Meet Sebastian: Assembly Group Leader in Uphusen
Sebastian Hobe is head of the recently established assembly department - a special cooperation with the local disabled workshops for the social inclusion of disadvantaged people.
What is your professional career like?
I am a trained car mechanic, then worked as a German Army soldier for 12 years as a master mechanic and since 2015 I have been working as a group leader of a contract manufacturing group in the local workshop for disabled people - I have prepared myself for this through additional special educational training.
What is special about the cooperation with Hydro for you?
It is a special opportunity for us and our employees to live the subject of inclusion - and in an international company. Our workshop for disabled people is located in the immediate vicinity of the Hydro plant in Uphusen and we were delighted when Hydro suggested an extended collaboration about two years ago. So far, my team has carried out the assembly work in our workshop and we have agreed to do this directly on the Hydro factory premises. Then the corona pandemic came and slowed us down a little. In the meantime, our employees were unable to do their work. Hydro made good use of the time. In the meantime, an existing work hall has been completely rebuilt to meet our needs and we were able to move into our new work space in mid-August 2021.
Now we can assemble aluminum components directly on the Hydro factory premises and have already implemented the first parts in the new environment. Our employees should be prepared for the first day in market and there is no better way to simulate these conditions. You are now integrated in a real industrial company, have an exchange with employees who work regularly at Hydro and enjoy being valued as real employees.
What do you enjoy doing at work?
Guiding and accompanying people with disabilities in the work area is simply a great pleasure for me. When I see how proud the employees with disabilities go about their jobs, participate in public life and are in a good mood and motivated at work, then that motivates me immensely. I think it's nice to create the opportunity for our employees to become part of society - right in the middle instead of just being there! It is important to encourage, but also to demand. The employees benefit immensely from this for their private and professional future.
Have you noticed changes in your employees after the short time?
The anticipation of the employees was huge and they feel well received and very comfortable in their new work environment at Hydro in Uphusen. The motivation to work is definitely on a higher level. Hydro also helps a lot with this. The work clothes, for example, were quickly available and our employees were very happy about them. Hydro workwear was still part of the conversation for days afterwards.
The factory tour, which was specially planned for our introduction, was a special highlight for everyone. How the material for our components is made from large aluminum bolts was extremely exciting - pride, fun and enjoyment at work, this is how the common path with Hydro can continue.