The decision-makers at the Federal Office are part of the general, non-technical administrative service.
Their task, namely to examine asylum applications, comprises both the important personal interview, as well as the subsequent decision on the asylum applications. The technical prerequisites for performing this task include both comprehensive knowledge of the law on asylum and on immigration, as well as detailed knowledge of the political situation in the applicants’ countries of origin. Furthermore, certain soft skills such as a mastery of customary interview techniques, culturally-sensitive empathy and intercultural skills, are included in the fundamental prerequisites for deployment as a decision-maker.
Qualifications and technical prerequisites
A contemporary basic and further training concept is deployed in the Federal Office’s Centre for Qualification. Staff are comprehensively trained by experienced teachers and prepared for the asylum procedure. Once the fundamentals of the law on asylum and interviewing and questioning techniques have been imparted, new decision-makers are trained in real-life situations. Because the asylum procedure in Germany is subject to constant change, including as a result of constant changes in policy, both the new colleagues and experienced staff members are obliged to attend regular training. This is also where the "specially-commissioned case-officers" are trained.
Specially-commissioned case-officers are specially-trained decision-makers for interview procedures among particularly vulnerable groups of individuals. These include unaccompanied minors, victims of torture, victims of trauma and persons persecuted because of their gender, as well as victims of trafficking in human beings. The specially-commissioned case-officers are at the disposal of their superiors and colleagues as contacts over and above their own tasks in processing applications.