“I had jobs in my country, but I was working so many hours for little money,” says Goran.He initially trained as a road technician but never worked in the industry, and by early 2017 he was working as a “handyman” at a health club.
This changed when Goran heard about Your first EURES Job (YfEJ) and decided it was time for a new start in Germany. Goran contacted the Croatian Employment Service, a partner service in the EU job mobility scheme, who then helped him to find a Duale Ausbildung, a kind of vocational training which combines on-the-job training with school-based learning. “I was very happy about this,” he says. “[It was] a good chance for the future.”
The company offering this opportunity was Stangl & Co. GmbH, an engineering company that produces customised precision parts for various branches of industry. For Stangl & Co.’s Markus Meister, the YfEJ scheme also represented a timely opportunity. When Markus first heard about the scheme in December 2016, he was immediately interested in what it could offer the company.
The firm, which is based in the Cham district of Bavaria, had until then been experiencing difficulties in recruiting the staff it needed. As Markus explains: “There is a clear shortage of people who we need locally in our region and in our industry. In the region the unemployment rate is also very low, which makes it difficult for employers to recruit the staff they require.”
“The majority of young people also prefer to pursue an academic career and go to study, rather than a professional or vocational career,” he says.
Anticipating recruitment difficulties “over the next 5 to 10 years”, he and his colleagues began browsing through a collection of potential candidates from abroad, provided by EURES Staff. Despite struggling to find candidates locally, Markus knew that Stangl & Co. could offer jobseekers from abroad an attractive opportunity including on-the-job training, intensive language learning, and the prospect of a longer-term traineeship in a highly skilled industry.
After a EURES Adviser at the Croatian Employment Service successfully put Goran in contact with Stangl & Co., he soon began a six-week training course at the company. Following successful completion of the course and some initial German-language training, for which YfEJ offered financial support, Goran accepted the offer of a three-and-a-half-year traineeship.
For Markus and his colleagues at Stangl & Co., finding new staff from abroad who can be trained up to take on the specialised roles the industry requires has helped to ease recruitment issues. Markus intends to continue recruiting through the YfEJ scheme in the coming years, aiming to take on another two trainees this year.
“Without the [YfEJ] programme, we would not have had the chance to recruit from Croatia or Spain, where we could find the relevant skilled people,” he says, adding that he would recommend the programme to other employers in Germany.
Goran, meanwhile, has traded in his life as a handyman for a career in a highly skilled profession, and is set on a path of long-term training that will significantly improve his future job prospects.
The Croatian is also quick to recommend his experience to others: “I would recommend this to anyone who is unemployed, who is open-minded – to new things, to learning.”
You can watch Goran’s experience in Germany here.
Your first EURES Job is a European Union job mobility scheme. To find out more about employment and training opportunities across the EU or to find employees with the skills you need, contact one of the scheme’s employment services or get in touch with your local EURES Adviser via the EURES portal.
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