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Impact story: The Schaeffler Group

Impact story: The Schaeffler Group
The client

As a leading global supplier to the automotive and industrial sectors, the Schaeffler Group has been driving forward groundbreaking inventions and developments in the fields of motion and mobility for over 70 years.

With innovative technologies, products, and services for CO2-efficient drives, electric mobility, Industry 4.0, digitalization, and renewable energies as well as manufacturing high-precision components and systems, the technology company generated sales of approximately 14,4 billion euros in 2019. With around 83.000 employees, Schaeffler is one of the world’s largest family companies with around 170 locations in more than 50 countries.

The Schaeffler Group is an important partner for Constructor University. Besides the executive education program, the company cooperates through knowledge transfer projects and as part of Schaeffler’s PhD program.

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The challenge

Mobility is changing broadly worldwide and already has a particular strong influence on the automotive industry. The whole sector is driven by significant demographic changes, changes in consumer behavior while a climate change has become a more important political priority worldwide.

A challenging environment shaped by increasing industrial consolidation among competing suppliers and manufacturers, vertical integration and globalization among customers and the effects of mounting economic uncertainty on consumer behavior, while we are living a worldwide pandemic. Current trends will change the industry landscape. A significant volatility in the markets is leading already to more complexity to predict future demands.

New systems and technologies, as well as new competitors are coming on the market that is leading to further cost pressure. Focusing on whole supply chains and especially supplier management will be key. That’s why the current development leads to new competences of Schaeffler Group’s employees which are trained in tailormade executive education programs of Constructor University Business Solutions.

The Schaeffler Group had to face increasing competitive pressure on rougher markets. To cope with this challenges, Constructor University designed a customized solution, as there are no adequate training facilities already available to answer special requirements and needs of purchasing professionals.

An outstanding cooperation of various departments of Constructor University, from the Business Solutions team to IT, Marketing and Events made the establishment and implementation of this future-oriented blended-learning solution possible, despite of ongoing pandemic restrictions in 2020.

The commitment

The aim is to efficiently train Schaeffler's purchasers for future challenges in the automotive sector while providing participants with targeted preparation for their next career step.

The executive education program was established as a blended learning opportunity over several months in 2020, while the corona pandemic gave space to take a breath outside the daily work routine. Further modules are planned for 2021 with long term cooperation options.

Experienced purchasing professionals attend customized seminars at Constructor University to refine their abilities in line with the current market situation and broaden their range of skills to develop new competences which are tackled by the “Schaeffler Purchasing Excellence Program”.

As a cooperation partner of Schaeffler, Constructor University Bremen, offers the opportunity for a progressive collaboration in specialized and customized Purchasing Programs. This program primarily focuses on the first step of the high-quality training in the form of a Purchasing Talent Program that aligns learning objectives with Schaeffler's business requirements and subsequent processes.

All participants have been introduced during the opening day to exciting topics about personal change and lifelong learning by Prof. Dr. Arvid Kappas, appointed dean of Constructor University Bremen and responsible for the entire Graduate and Executive Education, while being the current president of the International Society for Research on Emotions (ISRE).

A personal introduction by Dr. Florian Schupp, Adjunct Professor of Logistics at Constructor University and Vice President Purchasing Automotive OEM at Schaeffler Group as well as a summary of current challenges by Andreas Schick, Executive Board and COO Chief Operating Officer at Schaeffler, has been highly appreciated.

The approach

Schaeffler group’s experienced high potential purchasers attend customized seminars on topics such as logistics & SCM (supply chain management), negotiation training and techniques, innovation management in purchasing as well as the topics working capital and purchasing strategy.

With 20 participants per module, the program is partly made up of virtual content and partly of in-person events on the international campus of Constructor University Bremen. Step I was the first part of a long-term program and consisted of a program kick-off and the first four core modules. The program kick off was compulsory for all participants of the Talent Program (Step I). During the 1st year, participants are free to choose out of individual core modules.

As part of a future-oriented cooperation, further modules are already planned for 2021. The participants are in good hands, as their trainers belong to the top experts in their fields. Topics are individually tailored to needs and requirements of the Schaeffler Group as well as specially designed for the purchasing department.

Beside getting the opportunity to learn with intercultural atmosphere and a professional faculty support of an international campus, the participants are highly motivated to become internal field experts and receive a university certificate with international recognized ECTS credit points: A qualified certification that can contribute participants who possess already a bachelor degree towards a University Master Program requirement in the future.

The highly practical application of daily situations enables participants to effectively overcome challenges in their daily workplace. The program flexibility offers each participant the opportunity of shuffling and shifting training modules based on availability. All trainings are designed to broaden participants perspectives on current concepts in the automotive purchasing sector.

The impact

Constructor University’s vision is embedded in empowering individuals with knowledge and skills – to face market challenges with innovative approaches and advanced skills. Schaeffler’s customer approach pointed out that learning is only good when executed. That’s why participants got enabled by a customized training on their specific challenges to apply new learnings immediately.

While having the opportunity to exchange experience in academic surroundings as well as establishing new contacts with trainers who are experts in their fields, the participants of Schaeffler Group are growing professionally and personally by gaining new knowledge and insights.

Furthermore, the participants are highly motivated by getting awarded for their performance with an academic certification of an internationally top-ranked private University.  

Overall the customer outcome of the successful started tailormade program is paramount and will help to transform Schaeffler’s Purchasing into a stronger community with a significantly higher relevance for the whole company group. The program was designed and implemented by Constructor University.

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phone: +49 421 - 200 44 10