I recently relocated to Germany (I am already an EU citizen), and this is the first of the stronger job offers -

I did a technical task, did a Skype call, everything went ok, but the working hours are supposed to be 8 am till 7 pm, which honestly sounds a bit crazy. It feels unethical and even immoral, not to mention it sounds like shooting the company and the company culture in the foot. How the hell are developers productive after 3 pm?

I think I have a problem with fake EU startup culture. You get lower pay, you get no equity and there are no food benefits, like at least a lunch, and it's considered perfectly normal.

I will negotiate, but I already feel like a heretic. Any advice/thoughts other than run for the hills? Do it for the experience?


Asked about it in couple of emails to couple of persons at the company, got no answer other than a canceled meeting and this week a notice I didn't get the job. Probably for the best. Still not clear on that happened. Thank you all.

The firm in question https://stackoverflow.com/jobs/companies/payever. I considered a Junior Product Manager role.

  • 1
    Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – Neo
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 13:07
  • Did you ask them directly? "I'd like a clarification on what the working hours mean. Are you expecting me to work from 8am to 7pm for a 10 hour per day (assuming 1 hour for lunch) for a total of 50-55 hours per week?"
    – Dan
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 14:26
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    Can you clarify the phrasing in the offer letter/ad? Since this would be otherwise illegal I’m assuming that, instead, the phrasing implies that you’re expected to put your working time into the hours between 8am and 7pm (but not fill this period), but not outside of them. In other words: working hours are restricted to reasonable, “conventional” working hours and no out of hours work is expected. Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 18:16
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    ...but the working hours are supposed to be 8 am till 7 pm,... could it be that 8am to 7pm is actually meant to be office hours/when they expect employees to typically work from? Meaning, you work for 8 hours a day but they prefer those 8 hours to be anywhere between 8am and 7pm. Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 20:10
  • Do you know how long your breaks are? If they total more than 1.4 hours, it renders a lot of these answers incorrect
    – Mars
    Commented Nov 21, 2019 at 0:23

13 Answers 13


It feels unethical and even immoral

In Germany, it's illegal. As in against the law. The relevant sections are "Arbeitszeitgesetz (ArbZG)"

§3: Die werktägliche Arbeitszeit der Arbeitnehmer darf acht Stunden nicht überschreiten. Sie kann auf bis zu zehn Stunden nur verlängert werden, wenn innerhalb von sechs Kalendermonaten oder innerhalb von 24 Wochen im Durchschnitt acht Stunden werktäglich nicht überschritten werden.


The working hours on working days for employees must not be more than 8 hours. They can be extended to up to 10 hours a day, if the average over six months or 24 weeks stays inside 8 hours.

Please note that Saturday is considered a working day in Germany, so some employers try to sell it like 9.6 hours per day is perfectly okay (8 hours in 6 days, when only working 5 days and having one day off). Since the first sentence is pretty clear in what the intention of the law is, only really sleazy scumbags normally try. But beggars can't be choosers and many people are forced to take the job anyway. Being employed sometimes beats being right or even trying to be right in court.

But 11 hours? That's illegal plain and simple. The only way to legally work 11 hours a day is to be self-employed (or be one of the many exceptions listed in the law, but office worker is none of them). The owners of that company can work whatever hours they think are right. But for employees 11 hours is illegal.

Advice? Negotiate, get the contract in writing, then send it to a authority of your choice (Police might not know what to do with it, I think it's Zoll (customs) that check on working times and illegally employed workers) for the laughs.

While you do all that, get a real job. Not a startup, that's not a job, that's exploitation. There is no way you would not have a regular job in a month or two as a developer in Germany. We are so starved for devs, I haven't lead a single interview in German for half a year. We are happy if we can find someone from another continent to move over and start here in a few months. You should have no problem getting a job, not a shitty illegal "startup" offer.

