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job market

Job portals for refugees

von Charlotte Clarke, 4. September 2017 10:16
For companies aiming to offer jobs, apprenticeships or internships to refugees there are several suitable online job portals available. On the other hand, refugees can make themselves and their skills more visible for potential employers. The listed platforms are run either by organisations or by socially engaged private individuals. Some platforms offer additional support regarding bureaucratic obstacles for companies as well as for refugees.

For the German version of this article, click here.


workeer is the first platform for apprenticeships and jobs in Germany directly addressing refugees. The name is composed of the terms work and refugee, pronounced »work-here«. More than 4200 applicants (as of August 2017) have already registered on the platform. Job seekers have the option to upload their curriculum vitae, qualifications (e.g. language skills) and job preferences. On the other hand, more than 2500 employers have placed their offers for job vacancies, apprenticeships or internships in a variety of sectors, for example (industrial) services, technical/handicrafts occupations or media.

workeer was founded by Philipp Kühn und David Jacob in 2015. Initially, the platform was planned within the scope of a final project for their Bachelor’s degree in Communication Design at the University of Applied Sciences in Berlin (HTW Berlin). Due to the high level of interest on the part of employers and refugees the platform is now being continued and developed further.

The founders’ main goal is not primary the placement service but rather creating a space for networking. This is due to the fact that the individual decision whether a refugee is permitted to accept a job offer is made by the local authorities. The idea is that establishing first contacts to job seekers can potentially increase the employers’ willingness to accept the bureaucratic effort in the case of an employment.


Also the platform Jobbö has set up a job portal for refugees, where employers have the opportunity to place their vacancies at no charge. Furthermore, the website provides first general information for companies regarding the employment process, e.g. answers to questions like »How can my company provide further professional and language qualifications?« or regarding contact information of the responsible government office (Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge). is a nation-wide online placement service for refugees. Job seekers can set up an individual profile or directly apply for open vacancies.

On the other hand, companies are invited to directly contact potential employees or to search for suitable candidates according to specific criteria. The applicants as well as the companies are supported by mentors in formal/ bureaucratic challenges. Furthermore, special application workshops for refugees are offered.

The initiative is run by »enactus KIT e.V.«. The organisation has established cooperations with charity associations, social workers and lawyers in order to create a network for employers and refugees. Anyone who wants to support the project is invited to become a mentor.

The platform was founded by a young team of student entrepreneurs and uses a special algorithm for matching the profiles of employers and potential job candidates. Furthermore, job seekers are supported by an online community of »helpers«, who offer advice regarding e.g. application processes or legal matters. So far, more than 400 refugees and 100 companies have set up their profiles.

Work for refugees

A point of contact for companies and refugees in the area of Berlin looking for support is »Work for refugees«. The project is a cooperation of the »Paritätischer Wohlfahrtsverbands LV Berlin e.V.« and the foundation »Stiftung Zukunft Berlin« and was initiated in October 2015. Both companies and job seeking refugees can register on the webpage at no charge. The platform matches the applicants’ qualifications and professional experiences with the job offers. The contact between applicant and employer is supported by members of »Work for refugees«. The types of job vacancies are very variable, reaching from technical and handicrafts occupations to jobs in the gastronomy sector or other service fields. Several vacancies have already been successfully filled.

The project is still under construction, thus »Work for refugees« is always looking for volunteers.


ARRIVO BERLIN is a qualification and career initiative for the integration of refugees into the job market of Berlin. It is run by the local authority for occupation, integration and women (Berliner Senatsarbeitsverwaltung für Arbeit, Integration und Frauen), the Chamber of Handicrafts Berlin (Handwerkskammer Berlin) and the network for right to stay »bridge«.

Their project »practice workshops« gives refugees the opportunity to gain insight into handicrafts occupations and local work structures. Three different modules are offered: a business language course, an introduction workshop and a specialist course on the topic of guilds (German: Innungsfachkurs). The business language course provides specific language skills for professional contexts and essential knowledge regarding the German business world. The introduction workshop offers the possibility to familiarize with handicrafts techniques. The course on the topic of guilds provides insights into different professional career outlines.

For companies in Berlin offering jobs or apprenticeships to refugees, »bridge« has additionally developed an open information centre and a network for the exchange of experiences.

Want some more information on this topic?

General information for companies regarding the employment of refugees and further contact addresses can be found here at the »Bundesagentur für Arbeit«.

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