Traineeships: tailored work, tailored learning
In 2012 TenCate initiated an international trainee programme. Academically educated young people and new graduates can carry out projects in the fields of business development, sales & marketing, R&D, finance and operations for a two-year period. The aim is to forge a bond between young professionals and TenCate, acquire special (up-to-date) knowledge, gain innovative and invigorating insights, and translate these into the strategy of TenCate.
TenCate set about giving further substance to management development in 2012. There are four programmes: the Talent, Active, Executive and Trainee programmes. Based on positive reactions within the company, the trainee policy is now being mapped out in greater detail. Within TenCate there is a need for well-educated people at master and bachelor levels, and the company is particularly on the lookout for people with ‘TenCate competences’, such as results orientation, innovative and creative ability, enterprise, willingness to cooperate and leadership. ‘Now we are looking for the right projects,’ says Anouk Breukers. She is both HR advisor at Ten Cate Thiolon bv and MD officer at corporate level.
The salary costs may be an obstacle to taking on a trainee above strength, but the corporation is meeting the companies part of the way. ‘The recruitment costs are borne by TenCate corporate, as too are the personal education costs. “Corporate” is keen to forge a bond with young people, with new knowledge and technologies to explore specific processes. And TenCate can offer them international experience.’ The training and courses within the personal development process are tuned to the development needs of the trainee. The HR department plays a facilitating role in this. The starting point is a personal career plan for each trainee. ‘It is a tailored process, given the assignment and special supervision,’ explains Anouk Breukers. Trainees at TenCate are given a contract for two years. The basic principle is that they will undertake three projects, each lasting eight months – ‘although we can exercise some flexibility.'
Edwin Grobbink, trainee at TenCate
Now seven months on, trainee Edwin Grobbink knows that TenCate has a strong technological basis and invests heavily in technological innovations. ‘We are extremely good in developing new products, but we can attract much more business in this respect by devoting greater attention to the market customer and customer needs. As far as modernization, flexibility, communication and cooperation are concerned, considerable benefits are there to be reaped, both between and within the business units.’ Together with Anouk Breukers, he has now localized all highly educated young staff members in ‘the TenCate archipelago’. The first TenCate Young meeting is soon to be held. ‘And that is TenCate: if you have a good idea and show initiative, much is possible.’