At least tongue-in-cheek, Philip Eppler is prepared to admit that the fact his employer is the main sponsor of his favourite club Borussia Dortmund was very much the icing on the cake when it came to his decision to join the company. "The main thing, however, is that Evonik is a company with operations all over the world. It can guarantee me good training in my chosen occupation in the chemical industry and also offer plenty of interesting opportunities for advancement and continuing education and training.
The work atmosphere is also great. The training allowance and other social benefits are good, and I can easily commute to Wesseling on my bike. Overall, it’s perfect. What more could I want?"
This is a young man who is obviously highly satisfied with his situation. Next year, Philip will complete his training in the occupation of chemical technician. He has also not yet regretted going straight into working life instead of entering higher education after obtaining the upper secondary school leaving certificate like most of his old school friends.
"When I finished school, I just wanted to do something practical, create a good basis for my career and, of course, earn good money. Fortunately, I didn't have to submit too many applications. Things worked out for me pretty quickly."
And Philip Eppler's prospects are indeed not bad. "If I make the right effort and continue to perform well, then there is a good chance of being offered permanent employment after training. With a bit of luck, I might even get an Evonik scholarship. This would, for example, mean that the company could offer me financial support to do a degree in chemical engineering."
Philip has, however, not yet reached this point. He recently joined forces with many other Evonik trainees from the Rhine region to help with the recruitment of up-and-coming talent as the company hosted a special information day at its education centre. The motto of the event was "Experience training live", and large numbers of mostly young visitors took the opportunity to experience a taste of the sort of training workshops and laboratories that an international specialist chemical group is able to offer.
Evonik employs a total of just under 2,000 staff at its locations in Wesseling and in Niederkassel-Lülsdorf on the other side of the River Rhine. Both are involved in the production of a multitude of intermediate chemical products. The materials the company manufactures are in demand all over the world for use in the production of items such as varnish, paint, car tyres, cosmetics, paper, fire extinguishers, animal foods and solar energy systems.
This is a sector in which the next generation of skilled workers is required on an ongoing basis. Leading companies within the region are embroiled in a fierce competition to secure the services of the best school leavers. Evonik has recently introduced incentives such as a guaranteed subsequent permanent job for all trainees who complete their qualification to the satisfaction of the company. Trainees can choose from around 30 different training occupations and dual programmes of higher education study.
For next year, the company is seeking to recruit for training occupations including chemical technician, chemical laboratory technician, industrial clerk, industrial mechanic, and electronics technician. "One new training occupation we are offering is freight forwarding and logistics services clerk," reports Yvonne Freund, a member of the recruitment management team at the Rhineland Training Centre which is responsible for the Wesseling and Lülsdorf locations. "We also have opportunities for applicants with lower secondary leaving certificates in training occupations such as warehouse operator."
Her colleague Denise Wichart is, however, quick to point out that it is still not easy to obtain a training place at a company like Evonik. "Although supply and demand varies from year to year, we still receive an average of about ten applications for each vacancy. Popular training courses may even sometimes attract more interest. Nevertheless, young people who are interested should still apply and at least take the opportunity to do our aptitude test."
Good job prospects in the chemical sector in Wesseling
Source: rundschau-online.de (news article in the German newspaper Kölnische Rundschau), revised by iMOVE, January 2018