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    You have to consider that Saturday is a workday as well, so you are allowed to work 9.6 hours per day from Monday - Friday.
    – Ben
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 14:26
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    -1 for implying that startups are "not real jobs" and inherently exploitative. Seems like a gross over-generalization.
    – Time4Tea
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 17:53
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    @nvoigt the startup = not real job equation is all but true. I work in Germany for a startup that has proper pays and working hours, like many others.
    – Czar
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 9:38
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    @ИвоНедев At least in Berlin you do not need German at all (though it's convenient for everyday life, bureaucracy etc. of course)
    – Czar
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 9:39
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    @Mars The lunch break does not count as working hours, because otherwise it would need to be paid. Breaks are unpaid. It certainly does count as break and the site you linked does not say otherwise.
    – nvoigt
    Commented Nov 20, 2019 at 10:57

It has already been pointed out twice in the comments, but not yet included in any answer:

German offices jobs typically have an amount of hours you are expected to work each day (typically somewhere between seven and eight hours per day, or 35 to 40 hours per week) and a time frame during which you are expected to spend these eight hours (6 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the company where I work). Outside of that time frame, the door will be locked, lights and heating may be switched off and security may think you are in intruder.

Since your post does not make clear the exact wording of your interaction with the company, my assumption would be that you are not expected to work for 11 hours/day, but are expected not to be at the office before 8 a.m. or after 7 p.m..

That said, there are companies that really do expect you to do unpaid overtime. Typically they have sentences in the work contract that are similar to "the salary already covers any extra work hours that may arise". Note that such clauses are not considered valid by German labour courts. You can sign the contract, work the extra hours, and sue the company after you get your next job (unless you are rather high up in management, as has been pointed out in another answer). (this last part is not correct, see comment below)

As for negotiating, make clear that you expect compensation for anything that goes beyond 40 hours per week. Make it obvious that you are tracking your time at work. Ask if maybe they do time-tracking themselves (i always ask this in interviews).

This has also already pointed out elsewhere: the job market for developers in Germany is quite good. It should not be too hard to find something different.

  • 8
    These regulations /are/ valid in Germany ("All-In Contract") under the conditions that the contract lists explicitly the tasks and duties expected from the employee (to allow for an estimate of what you actually sign up to), or for jobs exceeding the "higher-paid salary bracket" of currently 80k Euros. focus.de/finanzen/experten/…
    – WooShell
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 6:27

Working hours 8am to 7pm does not mean you work from 08:00 to 19:00. It means you are only allowed to work in this time frame.

See also:

  • Business hours "8-20" at a car dealer does not mean you have to buy cars for 12 hours, it means you can buy cars in this time frame.
  • 12
    [citation needed] Commented Nov 17, 2019 at 19:24
  • 4
    @Mars I am from a certain continent called Asia, and my current company's flextime description goes (roughly translated): "Flexible time start work 06:00-10:00, end work 16:00-22:00." If they didn't have a "core time", it's not implausible that they would have simply written "Flexible time 06:00-22:00".
    – muru
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 6:14
  • @muru I'm happy to hear that you have a flexible work environment and healthy work hours. In many places, the standard workday is still ~9:00-~22:00, no flex :p
    – Mars
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 6:17
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    @Mars that is a very questionable use of the word "standard". In any case, as it has been said on other answers, this question is for Germany. Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 9:22
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    It's hard to tell what OP means but I suspect it's either the "working hours" that the business is open OR it's a loophole to get people to work 40 hours in 3-4 workdays.
    – Dan
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 19:17

My recent employer gave us a course to clarify German laws "for a given reason" and I will try to pass them on, as I've seen in some comments the same things that came up there.

Let's begin with some kind of translation, which really isn't that easy. Werktag means a day that is usually worked on, seen for all the professions that exist. As Sunday is the only day where work is only permitted exceptionally, Monday to Saturday are Werktage, that means, 6 days a week. Arbeitstage instead are the days you are usually working in your company. This one has to be specified in your contract, e.g. Monday to Friday (5-day-week). Most contracts specify only something like 40 hours/week, so it's left to your employer how he splits that up (meaning: he can tell you to end at 12 pm on Friday and work on Saturday instead - unlikely, but possible).

The daily maximum is 10 hours of work. With 8-19 pm you are exactly in that limit, if you get one hour break, which is the norm, 45 minutes are minimum required, thanks to the commentators.

The average Werktag(!) shall not exceed 8 hours. People in some comments imply this to mean 40 hours/week. This is wrong. Werktag is Monday to Saturday, that means, 6 days a week, that means 48 hours per week. If you work a five-day-week, which is most common in German industries, this means 9.6 hours per Arbeitstag are completely unlikely - but absolutely legal.

