Eric Reuting: “Electromobility and digitalisation are changing the automotive industry sustainably”
At the edubiz 2016 conference, Eric Reuting, Chief Human Resources Officer of Volkswagen Slovakia, gave insights into the personnel strategies of the automotive group, for which dual training plays a central role.
How do you see the employment situation of the automotive industry in Slovakia and in Europe in general?
The automotive industry is growing very fast. In the coming years, there will be headcount growth at both OEMs and suppliers.
Finding specialists for the automotive industry is a challenge. The Dual Academy helps to attract talent.
Finding new skilled professionals for the automotive industry is a challenge. For this reason, we have opened the Dual Academy in Slovakia. This enables us to attract young talents for us and train them to meet our needs for the future.
What must a company do to be attractive to professionals?
It is the mix of the social, financial benefits, image and tradition of the brand. At Volkswagen Slovakia our specialists work in the most modern environment and are constantly being qualified. Good career opportunities and competence development motivate especially the young talents to come to us. Employer branding plays a big role; In 2015, Volkswagen Slovakia became the most attractive employer in Slovakia.
What role does “lifelong learning” play in the company?
There are many employees here who work for Volkswagen Slovakia for over 20 years. Much has changed over time. There were completely different technologies used and without a good permanent qualification process we would not be competitive in the allocation of new vehicles from the group. Our employees on the line have to be able to represent themselves and assemble all the vehicles of a segment. At the same time, the complexity of our line, which results from working for 6 brands, is reflected in our qualification process.
In the development of vocational training projects, which substantive accents do you set?
We got the Duale Akademie running in September 2016. It is a cooperation of 3 industrial companies (Siemens, Matador Group and Volkswagen Slovakia) and the Bratislava district. It is basically the privatization of a public school into a private school; For Slovakia, a so far unique project with approx. 420 students in the industry. We started with 4 jobs in September 2016; Electronic technician for automation technology, industrial mechanic, tool mechanic and mechatronics engineer. After 4 years the graduates receive a Slovak Abitur, the degree after the Slovak Chamber of Commerce and the German diploma of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
What role do digitization and the transformation to electromobility play in this?
Electromobility and digitization will change the automotive industry on a sustainable basis. At Volkswagen Slovakia, production will change massively. Robotization will move forward and focus primarily on ergonomically heavy workplaces.