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Alumni Interview: Louiza Voorthuijsen from XITE

Louiza tells us everything about her job at the international music video brand XITE and her history with the MAA. Thank you Louiza for your interesting answers!

I think most of us already know about XITE, but for those who don’t, can you tell something more about XITE?

XITE is an international music video brand. We broadcast music videos through our TV-channel twenty-four hours a day. But the media landscape and our consumers are very dynamic. Therefore, we introduced a personalised music service, which makes it possible for consumers to like and skip music videos. We also have online channels where publish music-related content. The unique thing is that we execute the production ourselves.

That sounds like a very interesting company to work for! Can you tell something more about your function?

I work in the sales department. My title is officially ‘Manager Content & Brand Partnerships’ but I realise that this may sound a bit vague. Ultimately, I’m responsible for collaborations between XITE and brands. Check out the really innovative and successful collaboration between XITE and H&M here*:

* Sorry, the video is Dutch.

Can you name 3 characteristics that you definitely need for your function?
It is really important that you keep your knowledge up to date about the changing media landscape and our consumers.  Our target group is young adults and it is essential to really know the target group. Besides, my function requires a lot of empathy.  I work intensively together with other brands and advertisers so I have to recognise opportunities for them as well. And at the very least you need to be flexible, sometimes it is really busy.

How do you see the future of watching TV? Sometimes it looks like young adults are watching less TV.

I recognise that too, but the big screen will always be popular and there is still a TV present in almost every household. Although, I do believe that the way young adults watch TV has changed and therefore we introduced personalised music service. Consumers can like and skip music videos and create their personalised channel on XITE television. Furthermore, we’re constantly looking for new possibilities like a mobile application.

Why are music videos so important?

For music artists it is quite difficult to have a face nowadays. Maybe people recognize the song, but not the artist.  It is not only important for the artist but also for youth culture. For instance, think about the music videos of Madonna and the way she shed light on important social themes.

Can you tell us something about your history with the MAA?

Of course! I was an active member and chairman for the Marketing Beyond Borders (this is now called Careers Beyond Borders) committee. It was the first edition and we went to Dusseldorf.  And the skiing holiday and drinks were always very nice haha.

What did you learn from your role as chairman of the committee?

I really learnt how to work together because you have to deal with different personalities.  I still have to work a lot together in my current job, so it comes in handy. Additionally, I learnt how to motivate people. And this is also still very important in my current job. I can have nice ideas but I must convince my colleagues and have their support to carry out the idea. The MAA also helped to get me out of my comfort zone.

Finally, do you have some tips for students looking for a first job?

I think the most important thing is to look what your personal capabilities are. When you’ve got this clear you can find a job which suits you best. Personality test and talking to people can help you with this.

Written by Leonie Douma

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Hilti: Building a Better Future

‘Building a better future’ is one of the main objectives of the company Hilti. The building element in their case literally building as Hilti is the leading company when it comes to supplying products in the construction industry. This B2B company is also a loyal partner of the Marketing Association Amsterdam. But what is Hilti exactly? And what is it like working in such an industry? Today we speak with Nadine Gijzen, trainee of Hilti. She will help us understand more about the Hilti career possibilities and what it is like as a woman working in a male oriented sector.

Hi Nadine, thank you so much for finding the time to do this interview with me. Could you first tell something more about yourself and how you got in contact with Hilti?

Of course! My name is Nadine Gijzen and I am 27 years old. My study career started with International Business and Management. After finishing my bachelor’s I started a premaster and completed a Master of Strategy and Organization at the VU. My father always worked in the construction sector therefore I had heard of the name Hilti before, but I never imagined myself working in such a company. After my master’s I was looking for a sales traineeship. Like most people I started looking on LinkedIn and browsed on the Internet,  until I came across a vacancy with Hilti which said that it was also suitable for women. I became curious and looked for more information. Next, I wrote an application letter and before I knew it I was scheduled for an interview. Afterwards, I was invited to an introduction work day to better understand a regular day at Hilti. I really liked that day and the rest is history…

Ah nice! And what do you like most about working at Hilti?

The thing I like most about working at Hilti is the work climate. Everyone is just really informal and casual. The feeling that I get when working with my colleagues is one of the main reasons I enjoy Hilti.  Nowadays, I am often on the road in this period of my traineeship. Still I speak to many colleagues every day. The contact between colleagues is very good. A couple of months ago we even went on wintersport together. That is a really good way to develop friendly relationships with each other.

Did you already have a passion for construction?

