Continental integrates young refugees into the working world, offering them prospects for a brighter future. The scope and dimensions of the current refugee crisis pose a challenge that requires government, society, and business to join forces. The integration of refugees into the labor market must be one of the top priorities – and is an area where Continental is living up to its responsibility.
Helping people help themselves – More than 20 refugees are currently undertaking apprenticeships
2016 was the first year we opened up our initial qualification programs to 50 refugees. And over the course of the current year we have added 25 more spots. How does our program work? The German Federal Employment Agency provides profiles of refugees whose skills could match Continental’s needs. After successfully completing an aptitude test, participants are offered the chance to join an initial qualification program lasting a maximum of twelve months. This program, which also pays wages at the normal level for the first year of vocational training, lets participants develop the skills necessary to start an apprenticeship. So once they have successfully completed the initial training, they can apply for an apprenticeship at Continental. More than 20 refugees are currently undertaking apprenticeships at Continental, learning to be mechatronics specialists or process mechanics for example.
We can see that the young refugees are bringing a high degree of motivation and loyalty to the table. So we believe that with our concept of long-term integration in the labor market, we are taking the right approach. Diversity is part of Continental’s DNA, and it lays the foundation for new perspectives and creative approaches. We need both of these things for a viable future.
Dr. Ariane Reinhart, Member of the Executive Board responsible for HR.
A diverse workforce means diverse opportunities
The program helps us make a positive and constructive contribution to integrating refugees into society. We also believe that diversity benefits our workforce in every sense and paves the way for more innovation. And because our initiative offers long-term employment, it also improves the long-term prospects of the refugees concerned.