Leaving one’s home country is rarely an easy undertaking. If you want to move to another country in the process, the whole thing becomes a little more difficult. Not only the bureaucratic jungle you have to fight through, but also the uncertainties about your new home can be very challenging and exciting.
Even in her childhood, our colleague Imen Attatra was fascinated by Germany. After her successful studies in computer science and first experiences as a software developer, she became a part of our team.
In an interview, she tells us about the challenges she had to overcome during the relocation process and how metr supported her.
Why did you choose metr and how did you find this position?
Imen: I was looking for developer positions mostly in Germany and in France. metr caught my attention because of the complexity of their solutions. In Algeria we don’t even think about Smart Buildings and I find this field very interesting. It was and is a great opportunity to on something I care about.
m.: Why Germany?
I.: When I was little my mother read the stories of the Grimm brothers to me, so I was fascinated about this country with all the castles and fortresses as a child. As a grown-up and a developer I’m fascinated about the software solutions which are developed here in Germany. For example the metr Smart Submetering solution or the monitoring solutions, they simply don’t exist in Algeria. During my work with metr, I can see the impact my work has. This motivates me a lot.
m.: How did metr help you with the relocation process?
I.: A lot! metr, and mostly Michaela, did all the paperwork and helped me to find a way through the thicket of red tape. Without speaking German fluently it’s very tough to get all the documents and steps right. Michaela took care of all the communication with the Bundesagentur für Arbeit, the Bürgeramt, the embassy and the landlord of my temporary apartment. The support metr gave me was really a huge help and I got the visa within two weeks.
The team also helped me in finding a temporary apartment in Berlin in which I’ll stay for the first two months. Thankfully, Thiago picked me up from the airport in the late evening so I haven’t had to find my way through the new city alone at night. In the apartment there was even a metr welcome package for my first days in Germany.
m.: What were or are the biggest challenges for you in the process?
I.: As the support of the team is so great, my biggest challenge is not to disappoint them now. I want to do a good job for metr and especially the team. I’m very grateful for all they’ve done for me and that I got accepted in such an experienced team and now I want to pay them back.
m.: What was the easiest part of the process?
I.: Probably taking the flight. Finding one wasn’t so easy because of the global pandemic and the travel restrictions. But also, getting into my role at metr is made very easy for me by the team. Even with the remote situation we currently have, they welcomed me as one of them very fast and easily.
m.: What were the items you definitely had to take with you and what did you leave behind easily?
I.: I brought mainly my winter clothes and I bought a new smart phone to stay in touch with my family. For the whole relocation process and a safe travel over the border, I brought my passport of course and all the documents with me, for example my working contract and original certificates of my degrees. As I came from a Corona high risk area I also had to bring a negative test result with me.
I easily left behind the circumstances of being a woman in Algeria. The commuting time to the university and the jobs I had were quite long so I came back home quite late at night. That wasn’t always very pleasant.
m.: What are the next steps and would you do it again?
I.: For the beginning, I have to stay in quarantine and then I can start to explore the city. metr will also help me to apply for the Blue Card so I can obtain the right of permanent residence more quickly. Then, I want to get my mother to Germany, too.
And yes, I definitely would do it again. The living quality and working as a woman isn’t that easy back there. I’m thankful to metr because they gave me the opportunity to work on such great solutions and to start a new life.
metr works with a relocation agency from Berlin, which advises us on all questions concerning the immigration of our team colleagues.