Help us to move the world

Experienced professionals talk about their experiences at Festo 

Testimonials by experienced professionals at Festo

Festo provides you with an amazing opportunity to put your ideas into practice. Together, we keep the world moving. Find out the prospects that we can offer you and your professional development by reading this selection of testimonials by our employees.

Susanne Krichel: Product and Application Trends

Susanne Krichel: Always looking towards the technology of the future
Susanne Krichel: Always looking towards the technology of the future

After studying to become an information systems assistant through an integrated course, Susanne Krichel decided to do a degree in engineering cybernetics at the University of Stuttgart. She earned her doctorate in 2012 and joined Festo as a research engineer. After two exciting years working in the Energy Efficiency section, in mid 2014 she switched to Portfolio Management, where she is involved with the futuristic field of ‘SupraMotion’ (superconductivitiy in automation technology) among other fields and now heads a team.

Innovation works wonders, both inside and out

‘I’ve always been enthused by the exciting work at Festo. It covers a vast range of topics, and I am given a lot of scope in my everyday work. Within the given timeframe, I always have the opportunity to look into and work on the topics that interest me. I also come into contact with a wide range of different areas and have plenty of opportunities for advanced training. You can almost feel the strength of the company’s talent for innovation, and it’s palpable from the inside, too.

At the moment my work involves checking innovations for their market readiness and potential at an early stage. This is done in close contact with the Pre-Development, Marketing and Sales teams and the customers themselves. What makes all of this particularly appealing is that I am working in an area that is still in its infancy – that’s both exciting and challenging at the same time. The people in my team have a wide range of skills. I love the open and friendly environment that we foster here.

A great mix of young and experienced colleagues

Of course, as a woman in a typically male-dominated environment you need to prove yourself at the beginning, but my colleagues are open and honest, and it’s really fun working with them. I enjoy working in mixed teams. The mix of young and more senior colleagues also makes collaborative work more interesting.

While some bring a fresh sense of vigour, motivation and new ideas to their career, others contribute many years of experience and a certain calmness. In this way, everyone – men and women, young and old – contribute different insights and ways of thinking, allowing us to balance one another out. This helps us to see projects from different angles and to find the best solution together.’

Silvia Rummel: Head of Process Development Grinding Technologies

The link between development and the start of production: Silvia Rummel (right)
The link between development and the start of production: Silvia Rummel (right)

Silvia Rummel studied technology management with a focus on design technology at the University of Stuttgart. While she was studying, she was also able to gain practical experience and make some initial contacts at Festo. She then wrote her thesis as part of her funded project. She subsequently received a PhD on ‘Assessment-based capability testing of technological concepts in the development of technology’.

Practical insight in industry

‘During my degree I realised that I wanted to work in the industry. After I graduated, I got a chance to do my PhD with Festo. The practical slant was vital for me. Over this period I worked in the Research department as a technology management specialist.

Since then, I have received my PhD and am working in the area of Process and Technology Development, where I can best apply what I know about the production environment. I deal with the very latest processes and technology on a daily basis at the plant. In this respect, process development is the link between development projects and production start-up. There is an international context to most of my projects. Collaboration with our international plants is multifaceted in nature, both in terms of content and in the personal contact with our colleagues worldwide.

On an equal footing with colleagues

Due to my work I have fascinating insights into the whole of the company, and have a range of responsibilities and plenty of scope for my own tasks and decisions. At the same time, Festo offers me lots of opportunities to further develop, both professionally and personally. I work a lot with male colleagues. They tend to approach work in a very honest and straightforward way, which I really appreciate. I have never found myself not being taken seriously in this male-dominated profession; quite the opposite, in fact: I make my contribution, and I’m respected for it.

Effective cooperation

There’s no need for sharp-elbow tactics at Festo. We rely on cooperation within our team and between the different departments. From the very outset I’ve felt as though I’m part of a big family at Festo, and I’m proud of working here. In the meantime, I have taken over a small team in the field of process development – we carry out technological developments in order to transfer new processes into quantity production.

