Development and advancement

We are competitive and innovative only if we can attract and bind highly qualified employees to our company. To this end, we are supported by custom-tailored programs and promotional measures in all important phases of employees’ individual training and career paths.

Vocational training. Our industrial-technical and commercial vocational training, as well as our study programs at the Cooperative University, enable us to secure the majority of young employees we require. To keep abreast with the latest developments, we continuously expand our job portfolio as required. In Germany, the Daimler Training System (DAS) ensures the high quality and efficiency of our technical vocational education.

With our international exchange programs for trainees and trainers, we create the basic requirements for mobility and flexibility, as well as for foreign language and intercultural skills. In 2014, more about 70 trainees and two trainers had a chance to gather their first international experience in countries like Spain, Hungary, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Sweden, Romania, and Turkey.

In addition, we are continuously internationalizing our training activities in order to achieve high training standards throughout the Group. For example, we have developed the Mercedes-Benz Qualification System (MBQS) for our international passenger car locations. The program sets the framework conditions for the development of required qualifications abroad. Furthermore, we are also establishing cooperative university elements outside Germany.

Currently, Daimler employs a total of 8,346 trainees (2013: 8,630), including 1,773 abroad (2013: 1,964). We are in the process of training another 1,400 young people (2013: 1,300) as part of cooperative agreements with schools at international locations.

  • Vocational training at Daimler

    New selection procedure for trainees. With the 2014 hiring year we introduced a new selection process for trainees at our locations and branches in Germany, which places a stronger focus on job-related skills, attitudes, and behavior. This enables a better assessment of a trainee’s future success. School grades are included in the evaluation as an overall average only at a later stage of the selection process. Therefore, they are no longer knock-out criteria in the new procedure.

    Learning with DAS. The training system, Daimler Ausbildungs System (DAS), defines uniform training modules for all German training locations. Each module is divided into the steps: information, planning, decision-making, execution, verification, and evaluation. The trainees plan the individual work steps on the basis of work assignments and guiding questions. They work on projects and real-life tasks, study in small groups, and conduct independent research. Talks with the trainers help them to reflect on and improve their decisions and actions.

    The trainees have online access to the training contents via the learning platform DAS@web. In addition, DAS@web also offers networking and communication possibilities such as an online tool that can be used to monitor learning success, among other things.

    We continuously adapt the DAS modules to current developments. This concerns technological trends such as “green technologies” as well as new teaching theories.

    International training projects. Our growing activities, primarily in “Emerging Markets,” create a requirement for multifaceted qualification training, which is frequently not adequately met by the local structures and course offerings. That is why we are establishing our company training centers and structures in some countries or actively supporting the independent activities of the respective regions. The following chart illustrates the countries on which Mercedes-Benz Cars is focusing at present. In addition, we offer targeted qualification training in Germany for the trainers at the international locations.
    Training activities at car facilities outside Germany
  • Cooperative University at Daimler

    The Cooperative University combines a three-year academic program in the sciences with regular practical work assignments. Each of the six semesters includes about 12 weeks of theory at the university and 12 weeks of practical work in the company. The curriculum comprises around 100 different subjects. Even a master’s degree is offered. Thus the cooperative state university is optimally aligned to the requirements of the current and future job markets. The Cooperative State University of Baden-Württemberg was the first of its kind in Germany. With around 34,000 students at 12 locations and more than 12,100 freshmen students in the 2013/2014 winter semester alone, it is the largest and fastest growing cooperative university of the state of Baden-Württemberg today. Daimler already supported the foundation of the university in 2009 and continues to provide active support for its expansion.

    Our cooperative university (CU) graduates excel with profound knowledge of the company as well as practical experience acquired through assignments in various business units in Germany and abroad. Facts and figures:
    • Number of CU graduates (formerly University of Cooperative Education) who have obtained a degree since 1972: more than 3,000
    • Number of CU students at Daimler in 2014: 697
    • Number of CU graduates hired by Daimler each year: more than 200
    • Number of CU courses of study at Daimler: 12, whereof 7 commercial and 5 technical
    • Number of students by fields of study: 75 percent technology, 25 percent business
    • Number of company study locations in Germany: 14

Recruiting and developing new talent. Our broad range of career entry and qualification training programs is directed at talented young people who are offered development prospects in our company. These include study programs at cooperative universities, support programs for students (Daimler Student Partnership), the FacTS sponsorship program for young skilled workers, the Group-wide CAReer trainee program, and the Daimler Academic Programs, which offer bachelor’s and master’s degrees or even an academic certificate.

