What does a trainee do at CREMER OLEO?
Hello Antonia, you are currently in the final exams of your apprenticeship. Can you explain what you've been doing at CREMER for the past two years?
Yes, my apprenticeship is almost over, the only thing missing is the oral exam. In the past two years, I was able to get to know all areas of CREMER OLEO from a practical point of view: at the beginning, I was in the commercial team for a few months, where it's all about buying and selling our products. After that I got to know handling and transport of our orders in all operations teams. And now at the end I'm working in Quality Management. I was fully involved in all the teams, was thrown in at the deep end in a positive way and - with a lot of good judgment - was given a lot of responsibility. There are no typical "trainee tasks" at CREMER.
How does the dual apprenticeship work in Germany?
Dual apprenticeship is a special feature of the German labor market: a combination of practical "training on the job" in a company and subject-related theoretical instruction at a vocational school. Those who choose one of the more than 300 training occupations spend 2-3 years learning alternately from colleagues and at school. The contents and procedures of the training are prescribed and uniform throughout Germany. The apprenticeship ends with an official examination, after which the participants may officially bear their new job title.
More than half of all school leavers in Germany opt for dual apprenticeship every year. CREMER has been offering it for “merchants in wholesale and foreign trade” and other fields for many years. Many colleagues have learned their profession with us "from scratch".
In the vocational school, which I attended for 1.5 days every week, it was all about foreign trade topics, bookkeeping, accounting, law, economics and foreign languages, in my case English and French.
When you look back: What was your most exciting assignment?
I was able to support Roberto Echeverría in building up our Brazilian business. Together with our new colleagues in Joinville, for example, I developed processes for working with Hamburg and organized trainings for our systems. That was great fun and showed me how right I was to choose an international employer. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to take on so much responsibility so early on.
I wanted to work in foreign trade and deal with people from as many countries as possible.
So it's the international work that made you choose CREMER?
Yes. I really wanted to work in foreign trade and deal with people from as many countries as possible. And I wanted to work in the chemical industry because chemical products are needed in all markets and our business is therefore more versatile than almost any other.
You could have gone to university, too. CREMER also offers the option of a dual study program, doesn't it?
Yes, I graduated from high school in 2018. After that, I was in South Korea for a few months. When I came back, I wanted to gain work experience and earn money at the same time. That's where the apprenticeship was ideal for me. I now feel very well prepared for my future. I still want to study part-time. Preferably international management, as some of my colleagues at CREMER OLEO have done.
That brings us to the most exciting question: Do you already know what's going to happen after your apprenticeship?
Yes! This afternoon I signed my employment contract at CREMER OLEO. I'm starting as a Sales Manager in the Oleo and Glycerine team and I'm really looking forward to it!
Make the most of your time, get as much experience as you can and enjoy every moment!
What advice would you give to someone starting their apprenticeship at CREMER?
Make the most of your time, get as much experience as you can and enjoy every moment! Because I was given so much confidence during my training, I am much more relaxed with myself today. I was allowed to take on a lot of responsibility and on the other hand I always got an open ear for my ideas and questions. That is perhaps the most important thing to do at CREMER OLEO: not to hope and wait for something, but to address it and do it.
Thank you very much, Antonia!