Hello Thomas, please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am 35 years old and can really claim to have spent half my life at Continental. I started in 2000 as a trainee for industrial business management assistant at the Gifhorn factory and subsequently gained some experience in the areas of logistics, production and quality. After my time in community service I returned to plant Gifhorn and soon began working in local IT. Initially in the area of SAP user management, soon in first level support. This was followed by smaller and larger SAP projects. A few years later I had the opportunity to take over the IT management at the site and continued to qualify as a part-time student in a degree course for economic computer science as well as outside that.
In the course of time I was allowed to count another department to my area of responsibility and the IT department grew with the information logistics department to a competence center for IT infrastructure as well as process-oriented topics.
Recently, I moved from the factory to the headquarters in Hanover, where I was allowed to design and promote the highly exciting field of digitalization as part of the “Horse project”. Personally, I am a family guy and my three small children and my wife take care of the perfect balance.
What brought you to Continental?
Continental was the largest employer in my area and my father had worked for the company for many years. Accordingly, it made sense to complete the training at Continental. Little by little, I also discovered the Continental world outside of my own location and especially appreciate the colorful diversity of technology, people and possibilities.
What projects is your department/ are you currently working on?
The project team is responsible for the construction of the new corporate headquarters in Hanover. As part of this, my job is to digitalize the building, this means to integrate classic building functions regarding facility management, security and environmental functions like heating, cooling and lighting and to link them with administrating processes and comfort functions.
The trends of the recent years have made it visible to everyone; the world is becoming digital, in many different facets and almost every area of life. Regarding commercial buildings, too, the development towards digital processes will accelerate rapidly in the coming years.
But despite all the euphoria, digitalization does not only offer opportunities. Of course, aspects such as data protection and information security are to be highlighted and guaranteed. Accordingly challenging but also exciting is the implementation of this task.
What fascinates you about the topic of digitalization?
I come from a family of technicians and therefore I have almost an innate interest in technical topics. The consequent passion for digitalization has accompanied me since my youth. At the age of 13, I once won a competition from the “hottest” computer magazine back at that time. It was about digital drawing with advanced light and shadow techniques on “the Amiga”. At least since then, I am absolutely captivated by everything that has to do with computers and digital things. I would call myself a digital native.
What do you like about your work at Continental?
Continental is the ideal employer for my passion. I can bring my talents and interests to the fore and drive forward technology leadership. On the other hand, I appreciate the roots of a long-established company like Continental and can absolutely identify with the brand. A wonderful combination of tradition and technology.
How do you manage a healthy work-life balance?
The regulations on mobile work allow me to better arrange my job and my family. Again, digitalization helps to work from most places outside the office. So I can often react flexibly to events from the family environment and work around it, so to speak. Not to mention, of course, that my boss at the site is very accommodating.
What cannot be missing during a typical work day for you?
The first thought is coffee. Apart from that, I appreciate a conversation with colleagues. Because despite all digitalization, the social aspect must not be neglected. Ideally, the coffee with the colleagues should not be missed.
This article was written by our employee.