MANN+HUMMEL is growing. Over the past ten years, the company has doubled its turnover to almost EUR 3.9 billion. During the same period, the number of employees has also increased from around 12,000 to more than 20,000. Of course, this has not been purely organic – i.e. through internal growth – it was also achieved through company acquisitions. Our goal has always been to draw on existing knowledge and expertise in the new companies and thereby achieve synergies. At the same time, we have been able to generate new sales markets for our existing products. I myself joined MANN+HUMMEL in 2009 and have experienced these developments first-hand.
It all started with my Diploma thesis, which I wrote while studying Controlling at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz. Although, to be precise, I actually wrote it at MANN+HUMMEL in Speyer. The subject was: “Development and analysis of a value-oriented metrics system using the example of MANN+HUMMEL GmbH’s Industrial Filters Business Unit”. Admittedly, it does sound rather complicated. However, the important thing is that it wasn’t the sort of purely abstract topic where a student focuses solely on the science. It had more to do with the practical day-to-day work of MANN+HUMMEL. The results spoke for themselves, not least thanks to the close cooperation with the contacts in Speyer. I even received a prize for the best Diploma thesis at the university.
From university to work
Even more important for me, however, was the fact that MANN+HUMMEL took me on immediately after I had completed my studies. In Speyer, I started work as a Controller in the Industrial Filters Business Unit. Later, I was responsible for plant controlling before moving to MICRODYN-NADIR three years ago. MANN+HUMMEL took over the technologically leading membrane and module manufacturer of micro-, ultra- and nanofiltration as well as reverse osmosis at the beginning of 2015. Today, as Managing Director, I am responsible for MICRODYN-NADIR’s business in Germany while at the same time, as CFO, I am responsible for worldwide controlling. We are a rather small part of the MANN+HUMMEL Group, with our global team comprising around 400 employees. And yet our range of products represents one of the future fields in the area of filtration: The company boasts the precise expertise required for sustainable solutions in water and sewage treatment. We are suitably ambitious in our work. And this is where scientific research and training come into play again. We have been working together with the University of Applied Sciences Bingen for several years now. First and foremost, I must mention Prof. Klaus Kiene. With his expertise as a professor for product development and manufacturing technology, he was instrumental in optimising the layout of a new assembly hall in Wiesbaden. In addition, there were further consultations dealing with typical controller issues such as the identification of non-value-adding processes, quality improvements and the associated further training of employees.
From work to University
In exchange, he recently invited us to give a presentation on the subject of investment controlling as part of a series of lectures at the university. There, we talked about our company, discussed the importance of profitability calculations, but also brought with us facts and figures that students could use to calculate the return on investment for a case study. My colleague Stefan Knippelmeyer and I were very impressed with their efforts, because after about half to three quarters of an hour most of them were able to arrive at the right result. We quickly noticed the high level of practical application in teaching at the University in Bingen. For us, it was also a great opportunity to talk to the students, discuss their plans and, of course, highlight possible career opportunities at MANN+HUMMEL. This often begins by a direct hire, but it is also possible to support actual projects or – as in my case – to write a Master or Diploma dissertation. For the students, these are interesting opportunities; for us as a company, they provide the chance to engage genuine talent straight from university. After all, we have some big plans for MICRODYN-NADIR which will require us to assert ourselves in a competitive market segment. To achieve this, we need the right employees – and they can be found at the University of Applied Sciences Bingen, among other places.