultural Nuances and Best Practices

  • Common Mistakes to Avoid
  • Tips for Making Your Cover Letter Stand Out

By following the guidelines and best practices outlined in this article, you’ll be well-equipped to create an impactful cover letter that sets you apart from the competition and paves the way for a successful job application in Germany.

A well-structured and carefully crafted cover letter can significantly increase your chances of securing a job interview in Germany.

Understanding the key components of a German cover letter and its significance will help you create a compelling and impactful letter that resonates with potential employers.

In this section, we will dive into each component and provide guidance on how to make your cover letter shine.

1. Personal Information

At the top of your cover letter, include your full name, address, phone number, and email address.

This information should be right-aligned, ensuring it is easy to locate and follows the standard German formatting.

You may also include your professional title and LinkedIn profile link if relevant.

2. Recipient’s Information

Below your personal information, left-align the recipient’s details, including their name, title, company name, and address.

If you’re unsure of the recipient’s name, it’s worth conducting some research to find the appropriate contact person, as addressing the letter to a specific individual demonstrates your diligence and attention to detail.

Include the date below the recipient’s information, following the German date format (DD.MM.YYYY).

4. Subject Line

A concise and informative subject line helps the reader quickly understand the purpose of your letter.

Begin with “Bewerbung um die Stelle als” (Application for the position of) followed by the job title. This makes it easy for the recipient to identify the position you are applying for.

5. Salutation

In Germany, formality is crucial. Address the recipient with “Sehr geehrte(r)” (Dear) followed by their last name and a comma.

If you don’t know the recipient’s name, use “Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren” (Dear Sir/Madam).

6. Opening Paragraph

The opening paragraph sets the tone for your cover letter. Briefly introduce yourself and mention the position you are applying for, where you found the job posting, and, if applicable, any mutual connections or referrals.

7. Body Paragraphs

In the body of your cover letter, showcase your qualifications, skills, and experiences relevant to the job.

Focus on how your background aligns with the requirements listed in the job description, and provide concrete examples to demonstrate your accomplishments.

Also, show your knowledge of the company and explain why you are interested in the position and how you can contribute to the organization’s success.

8. Closing Paragraph

In the closing paragraph, reiterate your interest in the role and express your enthusiasm for the opportunity. Politely request an interview and thank the recipient for considering your application.

9. Sign-off and Signature

End your cover letter with a formal sign-off such as “Mit freundlichen Grüßen” (Kind regards) followed by your full name. If sending a physical letter, include your handwritten signature above your typed name.

10. Enclosures

Finally, mention any enclosures, such as your CV, references, or certificates, by adding “Anlagen:” (Enclosures:) at the bottom of the letter. This ensures the recipient is aware of the additional documents accompanying your application.

Now that you have a clear understanding of the key components of a German cover letter, let’s move on to a few sample cover letters and dissect their elements to help you craft your own.

Sample Cover Letters for Job Applications in Germany

To give you a better understanding of how to craft a cover letter for different job domains, we have provided three sample cover letters: one for an IT position, one for a marketing position, and one for a nursing position.

Each cover letter showcases a different format or style, allowing you to choose the approach that best suits your individual preferences and the specific job you are applying for.

Sample 1: IT Position (Software Developer)

[Your Name] [Your Address] [Your Phone Number] [Your Email Address] [LinkedIn Profile Link (optional)] [Recipient’s Name] [Recipient’s Title] [Company Name] [Company Address] [Date (DD.MM.YYYY)] Bewerbung um die Stelle als Softwareentwickler Sehr geehrte(r) [Recipient’s Last Name], I am writing to apply for the Software Developer position at [Company Name] as advertised on [Job Portal]. As a skilled professional with over five years of experience in software development, I am confident in my ability to contribute to your company’s success. Throughout my career, I have developed and maintained numerous software applications, consistently meeting project deadlines and exceeding client expectations. My technical expertise includes proficiency in Java, Python, and C++, as well as experience with Agile methodologies and DevOps practices. I am also passionate about continuous learning, which has enabled me to stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends and technologies. I am particularly attracted to [Company Name] because of its reputation for innovation and commitment to employee growth. I believe my skill set and dedication to software development would make me a valuable addition to your team. I would welcome the opportunity to further discuss my qualifications and how I can contribute to [Company Name]. Thank you for considering my application. Mit freundlichen Grüßen, [Your Full Name] [Handwritten Signature (if applicable)] Anlagen: Lebenslauf Zeugnisse Arbeitsproben

Sample 2: Marketing Position (Content Marketing Manager)

