BENTELER celebrates 15 years of the dual study program

Paderborn/Salzburg, 31.05.2017. BENTELER offers young recruits excellent prospects and good career opportunities. In particular in the form of a dual study program that the company has been running for 15 years now, in cooperation with the University of Paderborn. Open to students who have successfully completed a technical college education, this combined work-and-study program leads to a qualification in engineering, industrial engineering with business, electrical engineering, computer science, accounting & finance or international business. The dual study program is the perfect start to a career for young people – started in 2001, it combines periods of practical training in the company with university-based learning leading to a master´s degree. Also part of the program is a period of on-the-job training outside Germany in one of the BENTELER locations around the world. So far 150 candidates have successfully graduated in this program at BENTELER; after that they took up posts in the Steel/Tube, Automotive and Distribution Divisions.

Daniel Wienhusen and Christian Großeschallau are two former dual study program graduates, and both have since climbed up several steps on the career ladder. 31-year-old Daniel Wienhusen graduated in the BENTELER program in 2009 in International Business. His first position in the company was in strategic marketing in the BENTELER Automotive Division. Since 2016 he has been Director Industry 4.0/Digitalization at BENTELER Automotive, responsible worldwide for the key theme for the future – digitalization. He leads all global projects on this theme. Daniel Wienhusen explains: “The dual study program was for me the perfect mix of well founded theory and practice. Thanks to the experience I gained in a wide range of specialist departments during the practical phases, I was able to quickly build up a network that has stood me in good stead ever since.”

Christian Großeschallau is 36 years old and he was among the very first graduates from the BENTELER dual study program. In 2007 he graduated as a mechanical engineer. Today he is Team Leader and is in charge of a strategic project in the development area, focusing on the integration of a company into the BENTELER Group and setting up a new production technology. Christian Großeschallau says: “Because of the opportunity of taking part in the dual study program, it was then very easy for me to start on my career. During my  I gathered a great deal of valuable basic know-how about materials and products, and was therefore able to constantly expand my knowledge. From day one I felt very welcome at BENTELER; I immediately felt at home here – and I still do today.”

About a quarter of those who successfully complete the dual study program are women. This proportion is lower than that for the men, but it is above the proportion of women who take technical courses at university. In addition the number of women who then stay in the company is very high. Even after six years most female graduates are still with the company and as many as 90 percent are climbing the career ladder.

Thomas Koch, Head of Training at BENTELER, points to why the dual study program is such a success: “The broad-based education students receive gives them far-reaching insights into many areas of the company and it ensures that they have a good network of contacts within the company. What is also important is that the groups of students get along very well with each other and they develop a strong team spirit that leads to shared success."

For Ulrike Stühmeyer-Pulfrich, Vice President Human Resources, BENTELER International AG, the theme of personnel development within the company is also a factor in present and future success: “BENTELER is pursuing ambitious growth targets and it relies on the skills of a significant number of managers. For this reason we give our employees the opportunity of systematically developing themselves further and, over the course of their career, to take on more responsibility. The ongoing further development is supported by HR processes and tools.” The support from the HR departments also ensures that the skills of future managers are in line with the goals of the company.