Name: Gilai Nachmann
Position: Production Management Graduate
Location: Stockholm, Sweden
Hello, my name is Gilai and being a Production Management Graduate (PMG) at Arla, I am currently finishing my first rotation at Stockholm´s milk dairy. Considering the fact you are reading this blog, you are most probably interested in applying to the PMG program. You’ve come to the right place! By the time you finish this post, I intend you to have had “a look inside” the graduate life and determined to have Arla as your future employer.
After finishing my engineering degree in Industrial and Environmental Biotechnology, I applied to several graduate schemes. Honestly, at first, I didn't even consider the dairy industry as a potential employer (boy was I wrong), I applied on a whim. I only knew that I would prefer an environment that supports self-development while letting me explore my newfound interest in management. Two awfully vague criteria to decide one´s future. Arla´s PMG program caught my attention in 3 ways.
Firstly, the extremely exciting opportunity to go on a rotation to a dairy in another country! Starting March 2020 I´m going to join the Stourton dairy in Leeds for a period of 6 months. I have never been to the UK and this gives me the opportunity to actually live there for a short period and explore the country. Additionally, this is the perfect way to grow in a company and find your niche. Challenging yourself by testing out different rolls and learning of the diversity in working methods abroad. If repetitive work usually drains your creativity, the PMG program with its fixed rotations is the perfect solution!
Secondly, the application process and time at the Assessment Center. When I got the news of being accepted for the next stage of the recruitment process I was on a long backpacking trip with no possibility of reaching the Arla HQ in Århus on time. I was ready to give up on the PMG program, but the recruiters supported me and covered my trip to reach the Assessment Center and back to my original location so I could continue my trip. It made me feel that Arla truly values their employees and that is something I appreciate until today. At the Assessment Center we were warmly welcomed and even got to meet Arla´s COO, Sami Naffakh! We had a group case study and personal interviews with leaders from supply chain and even got some pizza with Arla cheese for lunch (yum!).
Thirdly, my mentor, my buddy, my manager, and my HRBP. Arla will make sure that, as a graduate, you will always (ALWAYS) have someone to talk to. You are assigned a senior member of the supply chain leadership team to act as your mentor. You have a buddy that started the PMG program before you (if you are applying 2020 it will probably be one of us). You have your direct manager and an HR business partner at the dairy to answer all your questions. My first two weeks at the Stockholm dairy my manager and a previous PMG prepared an amazing colour-coded tight schedule for me, to meet with people and try out every roll at the dairy. I started my first Monday at work picking up milk at the farm, second day with process engineers, third day packaging, fourth day laboratory, etc. This gave me a great insight into the supply chain before starting to work for real. I could not have asked for a better introduction to a new job.
Lastly, if you want all your friends to question your career, calling you Mr. Milk Man and making endless cow-puns you are applying for the right graduate program! Join the program and become our new Arla Cow-league, it will be legen-dairy.