Would you like to know what you do in a job as IT consultant in Germany and how to become one? Here you will learn everything you need to know about this activity in order to get off to a successful start as an IT consultant.
What does an IT consultant do?
An IT consultant is an expert who helps companies to optimally use and design IT systems. This can mean, for example, that he or she plans a software solution, analyzes an existing system or improves IT infrastructures. The IT consultant often works closely with other IT specialists to achieve the best possible results.
Where do you work as an IT consultant?
IT consultants are in demand in almost all industries and by companies of all sizes. However, a particularly large number of IT consultants employ large consulting firms such as Accenture, Capgemini or Deloitte. But there are also numerous job offers for IT consultants at banks, insurance companies or in the public sector. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) also like to hire IT consultants, for example to increase their IT security.
According to the Federal Employment Agency, about a quarter of a million people in Germany currently work in the field of IT consulting. The demand for IT consultants is high and is expected to increase further in the coming years.
As an IT consultant, you are primarily responsible for helping customers get the most out of and improve their IT systems. This includes, for example, the analysis of IT processes and the identification of optimization potentials. Subsequently, you develop solution proposals together with the customer, which you usually implement or support independently.
A typical task for an IT consultant
A typical task for IT consultants could be the introduction of a new software solution. The work usually begins with a comprehensive analysis of the customer’s requirements. The next step is to identify the right solution and work out a detailed plan. During the implementation, the IT consultant then coordinates all parties involved and ensures that the solution is optimally adapted to the needs of the customer.
In order to successfully implement a new software solution, an IT consultant usually works in several steps. First, a comprehensive analysis of the customer’s requirements is carried out. This is followed by the selection of a suitable software solution, which usually also has to be adapted to the needs of the customer. This is followed by the planning of the introduction, whereby the IT consultant coordinates all participants and accompanies the implementation process. Finally, the results are reviewed to ensure that the new software solution works optimally and meets the customer’s requirements.
How much do you earn in a job as IT consultant?
Earnings for IT consultants in Germany can vary significantly based on factors such as the individual’s level of experience, educational background, industry expertise, and geographical location. On average, an entry-level IT consultant can expect to earn between €40,000 and €50,000 per year, while more experienced professionals may earn between €60,000 and €80,000 annually. Highly experienced IT consultants, particularly those with specialized skills or niche expertise, can command salaries of €100,000 or more per year. It is worth noting that these figures are indicative and can fluctuate based on market demand, the size and type of the employing company, and the specific roles and responsibilities of the IT consultant.
In addition to the base salary, IT consultants in Germany may also receive various benefits and incentives depending on their employer and the terms of their employment contract. These may include performance-based bonuses, pension contributions, health insurance, and other perks such as flexible working hours or remote work options. Some IT consultants choose to work on a freelance or contract basis, which offers greater flexibility and the potential for higher earnings, but may also involve increased risk and less stability compared to a full-time, salaried position.
How do you get a job as IT consultant?
There are several ways to become an IT consultant. Many IT consultants have a degree in computer science, business informatics or business administration. Alternatively, you can also take up the profession of IT consultant through training as an IT specialist or further training as an IT consultant. Above all, it is important that you have a high affinity for the IT and technology industry and regularly undergo further training.
Dual vocational training
Pursuing an apprenticeship in Germany is a highly-regarded and practical way to start a career in various fields. Apprenticeships, known as “Ausbildung” in Germany, combine vocational education with hands-on work experience, offering a structured training program that blends classroom learning at a vocational school and on-the-job training at a partnering company. To begin, research and choose a suitable apprenticeship in your area of interest, focusing on one that aligns with your career goals and aptitudes. Then, apply for the apprenticeship and secure a partnership with a company that will provide the necessary practical training throughout your apprenticeship.
German apprenticeships typically last between two and three-and-a-half years, with the curriculum designed to provide a balance between theoretical instruction at the vocational school and practical experience at the partner company. As an apprentice, you will attend classes on subjects related to your chosen field, while simultaneously acquiring practical skills and knowledge through hands-on training at your partner company.
Becoming an IT consultant in Germany through a dual study program is an attractive and effective way to launch a career in the field. Dual study programs, unique to the German education system, integrate theoretical education with practical experience by combining university coursework and on-the-job training with a partnering company. To begin, research and select a suitable dual study program in IT-related fields such as computer science, information systems, or business informatics, focusing on one that aligns with your career goals and interests. Then, apply for admission to the university or institution and secure a partnership with a company that will provide on-the-job training during your studies.
Dual study programs typically last between three and four years, with the curriculum structured to alternate between theoretical coursework at the university and practical training with the partner company. As a student, you will attend lectures, seminars, and workshops on subjects like programming, software development, project management, and IT consulting methodologies. During the practical phases, you will apply this knowledge in real-world settings, working on projects and tasks under the guidance of experienced professionals at your partner company. This combination of theoretical and practical learning ensures that you develop a solid foundation in IT concepts and gain valuable hands-on experience, preparing you for a successful career as an IT consultant.
