Our Drive makes us Different
It’s the personal drive of our people that helps keep our business running at speed. If you take ownership of your development, we’ll help identify what’s important to you and set clear goals. Then, great performance will help you accelerate in exactly the right direction.
A day in our shoes
Whatever your ambitions and aspirations, we have the breadth of opportunity to help you meet your personal goals. It’s an important part of what makes us different. If you want to push the accelerator, we have development opportunities for people at every level. There are opportunities to learn; to acquire new skills and qualifications; to travel and enhance your knowledge by attending industry events and product launches. At the same time, if you want to develop your career without being away from home, we can offer that too.
National Communications Manager
My role as National Communications Manager is to develop the image of the ŠKODA brand internally and externally. I do this by leading the creation and execution of external advertising for ŠKODA UK through all media channels to retail and fleet customers.
Deciding to join in March 2014 was easy because Volkswagen Group clearly has a strong reputation for world famous brands. The potential to move around the Group between brands in the future is also attractive. I had also heard that the Group has a really great culture, which is very important to me. Plus I live close by in Northampton which is a comfortable commute.
I have settled into the ŠKODA team really quickly. In my first year I have delivered the launch campaign for Fabia winning What Car? Car of the Year award, given a presentation on the communications for our next big model launch to all our UK dealer principals at an event in Vienna and been asked to cover the Head of Marketing role for several months.
The best thing about working here is the great culture. There’s a true feeling of belonging at ŠKODA – you are being both challenged and rewarded every single day.
With so many opportunities available here, I hope to move on in due course to experience another part of the business, either within another brand or perhaps a Group role. I’m confident I will receive the necessary support and encouragement from management and colleagues so I can achieve my ambitions.
Area Fleet Manager
I am part of a team of five Area Fleet Managers for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles responsible for delivering annual sales volume targets, while developing great relationships with existing customers and prospecting for new ones.
My association with Volkswagen began when I started working for Trade Parts Specialists (TPS) in Leicester as a Sales Development Manager in January 2011. During a TPS conference in 2012, I met with the Sales Team from Group Parts Operations, Milton Keynes.
I was contacted later that year about a role in the National Accounts Team as a Key Account Manager. I started the role in August 2012 and I learned a great deal about the wider business and how group parts contributed to our overall profit. The role also allowed me to develop my commercial acumen.
I moved to my current position after spending four years working for Group Parts Operations within our Trade Parts Specialists network. I knew I wanted to stay in a customer-facing role but was keen to move into a brand.
Shortly before applying for the role, I had a 1-2-1 careers advice session with Penny Burnett, Head of HR Operations, at our Field Force Conference. She helped me to identify my strengths and suggested I look into fleet roles.
In January 2015 I applied for the Area Fleet Manager's role in Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. I passed the assessment centre and began the next chapter of my Volkswagen Group journey at the end of February.
The great thing about working here is the diversity of the business, which in turn means the variety of roles. The support is there to help you develop and grow. Whether that’s providing courses to help you progress, or pairing you with a mentor, if you’re willing to work hard, the rewards are obtainable. (Also, the cars are pretty amazing to drive!)
When I consider my next career move I have to take into account I enjoy working in the field, but equally wouldn’t rule out an internal role. I really believe career progression is important, but equally you need to commit to your current role.
I enjoy taking part in different working groups to help network across the business. I have also been given a mentor who has been exceptional at offering guidance and support.
I need to develop my knowledge further and have enrolled on some courses and training days. Nothing is handed to you on a plate – you must demonstrate commitment, energy and passion in all you do. The opportunity is there and Volkswagen Group will support you and offer you the tools to help you progress, but no-one is going to push you as hard as you can push yourself.
Tactical Planning Manager
My role as a Tactical Planning Manager for SEAT can be broadly divided into three areas. One area is negotiating with the Factory to make sure we have sufficient tactical resources to meet our sales ambitions. A second area is determining the most efficient way to deploy those resources into the competitive market, maximising sales and profitability while supporting the wider brand objectives. Thirdly, I analyse and report on campaign performance to ensure we remain within our budgets while constantly adapting our approach to improve our results.