[Your Name] [Your Address] [Your Phone Number] [Your Email Address] [LinkedIn Profile Link (optional)] [Recipient’s Name] [Recipient’s Title] [Company Name] [Company Address] [Date (DD.MM.YYYY)] Bewerbung um die Stelle als Content Marketing Manager Sehr geehrte(r) [Recipient’s Last Name], As an experienced Content Marketing Manager with a strong background in developing and implementing successful marketing strategies, I am excited to apply for the position at [Company Name] that I discovered on [Job Portal]. During my six years in the marketing industry, I have managed content creation, search engine optimization, and social media campaigns for various clients, leading to significant increases in web traffic, engagement, and conversion rates. My strengths lie in my ability to analyze target audiences, identify content gaps, and create compelling content that drives results. What draws me to [Company Name] is its focus on providing exceptional value to customers through innovative marketing techniques. I am confident that my expertise in content marketing, combined with my passion for creating engaging experiences, will enable me to contribute significantly to your company’s growth and success. I appreciate your consideration of my application and look forward to the opportunity to discuss my qualifications further. Mit freundlichen Grüßen, [Your Full Name] [Handwritten Signature (if applicable)] Anlagen: Lebenslauf Zeugnisse Arbeitsproben

Sample 3: Nursing Position (Registered Nurse)

[Your Name] [Your Address] [Your Phone Number] [Your Email Address] [LinkedIn Profile Link (optional)] [Recipient’s Name] [Recipient’s Title] [Company Name] [Company Address] [Date (DD.MM.YYYY)] Bewerbung um die Stelle als examinierte Krankenschwester Sehr geehrte(r) [Recipient’s Last Name], I am writing to express my interest in the Registered Nurse position at [Company Name], which I came across on [Job Portal]. With over seven years of nursing experience and a commitment to providing exceptional patient care, I am confident in my ability to make a positive impact at your healthcare facility. Throughout my nursing career, I have honed my skills in patient assessment, treatment planning, and health education. My experience includes working in diverse healthcare settings, such as hospitals, nursing homes, and outpatient clinics. This background has allowed me to develop strong communication and teamwork skills, adapt to different environments, and provide high-quality care to patients from various backgrounds. I am drawn to [Company Name] because of its reputation for excellence in patient care and commitment to employee development. I believe my nursing experience, passion for healthcare, and dedication to patient well-being make me a strong candidate for this position. Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to the opportunity to discuss my qualifications further and explore how I can contribute to the success of [Company Name]. Mit freundlichen Grüßen, [Your Full Name] [Handwritten Signature (if applicable)] Anlagen: Lebenslauf Zeugnisse Zertifikate

These three sample cover letters demonstrate different formats and styles tailored to specific job domains.

Bonus : Looking for additional cover letter templates? Here is a list of free CV and cover letter templates that you can use for your next job application in Germany.

Analyze the elements of each sample and use them as a starting point to create a cover letter that effectively showcases your unique qualifications and experiences for the position you are applying for in Germany.

Do you have further questions?

Join our community of job seekers and experts from Germany. You can ask your doubts and get expert advice on topics related to getting a job in Germany and several other related topics.

When applying for a job in Germany, it’s essential to be aware of the cultural nuances and best practices to ensure your cover letter makes a strong impression.

Understanding the expectations of German employers and adapting your cover letter accordingly will increase your chances of success.

In this section, we will discuss some key cultural aspects and best practices to follow when crafting your cover letter.

1. Formality and Politeness

German business culture places a high value on formality and politeness.

Ensure that your cover letter adheres to a formal writing style and tone.

Use appropriate salutations and sign-offs, and address the recipient by their last name.

Avoid using slang, colloquialisms, or overly casual language.

2. Addressing the Recipient Properly

Take the time to research the correct name and title of the person responsible for reviewing job applications.

Addressing the recipient personally demonstrates your diligence and attention to detail.

If you cannot find the recipient’s name, use the generic salutation “Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren” (Dear Sir/Madam).

3. Demonstrating Knowledge of the Company and the Role

German employers appreciate candidates who show a genuine interest in their company and the specific role they are applying for.

Research the company’s mission, values, and recent projects, and mention how these align with your own professional goals and interests.

Additionally, carefully review the job description and emphasize how your skills, qualifications, and experiences make you a strong fit for the position.

4. Focusing on Achievements and Contributions

Instead of merely listing your previous job duties, highlight your achievements and the impact of your work.

Use specific examples to showcase your accomplishments and demonstrate your ability to contribute to the success of the company.

This approach shows employers that you are results-oriented and can make a meaningful difference in their organization.

5. Tailoring Your Cover Letter to the Specific Job

Avoid using a generic cover letter for every job application.

Instead, tailor your cover letter to the specific job and company by addressing the unique requirements and expectations outlined in the job description.

This not only demonstrates your genuine interest in the role but also shows that you have taken the time to understand the employer’s needs and how you can fulfill them.

By considering these cultural nuances and best practices, you can craft a compelling cover letter that resonates with German employers and sets you apart from other applicants.

Common Mistakes to Avoid in a German Cover Letter

To increase your chances of securing a job interview in Germany, it’s crucial to avoid common mistakes that can detract from your application’s effectiveness.

In this section, we will discuss some common pitfalls and provide tips on how to prevent them.

1. Spelling and Grammar Errors

Mistakes in spelling and grammar can significantly damage the credibility of your application.

Proofread your cover letter thoroughly and consider using a grammar-checking tool to ensure accuracy.

If possible, ask a native German speaker or a professional proofreader to review your letter for any errors or inconsistencies.

2. Overly Casual Tone

As mentioned earlier, German business culture values formality and politeness.

Avoid using an overly casual tone, slang, or colloquialisms in your cover letter. Instead, maintain a professional and respectful tone throughout your letter.

