Note: I have done the research on this site and elsewhere, but this question regards German-specific details and conventions which are not part of other questions which are by and large US-centric. Keep that in mind before down-voting or answering.

Update: I did not nothing and about 48h after sending the application I got an email from the company asking for reference letters.

I am currently employed (fixed-term contract for another year, 3 months notice) and even though I am not actively looking for a job, I saw an open position in a location that I am keen to move to, so I have applied for it. My profile matches about 80% of the job requirements which means I have a very good chance of getting at least to the phone interview stage. The position is at reasonably small company (Healthcare, R&D) and my skills are somewhat niche so I don't expect they will have more than a dozen (or two) serious applicants and even fewer with a better skill set than mine.

However, a day after sending the application via email (with CV and cover letter), I realized that I forgot two things:

  1. a list of references;
  2. a request not to contact my current boss, which does not know about my plans, but would otherwise give me a very positive appraisal.

Regarding 1, it was not listed as required for the application, in fact nothing was listed, however I believe this is common in Germany (the company works in a international semi-academic environment). Another detail is the the application contact is the head of department and not HR. Names and places of previous employment are spelled out in the cover letter.

My main question is: what to do next?

I see three courses of action:

  1. do nothing. Wait for them to request for the references and assume that contacting the references will be one of the last things the company will do before hiring me.
  2. Send a short follow-up email asap with the missing information. Not faffing about, just "sorry here is what is missing from my earlier email".
  3. Wait for a week before sending the follow-up email, asking about the application status and filling in the missing information.

I am leaning towards 1 or 2. The first option gambles a little on the hiring company not contacting anyone at an early stage of the application.

The second option has a single marginal advantage of guaranteeing that there will be no awkward moments with my current boss until it is absolutely required. It highlight my mistake but also that I am professional enough to correct it asap. Option three I am not even sure why I listed because it looks bad anyway I look at it.

Bonus question: how seriously will this damage my application?

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put on hold as off-topic by Twyxz, IDrinkandIKnowThings, Jim G., gnat, gazzz0x2z Oct 12 at 9:15

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

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  • 3
    Are you sure that including a list of references directly in your application is common in Germany? The general advice is to not include it - Should references in a resume be upfront, or upon request? – Dukeling Oct 11 at 7:50
  • 6
    You should not be including a request not to contact your current boss - any reasonable person would assume you don't want that. – Dukeling Oct 11 at 7:53
  • It is usually assumed that you would have references; they will usually only ask you if you are reasonable close to getting the job. – gnasher729 Oct 11 at 8:16
  • @Dukeling the few applications I saw have it. It is also common to ask a written appraisal after leaving a job (or even during, I am not sure) that stays with you and gets sent when applying - see Arbeitszeugnis - which I don't have anyway, so contacts is the best I can offer. Because this is so specifically German I added the tag. I am assuming people down-voting missed it. – InCognito Oct 11 at 8:38
  • 1
    @InCognito I'm not sure unwilling to accept is the right phrase to use. Doubtful is perhaps better. If you were sure that references were expected, this entire wall of text could have been replaced with "I forgot to add references, should I send them in a follow-up mail?", though we already have similar questions to that effect I believe. As for point 2 I find it simply incredulous that a country that's so controlling over what employers can and can't say would not have an automatic taboo on contacting the current employer of a candidate. – Lilienthal Oct 12 at 10:41

IMHO, for the issue at hand as it is a bit problematic, i would suggest combination of 2 and 3, following up on your application status in 3 days and adding "in case you need it in this stage of my candidacy" clause with aforementioned data

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