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Overall score

Score by Indicator

in 2016 6.3
0 2.5 5 7.5 10

Key drivers

Overall wage pressure

Overall, German firms are benefitting from lower wage pressure. Wage growth has been slower than in recent years.

Wage pressure in high-skill occupations

Average wages in the highest-skilled occupations have increased rapidly, putting pressure on businesses with these employees.

Wage pressure in high-skill industries

The gap in wages between high- and lower-skill industries continues to exert pressure on the labour market. Despite a slight fall, it was above historical averages.


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View from the ground

Klaus Breitschopf, Managing Director, Hays Germany

The number of jobs in Germany is continuing to grow and is currently at a record level. This is mainly due to strong German business activities with foreign countries and greater investment by companies in digital business opportunities such as Industry 4.0. At the same time, the job market is continuing to narrow for digital professionals as demand increases and educational institutes need time to adjust to these new skills. Things are expected to become somewhat bleaker in the next few years as baby boomers begin retiring from 2020 and, due to low birth rates, won’t be replaced in the market. The Government therefore needs to adopt a more flexible approach to retirement, as well as focusing on bringing in highly-skilled professionals from outside Germany when not available at home.

Klaus Breitschopf, Managing Director, Hays Germany

Country Profile

Businesses looking to hire talented workers in Germany face a labour market with rising vacancies and a declining working age population.

Job vacancies have increased two years in a row in Germany, standing at 665,000 in 2016. That figure continued to increase in the first half of 2017. Businesses looking to hire skilled people are likely to encounter a more pressured labour market than last year.

Further contributing to these challenges is Germany’s falling working age population. The UN forecasts that in the five years between 2015 and 2020, the number of people between the ages of 15 and 64 will fall by about 3 per cent.

Key skills in demand

  • Software developers
  • Hardware developers
  • IT consultants
  • Project managers
  • Business analysts

News and Press Materials

Klaus Breitschopf, Managing Director, Hays Germany