3. Lengthy Cover Letters

A cover letter should be concise and to the point. Aim for a length of one page, focusing on the most relevant and compelling information.

Avoid long-winded explanations and unnecessary details that can detract from the impact of your letter.

4. Failing to Address the Job Requirements

Not addressing the specific requirements outlined in the job description can give the impression that you are not genuinely interested in the position or have not taken the time to understand the employer’s needs.

Tailor your cover letter to the job description, highlighting your skills, qualifications, and experiences that align with the requirements.

5. Underselling or Overselling Yourself

Striking the right balance between confidence and humility is crucial in a cover letter.

Avoid underselling your skills and accomplishments, but also refrain from overselling yourself or exaggerating your qualifications.

Focus on providing accurate and relevant examples that demonstrate your suitability for the role.

6. Neglecting to Research the Company

Failing to demonstrate knowledge of the company and its values can give the impression that you are not genuinely interested in the role.

Research the company and mention specific aspects that resonate with your professional goals and interests to show your enthusiasm for the position.

7. Using Generic Cover Letters

Submitting a generic cover letter for multiple job applications can harm your chances of securing an interview.

Tailor your cover letter to each specific job and company to demonstrate your genuine interest in the role and your understanding of the employer’s needs.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can create a compelling and impactful cover letter that stands out to potential employers and increases your chances of success in the German job market.

Tips for Non-Native German Speakers

If you are a non-native German speaker applying for a job in Germany, crafting an effective cover letter can be particularly challenging.

However, by paying attention to certain aspects and following some best practices, you can overcome language barriers and make a strong impression.

In this section, we will discuss some tips to help non-native German speakers create an impactful cover letter.

1. Language Proficiency

First and foremost, ensure that your German language skills are sufficient for the job you are applying for.

If the job requires a high level of proficiency, it’s essential to have a strong command of the language, both in writing and speaking.

If necessary, consider taking German language courses or working with a language tutor to improve your skills.

2. Use a Professional Translation Service

If you are not confident in your ability to write a cover letter in German, consider using a professional translation service.

This can help ensure that your cover letter is accurate, clear, and adheres to German business etiquette.

However, remember that using a translation service is not a substitute for learning the language, particularly if the job requires fluent German skills.

3. Seek Feedback from Native German Speakers

Ask native German speakers to review your cover letter and provide feedback on your language usage, grammar, and overall structure.

This can help you identify any errors or inconsistencies and ensure that your cover letter adheres to German business conventions.

4. Highlight Your Language Skills

If you are fluent in multiple languages, including German, highlight this skill in your cover letter.

Many German companies value employees who can communicate effectively in multiple languages, particularly in international settings.

5. Research German Business Etiquette

Familiarize yourself with German business etiquette and incorporate appropriate conventions into your cover letter, such as formal salutations, sign-offs, and language usage.

This demonstrates your understanding of the local business culture and your willingness to adapt.

6. Address Potential Visa and Work Permit Requirements

If you are not an EU/EEA/Swiss citizen, make sure to address any potential visa and work permit requirements in your cover letter.

Briefly mention your eligibility for a visa or work permit, or your intention to obtain one, to reassure the employer that you are aware of the necessary procedures and willing to take the required steps.

By following these tips, non-native German speakers can create a compelling cover letter that effectively communicates their skills, qualifications, and experiences while adhering to German business etiquette and addressing potential language barriers.

Adapting Your Cover Letter for Remote Work Opportunities

With the increasing prevalence of remote work, many job seekers are looking for opportunities to work from home or outside of their home country.

In this section, we will discuss how to adapt your cover letter to showcase your suitability for remote work positions in Germany.

1. Highlight Relevant Remote Work Experience

If you have previous experience working remotely, be sure to emphasize this in your cover letter.

Explain how you successfully managed your workload, communicated with your team, and adapted to a remote work environment.

This demonstrates your ability to navigate the challenges of remote work and remain productive in a virtual setting.

2. Showcase Your Adaptability and Time Management Skills

Remote work often requires adaptability and strong time management skills. Highlight any experiences or accomplishments that demonstrate your ability to adapt to changing circumstances, manage your time effectively, and stay organized.

3. Emphasize Your Communication Skills

Effective communication is crucial for remote work, as much of the interaction with colleagues and supervisors happens via email, phone, or video calls.

Showcase your written and verbal communication skills in your cover letter and provide examples of how you have effectively communicated in remote work settings.

4. Familiarize Yourself with German Business Etiquette

Even when working remotely, it’s essential to understand and adhere to German business etiquette. Familiarize yourself with the expectations and conventions of German business culture, and ensure that your cover letter reflects this understanding.

5. Address Time Zone Differences

If you are applying for a remote position from a different time zone, address this in your cover letter.

Explain your willingness to adapt your work schedule, if necessary, to accommodate meetings or other collaborative activities during the company’s standard working hours.

6. Mention Relevant Tools and Technologies

Remote work often relies on specific tools and technologies for communication, collaboration, and project management.

Mention any familiarity or experience you have with these tools in your cover letter, as this demonstrates your ability to quickly adapt to the company’s remote work infrastructure.

