Prodrive – an appealing opportunity to experience work life entry.

A few weeks ago, we interviewed two alumni/students from Tilburg University who entered their business life at Prodrive technologies, located in Eindhoven.

Our aim was to gain some insights into how previous students experienced their path from the end of their studies towards post university life and what opportunities arise at the dynamic technology company.

Mees van der Heijden: Global Category Manager, started at Prodrive in December 2020 as a category manager for distribution services and is currently finishing his master

Daan Kuijpers: Global Category Manager, started in January 2021 at Prodrive for writing his thesis

According to the two abovementioned the mentality within the company is very modern and energetic due to the young, open and dynamic teams. The average age of the approximately 2000 employees lies between 25 and 30.

“You get quite a lot of responsibilities, especially when you start, they just throw you in the sea and check if you can swim”. – Mees van der Heijden

 “This company is really attractive for ambitious people that want to have a lot of responsibility.” Each individual has a high learning curve, already from the beginning on. Therefore, it is definitely a company where it is nice to start directly after you graduate – Daan Kuijpers.

In addition, it is nice to see that you meet a lot of people that you have seen before: there are working maybe eight or nine category managers who studied on the university supply chain management.

Throughout the interview, we obtained an impressive picture about the work tasks and the structure within the company.

So, how did you guys end up at Prodrive as your employer and how was the start at Prodive itself?

Mees went to the Tilburg Career Days and had a personal interview with a HR responsible from Prodrive. He was looking for a potential company to write his thesis at and Prodrive’s flexibility for students catched his attention. At Prodrive you receive great support for writing your thesis. In addition, as a Master student you get the opportunity to work for instance 12 hours per week to learn more about tasks and responsibilities that are involved with working at Prodrive.

How did Covid-19 change working at Prodrive?

Purely from the work perspective, it was quite easy to work from home because Prodrive got the latest SAP programs and offers support in creating your home office. Covid made meeting new people a bit more difficult than when you would work at the office, however, Prodrive organised sport events to meet people from your project team or others if you like that.

Regarding the supply chain, there were more challenges. There were fluctuations in the forecasts from our customers, market changes and shortages in several markets which made purchasing more difficult. Overall, the learning curve was big since you had to be flexible during these times and Prodrive as a whole still managed to grow during this Covid crisis.

So you already gave a little inside into working at Prodrive, could you guys elaborate on that?

As mentioned earlier, at Prodrive you get quite some responsibilities right from the start. There are always people available that can support you if you are facing challenges. The team that you get to work in is predominantly young, ambitious and dynamic, so that should suit you. Prodrive itself is growing at a rapid pace, since the growth rate for the last 20 years was 25% annually. The young team, together with the decent working conditions makes working at Prodrive a fun environment.

In conclusion, do you have a piece of advice for the students who are going to enter the job market soon?

Of course, advice is always tricky to give, but an important aspect when looking for a job is orientating if your future colleagues have the same drive and ambitions as you as a person have. That can be in a small company or a large corporation, just what you like. If you find anything that really suits you, you will logically benefit from that in your working career.

If you are interested in working at Prodrive Technologies after reading this article, feel free to look at for your chances to kickstart your career at a rapidly-growing, ambitious company!

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