Sabrina Svechla | Head of HR Management
Please introduce yourself briefly.
My name is Sabrina Svechla and I come from Senden in North Rhine-Westphalia. After school at the local grammar school in Illerzell, I studied business administration on a dual studies program, specializing in retail, and worked in sales after I completed my Bachelor’s. However, I quickly realized I wanted more from my career and decided to do a full-time Master’s degree in advanced management with a focus on marketing and sales. I am now head of human resources management and training at UZIN UTZ.
Why did you want to work for UZIN UTZ?
I first heard about UZIN UTZ at the Career Night during my Master’s. The HR managers I met there were very friendly and open, which I thought was just right for me and it was what encouraged me to work at Uzin! Unfortunately, I have not always did not always have a great experience with my last employer, so I was even more enthusiastic about how they treated each other. My first impressions were right. Everyone really values each other and it is what makes the working environment at UZIN UTZ so special. I am really happy and at home here. I can make a difference and develop my potential.
Describe your career at UZIN UTZ so far – from your first day at the company to now
My first day was in November 2011 as a working student in HR management. I finished my Master’s in 2014. During the course I provided my colleagues with support to manage job applicants and was also assigned smaller employer branding projects. I started as an HR officer in May 2014. I was responsible for supporting our colleagues in the commercial area. I learned everything a HR manager needs to know, from payment to creating certificates. A few months later, I was put in charge of training. I really enjoy working with young colleagues, looking after them and seeing how they develop over the years.
What challenges are you dealing with at the moment?
We are currently facing challenges typical of our demographics and age structures. One of the biggest challenges associated with demographic change at the company is how to meet the desires and expectations of our workforce most effectively. The increasing diversity of the age structure, for example, calls for greater adjustment to our structures to meet the different needs of our specific age groups. We therefore strive to provide our colleagues, especially in production, with the best possible support so that they can work well even when they are older. Another challenge is the lack of specialists, which is already noticeable when you look at our technical and skilled trades apprenticeships. We are trying to meet this challenge with skillful marketing of our apprenticeships to find the best specialists and leaders of tomorrow.
What are your responsibilities within the department?
I am now the head of the HR Management Department. In this role, I am responsible for ensuring that processes and tasks run smoothly. My biggest responsibility is definitely the monthly payroll. After all, punctual and correct payment of our employees is a basic feature of a secure job. I also work with my colleagues responsible for training at UZIN UTZ, particularly training for administrative and other office staff. More specifically, this involves planning training, supervising the trainees and taking them on after their training.
Tell us a little more about your team and your tasks.
The HR Management team has three full-time employees and one part-time employee. We have structured ourselves so that each person has his or her own assigned area of activity, from recruitment to retirement. For example, I support my colleagues in R&D and sales. Our part-time colleague supports our “Generation Plus”, who are former colleagues at UZIN UTZ who have retired, and takes them on outings in addition to the regular meetups. This is our way of supporting every generation and ensuring that former colleagues stay connected with us at they get older and still feel a part of the company. This structure ensures that each of us is an all-rounder and we can therefore help colleagues as quickly as possible with all their questions and problems. Because we see ourselves as an internal service provider and want to offer the same level of service internally as we do to our external customers.
What skills are required to work in your division?
Empathy is at the heart of everything in HR. As a service provider, it is our duty to deal with our colleagues with great sensitivity and empathy. Communication, teamwork, cooperation and conflict management skills are also very important skills in our field. Organizational talent and high levels of accuracy are also essential.
Conducted in June 2017.