Career 4.0: How Digitization Is Revolutionizing Work

Digitization is facilitating new forms of work and collaboration, while at the same time confronting industry with a new set of challenges. As the need for a technically qualified workforce goes up, the number of qualified workers continues to go down. Let’s have a look at how the Germans face the problem. The Hannover Messe supporting program titled “Career 4.0”, exploring the different requirements and opportunities in this sphere, provides useful information.

by Elena Magistretti

Digitization is revolutionizing the world of work: robots work hand in hand with humans or travel autonomously through warehouses. Technologies like augmented reality and virtual reality connect workers with the factory, while exoskeletons support them on the job. Meanwhile, energy consumers are developing into energy suppliers.
But industry is still confronted with some major challenges. According to an economic survey commissioned by the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce (DIHK), German manufacturers view the shortage of skilled labor as their main business risk, since it means having to turn down new orders, postpone investment in new technologies and cope with the related wage hikes. By 2030, the economic research and consulting firm Prognos is forecasting a skilled labor shortage of approx. three million people.

A supporting program aiming at building a qualified workforce
With Carreer 4.0, Hannover Messe is providing a supporting program dedicated to examining the steps needed to resolve this shortage and build a qualified workforce. The program consists of three main elements – job and career, WoMenPower and Young Engineers Day, with a shared focus on questions like, “What can industry offer me in terms of my career? How can I move up the ladder professionally? How can I balance work with family life? What training courses are important for me?”. Career 4.0 provide students, young professionals and experienced workers with comprehensive information on job vacancies and career opportunities while showing them the radical impact of digitization on the world of work and the kind of requirements they need to prepare for. This is the path Hannover Messe is adopting to support exhibitors in terms of their training and recruiting measures.

A special program focused on woman’s work
With WoMenPower Career (Conference on Friday, 27 April), Hannover Messe will focus the attention on woman’s work. Geared to working specialists and managers as well as career novices and students, the program will consist of presentations, panel discussions, workshops and networking events. The motto in 2018 is “New Work – Careers in a Changing World”. The “Engineer Powerwoman” award will be announced at WoMenPower. This career award honors women who have made special contributions to the technical environment of their companies, with an independent jury selecting the final winner. The prize is endowed with 5,000 euros. The awards ceremony takes place on 27 April as part of the official WoMenPower opening ceremony.

Industry meets university within “job and career”
“job and career” is another traditional rendez-vous at Hannover Messe: an event geared to professionals and managers from industry on the one hand, and to university students and graduates on the other. Apart from chatting with potential employers, job seekers can learn about topics like further training and career planning. Up on the job and career STAGE, technical and career specialists will discuss business topics and provide training and workshops, with offerings ranging from personal and professional development to career tips.
The “job and career” online portal carries more than 1,000 job vacancies posted by Hannover Messe exhibitors, including Audi, Aerzener Maschinenfabrik, Ferchau Engineering, Festo Didactic, the Fraunhofer Academy, the Karlsruhe Institute for Technology (KIT), the Leibniz Association, Phoenix Contact, Pilz, Rittal, the Association of German Engineers (VDI) and the German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers’ Association (ZVEI). Interested job seekers can use the portal to search for potential employers and schedule appointments with them right at the fair.

A full day dedicated to young engineers
Staged jointly by the Association of German Engineers (VDI) and Hannover Messe, Young Engineers Day on Thursday, 26 April, is geared to students with technical and engineering majors, featuring topic-specific guided tours and information offerings. Students and young engineers from the VDI network can visit exhibitors in the fields of robotics, Industry 4.0, lightweight construction, energy and drive technology. Participants stand to benefit particularly from this opportunity for direct contact and dialogue with representatives of industry. l

(Source: Hannover Messe)