By adapting your cover letter to emphasize your suitability for remote work, you can increase your chances of securing a remote position with a German company.

This approach demonstrates your understanding of the unique challenges and requirements of remote work and showcases your ability to thrive in a virtual work environment.

Crafting an effective cover letter for a job application in Germany requires attention to detail, an understanding of local business culture, and the ability to showcase your unique qualifications and experiences.

By following the guidelines and best practices discussed in this article, you can create a compelling cover letter that stands out to potential employers and increases your chances of securing an interview.

In summary, remember to:

  • Familiarize yourself with German business etiquette and conventions
  • Use a clear structure and include all essential components
  • Tailor your cover letter to the specific job and company
  • Showcase your accomplishments and provide concrete examples
  • Avoid common mistakes and maintain a professional tone
  • Consider cultural nuances and adapt your cover letter accordingly
  • For non-native German speakers, seek feedback and support as needed
  • Adapt your cover letter for remote work opportunities, if applicable

By putting in the effort to create a well-crafted, tailored cover letter, you demonstrate your professionalism, commitment, and genuine interest in the position.

This can set you apart from other applicants and ultimately help you land your desired job in Germany.

Stay persistent in your job search, and don’t be afraid to refine and revise your cover letter as you gain more experience and insights into the German job market.

what is cover letter in german

Anoop is a German PR holder and a Software Engineering manager with over 12 years of experience in the IT industry. He worked for several renowned IT companies in India and many startups in Germany. Anoop was featured on YourStory Germany, Zeit Online, Imagine Foundation, Tech Job Fairs Berlin, and many other platforms.

Interested in discussing the above topic in detail? Schedule a 30-minute 1-1 session with Anoop here .

What is the translation of "cover letter" in German?

"cover letter" in german.

  • volume_up Begleitschreiben
  • Motivationsschreiben
  • volume_up Anschreiben
  • Begleitbriefe
  • volume_up Motivationsschreiben
  • Anschreiben
  • Begleitbrief
  • Begleitschreiben


Cover letter {noun}.

  • American English

covering letters {noun}

Covering letter {noun}.

  • open_in_new Link to source
  • warning Request revision

Context sentences

English german contextual examples of "cover letter" in german.

These sentences come from external sources and may not be accurate. is not responsible for their content.

Monolingual examples

English how to use "cover letter" in a sentence, english how to use "covering letters" in a sentence, english how to use "covering letter" in a sentence, english how to use "motivationsschreiben" in a sentence, english how to use "begleitbriefe" in a sentence, synonyms (english) for "cover letter":.

  • covering letter
  • cover letter

Similar translations

Similar translations for "cover letter" in german.

  • Korrespondenz
  • Leistungsabzeichen
  • beschriften
  • mit Buchstaben kennzeichnen
  • cover glass
  • cover holder
  • cover holders
  • cover illustration
  • cover image
  • cover in concrete
  • cover insurance
  • cover lesson
  • cover lightly
  • cover loosely with
  • cover of darkness
  • cover oneself
  • cover oneself two ways
  • cover oneself up

Translations into more languages in the Swahili-English dictionary .

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  • cover letter

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How To Write a Cover Letter in German? Tips & Examples

How To Write a Cover Letter in German? Tips & Examples

To apply for a job or an internship in Germany, your cover letter must be not only impeccable but also personalized because German recruiters scrutinize cover letters!

We will give you all the translations you need and explain everything: what wording to use and how formal it should be, how to start it, how to end it, what to put and what format to choose, so that you can get the job you want. In addition to our tips, you will find at the end of the article an example of a German cover letter in word and pdf for free download.

How do you say cover letter in German?

The translation of cover letter in German is "das Motivationsschreiben". It simply means the motivation letter.

The application is called "die Bewerbung" in German and the applicant is called "der Bewerber" or "die Bewerberin".

➜ See our tips for writing a German CV .

Salutation and opening greeting to use in a German cover letter

The cover letter in German is formal and you have to pay attention to the politeness, even if you apply by e-mail.

When you know the name of the person, write :

Sehr geehrter Herr Müller or Sehr geehrte Frau Müller,

If the person has a doctorate or is a professor, use the following salutation:

Sehr geehrter Herr Dr. Müller or Sehr geehrter Herr Professor Müller,

Namely: If the person is a professor and also has two doctorates, it was usual (not so long ago) to write:

Sehr geehrter Herr Prof. Dr. Dr. Müller,

But nowadays, it is enough to put only the highest title (Professor in this example). On the other hand, these titles must be specified in the address (at the very top of the letter).

If you do not know the name of the person, for example for an unsolicited application, simply write:

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,

This is also the standard, polite way to greet someone unknown in an e-mail in German, in a formal cover letter or in any business letter.

If you are applying for a job in a start-up or a rather young and untraditional organization, you can simply write:

Hallo Herr Müller,

Please note: The sentence that follows does not start with a capital letter: "Hallo Herr Müller, hiermit bewerbe ich mich...".

💡 Our advice: Start with "Sehr geehrter Herr Müller" and if your interviewer changes to "Hallo Herr Dubois" or "Hallo Nicolas", then do the same.

