Category Archives: Personal @en

Career fair “Trained in GermanY“ November 2015

It has been the second time that Balkaninvest took part as an exhibitor at the career fair in the Goethe institute in Sofia. Interesting applicants as well as potential clients visited our stand. Especially German-speaking specialists from Bulgaria took part in the fair which was organized by the Alumniportal Germany.

High qualified candidates at the Balkaninvest stand

Endreva Wetzel Sofai
Maria Endreva and Enzio Wetzel

After a short presentation about the Alumni Germany Website by Ms Maria Endreva, reference person of the Alumniportal in Bulgaria and Mr Enzio Wetzel, head of the Goethe institute, the alumni had the change to do job interviews with the exhibitors.

Our stand was well-attended by well-trained visitors with excellent German-skills. The majority offered a specialist education and many marketing and IT candidates were interested in our job advertisements.

In addition to that some of them were already living in a German-speaking country and wanted to inform themselves about the current employment situation, job and future prospects in Bulgaria.

But also other exhibitors of the fair came at our stand for small talk which offered us the possibility to establish business contacts.

Highlights at the Balkaninvest stall

Unser Stand auf der Karrieremesse im Goetheinstitut Sofia
Our stall at the fair which took place in Goetheinstitut Sofia

We presented the job ads we posted on the Alumni Germany platform and received many CVs at our stand. Some candidates already knew our employment ads from the Alumni platform and asked directly about them. Many fair participants knew Balkaninvest already as we took part in this fair for the second time or as they already had an interview at our office.

We offered a lottery as highlight for our visitors. The participants had the chance to win one of three interview trainings worth 149 Leva. The price included the simulation of a typical job interview in our Balkaninvest office in Sofia as well as a CV analysis including a written evaluation.

The candidates had to do a short German fill-in-the-blank test,in the German level stated in their CV, to be allowed to participate. The winners will be informed until the end of next week.

 Relaxing conclusion of the fair

Exhibitors and visitors were offered a buffet including water, juices, coffee as well as sweet and salty snacks. At the end of the event the guests were able to conclude the evening with a glass of wine and nice conversations between exhibitors and organizers. The operators were also asking the participants about feedback and improvement suggestions.

Summarizing it can be said that the career fair was a successful and professionally organized event. We were offered the possibility of informative talks and to socialise with important business contacts. We really look forward to take part in the next career fair “Trained in GermanY“.

Balkaninvest-Stand-

Interview with Maria Endreva (Alumniportal)

Maria Endreva of AlumniportalAs a follow-up of the participation of the Balkaninvest-team at the 2015 career-event at Goethe-Insitute, organized by the Alumniportal Germany, we had the chance to talk to the host. Ms. Endreva studied German philology at the Sofia university. After her studies, she started working at the department of German philology. She has been in charge of the Bulgarian section of the Alumniportal since 2010 (with a short break) and organizes events and conferences for people interested in Germany and German language.

In her interview with Balkaninvest, Ms. Endreva said that the great public interest in the career event shows that there is a big demand for qualified professionals with German language skills. She underlined, that Germany and Austria are among the largest investors in Bulgaria. Asked about the option for people with language skills to emigrate to Germany she remarked that this is a personal decision with pros and cons. But in her view, some years working experience in Germany would always a good choice.

Her advice for applicants at German companies was to show in the application that one is not only a qualified professional, but can also handle the cultural differences between the German and the Bulgarian mentality.

Asked about her satisfaction with the career event 2015 she said that it exceeded all expectations. For the next career event which will take place in November she hopes for even more attendants.

To read the full interview, please visit our German section.

Career Fair “Trained in GermanY”

flyer-goethe-2015l

On 01/06/2015 the Balkaninvest team had an exhibition stand at the career fair “Trained in GermanY – career with the German language”. Organized by the Alumni Portal Germany, the event took place in Sofia in the premises of the Goethe Institute Bulgaria.

This career fair should address German speaking Bulgarian professionals as well as recent graduates. A total of almost 150 interested people took the opportunity to network with various business representatives of German employers or other alumni and made sure that the career fair was a huge success.

Well-attended Balkaninvest exhibition stand

Balkaninvest bei Trained in GermanY 2015
The Balkaninvest-Team made valuable contacts – and welcomed more candidates than expected.

The Balkaninvest exhibition stand was well-attended by the visitors of the career fair. With our freshly printed banner and various information materials about job offers and our recruiting agency we were able to attract many interested visitors and conduct many interesting conversations.

But not only Germany alumni visited our stand, also other exhibitors were visiting us for a coffee and small talk. So we were also able to establish new business contacts.

Balkaninvest-competition was a big success

During the fair, we carried out a prize competition at our exhibition stand. Three out of all participants were able to win a voucher for a simulation of a typical job interview with a German employer in our Balkaninvest office – including a written evaluation and suggestions for improvement (with a total value of 149 leva).

Prior to the event we had advertised our prize competition on different channels – with huge success. About 60 interested people took part in our prize competition – a resonance we did not expected. The three lucky winners will be notified through e-mail in the mid of this week.

Fair offered interesting branch mixture

In total, twelve companies of different branches presented themselves at the career exhibition. Besides Balkaninvest the ACO Severin Ahlmann GmbH located in Büdelsdorf in Schleswig-Holstein and companies such as DB Schenker, Lidl or the Lufthansa Technik took part at the career fair.

Reiner Itschertl of Goethe-Institut Bulgaria, Marcus Haas of German Embassy in Sofia, Carmen Struck for the German-Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce, Marie Fessel of the DAAD and Maria Endreva representing the German Alumniportal gave short speeches during the official opening of the event.

