The working connection of ExxonMobil and IBS goes back to more than 5 years. Representatives of Exxon keep coming to IBS career days, and they are often invited as guest lecturers.
September 18 was the first “ExxonMobil day” within the induction week, when representatives of the company, Gero von Frieling (General Accounting Division Manager, Controllers), Zita Kancsár (Senior Recruitment Advisor), and Peter Zsirai (General Accounting Supervisor, Controllers), held a presentation about ExxonMobil, talked about the company in details, and about the options how to join. This interview with Gero von Frieling and Zita Kancsár was conducted on this occasion.
What were your impressions about the session this morning? Did you receive some interesting questions?
Gero von Frieling: For me it was particularly interesting. I am the management sponsor of the Ambassador Program and it’s the first time I am here at IBS. I was surprised by the high number of people showing up. I was impressed how interested some of the people were. They were excited about what we are doing and that we are a potential employer for them, only 10-15 minutes away on the other side of the Danube. I think we attracted some people.
Do you already have experiences with IBS students, either as interns or employees?
Zita Kancsár: We certainly do. I did some interviews with IBS students, I can tell that they were very well prepared, having excellent English which is essential for our jobs. They have very good presentation and conversation skills, you can sense the international air, atmosphere, education around them. Later on, they all proved to be very good employees for us. They have a constructive approach, and the ability to make conscious decisions.
What would you recommend to students who would like to have an internship or job at Exxon?
Zita Kancsár: For an interview, I would recommend to be conscious of your skills, and be sure what skills you would like to develop. It is also useful to rehearse for the interview as it is a challenging situation, even if you had several mock interviews in school. Try to think about all the skills that the company would like employees to have. We are a huge business support centre, and international business students would mainly go for controller type of jobs. We are supporting controllers, information technology, fuels and lubes business operation, upstream commercial operations, so connect these skills with your own skills, know what skill are needed for a certain type of job. Think it over how you could demonstrate it during an interview, by giving also specific examples.
Gero von Frieling: I would like to advise to be yourself, do not try to appear, to be someone else. An ideal candidate is honest and straightforward. A candidate should also be aware that coming to ExxonMobil from a university does not mean the end of studies, on the contrary, it is the beginning of a life-long learning process. Business is changing tremendously for all companies, including ExxonMobil, and the speed of change is faster and faster. That requires a willingness to keep learning, which is supported by our numerous training programs.
I can also add that one of our priorities is a focus on safety. Nobody should get hurt – this is an ExxonMobil motto that we always keep in mind.
Zita Kancsár: We have a health initiative, we are very conscious about common safety and wellbeing everywhere.
What do you think the most attractive features of ExxonMobil are for a potential employee, for our students?
Gero von Frieling: I was working here in the Budapest office twelve years ago, then I had other positions in the German office, before coming back here. In the last 12 years the company has changed a lot: now we have a broad, interesting and wide area of opportunities that we are offering to new hires. We offer a big variety of jobs, from product movement and inventory to general accounting, financial accounting, tax and payroll accounting. At the interviews we always ask, what would be the preference of the candidate. We also offer opportunities to develop, to gain deep knowledge, which then can be a foundation to grow in the company. We can offer different job locations, also assignments outside of the country, positions for individual contributors, managerial roles. Those colleagues, who are more interested in technical type of jobs, can find those as well. Anybody who is interested in this broad variety of business jobs is welcomed in ExxonMobil.
Zita Kancsár: ExxonMobil is a mature business support centre, it means that we concentrate a lot of knowledge. I would like to emphasize how many initiatives we have, which people can join, participate in. We also measure the satisfaction of our employees. Next week we have a Career Open day event where you can meet folks from other departments, if you would like to move from controller to IT, or the other way around, you can learn about the other departments in this event, you can learn about the other processes.
We also have a committee for those who are working for us for more than two years, and I can say that more than 50 % of ExxonMobil employees have been working here for more than 6 years, which is outstanding. We have a charity initiative, culture of health initiative, event organisation team, and many other initiatives and committees employees can join. Our aim is that people feel that they belong to one team.
Could you tell a bit about your ambassador program?
In the ambassador program we interact with students and universities, as it is of a key importance to connect with future colleagues, whom we would like to welcome in our company. We have a lot of new opportunities in our business support centre and offer long-term career. I am here for the first time at IBS and I am very happy to be here and was impressed by this great event. Thanks for the opportunity.