  • FacTS sponsorship program

    Our FacTS program – the acronym stems from the German phrase meaning ‘skilled workers talent factory’ – is directed at particularly capable young skilled workers. Trainees who have completed our technical vocational training with outstanding results are selected to receive targeted support in the early years of their career. The program, which was rolled out in 2012, already had 33 participants in 2014.
  • Daimler Academic Programs

    Selected specialist staff and managers can study with company support as part of the Daimler Academic Programs to earn a bachelor’s or master’s degree and academic certificates that can be earned through part-time or full-time attendance at prestigious universities in Germany.

    The range of courses is geared to the main strategic and specialist emphases of our Group. The more than 40 courses of study that are available, are clustered in four main categories: engineering, production, IT, and special topics – including, for example, sustainability management. In the winter semester of 2014/2015, around 200 employees have been studies as part of the Daimler Academic Programs.

    Our managers can advance their specialist unit in line with their requirements with the help of the Daimler Academic Programs, by developing and retaining highly qualified specialist staff. The basis for this is provided by multi-stage internal company selection procedures and personal development plans, which are agreed on between the employee to be promoted, their supervisor and the HR department. Taken together, this enables the optimal coordination of interests and study contents between the employees and the company’s requirements.

    The employees who study as part of the Daimler Academic Programs are provided with financial support as well as the free time needed for their studies. Supplementary study support is also provided by a support and supervision program and a comprehensive alumni management. Daimler Academic Programs additionally offer many possibilities for networking within the Group and thus foster the transition from theory to practice.
  • CAReer trainee program

    Our CAReer trainee program enables university graduates, people starting their careers, and applicants with practical experience to get a job with the company. In 15 to 18 months the trainees complete at least three project assignments in various parts of the company and are fostered in a targeted way. From the outset they receive an open-end employment contract and a full salary. Since 2013, the focus has increasingly been on an international career. In 2014, we hired more than 200 trainees, a third of whom were hired outside Germany.

    Daimler Career Portal

Training and skills upgrading. In keeping with the principle of lifelong learning, we enable our employees to obtain further education and training — professional as well as personal — throughout their careers. In doing this we increasingly rely on E-learning and electronic means of communication. Once a year, superiors and employees meet to discuss qualification topics and agree on appropriate measures.

Continuing education is regulated by the general works agreement on qualification, which also provides that employees can leave the company for up to five years in order to obtain additional qualifications, and can subsequently return to the company. We give this opportunity to around 500 employees each year. Moreover, managers can facilitate employee qualification efforts through time credits and financial support.

The Daimler Corporate Academy (DCA) provides an integrated globally consistent qualification program for our specialist and management staff, who are provided with the same high-quality offerings, often in their respective national languages in many locations. The program covers the areas of management, specialist knowledge (HR, Finance, Procurement, IT) and cross-functional knowledge. In addition, the DCA also supports the strategic cooperative ventures of the corporate Group with customized offerings.

  • Key areas of qualification

    We advance the specialist and personal skills of our employees in six areas:

    1. Vehicle development

    The Technical Academy for Research & Development is responsible for keeping the specialist skills of employees in Product Development up to date and expanding them with an emphasis on the key aspects of the “Daimler Green Strategy.” In this respect, event formats such as the “Lecture and Academic Series,” the “Experts Campus” or the “RD College” have become established as proven learning platforms.

    2. Production

    A global standard for qualification of foremen. Our production locations are responsible for the qualification of specialists and managers in production. In this respect, the function of the foreman plays a decisive role in employee development. The foremen plan and manage the production processes and coordinate the deployment of workers. That is why their qualification is particularly important, not least because the foreman’s function represents an important pillar of our leadership system. For us, it is a crucial success factor for the creation of a consistent HR development concept and the related binding leadership culture. Since 2013, we have been testing a global standard for the qualification of our foremen at several locations as part of the Mercedes-Benz Qualification System (MBQS). In 2014, we successfully implemented this process (Group Leader Development Program, GLDP) at our locations in Tuscaloosa (USA) and Kecskemét (Hungary). Other international locations are in the planning stage.