How to start your cover letter in German?

The introduction should arouse the recruiter's curiosity and make him or her want to read the rest. It should immediately highlight your profile and show your determination and passion for the position and the company you are applying to. This is how you will stand out from the other candidates.

It is also the first impression you give of yourself and we know that the first impression is always the strongest. It is indeed very difficult to get rid of a first impression, it is a cognitive bias called in psychology the anchoring or confirmation. So if your introduction is successful, it's half the battle won (well, almost).

Avoid ready-made sentences, banal formulas and don't repeat what's in your resume or your CV. The introduction should be concise and not exceed 3 sentences.

Here is an example of a very effective personalized introduction:

Sehr geehrter Herr Müller, seit sechs Jahren verfolge ich die Entwicklung von Elektroautos und die Fortschritte der Automobilbranche mit großem Interesse und habe mit Begeisterung von einem Praktikum (or von einer Stelle als …) in Ihrem Unternehmen gelesen. Als Student der Elektroingenieurswissenschaft mit abgeschlossener Ausbildung zum Mechatroniker verfüge ich über viel Knowhow gepaart mit Leidenschaft für Autos und technischem Feingefühl.

Another possibility is to emphasize your skills and successes, for example like this:

mit 6 Jahren Erfahrung als Sales Manager im Bereich B2B für große Saas- und Softwareunternehmen und einer langjährigen Affinität zu den Themen Preisstrategie und -Verhandlung bin ich der perfekte Kandidat für Ihre Stelle.

The candidate starts with his strongest asset (his 6 years of experience) and then emphasizes his expertise.

💡 Pro Tip: 99% of all applicants write the same introduction in their cover letter almost word for word, so make sure you stand out if you want to have a chance of getting the job of your dreams!

What to put in your cover letter for a job application in Germany?

The objective of the cover letter is to convince the recruiter that you are the ideal candidate and that you correspond exactly to the profile sought. Basically, you must explain why the company should hire you and not someone else.

Do not copy your CV into your cover letter! Explain that you have the required skills, gained from your various experiences, and that they will be put to good use by the company.

For example:

Ich habe 4 Jahre Erfahrung als E-Commerce-Marketing-Analyst bei Fashionista (your position) gesammelt und war in dieser Zeit verantwortlich für die SEO-Strategie des Online-Shops und die Kundengewinnung. Ich konnte den Umsatz um 12% monatlich steigern und die Conversion Rate um 17% optimieren (mention your role, main responsibilities and results).

Als Marketingmanager des Fashionista Online-Shops erwarb ich fundierte Kenntnisse über Techniken zur Verkaufsoptimierung und lernte prägnante und überzeugende Texte zu verfassen.

In this example, the candidate does not go back to his professional experience, which has (surely) already been presented in his resume, but focuses on the skills he has acquired that he can bring to the company he is applying to.

You can also list your key skills, those that interest the recruiter, in the following way:

Meine Kernkompetenzen sind: - Online Kundengewinnung (SEO und Content Marketing) - Techniken zur Optimierung der Conversion Rate - Verfassen von prägnanten und überzeugenden Texten - Übersichtliche Darstellung von komplexen Daten

The recruiter quickly sees what interests him: it is clear, simple and effective!

Be as concise as possible: it is better for the recruiter (some prefer half-page cover letters) and it will force you to avoid length and repetition. In any case, do not exceed one page.

💡 Our advice: The word "motivation" can be misleading. In reality, it is not a question of showing off your motivations but of showing the company what you could bring to them, what your qualities, skills and areas of expertise are.

How do you conclude a cover letter in German?

You can end your cover letter by showing that you would like to know more about the position and the company:

Auf die Gelegenheit, Ihr Unternehmen in einem persönlichen Gespräch kennenzulernen und mehr über die Position des Marketingassistenten zu erfahren, freue ich mich sehr.

Or finish by emphasizing your value:

Sehr gern überzeuge ich Sie in einem persönlichen Gespräch von meinen Fähigkeiten als Sales Agent und freue mich darauf, mehr über Ihr Unternehmen und die Stelle als Marketingmanager zu erfahren.

If you are applying for an internship, you can end your cover letter as follows:

Auf eine persönliche Vorstellung, in der ich Sie von meiner Leidenschaft für die Energiebranche, meiner Motivation für ein Praktikum im Projektmanagement sowie meinen Kenntnissen in der Auswertung der Energiedaten überzeugen kann, freue ich mich.

The most common greeting at the end of an email or a letter in German is:

Mit freundlichen Grüßen

If you already know the person or after several mail exchanges, you can use either of these two polite formulas which correspond to Cordially in German:

Viele Grüße or Beste Grüße

Skip a line after the greeting and add your signature and your name below.

💡 Pro Tip: Unlike in English, there is no comma after the greeting at the end of a german letter.

Sample cover letter in German to download

Here is a sample cover letter in German in PDF and Word for free download.

Lexicon and vocabulary to translate your cover letter into German

Here is a list of useful words with their translations in German:

Jerome Feys

Jerome Feys

Job in Berlin's Founder

As a recruitment expert and founder of Job in Berlin, I have corrected over 1,000 resumes. Since 2015, I've been sharing my expertise and delivering tips on resume and cover letter writing, as well as techniques for a successful job interview.

