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Attracting qualified employees with appealing programs for junior staff

Growing need for staff has forced DB to act. It is taking an integrated approach through 350 school partnerships and collaboration with 100 carefully chosen national & international universities.

Since 2012, the new Recruitment organizational unit has been responsible for the strategic alignment of the employer brand and recruitment at the DB Group in Germany and has ensured that the new approach is implemented at operational level. Seven regional teams ensure that DB has a uniform market image and that vacancies are filled quickly. DB is focusing on all important target groups: high-school students, university students and experienced professionals from both academic and non-academic fields. The processes of recruitment, application management and onboarding at DB were adjusted to bring them more closely in line with the needs of applicants, new employees and the individual business units.

The new employer campaign "A job like no other" was launched in Germany in November 2012 and spans a comprehensive range of media, such as TV, print, radio and poster ads. It presents employees in typical working situations to illustrate the diversity and multifaceted nature of DB as an employer with 500 different professions. The new career website is at the heart of the campaign. It is supplemented by social media profiles and innovative event formats. The campaign has prompted a sharp increase in applicant numbers of 40 percent on average. Right from the start, DB employees were involved in the campaign and made ambassadors.

DB cooperates with schools, colleges and universities to establish a connection with potential employees early on. Over 350 school partnerships and collaboration with some 100 carefully chosen national and international colleges and universities help to provide career guidance. DB particularly likes to stage events with a practical focus. For example, the company presented itself as an employer during a day-long train ride during its “DB Careers Express” event.

Marks are no longer the crucial hiring criterion they once were at DB. The Group eliminated preselection based on school marks for applicants seeking a training or cooperative education position. Instead, it introduced an online test for all school students who want to begin professional training or the cooperative education program beginning in Autumn 2014. The test emphasizes individual strengths and skills.

High-school students can choose from a broad range of over 50 vocational training courses and more than 20 cooperative education tracks. College and university students can gain initial work experience at DB and establish important professional contacts while they study: through an internship, by working part-time or as part of their degree thesis paper. At the end of their degree course, they can choose between direct entry into the company and a graduate trainee program.

DB is implementing its internationalization strategy in staff recruitment by using recruiting events in Spain and Greece, for example, to reach civil engineers, electrical engineers and mechanical engineers in these countries' labor markets and recruit them to work for DB in Germany. The company has also built up partnerships with colleges abroad. DB offers an international internship program for students at these institutions.