Maintaining the high quality of apprenticeship programmes

Energie AG's in-house apprenticeship programme is an important competitive advantage. Since 1943, 1,571 apprentices have successfully completed their training and become top-qualified specialists in their fields. About half of these are still employed in the Company today. In September 2023, 24 youngsters (previous year: 22), began their apprenticeships at Energie AG in the areas of electrical engineering and metals engineering, as well as for the first time in IT systems engineering. In keeping with Energie AG's mission to promote diversity, apprentices of immigrant descent and asylum seekers also have their place in the Group. Through special early-stage campaigns and events, Energie AG seeks to retain these individuals while encouraging mutual exchange.

The cooperation with mandatory-attendance schools (electrical engineering polytechnic course, PowerGirls, Girls Day) and the job shadowing options continued in the past fiscal year.

Safety and health are especially important to Energie AG in its apprentice training. The Company offers professional workshops and seminars to provide guidance to young people on topics such as preventing addiction and using the internet safely, as well as a three-part communication training that is spread across the full length of the apprenticeship programme.

A comprehensive feedback tool for trainees was introduced in September 2023. Apprentices are now able to rate their current training situations every two weeks.

The most important milestone for an apprentice is the skilled worker examination at the Austrian Economic Chambers. The quality of training was also documented in the 2022/2023 fiscal year, receiving an outstanding result. Between them, the 18 current graduates (previous year: 16) earned 14 distinction grades in vocational school and 15 good or outstanding results in their final examinations. At the Apprentice Awards held by the industrial sector in Upper Austria, the team of Energie AG apprentices in their second year took the first, second and third place in the category energy technology.

In terms of sustainability with regard to the next generation of skilled workers, work on modernising and expanding the training workshop and apprentice residence in Gmunden began in fiscal year 2022/2023. The apprentice workshop currently operates with 20 energy technicians, three metal technicians and one IT technician per year. The expanded workshop will have room for 20 more apprentices, with modern technology deployed to ensure facility is adapted to train and support the professionals of tomorrow.

The recruiting process is continuously adapted to the situation on the market. Due to a multi-faceted approach geared to the qualification, local demand and place of residence of the candidates, all apprenticeship positions were filled with qualified young talents.

In 2018, Energie AG initiated the establishment of the “zukunft.lehre.österreich” association Future Apprenticeships Austria (ZLÖ). Its objective is to strengthen the image of apprenticeships in Austria. On 26 January 2023, Robert Machtlinger was elected to succeed DDr. Werner Steinecker, MBA as the new chairman of the Association Board. Joining forces with the other members of the association, Energie AG aims to restore the status that apprenticeships deserve as a key foundation of business and, in turn, of society both today and in the future. Since 2018, we have worked meticulously to design and advertise an Austria-wide apprenticeship platform and an apprenticeship-related image campaign aimed at the target group.