I wanted to say that I have already talked with the recruiter, but I have no idea which word is correct. I would like to know what the difference between these two words is.

Ich habe schon mit dem Personalvermittler gesprochen.

Ich habe schon mit dem Anwerber gesprochen.

  • 2
    Imho this needs more context. Do you mean a person who establishes contact between employer and employee? Or is it a person from the company hiring? Nov 25, 2022 at 9:23
  • 2
    What did the recruiter call themselves?
    – Bergi
    Nov 25, 2022 at 11:30

3 Answers 3


While in practice both terms will work out to basically the same, a

"Personalvermittler" is the "man in the middle" - an agent that might work both on behalf of employers looking for potential future employees and employees looking for jobs. "Personalvermittler" will never be used for recruiting in the military.

An "Anwerber" would be the literal translation of recruiter - he works exclusively for the employer looking for potential employees. "Anwerber" originates (just like recruiter) from a military term where the recruiter exclusively recruits (enlists), well recruits.

My guess is that "Personalvermittler" would be seen as the favourite job designation by recruiters, as "Anwerber" has a slightly negative undertone of forcible enlistment from history. In addition, "Anwerber" might also be used in entirely different context for press-ganging people into criminal organisations, recruiting people into drug trafficking, or "soliciting a john".

  • Also in my eyes "Anwerber" has a slightly negative touch. But actually it seems to be quite common that companies use it. See resources.workable.com/de/anwerber-stellenbeschreibung
    – Paul Frost
    Nov 29, 2022 at 13:18
  • @PaulFrost I'm not sure I'd accept a clumsily translated (obviously from English) web page of a US corp as a reference to "quite common". (Or, I'm rather sure I won't)
    – tofro
    Nov 29, 2022 at 15:06
  • A Google search gives quite a number of results. But I agree that "Anwerber" is the literal translation of "recruiter" and I would regard it as a sort of anglicism. The use of "Anwerber" may be limited to British or US companies operating in Germany.
    – Paul Frost
    Nov 29, 2022 at 18:31

Additionally, the word Recruiter is used in German as well.

Ich habe bereits mit dem Recruiter gesprochen.

  • 3
    Von meinem Sprachgefühl her sollte man genau dies verwenden. Oder mit xxx von der Personalabteilung Nov 25, 2022 at 9:20
  • @planetmaker Wobei statt Personalabteilung häufig schon das schöne "HR" (Human Ressources) verwendet wird.
    – Paul Frost
    Nov 29, 2022 at 13:11
  • @PaulFrost "Human Resources" ist schon wieder aus der Mode. Das heißt jetzt in den meisten Unternehmen "People" oder ähnlich. Viele Unternehmen haben inzwischen verstanden, dass Angestellte kein "Rohmaterial" sind.
    – tofro
    Nov 29, 2022 at 15:08

An Anwerber is someone who press-gangs people into military service. Don't use that term.


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