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The Berlin Life

How To Write A German Cover Letter – A Step By Step Guide

by Cheryl Howard | Nov 28, 2023 | Berlin Guides , Job Applications , Working In Berlin | 0 comments

Write a German Cover Letter - The Berlin Life Header


Have you been l ooking for a job in Germany, applying for several positions, and finding that you’re not getting any responses? It happens to the best of us, even to those who work in   highly demanded professions   like software developers, marketing professionals, economists, and more.

Searching for a job , especially one right for you, is a daunting task that takes   a lot   of work, patience, and perseverance. When you add looking for a job in a foreign country like Germany into the mix, it’s even more challenging. You’re probably unfamiliar with the country’s norms when creating job applications and could unknowingly be making mistakes. What’s more, a lot of the information about how to write a German cover letter is often outdated and/or created by people with zero experience in recruiting.

The most significant part of getting noticed by German employers is your ability to put together a solid job application, which usually includes a well-written and designed cover letter and CV that tells a story about you and why you’re uniquely qualified for that position.


📖 📖 📖 Bookmark THIS extensive guide on how to write a German cover letter and use it as a frame of reference when applying for jobs in Germany. Banner

1) Are Cover Letters Really Needed?

As you’re searching for a job in Berlin, or anywhere in Germany for that matter, have you asked yourself these questions:

1) Do I need to write a German cover letter when I’m applying for jobs?

2) Are cover letters relevant when my CV already tells my story?

3) Does anyone even bother to read cover letters?

Let me tell you a story:

I worked for one company when a member of senior management asked, “Why do people write cover letters? I   never   read them. I only want to see their CV, and I’ll get in touch if it’s interesting. I’m way too busy to read both cover letters and CVs.”

A very fair point and I agree with him 100%. His pain was also my pain, as I was reviewing several job applications each day and looking at people we could potentially add to our team. It was time-consuming and tedious, especially when we wanted to ensure whoever applied was given a fair shot.

It’s true that not every recruiter or hiring manager will read it (like that manager), and some companies (like where I currently work) even ask candidates   not   to submit cover letters. However, many companies still expect to see one.

So do you need a German cover letter? Yes, most definitely. Even though they feel like a waste of time (and sometimes really are), cover letters are essential when applying for jobs in Berlin or elsewhere in Deutschland.

2) Why Should I Write A German Cover Letter?

There are a number of good arguments about why you should take the time to write up a cover letter for your job applications:

1) There’s a slight chance that not submitting a cover letter will result in immediate rejection. A recruiter or hiring manager may think that if you didn’t put in the effort to make a cover letter, why should they even consider you for the job? While this is silly, don’t take a chance and make it a habit always to include a cover letter.

​2) Some (not all) HR software scans submitted documents looking for specific keywords. A cover letter that mentions certain keywords from the job description could help you bubble to the top of the candidate pool, where you’re more likely to get noticed before other candidates.

3) Called a motivation letter in Germany ( Motivationsschreiben ), a cover letter is your chance to shine. It’s when you can tell the company why you want to work for them, explain how uniquely qualified you are for that role, and really make your personality come through.

​Think of it like this – when you go to the theatre to watch a movie, you’ll see trailers for upcoming flicks. They only last one or two minutes, but if the trailer is really good, they’ve hooked you, and eventually, you’re going to go out and watch that movie.

Your cover letter is exactly like that movie trailer. It’s a preview of your CV and you as a person. A cover letter’s main call to action is to make the person reading it want to know more. They’ll spend time reviewing your CV and, hopefully, contact you for that first interview.

4) A cover letter shows diligence and interest from your side. Employers are keen to know why you want to work for them, learn why you’re the person they should hire, and if you’re passionate about your chosen field.

If a cover letter is done well, in the sense that it’s framed as a well-written and compelling narrative, it’ll motivate the employer to contact you for an interview. Most people do really read them, so it’s worth spending time writing one that makes you stand out from other applicants.

3) How Do I Structure A German Cover Letter?

Following a fixed structure and method that you can repeat for each new job application makes writing a cover letter way easier.

Always include these vital elements in a cover letter:

The Berlin Life -- Cover Letter Sample

1)   Salutation   – Address your cover letter to that person using formal German greetings such as “Dear Herr Müller” or “Dear Frau Schmidt.” If no contact is listed or you’re unsure about which greeting to use (you don’t ever want to address someone as Herr when they’re a Frau, for example), use a generic greeting such as “Dear hiring manager” or “To whom it may concern.” If you read other online texts saying that you  always  have to specify a specific contact name, this is very untrue. More and more German companies are refraining from adding contact names to job descriptions to avoid being spammed by applicants. So don’t stress out on this point at all, as using a generic greeting is not only expected but completely acceptable.

2) Intro   – This section should be one paragraph maximum. Personalize your cover letter by telling the company  why you want to work there.  Be specific and use supporting examples gleaned from company research. Doing so will impress the company and show you did your homework before applying. Remember that this section is not about you but about them as an organization. Avoid self-serving statements when telling them why you want to work there. For example, don’t say you want to work there because the office is down the street from your flat or you heard they pay exceptionally high salaries. Instead, say you’re impressed with the company culture, that you identify with their sustainability mission, and that you want to be part of building out the next stage of their growth.

