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      Let your ideas shape the future
      November 30, 2023

      From the Job Agency to Conti-IT

      Since April, anyone who contacts the local IT department at Conti's headquarters in Hanover may end up with me on the line, Michael Jakob. A few years ago, I could not have foreseen that I would be working again in my profession as an IT specialist: After an unsuccessful effort at self-employment, my path led to unemployment in 2010. Despite part-time jobs and short-term assignments at various companies, I didn't manage to re-enter the workforce for years and the longer I was out, the more difficult it became.

      I joined Continental in August 2021 through a funding program of the Bundesagentur für Arbeit (Federal Employment Agency). First, as part of an internship at the Continental Institute for Technology and Transformation (CITT), which had advertised a job in the warehouse sector. I received the offer through the JobCenter – I must admit that it wasn't quite what I wanted. But the interview convinced me, on a personal level it was an immediate fit. And after I was able to show my potential during my internship, I was allowed to take over the management of the digital equipment in addition to the storage and shipping activities.

      Being a full-time employee again and getting my foot in the door at a company like Continental gave me a real sense of achievement. Nevertheless, I have occasionally experienced prejudices in my everyday work. Be it that the simplest things have been explained to me in detail or that I have encountered typical unemployment clichés in conversation. When I told them that I always had a regular daily routine, the person was really amazed.

      I took these individual cases in stride – and countered the cliché with my own initiative. So, I not only took on additional tasks within the CITT, but finally switched to my current job in local IT, which I discovered while browsing through our job portal. It was nice to see that my previous manager supported this application – and even nicer that it was successful.

      When I moved to my current job, my time in the support program also came to an end. Looking back, I can say that I think the idea behind this program is great, because it makes it much easier for long-term unemployed people to get started. If you want to develop further within the company, you still need a certain drive: show performance and initiative, make yourself visible, maintain contact with other departments – without that, it doesn't work.

      I have now achieved my goal of taking the step out of the program. Now, I'm very happy here in local IT – and at the same time I can well imagine that this won't be my last step in the company. Who knows, maybe I'll even go abroad for Conti....


      Michael Jakob

      Technical IT Support at Continental in Hanover