09. February 2010

HARTING Wins “Professional Woman 2010” Award

Left to right: Margrit Harting (Senior Vice President and Partner in HARTING Technology Group), Dr. Christine Hawighorst (State Secretary for Social Affairs, Women, Family and Health), Dr. Maitha Salem Al-Shamsi (Minister of State of the United Arab Emira

HARTING KGaA received the “Professional Woman 2010” award for the company’s outstanding commitment and special services to the advancement of women in business and the reconciliation of work and family life, and in recognition of their wide-ranging efforts to awaken the interest of young people, especially young women, in jobs in technology and science.

Maitha Salem Al-Shamsi, Minister of State of the United Arab Emirates, presented the award to Margrit Harting, Senior Vice President and Partner, and her daughter Maresa Harting-Hertz, Senior Vice President of Finance, Controlling and Tax, who accepted the honor on behalf of their family-run business. Dr. Al-Shamsi believes that the programs run by the HARTING Technology Group to support women, and the company’s activities promoting young people’s interest in training for jobs in technology are exemplary and deserve the highest of praise. “They set standards and serve as encouragement and an example for others to follow,” said the Minister in her speech at the award ceremony held as part of the “Technology is Female” symposium at Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences. The ceremony was presented by TV journalist and author Bärbel Schäfer.

“We need personalities who are role models,” emphasized Dr. Christine Hawighorst, Lower Saxony’s State Secretary for Social Affairs, Women, Family and Health, in her laudatory speech. This year’s prize winners are regarded as extraordinary role models. Osnabrück’s mayor, Karin Jabs-Kiesler, stated that now, more than ever, society cannot afford to do without the skills and expertise of women. “Women in technical jobs are a gold mine. And they have a rather more developed sense of moderation,” she added, alluding to the causes and the people behind the global financial crisis (mostly men). She also believes that the advancement of women contributes to creating more peaceful societies.

The competition, organized by the University of Applied Sciences and the City of Osnabrück and now in its second year, attracted entries from numerous companies and individuals, all of whom engage in a range of projects to provide special support to women in employment and in management positions and to increase the share of women working in the spheres known by the acronym MINT (mathematics, information technology, natural sciences and technology). The HARTING Technology Group won over the jury of scientists and industry experts with its successful concept of staff development and promotion of young managers, its activities to help people reconcile their work and family/private lives, and the company’s cooperation with institutes of teaching and research, all of which have been ongoing for many years. HARTING Technology Group offers an impressive 150 different work time models, for instance, in a bid to meet the varying needs of its employees and the requirements of its business. In close collaboration with schools and other educational providers, at trade fairs and exhibitions, during guided tours of the company facilities and in presentations, company representatives spread the word about the specific training routes available within their enterprise. Furthermore, special efforts are made to help dedicated women employees augment their skill sets. Of the 1,700 or so people who work at the Espelkamp and Minden sites, one-third are women. At HARTING one in six jobs in the MINT disciplines is held by a woman. And 13.5% of the company’s managers are women, which is substantially higher than the industry average. “And we plan to increase this even further,” promised Senior Vice President Maresa Harting-Hertz in her acceptance speech in the presence of Prof. Erhard Mielenhausen, President of Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences, and Petra Ledendecker, President of the Association of German Women Entrepreneurs. In the company’s vision, formulated back in 1996, HARTING set itself the goal of creating values for people. “And for us, that includes women and families in particular,” affirmed Mrs. Harting-Hertz.