For members


Everything you need to know about preparing your CV in Austria

When applying for a job in Austria, it makes sense to know what a hiring manager expects to see on a CV. Here's what you need to know.

Everything you need to know about preparing your CV in Austria
There are some big differences between Austrian CVs and those you might be used to. Photo by Lukas from Pexels

If you’re from an English-speaking country there are some notable differences to be aware of when it comes to drawing up your CV.

Making a few small changes can boost your chances of getting an interview significantly. 

After all, applying for a new job is already time-consuming – so make sure that hard work doesn’t go to waste.

How are Austrian CVs different?

The difference in CV style and format in Austria will depend on where you’re from in the first place.

For example, if you’re from the UK, USA, Australia or New Zealand, a big noticeable difference will be the use of a photograph on an Austrian CV.

Yes, hiring managers in Austria want to see what candidates actually look like – even at the initial stages of the application. 

READ MORE: Everything you need to know about finding a job in Austria

This can be an intimidating prospect. Especially if you come from a country like the UK where it’s frowned upon to include a photograph to avoid discrimination based on appearance.

But, as the saying goes, when in Rome do as the Romans do. 

Just be careful with the choice of photograph.

It’s best to go with a professional image that gives the impression you’re a reliable person. This means holiday snaps or pictures from a night out won’t send the right message.

Next, Austrian CVs don’t include a career objective. This is what the cover letter is for.

CVs should only contain facts and details of hard skills, plus a description of tasks completed at each role.

Save the sprinklings of personality for the cover letter and the interview (if you get one).

Most Austrian hiring managers also prefer CVs that are maximum two pages long.

So use those two pages wisely and let the facts tell the story.

What personal details should be included?

Like most countries, there are some key personal details that should be included on a CV in Austria.

The obvious details are name and contact details. But what about the date of birth?

In some places, asking for an applicant’s age is actually against the law, like in Ireland and the UK as a result of the Employment Equality Act. This means a date of birth should not be on a CV.

But in Austria, hiring managers will expect to see the date of birth, so it should be included.

Other details to include are nationality, place of birth and whether you have a valid work permit or visa for Austria.

For British people, it’s a good idea to include whether you have the Article 50 EUV card or even an EU passport (now that the UK has left the EU) to prove that you have the right to live and work in Austria post-Brexit.

Then you should include education and work history in a chronological order, followed by language and IT skills, any voluntary experience and a brief overview of hobbies.

Finally, if a job is not advertised in English or doesn’t state that the role is in English, it’s probably a German-language role.

In this case, a CV should be translated into German.

What about Europass?

Europass is a CV builder that is used throughout the EU with the aim to standardise the CV format.

It’s available in 29 languages and allows users to store a CV in the Europass library.

Austria is a European country so a Europass CV is accepted by Austrian employers. But many hiring managers don’t like it because of the generic format and lack of customisation.

If writing a CV in Austria for the first time, a good approach is to use Europass as a guide for the right information to include. And then add some individuality with the layout.

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Wild weather in Austria: How to protect yourself during summer storms

With violent storms becoming increasingly common in Austria, here’s how to protect yourself (and your home) this summer.

Wild weather in Austria: How to protect yourself during summer storms

Storms are a regular occurrence in Austria during the summer months, but the strength and frequency seems to be increasing.

Overnight on Tuesday, June 28th, both the Pöllinger and the Treffner rivers in Carinthia burst their banks causing widespread flooding, mudslides and damage across the region.

Reports on Wednesday morning said the villages of Treffen am Ossiacher See and Arriach (Villach-Land district) were still metres under water and several people had been rescued from the deluge.

READ ALSO: Who to call and what to say in an emergency in Austria

According to ORF, emergency services were still struggling to reach some areas and there were unconfirmed reports of missing people.

A Tweet from Unwetter-Freaks said: “Bad pictures from #Arriach in #Kärnten , which was hit by several storm cells last night. According to ORF, the place is currently cut off from the outside world and cannot be reached by the emergency services.”

Earlier this week, rural areas in Upper Austria were also hit by storms (overnight, June 27th) bringing torrential rain and hail the size of golf balls, which caused extensive damage to crops and grassland in the key agricultural state.

READ ALSO: 23 essential articles to help you navigate life in Austria

The Klaus reservoir had to be drained of 200 cubic metres of water to avoid flooding and trees were brought down across the province by wind gusts – some up to 91 km/h.

