Vocational training at Volkswagen

Training within the vocational groups

Training at Volkswagen is organized very systematically on the basis of vocational groups. A vocational group includes all employees whose work activities are based on similar technical skills and who need related expertise in order to perform their job. The skills profiles lay down the functional and interdisciplinary skills for each job.

A broad range of qualification opportunities is available to employees. This enables them to continue to develop throughout their working lives and continuously deepen their knowledge. In this process, they also learn from more experienced colleagues, who act as experts in the vocational group academies – the learning centers of the vocational groups – and pass on their knowledge to others.

In the reporting period, the Governance Academy was established and the foundation of the Academy of Technical Development anchored in the pact for the future. Staff from the new model line organization will be supported by the existing Product Academy. From 2017 onward, skills development and training for all vocational groups at Volkswagen will be supported by an academy.

Dual vocational training

Dual vocational training, where theory and practice are closely interwoven and which meets the Group’s high standards of expertise and quality, creates the basis for first-class performance. As with staff training, here, too, the content is developed based on the expertise required within each vocational group. The “Volkswagen Group Charter on Vocational Education and Training” adopted in June 2015 shows the high value Volkswagen places on education and training. In addition to high-quality education and training, good training conditions will be created and/or developed further at the relevant Group locations.

Volkswagen has introduced dual vocational training at many of the Group’s international locations in the past few years and is continuously working on improvements. Over three-quarters of all the Group’s vocational trainees now learn their trade through dual vocational training. As of the end of 2016, the Volkswagen Group had trained 19,490 young people in approximately 60 trades and 50 dual study programs.

After completing their vocational training, young people at the start of their career have the opportunity to take part in the “Wanderjahre” (Years Abroad) program, spending twelve months at one of the Group’s international locations. In the reporting period, 42 trainees at 15 Volkswagen Group locations around the world took part in this development program, including employees from Volkswagen Truck & Bus and MAN Truck & Bus in Germany for the first time.

Once a year, Volkswagen honors its highest-achieving vocational trainees in the Group with the “Best Apprentice Award”. In 2016, nine young women and 36 young men at a total of 43 Group locations received this award for their excellent performance and technical expertise.

as of December 31, 2016; in percent

Developing university graduates

We offer structured programs for joining Volkswagen that are specially geared to university graduates. At Volkswagen AG, two trainee programs are available. In the StartUp Direct program, the trainees work in the target area from the outset, attending supplementary training seminars so as to get an excellent overview of the Company. In the StartUp Cross program, university graduates interested in working internationally are assigned to different locations at home and abroad. They get to know the various specialist areas throughout the value chain, broadening their knowledge and practical experience in the process. Volkswagen took on 114 trainees under the two programs in 2016; around 26% of them were young women.

Trainee programs are also offered at the international Group locations, among others at ŠKODA in the Czech Republic and at Scania in Sweden. In addition, the Volkswagen Group’s StartUp Europe trainee program offers young engineers from Southern Europe an opportunity to gain international work experience.

Volkswagen uses a differentiated approach to ensure the loyalty of its young academic talent, which consists of two elements: the Student Talent Bank and the Academic Talent Pool.

Through the Student Talent Bank, Volkswagen supports particularly high-achieving students in both functional and interdisciplinary areas. The aim here is to persuade former interns to join the Company and, by inviting them to specialist lectures, seminars, or visits, for example, to give them the best possible preparation for entering a profession in the world of Volkswagen.

Talented young high potentials are added to the Academic Talent Pool just before they complete their degree or doctorate. This puts selected high potentials on the radar at the Company, allowing them to be considered for an entry-level position in one of the functional areas.