Trainee payment


I´m writing my bachelor thesis at a company in germany right now and I maybe have the chance to work for another 6 month here with my own project as a trainee.
I would have my own project in that period and besides that I would do some preliminary work for my colleagues.
I would really like to gain some more experience here because the work and the atmosphere is just great. Also I dont want to get damn rich right now, just want a fair payment for my work.

What do you think can I expect?
What is to low and what is way to high?

thanks in advance!

Well compensation really depends on a lot of factors.

For starters, are you a trainee on a Visa in Germany? In that case, is the company already paying for your Visa fees?
Also how high are the living costs? Being in Berlin or Munich is already a huge difference in terms of rent and other costs. So that might also influence the level of compensation.
Size of the company, another factor. If it is a small boutique studio or a large corporation with an in-house design team will already make a big difference in what you will be able to offer you.

It seems like you get a lot out of the arrangement other than financial compensation. However, you state that you will be assisting in projects not related to your project. So I would look at how much time you will effectively spend working for the company and what your living costs require for you to do this.

I am german… So I dont have visa fees :slight_smile:

Unfortunately the company is based in munich so the rent and livingcosts are very very hig!
Here in munich we have around 30-40 people I guess.
So definitely not a small company…

Seems like you could propose a “living stipend” or something, figure out how much you need for food, rent etc. Don’t’ be too conservative, you can always go down if they think it is too much…

To be to conservative is, I guess, the most common “mistake” when it comes to payment …

My fix costs including rent, eat, and sports are around 750€. The biggest part is of course the rent.

Okay I found out that the (minimum) starting salery for industrial designers in germany is around 2100€ (pre-tax).

You guys think that is acceptable?

Thats pretty high for a trainee, since thats the rate for a junior position.
If they pay it, good for you, but i would say it is probobly more around 1200€-1500€ for trainees at the most. I know some who work as trainees, also in munich for about 800-1200€

Of course always depending on the company most of all.

how is one supposed to live if the rent is 450€, train ticket 70€ and eat / month 200€ round about, if you have 800€ pre - tax pay :open_mouth:

i know interns who earn more money then 800€ … :confused:

This project that you are working on from your thesis, I assume you do not own the rights to it and are developing it for the company?

I’d look into the value of that. As it is your thesis, it was originally yours, I assume. Did you sell it to the company?
So now, I guess, the company has decided to proceed and to give you the rains while at the same time also asking you to help out here and there on other projects.
Is this correct? Or will the “helping out” be your main occupation?

I have just accepted a “trainee” position as well which I will start in the fall.
As it is in the US and I am European, the term “trainee” or “intern” is much more for the visa application than an indication of responsibilities and compensation. So I am being paid a full wage.

Point being, don’t get hung up on the term “trainee” as it really is much more of a legal wording to classify your status within the company, since you are not being hired as a fulltime Junior Designer and the commitment is only 6 months.

Without knowing you, the company and the projects it really is impossible to say how much you should ask for and what you will be offered. So take what is written here with a grain of salt.
As stated earlier, it seems like you are getting a lot out of the arrangement other than financial compensation and it is for you to figure out where your bottom line is.
All this being said, getting a job offer straight out of school is a success in itself and just getting that first step onto your resume is quite valuable.