This average is to be followed over half a year. But you also have holidays. By law these are 24 Werktage (notice: Werktage!). If you work 6 days per week these are four weeks. That means, if you work only 5 days per week, having only 20 Arbeitstage holiday is legally fine.

Let's get back to that half year. If you have 24 Werktage holiday per year, that's 12 days in half a year, that's 2 days per month, that you don't spend working. Therefore you can add another 16 hours (remember 8 days per average Arbeitstag) to your daily amount. Assuming 22 days of work in one month that's another 0.72 hours per day.

9.6 hours per day + 0.72 hours a day = 10.32 hours per Arbeitstag over half a year on average could be legally ok - were it not for the maximum of ten hours per day.

I didn't even consider official holidays like christmas here. As they're not Werktage they reduce the amount of hours legal in that half year. Thanks to @cbeleitessupportsMonica I know better now: a court ruled your holidays and official holidays may not be used to compensate for overtime hours. German article

In other words: calculating properly, most employers in Germany are really really generous. Much more working hours are lawful. 9.6 hours per day in a 5-day-week is absolutely fine (though horrible, of course). That means, if your usual break is 1.4 hours per day, 8-19 pm is legal.

Though such a contract would be perfectly legal, even in Germany, it is highly unusual. Because of Gewerkschaften (labour unions) 40 hours per week or even less are the common case. By the way: staying a single minute longer would be illegal. Also consider your travelling times, as you may not be away from home longer than 12 hours per Arbeitstag for work - that one hour break included. That means your commute may not take longer than half an hour one-way.

Note: I've only talked about industries so far, labour unions etc. For craftsmen these working hours are absolutely usual. They even break the law most of times (just consider what that means!). Working in industry is luxury. For sure, as a dev, you can have a better job, though...

Edit @nvoigt: You are right about the 12 hours travel time. I know that only by word of mouth, but could not find a law supporting this. So here's what I found:

  • if you are driving a car actively, travel time is counted as working hours - then 10 hours are maximum, travel time included (a court ruled)

  • if your workplace is a fix place, travel home - workplace is not working hours - though insurances have to pay like it was a working accident if something happens

  • IGM (IG Metall - labour union) rules say, Dienstreisen have to be paid up to 12 hours a day (which collides with 10 hours maximum working hours = ???)

So for my previous employer, IGM could have been the reason to tell us about 12 hours maximum, but that does not explain why my current employer (no IGM here) told me the very same. Both employers agreed that I should check into the next best hotel if I'm to exceed 12 hours including travel. To be honest, after looking that up, I don't understand why.

  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – Neo
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 12:09

The employer is also in breach of the European (EU) Working Time Directive, which limits you to 48hrs/week. Directives, unlike Regulations, must be signed into law by the member-state (Regulations are automatically binding).

  • Well, at first that's what I thought they meant, but no :).
    – oxioxi
    Commented Nov 17, 2019 at 18:56
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    11 hours - 1 hour lunch - 30 minute break somewhere = 9.5 hours. 9.5 x 5 = 47.5--not in breach of anything.
    – Mars
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 11:04
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    11 hours - 30 min - 15 min (mandatory breaks for > 6 h work) = 10:15 hrs = violation of ArbZG. The employer can one-sidedly mandate a whole lot about the breaks (e.g. that breaks need to be taken in turn so that someone is in the office all the time), but that needs to be equitable. Mandating that employees have to take additional 45 min unpaid breaks every day is not equitable. The legally possible exception would be to say that the employees are paid for these 45 min - but they'd still need to be breaks, i.e. the employees can leave and do their own stuff during that time.
    – cbeleites
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 19:38

is it normal to be asked to work 11 hours/ day?

No, not formally

Any advice/thoughts other than run for the hills?



HI :)I can give a little insight in comparison to US startup culture. I think you are getting a pretty bad deal here. It isn't unusual to work many hours in a startup, but the there are supposed to be more potential benefits in the long run.

LONGER DAYS: If you are a founder, or being paid a lot of equity, it is expected and necessary to work longer days. In reality, if you worked 11 hour days for 5 days a week, a 55 hour work week would be short for a founder of a startup. But you are not a founder. No one should expect regular employees to have as much incentive as the founders to work extra hours.

