In order to advance in the working world and climb the career ladder, further training is mandatory. It is possible to deepen one’s previous professional education, learn new skills or acquire new knowledge. But who pays the costs and how can time be found for further training when the average German works 34.8 hours a week?
First of all, a distinction must be made between continuing education and advanced training. Continuing education expands personal qualifications, but does not necessarily have anything to do with the previous profession. For this, you usually have to take the initiative and, in most cases, pay for it yourself. Examples of this would be distance learning or additional training. Further training, on the other hand, relates only to the current job. Skills are acquired that help the employee to a particular extent in his professional activity. These costs are usually borne by the employer.
Although there is no direct right to further education in Germany, the right to educational leave exists in every federal state except Bavaria and Saxony. The difference to normal leave is that educational leave is intended for further education without exception. In the employment contract, the duration of the educational leave and a possible assumption of costs is determined individually.
The employer’s assumption of the costs is voluntary. However, if he pays the costs and a termination of the training or a dismissal before completion of the same intervenes, the employer has some rights:
- The supervisor can bind the employee to the company for a longer period of time. The higher the financial resources, the longer the commitment period can be. This must be agreed before further training.
- To prevent the commitment period from being too long, a repayment of the amount or part of the amount can be agreed. In this case, too, the amount is usually fixed before the start of the further training.
- However, if the employee is terminated for operational reasons, repayment of the costs is voluntary.
If the employer decides not to bear the costs of further training for the employee and the employee decides to bear them himself, the supervisor has no right to prohibit the further training.