The Kronen Zeitung reports the storm caused damage to around 16,000 hectares of agriculture land, with insurers estimating the cost to be up to €6.5 million.

One Tweet showed the size of the hail on Monday night and read: “In the night we had ‘light’ hail.”

Storms then hit the region again on Tuesday night leading to a lightning strike on a hay barn in the Mühlviertel and the flooding of an underground car park in Linz.

With the summer season far from over and the possibility of more wild weather in the coming months, here’s how to stay safe during storms in Austria.

FOR MEMBERS: When and where to avoid driving in Austria this summer

Check the weather report

It might sound obvious, but checking the weather forecast should be at the top of the list of summer storm preparations.

Unlike in the past, weather reports are now typically reliable, and apps like Bergfex and Accuweather are well-known for providing detailed forecasts and weather warnings.

However, long-range forecasts can change quickly, so if you’re planning a camping or hiking trip, be sure to check the weather between 24 and 48 hours before to avoid being caught out.

Additionally, the Österreichischen Unwetterzentrale (Austrian Severe Weather Centre) has regular updates about storms and weather forecasts for Austria and users can sign up for email and SMS notifications.

Stay indoors

According to the organisation, Die Helfer Wiens (The Helpers of Vienna) one of the biggest risks during a storm is being hit by a fallen tree or flying debris.

For this reason, they advise people (and pets) to stay indoors during a storm and close all windows and doors. 

If staying in a tent or campervan, it’s also a good idea to seek shelter in a building (if possible) until the storm has passed.

However, if you are outside during lightning, the Austrian Red Cross says the best approach is to crouch down into a ball to reduce the amount of contact you have with the floor.

READ MORE: How to keep your apartment cool in Austria this summer amid rising energy prices

Stay away from the cellar

Cellars and underground car parks can quickly become flooded during heavy rain – as seen in recent storms in Upper Austria and Carinthia, and last year during violent storms across Austria.

Flash flooding can happen quickly (the clue is in the name), so stay away from cellars and underground spaces during a storm and call the emergency services if you suspect a flood in your home.

Remove plants and furniture from balconies

Having plants and flowers on a balcony is a lovely way to brighten up an outside space, but they risk being damaged during a storm.

To safeguard your pots and lovingly-planted flora, move them inside – especially during a thunderstorm with strong wind gusts and lightning.

The same applies to any outdoor furniture that could be damaged by wind or hail, like cushions, decorative objects and sun umbrellas.

Park cars under shelter

Hail is one of the leading causes of dents to bodywork on cars and damage to windscreens, both of which can be costly to repair.

If hail is forecast during a storm, park a car in a garage or under shelter, if possible. 

If strong wind is expected, then avoid parking a car under trees as debris, or even the tree itself, could end up landing on the vehicle.

FOR MEMBERS: EXPLAINED: How Austria banned everyone from the forest for 123 years

Don’t go into the forest

Whether walking or driving, the best advice is to stay from the forest or areas with lots of trees during a storm.

While sheltering under a tree can protect from rain or hail, lightning or strong wind can bring down trees. This makes the forest a dangerous place to be in a storm.

But if you do find yourself in the unfortunate position of being in a forest when a thunderstorm hits, stay away from low branches and tree trunks and crouch down low. Place any walking sticks or metal poles away from you and stay away from metal fences.

Avoid risky activities

Certain outdoor activities are especially hazardous if there’s a lightning storm. 

Any activity in an open area or that puts you into contact with water or metal is strongly advised against. So that means fishing, swimming, boating, cycling and golfing are out until the storm is over. 

Keep torches and candles ready

Power cuts are common during storms, so keep a stock of candles and torches ready in case you end up without electricity for several hours.

It’s also a good idea to have a portable USB charger to make sure your phone doesn’t run out of battery during an emergency.

Who to call in an emergency

These are the numbers to call if you need help from the Austrian emergency services during a storm.

122 – fire service (Feuerwehr).

133 – police (Polizei).

144 – ambulance (Krankenwagen or Rettungswagen).

120 – ÖAMTC emergency breakdown service.

123 – ARBÖ emergency breakdown service.

140 – mountain rescue.

Finally, 112 is the single European emergency number, whose operators will direct you to the relevant services. This number can even be called on a locked mobile phone without needing the pin.

Find out more with The Local’s guide on who to call and what to say in an emergency.