PAY It's: It's not unusual to take a lower salary in return to equity. Sometimes startups will attract a few key employees with way above market rates for their salary. Sadly, neither is the case for you :(

Equity: Here it is, the reason everyone wants to own a startup. Have a small company, develop a niche product, and hope that Google or Amazon buy you out for obscene amounts of money. Again, since you do not have an equity stake, your incentive to make the company valuable enough for a larger company to buy you out is not there.

Fringe benefits Small startups sometimes recruit and keep employees based on fringe benefits, lunches, recognition, a great work culture, etc, but it doesn't sound like you get any of that either.

Conclusion: Ask your employers to address these issues, they need to pay you above market rate or pay you in equity (This route locks you in for several years), and address the work culture. The work hours aren't fun, but everyone works 60-70 hours a week in a startup to make it successful. You have to ask if the potential future rewards are worth the trouble now.

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    70 hours a week? That translates to 14 hours a day (mon-fri) or 11,7 hours a day (mon-sat). Both illegal. 8 hours average, 10 hours a day maximum, is the law.
    – Gertsen
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 7:42
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    Startups like those succeed despite people working 70 hours a week, not because of it. Yes you can do it for a week, maybe even two, in an emergency situation, but it's not sustainable. Working those hours people's productivity flies off a cliff.The "80 hour work week" culture is cancerous. Studies have repeatedly shown that even 40 hours is already too much, and historically before the 19th century people have never worked more than 25-30 hours on average. The idea that medieval peasants worked from dawn to dusk in the fields is a modern invention used to justify these insane schedules.
    – Demonblack
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 13:12
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    @Demonblack If you have some actual data for that, I'd be interested
    – Mars
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 6:42
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    @Mars For the historical part groups.csail.mit.edu/mac/users/rauch/worktime/… All the sources are listed at the bottom. I don't have any articles on productivity on hand but it's such a widely studied/accepted subject that you'll find tons if you just google "productivity vs working hours" or something.
    – Demonblack
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 14:29
  • @Demonblack I read through the first bit and it's pretty interesting! I'll read through the rest later
    – Mars
    Commented Nov 19, 2019 at 15:04

First of all, you should confirm that you are actually supposed to work from 07:00 to 20:00. It is quite possible that these are merely business hours, but you are only expected to work 8-9 hours within these 11 hours.
It is quite possible that teams even have overlapping shifts to cover the whole range, or that you have a certain "liberty" of starting anywhere from 7 to 9, etc.

It is also possible that you are indeed expected to work 11 hours. There exist employers like that, especially those that dub themselves as "startup". Presumably, you are entitled to some super benefits in case the startup is successful. But be sure you have in writing what you get (if you opt to take it).

Does the law allow for that? No. But who cares. Ironically, in Germany, "Recht" (law) sounds much like "gerecht" (just), and it seems like "Gerechtigkeit" (justice) comes from "Recht" (law). That's not the case.

(Actually, there is a trick so the law will indeed allow for that, and which will get you cheated over the employer's half of social insurance pay. Be sure not to work as subcontractor.)

Politicians always like to point out how we're a democratic, constitutional state where people are equal and the law applies to everybody (blah blah), but that isn't the case. In reality, it is only true when it's opportune.

Law has it that you must not work longer than 8 hours per day (and your employer may not ask for that). Except... it can be 10 hours, exceptionally, if on the average over six months it's no more than 8 hours.
The law has it that you must have 45 minutes of break if you work 9 hours or longer (30 mins otherwise), breaks may not be split up to intervals shorter than 15 minutes, you may not have more than 6 hours of work in one block, and you must have 11 hours of rest before going to work again. The latter is just about the case if you go home at 20:00 and start again at 07:00.

Law also has it that you cannot and must not work during vacation, and you cannot and must not sell vacation (not just illegal for your employer, but also for you). You cannot, except in very drastic situations, e.g. when the company would otherwise go bankrupt, be told to go on holiday, or to cancel holiday.

Law has so many other silly things (genders are equal? are you kidding me?). Nobody cares.

Reality has it that not everybody is equal, and nobody cares. Nobody cares whether it's against the law, nobody cares if you feel unhappy about it. Reality has it that not only some companies, but entire professional branches violate the law systematically, on a daily base. Reality has it that some very high profile companies will try to buy off your holidays and will force you to take holidays when it's more profitable for them. And yeah, most people do comply with it because if you don't, you'll find yourself unemployed soon enough. Not for that reason of course, they'll find another reason. Most people cannot afford the luxury of being right.