​ 3) About You   – This section can be one or two paragraphs long and is the “meat” of the cover letter and where you need to sell yourself. Pull points from the job description to tell your potential employer   why you’re uniquely qualified for the position . Build on those points by using personal examples that draw from your experience, education, and more. Ensure your examples are specific, build on one another in a complementing fashion, and tell an exciting story. Say that the role calls for someone with leadership experience. You can tell them that you have 10 years of experience managing distributed teams of varying sizes. You can further say that you excel at creating and maintaining high-performing teams with a track record of meeting deadlines. And finish by telling them how you launched a project that helped the company make millions of euros. Whatever you do, don’t just list a bunch of keywords, repeat the job description itself, or write a novel.

4) Closin g   – Reiterate your excitement about the company and the open position. Let them know you want to learn more and would welcome a chance for an interview. Be sure to tell them about your availability and how to best get in touch.

A few more tips about how to structure a German cover letter:

1) If you’re sending the cover letter by email or uploading it to an applicant tracking system, you don’t need to include the address information of yourself or the company. For that matter, a signature isn’t required either. These things are entirely unnecessary and irrelevant as we no longer live in the Stone Age.

2) If anyone prints or references your cover letter for an interview, you can leave the date on it so they know when you applied for the role.

Strive to ensure the narrative in the letter flows well and tells a unique story about you and why they should hire you over anyone else out there.

4) Should I Customize My Cover Letter For Job Applications ?

Yes, we know. It’s   a lot   of work to create a new cover letter every time you apply for a job, but sending the same cover letter out won’t do anymore. You need to show employers you took time to research their company, tell them why you want to work there, and why they should hire you.

This is why personalizing the cover letter is really important. They need to see the real you and that you were thoughtful in your job application. Anything less makes it look like you’re not really interested in the role and could see your job application land in the recruiter’s NO pile.

Suppose a cover letter is simply a regurgitation of the job description or a generic copy-and-paste text you’ve used for every job application. The recruiter or hiring manager will easily be able to spot this and may make the company less likely to contact you. Again, don’t take a chance.

Read about how to customize cover letters when you’re submitting unsolicited job applications . 

5) How Do I Use Company Research In My Cover Letter?

Before writing a cover letter, we recommend that you complete in-depth research on the company to which you’re applying. The research will help you a lot, especially as it’ll give you the information you can embed in your cover letter and use later to ask questions during an interview.

You need to tell the employer why you like their company and show you did your research, by looking at   Glassdoor reviews , browsing through their website, reading their press releases, etc.

Read our detailed guide about how to   research a German company .

6) How Long Should A German Cover Letter Be?

Keep the cover letter to a single page and not more than 3 – 4 paragraphs. Be succinct (i.e., avoid long wordy sentences or overuse of adjectives) and   summarize, summarize, summarize .

Pick key points from your CV and/or job description but don’t repeat things verbatim.

7) Should I Use An Automatic Text Generator or AI?

I’ve played around with ChatGPT and boy, is it good. Like really really good!

Call me old school, but in general, I’d still suggest writing your own cover letter without the help of predictive text generators or AI.

I say this for two reasons:

1) Many of these generators like Speedwrite yield text that doesn’t make much sense at all. It often reads as if it were written by a robot and spits out alternative text that says exactly the same thing but in a slightly different way.

2) Even worse, it won’t sound like you. A cover letter should be an honest and accurate reflection of who you are and how you communicate. I cannot stress that enough, especially if you’re being hired into a role where communication skills are key.

What you could do is use AI to write that very first draft cover letter. Then you could use that text as a baseline and improve it using your own words. Try out this beta AI from Imagine to get started! 

Alternatively, you can write a draft first and then use a tool like Grammarly to better what you’ve written.

We know this can be tough if you’re not writing in your native language. In these cases, make sure you get other people to proofread your cover letter or even hire a professional to help you out.

8) Should I Write My Cover Letter In German ?

Writing your cover letter in German may help you get noticed by HR software or LinkedIn search engine algorithms.

Be careful and use your best judgment here, though. It could backfire when they discover that your level of German doesn’t match the level of what’s in your cover letter.

Let me tell you another story:

A recruiter I used to work with told me that she’d found a dream candidate for a position that had been open for a long time. This person was applying from abroad and had submitted   both   their CV and cover letter in German.

The first interview was scheduled, and during the call, the recruiter was surprised to find that the candidate didn’t know any German at all. Turns out they’d paid someone to translate their documents.

Sadly, the candidate was rejected for their false claims of being fluent in German and wasting the recruiter’s time. And contrary to what many say, German fluency is absolutely essential for most available positions in the country. 

Of course, it could go the other way and the company may still hire you anyway because you’re such a good fit. But please, be honest upfront and if you decide to write your cover letter in German, indicate your language level (like B1 or C1) very prominently on your CV and in your cover letter. Then the decision will be left to the employer to contact you.

