“Brose is a truly a gem among Würzburg’s industrial firms, and we don’t have many here,” said Prof. Ralf Jahn, head of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, at the official dedication of Brose’s new apprentice workshop. The ceremony took place on the company’s family day last Sunday to mark its 100th anniversary. “We are very thankful, after experiencing so many ups and downs, to have a family-run business in Würzburg that we can trust and rely on,” he added. “I hope,” he continued, “that Brose will be with us for many more years. Maybe we’ll be able to celebrate your 125th anniversary in Würzburg as well, and we'd be happy if you strengthened your commitment to the location. We’ll do everything we can to make you feel at home here.”
Addressing himself to the approximately 100 Brose apprentices, he added: “You are having a one-of-a-kind experience. I congratulate you. Not only will you get your training here, you’ll have a unique opportunity to explore the world beyond Germany’s borders.
Brose shareholder Maximilian Stoschek and Brose CEO Jürgen Otto dedicated the new apprentice training facilities in the presence of
Würzburg’s mayor Georg Rosenthal and numerous business leaders, policymakers and trade association representatives.
Barbara Stamm, first vice-president of the Bavarian parliament, said the following: “My heartfelt thanks to Brose for coming to Würzburg. It’s especially gratifying to have a family-run business with such a tradition.”
The company is investing some 350,000 euros in refurbishment and modernization. Up to now, its apprentice training facilities
were spread among several buildings. Now the workshops and classrooms for in-house training are concentrated in an area of about 900 square meters and can be used efficiently; the new structure provides greater transparency and improves communication.
Some 100 young people being trained for future careers
Currently some 100 young men and women are receiving training in Würzburg. Sixty-nine are learning commercial or manual-technical occupations and two are studying at a university of cooperative education. In addition, Brose is continuing to train 20 young people from Würzburg and vicinity who began their training in the former Siemens plant before it was taken over by Brose. Five instructors are responsible for training the future mechatronics engineers, electronics engineers for automation technology and industrial business management assistants.
Innovative training concept leads to top-level performance
Training director Michael Stammberger reports that Brose’s new recruits have shown highly encouraging levels of performance for decades. “Their above-average examination results give further proof of their high motivation to contribute to the success of our family-owned company.” In 2006, for example, Germany’s best electronics engineer came from Brose’s apprentice training program, and in 2007 Germany’s best mechatronics engineer was trained by Brose.
Training concept with international orientation
The Brose Group’s international outlook requires that its apprentice training have an international outlook as well. In 2008 alone, the company invested some 12 million euros in personal advancement, qualification and training of its employees worldwide.
And the days are over where one could train apprentices only in their special areas. “A modern and successful apprentice training concept must emphasize technical competence and social competence to an equal degree,” stresses training director Stammberger. For this reason Brose’s training concept includes deploying apprentices to its plants in Europe, North America and Asia for periods of several weeks. In this way young people are prepared for later assignments at Brose’s locations around the world. They gain impressions and experience that contribute to their professional and personal growth, at the same time improving their language proficiency.
Twenty apprenticeship openings in Würzburg in 2009
Stammberger also reports that Brose’s Würzburg plant will have 20 openings for apprentice training in the coming year. Young people who are motivated and flexible can submit applications immediately.
More and more women in technical vocations
“We put special emphasis on training young women in technical vocations. If they have completed their schooling with good results, their opportunities in these fields are excellent,” explains Stammberger. Of the some 200 apprentices currently being trained for a technical vocation by the company, almost one fifth are women. “Women graduates are showing increasing interest in demanding areas of work like mechatronics, technical product design, electronics and toolmaking,” he adds.
In the Brose Group some 240 apprentices and students at universities of cooperative education are currently receiving vocational training. Seventy-one are in Würzburg, 49 in Hallstadt, 98 in Coburg, 14 in Wuppertal and six in Berlin. In addition, eight students from
the vocational training school in Koprivnice are receiving practical training lasting several weeks at Brose’s plant in Ostrava, Czech Republic. Four production employees at the plant in London, Ontario, are being trained on the job as electronics or mechatronics engineers.