After confirming that you are indeed expected to work for 11 hours per day, your only (realistic) options are to either take it, or find a different job. If you believe that you can just say "yeah no problem" and then not work as agreed, please note that within the first six months they can just cancel your contract any time they want, without reason.

The sad truth is that you aren't going to negotiate anything. Employers who do ask such working hours know darn well what it is that they're asking, and they know darn well that it's illegal. They also know darn well that they'll find someone else to work in these conditions.

It works until it doesn't work any more. If anyone wonders why there's such a problem with seeing a physician in Germany, that's exactly the reason. Long education, high qualification, high responsibility, 11 hour work days (assuming no stand-by, which despite its name really isn't stand-by but 30 hours of work with, if you're lucky, 3 hours of sleep from 2 to 5 AM). Getting cheated on rest periods every time, and getting paid 65k gross for that. Not happy? Go shit, there's plenty of others who will do it. Until there aren't. Which is where we are now.
Wow, that comes as a total surprise.

Eventually, the "startup" kind of employers may face similar problems finding people who are stupid enough to do it anyway, but so far that's not realistic. Realistically, you can take it or leave it.

  • Thanks Damon, I know what you mean.
    – oxioxi
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 13:00

It is illegal in both Germany and EU to work 11 hrs per day, and the company must know that already, I dont think they are dumb that much to tell you something like that because you can report the company.


the working hours are supposed to be 8 am till 7 pm

it means the working hours that you are allowed to work within, you can work your 8 hrs any time within those limits, because some developers like to start and finish their working hrs very late. You should contact the company and ask for a clear explanation for that point.


Forget food benefits, that's maybe around 10€ per day, so around 2000€ per year. I think startups do that mostly for their many interns because if they pay them more the interns will have to start paying taxes. Usually you get free coffee, I haven't seen a company without a decent coffee machine that can also do cappuccinos and stuff like that. Free soda is also often available if you prefer that, but all that is again just a few euros.

Whatever you get as free perks is already subtracted from your base salary, so you lose the opportunity to buy it yourself. For example if you don't like coffee and want to bring your own drinks, you still get the lower pay.

As many have stated already, the 11 hours are illegal. If you look into IGMetall rules, they even go to 35 hours/week and make exceptions that a certain percentage of workers can work 40 hours/week. But that's only in bigger companies that are part of the IGMetall. I have heard they start smaller companies where those rules do not apply and everyone works the 40 hours/week. Everywhere else in the industry it seems to be 40 hours/week as a norm or less if you prefer more free time.

Also I heard about people earning so much that the protection laws do not apply anymore, but there are strict rules too I think, you have to be a real manager responsible for hiring and firing your staff, etc.

I would recommend going to more interviews until you find a job that is both interesting and well payed. We have a nice office in Hamburg if you are bound there and we do fun stuff. :) Especially when the startup tanks you'll be happy to have avoided that place. But make sure they are really asking you to work 11 hours per day. If you copy the relevant passage we can help translate it.



I can't speak for German law, but in general a job offer is not the final step in the job-hunting process. What seems to be missing is active communication with the hiring manager or employer. If you have questions about the offer or the company culture, ask the employer rather than strangers on the Internet.


[W]orking hours are supposed to be 8 am till 7 pm...Any advice/thoughts other than run for the hills?

Job offers and work contracts are often an admixture of national labor laws, regional culture, and lawyerese. I don't live in Germany, so turn to other answers on that score. Instead, I'll address some framing you might want to explore as you clarify the terms of your offer with the employer.

Office Culture and Work-Week Definitions

From a work-culture standpoint, startups (especially tech startups) often have a culture of long work hours. That work should be incentivized in some way, but as a rule of thumb a contract can specify any agreement between two parties that isn't actually illegal. So, if the actual agreement is that you will work longer hours for X amount of pay, then as long as that isn't illegal where you are then it can be agreed to.

A different cultural viewpoint (one most often found in agile tech startups) is the idea of core hours. The notion here is that you define a set of overlapping hours that everyone should work (e.g. 10am-2pm). Employees can then build a flexible schedule around it, provided they're present during the defined "core" hours.

