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More than a bridge from industry to education

Taking part in shaping the workforce and gain a competitive advantage with early access to their future IT talent is an alliance indispensable for success.

SUCCESS FACTOR: Collaboration NTS and Cisco Networking Academy FH St.Pölten

boxenstoppNTS

Interview with Beatrix Ortner by Jutta Jerlich, Cisco Networking Academy Program Management Austria

What is the relationship between NTS and Cisco Networking Academies?

We closely work with Cisco Networking Academies in several locations in Austria connecting with students during their studies at the academies. We are looking for people with knowledge in the area of Voice, Data Center and Networking Technology.

NTS is closely working with the University of Applied Science FH St.Pölten because they have a strong Cisco focus in their study program. The students at FH St.Pölten usually come from HTL Spengergasse or HTL Rennweg which are among the most renowned Cisco Networking Academies in Austria.

The interaction between the academy and NTS encompasses a close relationship between NTS HR and the manager of the Cisco Networking Academy FH St.Pölten, the offer for a three months internship at NTS to students as well as an exchange of thought between NTS and the Cisco Networking Academy FH St.Pölten about the development of the curricula towards topics needed in the market, such as for example voice and data center knowledge.

Foto4The NTS Trainee Program

Studies at a University of Applied Sciences in Austria have the requirement to complete a three months professional internship with a company during their Bachelor-studies. This three months internship is offered to students from the FH St.Pölten. There is no more recruitment or advertising of the internship positions needed because of the close contact resulting in students being selected on a very direct and personal level.

At NTS the three months internship is called trainee program and about 3 to 4 trainees are taken every year. When the students start at NTS, they get a mentor assigned based on their topic of interest. They have the support of this mentor also for a project they have to complete for their studies. At the same time they work with customers from their first day onwards.

During the three months it is easily possible to see if the young talent has the required knowledge and attitude as well as if there is a cultural fit. In return the intern can see if NTS is a company he or she wants to work for. The experience is that all trainees are being offered employment, accept it and stay in the company.

If the students do want to continue their Master studies for another two years. NTS offers them to work part-time for 20 hours and 100% employment after they complete their Masters.

Can you describe the impact this had on NTS?

Due to the closeness to the Cisco Networking Academies NTS is able to plan with and rely on a talent pipeline for their company development plan. The key factors are:

  • Very high (almost 100%) employee retention rate
    We have almost no loss of employees, they enjoy their work. Giving our young talents responsibilities and valuing their contribution leads them paying back double.
  • Almost doubled the size of the company in 3 years
    NTS managed to grow the company from about 80 employees to almost double the number today in only 3 years.
  • Have an open company culture with motivated people and a constant new technology inflow
    The motivation of the young people is worth a whole lot for NTS. They are open for new ideas and new topics. They also bring new skills into the teams that are very important for the overall development of the company.

We include FH St.Poelten into our development plan, we could not achieve our company goals without them.

Are there other ways you engage with education and society?

NTS is engaging in the new initiative of Cisco Austria and Cisco Networking Academy Austria, the Top Talent Club Austria. Since there were not yet any female applicants for the NTS trainee program, NTS want to support women coming into IT. Therefore NTS and the FH St.Pölten, initiated and supported by the Cisco Networking Academy Program Management Austria, are in the process of designing a program and/or initiative supporting und mentoring female students already during their studies to keep them motivated to actually finish their studies.

There is also an initiative being designed that should help the FH St.Pölten to attract more female students to their study programs.

NTS – CISCO GOLD PARTNER in AUSTRIA www.nts.eu The Company was founded 19 years ago by Herr Albler and Herr Koller in Graz, Austria. The collaboration and early engagement with Networking Academy Students is and has been instrumental for building a pipeline of highly qualified and motivated young talents for their company development.

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