    The Production Learning System. With the help of our Production Learning System (PLS) we ensure on-the-job training in our truck plants worldwide. PLS focuses on the employee. His or her knowledge and experience are to be provided to the colleagues at all locations. PLS enables this knowledge transfer. The IT-based system can map all work processes in the areas of assembly, production, and maintenance. Among other things, it offers the possibility to establish and regularly monitor a professional qualification training process and promptly inform employees of any changes. Moreover, PLS can provide central access to all important information for a particular area. PLS is supported by specially trained employees. As learning guides they encourage their colleagues to acquire knowledge in the work process.

    PLS is also useful as an assistance system as part of the future project “Industry 4.0” of the German Federal Ministry for Research and Education. Currently, we are advancing a system for the use of social media together with the federal ministry. In future, all employees involved in the production processes will be able to access the PLS information via mobile devices.

    3. Sales and customer service

    Global training. The Global Training unit ensures and strengthens the skills of our employees in the Mercedes-Benz Sales and Marketing organization. It develops the training concepts centrally and makes them available for all countries in seven languages, thereby enabling the concurrent provision of the latest know-how to all Sales and Marketing employees.

    In the concept development Global Training works closely with the Global Service & Parts business unit and the markets. A total of 746 trainers implement the concepts at 151 training locations worldwide. Each year they teach more than 150,000 participants new skills.

    4. Managerial and specialist staff

    Under the auspices of Daimler Corporate Academy (DCA) we have consolidated our range of individual training opportunities into three key areas:

    1. Management skills training 2. Specialist training for positions in Finance, Procurement, Human Resources, and IT 3. Interdisciplinary qualification training

    The bundling of these services enables us to qualify our employees around the world in line with uniform Daimler standards while utilizing our efficient learning hierarchies. Our global position additionally enables us to react quickly to business-division-related and regional developments.

    The training volume remained constant in 2014. Around 2,900 managers from 60 locations took part in the qualification training measures. We provided 14,000 employees with specialized qualification training. In the area of interdisciplinary qualification we organized about 1,600 events across Germany with 11,000 participants.

    Qualifying managers for today and tomorrow. Each year, the DCA creates an integrated globally standardized overall program for the qualification training of managers in the Daimler Group. As a member of the Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative (GRLI), DCA is additionally involved in the advancement of training requirements and concepts for the next generation of managers, which is to operate sustainably in the context of worldwide responsibility. We implement the results of the collaboration in the Daimler Leadership Programs. For more information on GRLI visit:

    Personal development coaching. Increasingly, we offer personal coaching to supplement the personal development of our managers. To this end, we have established a worldwide coaching pool of registered internal and external coaches, who have undergone a standardized quality review. This means suitable coaches are readily available, while also ensuring uniform quality of training and an increased transparency of contractual conditions. Worldwide specialist training. The goal of specialist qualification training is to ensure our managers’ and employees’ capacity to act and their professionalism. To this end, we provide instruction on specific methodological, system, and process knowledge for the specialist units. In doing this, we account for the globally valid corporate guidelines as well as regional topics. We continuously adapt our specialist qualification program to the strategic training requirements of the specialist units on the basis of skills profiles.

    5. Lean Management

    Lean Management is a method for raising the quality of production and administrative processes that extends to all employees. It is designed to streamline structures, avoid waste, and establish a process of continuous improvement. Today Lean Management is established in all product areas and the supporting processes at Daimler.

    6. Compliance

    We promote legally compliant behavior in our company with the help of training measures. We make use of on-site training and web-based training for this purpose, which lie in the hands of our Corporate Compliance organization.
  • Program “Professionals on the Move”

    Professionals on the move. Professional development does not necessarily have to be oriented to a rise on the career ladder (vertical development). It can also be focused on new specialist tasks, skills, and areas of responsibility (horizontal development). One offering with which we particularly promote horizontal development of employees is “Professionals on the Move.” The program is intended for all employees of Daimler Financial Services and is not limited to specific hierarchical levels. In four training modules and at least two work shadowing assignments, the participants can expand their professional and social skills and make valuable contacts. They work in individual projects at their own or other locations as well as in a joint project with all participants. The program is rounded off by development talks with the supervisors.


Qualification of employees in Germany
  2012 2013 2014
Investments in employee qualification (€ millions) 112 107 121
Qualification days per employee (total)/year 4.0 4.1 4.1
Qualification days per woman employee/year (recorded beginning in 2011) 4.3 4.2 4.3
Qualification hours per employee/year 28.0 28.7 28.7
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