9) Can I Stretch The Truth Because Everyone Fibs A Bit?

Above all, be humble and honest about things, like your education, work experience, level of German, etc.

It’s easy to lie or exaggerate when you want a job, and we’ve all been told to “fake it until we make it,” and in many cases, it can work in your favor. But let’s be real here, this behavior is unprofessional, not to mention unethical.

Not long ago, I was shocked to read the LinkedIn profile of a former colleague who claimed to have led a high-profile project for our company. That project wasn’t even started until after that person left. This person was blatantly lying and taking credit for other people’s work that she didn’t do.

Don’t be that person. 

False claims could come back to haunt you. For example, the Berlin community is small and people know each other. A potential employer may know someone at one of your former companies and informally reach out to them for information about you.

If they uncover any lies, it will likely cost you the job, even your reputation.

Of course, be confident in your accomplishments, and don’t undersell yourself. Just make sure you’re telling the truth.

10) How Do I Create A Well Designed Cover Letter? 

You could just type of bunch of text into a Google document and send it off. But how about making your cover letter look nice using websites like   Canva   or , where you can find beautiful and professional templates for free?

Other things to keep in mind:

1) Use a large and readable font that considers general accessibility guidelines. Sometimes people try to jam as much information as possible onto a cover letter and to make it fit a single page using ridiculously small font sizes. Trust me – no one wants to use a magnifying glass to read your cover letter.

Use this   guide from Indeed   which speaks to the right font and font size to use on CVs, which also applies to cover letters.

2) Don’t make your paragraphs too long and use sensible spacing to make your cover letter easier to read.

3) Your   German CV   should have a similar look and feel. This way, the cover letter, and CV will appear as one fluid job application package.

11) Do I   Really   Have To Follow These Rules?

No, of course not! Our guidelines are simply here to help you write a good cover letter that’s more likely to get you noticed by German employers.

There’s no reason not to get creative and have fun with your cover letter. This may also mean breaking some of the “rules” outlined here.

Be bold and dare to take unique approaches that challenge the status quo. Perhaps give them a link to a video you made telling them why you want to work there. Share a sample of what you can do for them by sharing some insight on how you’d approach your job. Invite them to check out your blog or social media.

The sky’s the limit. A unique cover letter will help you stand apart from other candidates.

12) How Can I Ensure My German Cover Letter Is Of High Quality?

Make sure there are no spelling or grammatical errors, get the company name and other details right, and if you can, have a second or third pair of eyes review your cover letter. This can be a friend, partner, or even, a paid professional. Proofreading is essential, as if you’ve been staring at the same documents for hours, it can be super easy to miss out on small mistakes you might’ve made.

This advice might sound really obvious and basic, but trust me, I’ve seen tons of job applications with errors on them. I must also confess that I once put the wrong company name in a cover letter and somehow still got several interviews with them. Miracles happen, folks! 🤣

Anyway, avoid sloppy mistakes if you can, and make sure your German cover letter is top-notch.

What do I recommend?   Join my   Facebook community   of more than 8,000 people and ask someone there for a   cover letter exchange . Another person can review your cover letter and give you feedback and you can do the same for them.

That’s a wrap! Follow these tips to write a really good German cover letter that’s going to land you a job in Germany.


Are There English Speaking Jobs In Germany?

Are There English Speaking Jobs In Germany?

by Cheryl Howard | Nov 30, 2023 | Berlin Guides , Job Search , Working In Berlin | 2 Comments

Can you find English speaking jobs in Germany? Is being fluent in German essential to building a career? We answer your questions.

A Roundup Of Professional Career Coaches In Germany

A Roundup Of Professional Career Coaches In Germany

by Cheryl Howard | Nov 30, 2023 | Berlin Guides , Job Search , Working In Berlin | 0 Comments

Unsure how to navigate the German job market? Seeking to change careers or ask for a promotion? These career coaches in Germany can help.

How To Find A Job In Berlin: An Honest & Detailed Guide

How To Find A Job In Berlin: An Honest & Detailed Guide

An honest and detailed guide with tips from a career coach and hiring manager, advising you on how to find a job in Berlin in 2023.

Cheryl Howard, Founder @ The Berlin Life

Cheryl Howard, Founder @ The Berlin Life

Hi, I’m Cheryl. My mission is to help you move to Berlin and find work.

A Canadian in Berlin for 10+ years, I have the unique experience of moving to Berlin – not once, but twice. During my time in Berlin, I’ve had five different visas and worked as both a freelancer and a permanent employee for   numerous   Berlin companies. I even managed to find a new job during the pandemic  and again in 2023, during Germany’s  recession and massive layoffs in tech. 

My day job has involved work as a hiring manager, overseeing the recruitment of countless people, as well as a team coach helping teams and individuals work better and find happiness in their careers. Through my side projects, I’ve also shared my personal experiences by publishing a series of helpful blog posts, creating a thriving community of job seekers, and hosting events to help people find work in Berlin. In 2021, I decided to put my coaching and recruiting talents to use by creating The Berlin Life, bringing my existing content and community together in one spot.

The combination of my personal and professional experience means I know  exactly  what it takes to move to Berlin and find work.

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