Undertaking traditional studies in a specific field at a German university is another way to build a solid foundation for a successful career. Unlike dual studies, traditional university programs focus primarily on theoretical education, offering in-depth knowledge and a comprehensive understanding of the chosen field. To begin, research and select a suitable degree program that aligns with your career aspirations and interests. Apply for admission to the university or institution, meeting the required academic and language proficiency criteria.
Traditional degree programs in Germany generally last between three and four years for a bachelor’s degree and one to two years for a master’s degree. As a student, you will attend lectures, seminars, and workshops, engaging in coursework and projects that delve into the key concepts and methodologies of your chosen field. Although practical experience may be limited compared to dual studies or apprenticeships, internships and part-time work opportunities can help bridge the gap, allowing you to gain hands-on experience and apply your theoretical knowledge in real-world situations.
What personal requirements do you need to become an IT consultant?
Above all, a high affinity to the IT and technology industry, a pronounced logical thinking ability and a quick comprehension are important. The ability to work in a team, strong communication skills and customer orientation are also important soft skills that an IT consultant should have. In addition, it is an advantage to be flexible and resilient and to keep a cool head even in stressful situations.
As an IT consultant, you also need specialist knowledge in the field of IT and information technology. In addition, you should also have knowledge in the areas of project management, business analysis and process optimization. Programming skills can also be an advantage in many cases. Important soft skills for an IT consultant are above all the ability to work in a team, strong communication skills and customer orientation. In addition, quick comprehension, a pronounced logical thinking ability and a high degree of flexibility and resilience are important characteristics.
Job as IT consultant: Questions and answers
What industries typically hire IT consultants in Germany?
IT consultants in Germany work across various industries, including automotive, finance, healthcare, manufacturing, and telecommunications. Their expertise is sought to develop and implement IT solutions that improve efficiency, security, and overall performance.
Can non-German speakers work as IT consultants in Germany?
Although knowledge of the German language is often preferred, non-German speakers can find opportunities as IT consultants, especially in international companies or start-ups. However, learning German can significantly improve your employability and integration in the job market.
Are there any specialized IT consulting firms in Germany?
Yes, there are numerous specialized IT consulting firms in Germany, ranging from large global companies such as Accenture and Capgemini to smaller, niche firms focusing on specific industries or technologies.
How important is networking for IT consultants in Germany?
Networking is crucial for IT consultants in Germany, as it helps them stay updated on industry trends, expand their professional connections, and identify potential job opportunities or collaborations.
Is remote work common for IT consultants in Germany?
Remote work has become increasingly popular for IT consultants in Germany, as digital technologies enable them to collaborate with clients and colleagues effectively from a distance, offering flexibility and adaptability.
Are there any IT consultant-specific certifications that are popular in Germany?
Popular certifications for IT consultants in Germany include those related to project management (e.g., PMP, PRINCE2), IT service management (e.g., ITIL), and specific technology platforms (e.g., Microsoft, Cisco, AWS).
What is the role of IT consultants in digital transformation projects?
IT consultants play a critical role in digital transformation projects, helping organizations assess their digital readiness, develop strategies, and implement technologies that enable them to adapt and thrive in a rapidly evolving digital landscape.
How do IT consultants stay updated on the latest trends and technologies?
IT consultants stay updated on trends and technologies by attending conferences, webinars, and workshops; participating in industry-specific forums and online communities; and continuously learning through professional development programs and certifications.
Can IT consultants transition to other roles within the IT industry?
Yes, IT consultants can transition to other roles within the IT industry, such as software development, project management, or IT security, depending on their interests, expertise, and experience.
Are there any professional associations for IT consultants in Germany?
Several professional associations support IT consultants in Germany, such as the Bundesverband IT-Mittelstand (BITMi), which represents the interests of small and medium-sized IT businesses, and the German Informatics Society (GI), which connects IT professionals from various disciplines.
What are the career prospects?
Overall, career prospects for IT consultants are very good, as the demand for experts in the IT and technology industry is rising sharply worldwide. Especially in Germany, the prospects are very good, as many large companies and consulting companies are located here.
What are the opportunities for foreigners for a job as IT consultant?
Overall, the chances for foreigners to work as IT consultants in Germany are good, as the demand for skilled workers in this area is high. However, it is important that you have a good knowledge of German and are familiar with common IT systems and processes. In addition, when looking for a job in Germany, you often have to overcome some bureaucratic hurdles, such as the recognition of degrees and qualifications.
Which jobs are similar to a job as IT consultant?
There are various professions that are similar in content to the profession of IT consultant. These include, for example, the IT consultant, the business analyst, the IT project manager, the IT system architect or the IT security consultant.