As Tactical Planning Manager you are responsible for one of, if not, the biggest budgets within the brand. With this comes great responsibility, but also great opportunity in terms of exposure at a senior level both nationally and internationally. Making and influencing decisions that directly affect the success of the brand is a hugely rewarding feeling.
I am relatively new to Volkswagen Group, having joined 18 months ago. I still have some things I want to achieve in my current role but will be ready for a new challenge in the not too distant future. The really good thing about the Group is that it embraces career progression and the size of the organisation means that there are lots of new career opportunities arising all the time.
I know it sounds a bit clichéd, but it’s the people that make this a great place to work. There is a can-do attitude inherent in everyone who works here, with everyone focused on improving the results for the company. It's hard work and at times there is pressure, but with the knowledge that everyone is pulling in the same direction, the results can be very rewarding.
Like many people who work here, I am ambitious and am keen to progress my career as far as I can. There are couple of areas of the business which I am considering for my next move and at some point it would be good to gain some experience in a different brand. Whatever my path, however, I am confident that the organisation will support me in my development.
National Used Car Manager
I am National Used Car Manager for Volkswagen Passengers Cars, giving me responsibility for three areas; Retailer used car performance and our customer used car programme called Das WeltAuto, wholesale performance, and Residual Value management.
My job has brilliant variety. No two days are the same and it touches many different parts of the business. Also, we are constantly developing new concepts, so there is huge job satisfaction in seeing these rolled out and brought to life.
I started on the Volkswagen Group Graduate Programme in 2005, which included placements in Audi, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles and ŠKODA, plus four months in Germany with Audi. After that I worked in tactical planning for Audi, which involved setting up finance campaigns, tactical programmes, bonus and target setting for new cars.
I then went into used cars for Audi as Used Car Development Manager, this involved taking responsibility for the used car field team and Audi’s used car programme. And finally my last role before my current position was an Audi Area Sales Manager. Being an Area Sales Manager is a brilliant role, and gives you a great insight into how the retail side, our Audi Centres, works. I’d recommend this role to everyone who really wants to get to grips with the business.
One of the best things about working for Volkswagen Group UK is the variety of roles that are available and the fact that there are five brands under one roof.
Moving from Audi to Volkswagen was like moving to a different company, but you have the benefit of knowing people and how the wider business works.
I am currently on Volkswagen Group’s Leadership Development Programme, so my aspiration is to become a Head of Department in the next five years. In all likelihood I’ll move into a different area of the business such as marketing, aftersales or network development in order to broaden my experience.
National Used Car Manager
I started out in the Financial Services arm of the business, processing a lot of the new business admin. I progressed to compliance officer, the national audit team then on to product development and moved to my current role in July 2013.
There’s been plenty of challenging times, not least adapting to the different behaviours that you have to adjust to when working in different disciplines. I’ve tried to be open to change, willing to take risks and not be so rigid in my career ambitions. Building a strong network of people across the business has proved invaluable.
Head of Marketing for Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles
I joined Volkswagen Group UK after seeing an advert for the graduate scheme in The Sunday Times and was immediately immersed in the business.
It was very intense, said Kirsten. The graduate scheme had several elements such as working for a dealership and in numerous other departments. But the best was five months in the Volkswagen Group factory just outside Mexico City. It was a fantastic experience to see the industrial operation.
Then I joined ŠKODA marketing as a Product and Planning Manager. This was a wide-ranging job with lots of contact with the factory. Then I moved to ŠKODA Communications Manager. It was a small and dynamic team and I had a broad remit. I managed the ŠKODA display at the British Motor Show which was a big responsibility. I was also in charge of national advertising and sponsorship. Following that I joined Audi as Centre Marketing Manager, taking responsibility for aftersales and used cars marketing and local marketing, leading a team of three.
From there I moved to Volkswagen Passenger Cars, first as the Marketing Communications Manager (Large Cars) and then as National Communications Manager, responsible for all communications for the brand. And in March 2014 I moved to my current role in Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.
It’s a very exciting time for the brand because this year we are launching two new models.
My managers trust me to do my job and to do it well, they have always been very supportive.
You don’t have to move from department to department, it’s okay to be a specialist. If you work hard and do a good job you will get the reward for it.
I have never felt at a disadvantage for being a mum and not always being able to work late. My managers have always supported me – it’s part of the Group way of doing things.