Demand for trainees at Hessian companies remains high - Training Week: “Training is the future”

Active recruitment of junior staff continues to be an important factor in meeting the demand for skilled workers. Frank Aletter, Managing Director of the Association of Hessian Chambers of Industry and Commerce, and Dr. Frank Martin, Head of the Hesse Regional Directorate of the Federal Employment Agency, discussed the challenges companies face in attracting young people to dual vocational training programs with Claus Schäfer, Managing Director of the HÜBNER Group.

Demand for trainees at Hessian companies remains high - Training Week: “Training is the future”
Matthias Berninger (left), deputy head of the HÜBNER Training Workshop, explains the work of the training workshop to HIHK Managing Director Frank Aletter (from right), Petra Kern (Head of the Labor Market and Networks Department, Federal Employment Agency Hesse) and Dr. Frank Martin (Head of the Hesse Regional Directorate of the Federal Employment Agency). Photo: HÜBNER Group/Uwe Zucchi
Demand for trainees at Hessian companies remains high - Training Week: “Training is the future”
Steven Völk is currently completing his traineeship as an industrial mechanic at HÜBNER. Photo: HÜBNER Group/Uwe Zucchi

It is already clear that the gap between applicants and registered vocational training places is widening for the current training year. Overall, Hessian companies reported approximately 27,400 available training places as of February 2023, 350 more than a year ago., So far, around 22,130 young people have registered with the employment agencies in Hesse in search of a vocational training place.


More training places, but fewer trainees

Already last year, the number of young people who wanted to start dual vocational training and were registered with the employment agencies fell by 4.3 percent. A total of approximately 33,700 young people were searching for such a position. On the other hand, there were 34,500 registered in-company vocational training places in Hessian companies, 5.7 percent more than for the previous training year. Even at the end of the post-placement phase (31 December 2022), around 400 training places remained unfilled.

This year’s Training Week, which is currently running throughout Germany, was the occasion of the visit to the HÜBNER company in Kassel. As every year in March, the German Federal Employment Agency is promoting dual vocational training programs to pupils, parents and teachers during Training Week (13 - 19 March). This year the Training Week motto is “Training is the future”.


Strengthening career orientation at schools

Frank Aletter, Managing Director of the Association of Hessian Chambers of Industry and Commerce, emphasized: “Many young people and their parents are not even aware of the equivalence of dual vocational training with academic degrees. In order to bring more young people back into such programs, vocational orientation at secondary schools must be strengthened and also needs to be presented within the framework of core subjects. To impart the relevant background to teachers, appropriate informational offerings should be anchored in teacher training. Pupils’ experience of what happens at companies can also be promoted through cooperation between schools and companies, for example in the form of internships, company visits and joint projects. In our opinion, these activities should also be offered at all types of schools, including the gymnasiums, to let pupils make a balanced decision among the available options.”

“Dual vocational training is a successful educational model that is the envy of many countries. When it comes to income, protection against unemployment, opportunities for advancement and exciting professions, training for a vocation can certainly hold its own against a course of university study. Nevertheless, more and more young people and their parents are opting for further school attendance or a university degree. The consequences are very serious, because where vocational training places cannot be filled today, urgently needed skilled workers will be lacking tomorrow. In the long term, we must succeed in better communicating the attractiveness of dual vocational education and training – from the good starting conditions to the diverse future opportunities that such training offers,” summarized Dr. Frank Martin, Head of the Hesse Regional Directorate.


Training for company requirements is corporate philosophy at HÜBNER

Claus Schäfer, Managing Director of the HÜBNER Group, said:“For many decades, it has been part of HÜBNER’s corporate philosophy that we train and develop specialists ourselves and in accordance with the requirements of our business, and thus try to retain these trainees as long-term employees. This is another reason why we are constantly developing our training activities. In order to meet the requirements of digitization, trainee positions as a prospective digitization management businessperson and an IT specialist are being offered at HÜBNER for the first time this year.”

Dr. Thomas Fölsch, Head of Training and Further Education at the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK) Kassel-Marburg: “Northern Hesse and the district of Marburg are among the regions with the highest levels of training in Hesse. The strong training performance of our member companies contributes to the future viability of the region as a business location – this is exemplified by the commitment of the HÜBNER Group. The quality of a location depends on its success in attracting and securing skilled workers. As Kassel-Marburg Chamber of Industry and Commerce, we provide support for various fields. Our latest offering is our YouTube channel, which gives information about the diversity of dual IHK job profiles in an entertaining and interactive way.”


Employment agencies support search activities

Dr. Frank Martin added: “The employment agencies support pupils, parents, teachers and employers in their search for the right vocational training place or trainee. The career counsellors are present at all schools in Hesse. In addition, students can receive further support in one-on-one interviews or in the career information centers. Those who prefer to get their information virtually can use the diverse online offerings. From traditional communication channels to social media, we have something for everyone.”

For the first time this year, the German Federal Employment Agency held a week of digital parents’ evenings. In February, parents and their children in around 8,000 households visited more than 50 companies to find out about their training opportunities.


More about training at HÜBNER at: