Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Volkswagen Launches International Program for Young Employees

Text from Volkswagen AG.
“Journeyman’s travels” program encourages job experience and a cosmopolitan approach

WOLFSBURG, Germany - Volkswagen is encouraging international job experience and a cosmopolitan approach among its young employees with a new program.

From September 1, the company’s trained apprentices will have the opportunity to gain in-depth experience at the Group’s sites in other countries early on in their working life. The young people will work under the regular shift system at the respective plant and will also have the chance to participate in further training measures. The “journeyman’s travels” will cover an average of twelve months.

“In an age of global change, we need employees willing to broaden their horizon. They will become part of the top team which will lead the company to sustained economic success,” explained Dr. Horst Neumann, the Member of the Board of Management of Volkswagen AG responsible for Human Resources. “Both sides profit from this program: Volkswagen gains further motivated employees with experience of working abroad, and each young person taking part in the program improves his or her development opportunities.”

“An international company needs a workforce with a cosmopolitan approach. Such an attitude does not come from a fortnight’s holiday,” emphasized Bernd Wehlauer, Deputy Chairman of the Group Works Council of Volkswagen AG. “That is why, in my capacity as a member of the European and Global Group Works Council, I am particularly pleased that we are able to offer young people an extensive program which I hope will prove very popular.”

Based on the journeyman principle, the program is directed at young, mobile trained apprentices of above-average performance and development potential with a maximum of five year’s job experience. Support includes training tailored to working abroad and the program also features language courses and sessions on countries and customs.

Once they have returned home, the “travelers” bring with them a new personal work perspective, profiting from their international experience. According to Neumann: “The ‘journeyman’s travels’ program brings benefits for both sides: Volkswagen gains motivated employees with experience of working abroad and the young people can develop within the company from the very start of their employment, building themselves an international network.”

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