From cybersecurity to affordable internet: Germany's remote work advantage

With a solid 3rd position in the GRWI, Germany commands attention in the remote work realm. Unravel the narrative of Germany's prowess in cyber safety, economic resilience, and top-notch affordability in internet services.

Germany in GRWI map


Key takeaways

  • Germany ranks 3rd overall in the Global Remote Work Index (GRWI).
  • It is particularly strong in cyber safety, ranking 4th globally and 1st for legal measures.
  • The country performs well in economic safety, securing the 6th position globally and 7th in healthcare.
  • In terms of social safety, Germany ranks 13th globally, with a lower general safety ranking at 33rd.
  • For digital and physical infrastructure, Germany stands at 22nd globally.
  • However, it offers the most affordable internet service worldwide, ranking 1st in this category.
Overview of countries GRWI measurement scores

Cyber safety

Cyber safety-wise, Germany does well. Its high overall ranking in this area (4th) is predominantly determined by its world-leading legislation (1st) and response capacity (3rd). The legislation (German IT Security Act 2.0) passed in 2021, provided the Federal Office of Information Security with greater capacities in many areas of cybersecurity. These areas included detection and defense, security for business, and cybersecurity in mobile networks.This gave way for a safer and more efficiently policed German cyberspace. Meanwhile, the cyber safety infrastructure is not far behind, ranking 8th globally.

Comparison with neighboring countries

When compared with the two other neighboring European giants, France (15th) and Poland (18th), Germany outperforms them in all areas except digital and physical infrastructure. France (14th) leads in the dimension, followed by Germany (22nd globally) and Poland (36th).

When it comes to cyber safety, Germany (4th) dominates the overall ranking, surpassing France (12th) and Poland (8th). Yet, its neighbors give it a race for the money in separate areas: France (6th) overtakes Germany (8th) in infrastructure, while Poland (1st) leads globally in response capacity, leaving Germany (3rd) slightly behind. Economic safety is another area where Germany shines in tourist attractiveness (2nd), English language proficiency (11th) and healthcare (7th). However, the cost of living in Germany is higher than in Poland (41st), which significantly outstrips Germany (79th) in this aspect. Finally, Germany is a clear leader among the three when it comes to social safety, with the only exception of Poland (22nd), ranking higher in general safety than Germany (33rd).

The real competition arises in the area of digital and physical infrastructure. While Germany can indeed take pride in offering the most affordable internet services in the world, France outstrips it in the quality of these services (10th vs 30th) and e-government (11th vs 22nd). Poland lags behind its Western peers in this dimension.

Comparison map with neighbouring countries

Finding a non-neighboring country with similar index results

Traversing the European map from North to South, you can find unexpected similarities between Germany and Malta. Both countries rank very closely in digital and physical infrastructure (22nd and 21st, respectively), economic safety (6th and 10th), and even social safety (13th and 20th). Cyber safety, on the other hand, is one place where they differ starkly, with Germany being one of the global leaders (4th), and Malta staying far behind (42nd).

Malta slightly outperforms Germany in digital and physical infrastructure. It holds a small advantage in internet quality (26th vs 30th), physical (8th vs 17th), and e-infrastructure (26th vs 28th) rankings. When it comes to economic safety, the closest two countries rank is the cost of living, with Malta narrowly surpassing Germany (77th vs 79th). Despite Germany's dominance in the areas of tourism attractiveness (2nd vs 10th) and especially—healthcare (7th vs 27th), Malta can brag about its superior English proficiency (1st vs 11th). Regarding social safety, the two countries are also relatively close, especially when it comes to inclusiveness, with Germany ranking 10th and Malta 9th.

Cyber safety poses the most significant divergence, particularly regarding infrastructure, where Malta (51st) falls far behind Germany (8th) and response capacity (20th and 3rd, respectively). However, the gap is less significant in legislation, which benefits Malta (10th), compared to the world's top cyber legislator—Germany (1st).

 Illustration of neighbouring countries GRWI

Top remote destinations for German workers

Germany offers a decent balance between the cost and the quality of living, and it boasts of an excellent cyber safety environment. However, if the German order all of a sudden feels a little too much, you simply want someplace more English-speaking, or you do have a need for top-quality internet services and e-infrastructure, you might look elsewhere for alternatives.

Considering personal rights & safety

It is difficult to seriously call Germany a restrictive or unsafe country. Yet, the cultural attitude towards rules and regulations or the bubbling, dynamic life of an economic mega-hive with all its edges and challenges, might feel overwhelming for some. The paradox here is that usually, countries that enforce stricter security measures can lean towards the lower end of the personal freedom spectrum, but there are some exceptions. Namely, if you would like to go and work in a more relaxed yet safe place at the same time, you could go to Switzerland, Denmark, Finland , or even Iceland. However, if you would like a real change of scenery, you could try South Korea. All of these countries offer a safer environment, generally speaking, while also highly respecting your personal rights.

Prioritizing internet quality and e-infrastructure

Although Germany offers the most affordable internet services globally, countries like Norway, the United Arab Emirates, South Korea, and Singapore are top contenders when seeking high-quality internet and e-infrastructure. They rank the highest in both of these two areas.

Working remote employees illustration

In terms of English proficiency

Germans are fairly fluent in English, but not knowing the local language might raise barriers, especially in legal and employment matters. If that is the case, there are many excellent English-speaking destinations, many of which also rank reasonably high on the general GRWI scale. You would get the best English proficiency to general GRWI ratio in the Netherlands and Ireland , both within an easy reach from Germany, are good choices.

Or is it better to stay at home?

With excellent rankings in cyber safety, tourism attractiveness, internet affordability, and healthcare rating, Germany remains a well-balanced option. Furthermore, German society is fairly inclusive, the country is tourist attractive, and people are reasonably fluent in English. All of which makes the country a solid option to consider staying in.


Explore more countries

Man explores Global remote work index details of 2023

Explore the full details of the GRWI 2023