Get together a worthy conclusion

The organizers of the fair arranged an amazing catering offer for visitors and exhibitors. In addition to juices, coffee and water, cakes, cupcakes and sandwiches were offered. At the end of the exhibition companies and German alumni were invited to a glass of red wine and a “Get together”.

All in all, it was a successful and professionally organized event. We had great conversations, met a lot of nice people and are looking forward to meet all of you again at the next fair.

More pictures:

Unser Team im Gespräch mit der Organisatorin Maria Endreva.
Our Team in discussion with organizer Maria Endreva.
Zahlreiche Besucher mit deutschen Sprachkenntnissen fanden den Weg ins Goethe-Institut.
Numerous attendees found their ways to the Goethe-institute in Sofia.
Balkaninvest Team in Aktion
Keep smiling: Our team in action.
Interviews mit Balkaninvest
Interviews with Balkaninvest

Employee Motivation as a part of Employer Branding – Part 1

As part of our new regular series “Employee Motivation as a part of Employer Branding” we would like to illuminate the two best-ranked aspects of the 2015 “work motivation” study by the Manpower Group – a good working relationship with colleagues and superiors as well as flexible working hours.

The most important factor for employee motivation is a good relationship with colleagues and superiors. In the study, 65 percent of the respondents said to be more motivated if they get along well with colleagues and superiors. Even though the percentage is lower than last year (77 percent), a good working relationship is still considered to be the most important motivating factor.

Pierre Bourdieu influence on the theory of social capital

Pierre_Bourdieu
Pierre Bourdieu “in action” (Photo: alicia gaudí @flickr.com, creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

The most famous scientific theory about the positive motivational influence of good relationships between colleagues and superiors is the theory of social capital by the French sociologist and social philosopher Pierre Bourdieu. Social capital describes the collective benefits of social relationships between different people, in the case of a company the relations between employees and superiors.

Building social capital requires a high level of trust for giving support, assistance and recognition to others and to establish cooperation. All these characteristics and a high degree of trust lead to a strong intrinsic motivation of the employees and to higher motivation. An employee who does not feel well, is not a good worker. Real friendships between the employees are not necessary but social capital promotes a pleasant and helpful working environment, which leads to collegial relationships and long-term retentions of employees.

Flexible working hours an important motivating factor

The study “Working Motivation 2015” by the Manpower Group Germany named flexible working hours as the second most important motivating factor for employees. Overall, 50 percent of the respondents had the opinion that flexible working hours are an important motivational factor. In the previous year, only 67 percent of the respondents concurred that flexible working hours have a positive influence on employee motivation.

But even though flexible working hours can be found on almost every job advertisement as an incentive, researchers at the University of Minnesota came to the conclusion that flexible working parents have no significant time savings. It means, in particular, that workers can not afford more time for their children. Flexible workers have just more time for themselves and feel less stressed, which is beneficial for their own well-being and their own motivation.

Happy workers positive for corporate image

Good relationships with colleagues and supervisors as well as flexible working hours increase the motivation and commitment of employees and affect the long-term retention of employees in a positive way. In addition, happy workers like to share their positive experiences within the company and thus communicate unconsciously a positive corporate image.

In the next part of our series “Employee Motivation as a part of Employer Branding” we will discuss the aspects “friendships with colleagues” and “free drinks for employees”.

Graduates need in the German labour market 2015

According to a study by the Staufenbiel Institute in 2015, German employers are optimistic towards the developments in the labour market for graduates. Even though a decreasing number of companies expect an increasing need for graduates compared to the last years, pessimistic forecasts for most disciplines are an exception.

In 2015 particularly economists are in demand. For almost 45 percent of the offered positions, of which half are positions for internships, graduates with an economic background are needed. 3% of the companies forecast a rapidly growing demand for economists for the next five years.

Increasing demand for engineers and computer experts

Compared to the previous year the forecast for the demand for engineers and computer scientists is slightly less optimistic but still positive. For engineers, 35 percent of the employers (2 percent less than last year) expect a rising or significantly rising demand. Over the next five years, this amount will rise up to 63 percent which means a decreasing tendency in comparison to the forecasted increase in demand last year (68 percent).

The predictions for IT graduates remain nearly unchanged compared to the previous year. 38 percent of the companies expect rising and 8 percent significantly rising demand. The job prospects remain bright in the future: 51 percent of the companies expect an increase and 51 percent a strong increase for the demand of computer scientists.

Focus on interns

Almost half of all graduates jobs are provided for interns (44 percent). 6% of the jobs are for trainee programs and 18% for young professionals. The remaining workplaces are split up between graduates (27%), clerks (3%) and associates (2%).

In computer science, the distribution focuses less on internships (35%) but more on young professionals (31%). Workplaces for engineers are offered especially for interns (43%) and graduates (29%). Trainee positions are for IT graduates (4%) and engineers (3%) less frequently offered.

Employers prefer Master’s degrees

Inside application processes primarily Master’s degrees are preferred. 90% of the companies favour this type of degree over a University Diploma (76%), a University Bachelor’s degree (60%) and a Diploma of a University of Applied Sciences (55%).

This tendency can be also detected for engineers and computer scientists. 97% of all companies prefer engineers with Master’s degrees and 92% prefer IT graduates with Master’s degrees. The Diploma of a University of Applied Sciences in Computer Science (54%) and Engineering (63%) is clearly preferred over a Bachelor’s degree. A Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science is preferred by 47% and a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering by 36% of the companies.