Eileen Kaluza: Development Human Machine Interaction PA

Eileen Kaluza (right) thinks that close teamwork is important
Eileen Kaluza (right) thinks that close teamwork is important

Eileen Kaluza has been working and learning at Festo since 2011. She began by completing an integrated degree (duales Studium) in information technology at DHBW, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in engineering. Over this time, she has already had placements in several departments. Since 2014 she has been working as a software developer in process automation in Denkendorf.

Excellent development prospects

‘As I’m from Esslingen-Berkheim, Festo was my first choice for an integrated degree course due to its good reputation. Even during my studies, I was able to see for myself just how seriously Festo takes the vocational and advanced training and development of its employees. We were very well prepared for our future working life. Even now, as a software developer working in process automation, I’m able to take part in a whole range of internal and external development opportunities such as training, extra technology classes and language learning.

Developing embedded software for remote I/O

The information technology course comprises computer science and electrical engineering. After I had gone through a few departments at Festo, it became clear to me that I would like to work in product development. I enjoy working directly with a product and having something tangible in my hand at the end.

Programming also falls under my remit, of course, but even here the focus is always on the product. I work primarily on projects that relate to human–machine and machine–machine interaction. I also help to develop modules for our remote I/O. Ultimately, these have to be compatible with external products. As such, I make sure that our products are capable of being integrated into the automation systems used by different manufacturers.

My remit also includes competition analysis and regular tests on our products. This means that I have a lot of contact with other companies. But that’s not the only thing that brings variety to my job – I also have the range of different working environments to thank for that: I don’t just work at a PC, but can also be found in the laboratory, where I set up and conduct trials. In this capacity I work closely with the testing section.

Up until the point when a product reaches the market, a few things are of paramount importance: planning, technical approval, specifications and testing alongside the development process. Even though I might be working as part of a team, I’m responsible for my own tasks and their execution. This requires good time management and a structured approach.

Creativity and teamwork

Software development is a very dynamic area of the profession, and I’m able to use my own ideas in my work. Every project presents some sort of challenge. My work gives me the opportunity to really come into my own and develop further, not only as part of a team but also due to the wider sense of cooperation within the whole company. Overall, Festo really makes teamwork a top priority. This is apparent in the regular team-building initiatives, for instance. I now have development management responsibility in some projects.’

Daniel Ritter: Global operations project manager

As a project manager, Daniel Ritter (right) enjoys the combination of responsibility and appreciation
As a project manager, Daniel Ritter (right) enjoys the combination of responsibility and appreciation

Daniel Ritter obtained his master’s degree in industrial engineering, with a focus on mechanical engineering, before starting a traineeship in 2011 as an assistant to the plant management at what is today the Scharnhausen Technology Plant. He was then responsible for a wide range of topics as a project manager and, today, leads international production projects in Global Engineering.

Festo: still a leading name in engineering

‘It goes without saying that you hear a lot about Festo during your engineering course. But I only came into proper contact with the company when I was looking for a job. I was won over from my very first impression at interview: this was a place where the focus was on people.

Understanding the overall context of the company

As an assistant to the plant managers, I obtained a valuable insight into the overall context of the company. My projects involved lots of challenges and meant that I had a steep learning curve. Past work included coordinating cross-disciplinary project teams, overseeing and helping to shape strategy for the plant, and working on the production line.

After two years, I moved up to the next stage by making the transition to project management. In this role, I was able to take on responsibility for assembly optimisation, production and major plant projects. One particular highlight for me was taking part in the planning for the Scharnhausen Technology Plant.

After almost seven years at the plant, I am now working for international production projects in Global Engineering and am facing new and intercultural challenges.

Joining Festo was a real stroke of luck

My decision to join Festo was a real stroke of luck. The essential foundation for successful collaboration is interpersonal relationships, and this is a notable aspect of everyday work at Festo. Trust and appreciation foster a high level of motivation.’