What you're describing sounds like the converse of that: a work-window into which you (possibly in collaboration with your manager) fit your agreed-upon work hours. For example, if you're expected to work 40 hours per week, and have a work-window of 8am-7pm, you could choose a shift from 8am-4pm or 11am-7pm daily. You might even be able to slide your schedule around within those windows (a.k.a. "flex-time"), so long as you average 40 hours per week over some defined period.

You'll need to clarify which of these things are true, or whether there's some other explanation or intent.


There's really no such thing as a "one size fits all" contract. In addition to differing goals and circumstances, the quality of a contract can vary depending on who writes it. Contracts are sometimes pasted together (sometimes quite badly) by non-lawyers, and a small startup without a lot of capital for lawyers' fees might do that. On the other hand, practicing attorneys make money by gussying up basic terms and conditions in ways that sound impressive, but that don't always make sense to non-attorneys.

Consider the possibility that the contract could simply be badly written, or that it's simply needlessly confusing. The only way to do that is to ask the employer for clarification.


Regardless of the reason behind the wording, the only way to know what the other party has in mind is to ask them. While it's possible that there's a personal or cultural barrier that makes asking a potential employer these sorts of questions, it's really the only way to know what they intend the wording to mean.

At least in the US, a request to clarify (as opposed to change) the terms of a standardized contract would rarely be seen as an unreasonable attempt to negotiate. This is especially true if you make it clear that you're new to the country or industry, and therefore need more information in order to evaluate the offer as presented.

You can't effectively accept or modify an agreement you don't understand. There's also no way (other than by making potentially-incorrect assumptions) to get that clarity other than to communicate with the other party. So, unless you're simply asking if that's a societal norm where you are, there's no substitute for a conversation with your potential employer.

Think of it as an opportunity to show the the value of your critical thinking and communication skills. If it turns out to be a matter of industry or cultural norms, opening a dialog will also help to show them you have some awareness of the potential differences, and sufficient soft skills to successfully navigate them before they become problems.

  • This is very helpful advice. As German let me add: in Germany it is also not considered unreasonable to ask clarifying question. I would also suggest that you ask not only about the legal requirements in the contract, but also if the team/group you'll join has any preferences. Like "yes, we have flex time, but we prefer having stand up at 10".
    – kap
    Commented Nov 18, 2019 at 13:08

I suggest to check how well the startup is holding its "startup promises". These generally are:

  • You are allowed to work, at least part time, on your dream tasks that would not be so easily accessible for you in a normal company. You can learn things you want to learn and gain lots of experience.
  • You are offered shares, but not some "options", "coupons" or other similar Katzengold.
  • You do not like to be constrained by various corporate rules and processes that are for making large groups of people to work together efficiently, and here you are not.
  • You sense a real respect from the company owners and the team in general and feel in the place you want to be.

If these claims are at least partially true, they may be viewed as a part of the real salary that is not always just money. I do not know how much it is exactly legal, but yes, there are reasons why people (I mean other than owners) do join startups and work there overtime, and for lower salary. I did.

If the owners truly believe from the depth of they heart they have done all they can to fulfill the things above for you, they may see your complains about money and working hours as not in place.

If the things above are more false than true, this is just pure job. Hence you should drift away on the free market waves towards another job with rewards matching your market value.


Since no other answer has put it simply...

11 physical hours is not the same as 11 work hours.

(According to this Law SE answer)

I imagine the company has something like 1 hour lunch and a 30 minute break (or two 15 minute breaks).
I've had this setup in two different countries in three different industries, so I don't think this assumption is unreasonable.

With that setup, you have a 9.5 hour workday. That is legal in Germany according to a few of the other answers. For perspective, according to the one, sourceless claim that I could find in 30s:

17 percent [of devs] work 50 hours or more a week. Also, software engineers may have to work evenings and weekends to meet deadlines and resolve problems.

9.5 hours is not an absurd amount of time and many people choose similar work hours if the compensation fits.

You ask:

Any advice/thoughts other than run for the hills? Do it for the experience?

Clearly you value highly short working hours. If that's the case, this place likely isn't for you. I personally haven't seen many developer positions that aren't advertised as at least 8 working hours (with the exception being mothers with children working 6), so I think you may find freelancing is the style that suits you best.

You do not need to do anything--you can leave this position for someone more suited for it! Best of luck in your job search.

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