No, not at all actually. That is also not that important for Hilti. Of course you need to have some affinity or interest in technics, and want to learn more about the product of Hilti. Though, you do not need to have a technical background. It is more about what kind of person you are and if that fits with the culture of Hilti. It helps if you are easygoing and social to handle clients. The technical stuff you will learn along the way, so do not worry about that!

Still the construction world looks like a male oriented world from the outside, how is this world for you as a woman?

Actually there are also a lot of women working at Hilti and more and more are joining. However, from the perception of the client they sometimes still have to get used to this. For example, in the beginning the clients were testing me a bit more than my male colleagues. They are just curious where you came from. But if you show them you know what you are talking about and if you don’t know right away, they want to see that you handle it right.

Ah good to know! And could you tell us something more about your traineeship and the career possibilities at Hilti?

Yes, I started this two year sales traineeship in January 2016. With this traineeship you work as an account manager for 2 years but at the same time you receive coaching and training. Now I am working for the outlaws program, this is a business case inside the company. Besides the sales traineeship there is a technical traineeship, but you marketers are probably less interested in hearing about that. Also there is an international program, where you can work as an account manager for 1 year and after you go abroad for a new assignment. For me the sales traineeship was the most interesting because I want to stay in the Netherlands for now. Although, If you choose one traineeship there are still multiple possibilities. In these 2 years working as an account manager I am building my own client network and I have the autonomy to control for myself for what I want to do next. Hilti is a big company, but the nice thing is that you can easily switch positions for a different function or a different location. It is also possible to apply for one position instead of a traineeship. Also there are possibilities for internships. That is a nice way to get to know Hilti!

Ah, and what kinds of study background are you looking for in your new employees?

We do not pay that much attention to which study you have done. Your personality is more important. We are looking for people who are social, communicative, independent and creative. Also we speak Dutch internally so that would also been a requirement. Still internationals are welcome if they are open to learn Dutch. Also our new director from Germany is learning Dutch now!

What will you recommend to people that are still doubting if Hilti is a good fit for them?

There is always a possibility to get to know us better! You can just come over for a cup of coffee and we can talk about your options. It is important that you have some interest in sales and that you would like to improve your sales qualities for the sales traineeship. Also everyone will have an introduction work day to really discover how everything works at Hilti. So, I would like to recommend to you to come talk with us, and ask yourself and us critical questions. You are not only there to present yourself but it is also the other way around!

Nice to know:

  • Nadine’s favorite tool of Hilti is the new robotic total-station, it can measure everything on the construction site!
  • Nadine’s most memorable Hilti experience is when the whole company visited the head office in Lichtenstein, which was very impressive!

Written by Suzanne Bolander

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My Day at Hilti

sam_4640-min

Today is the last inhouse day of the National Marketing Battle and I was placed to visit Hilit. Hilti? Oh yes, I recognize the name because they are often present at MAA events. But what exactly do they do? I was about to experience it for myself. Hilti is a company that is all about building equipment and building software, in other words buildings from A to Z. It’s not everyday that companies meet marketing students, so I was sure this was going to be something different than the many other companies we usually get to know.

sam_4633-minUpon Arrival, a line of cars were ready to receive us. They taxied us to their office in Rodenrijs, which is near Rotterdam. The marketing director of Hilti Netherlands gave an impressive presentation, told us what they are doing right now, and what they have achieved. I was impressed by their numbers, global presence, and the passion they embodied. Everyone seemed to love being on building sites, even girls like me – nothing I would have expected!

Before starting on the case, we visited the Hilti equipment store where we could see and feel the equipment for ourselves. I don’t know anything about drilling machines, but even I got the feeling these were high quality materials. After lunch, we were reset into groups to solve a case. It was a marketing case on employer branding. It was an interesting case, where we had to find a solution as to how Hilti can attract more students like us and increase their awareness. It is a tough job for them, as marketing students are less aware of the B2B business world, especially in building, than the standard FMCG companies who have huge budgets to spend on their recruitment. The case made us think outside of the box and was rather challenging.

sam_4649-minSadly enough, we did not win, I must say we had strong competition! Before I knew it, they day had come to an end and we were taxied back to the train station. I ended the day knowing a lot about Hilti, the industry they work in, their traineeship, and the possibilities.

Curious about Hilti yourself? Check out their traineeship and other vacancies at www.careers.hilti.nl/nl-nl!

Kind Regards,

Sascha van Ginneken

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“Direct en persoonlijk contact met onze klanten”. We spraken Marien Adema over marketing bij Hilti

5 minute read – english version available soon – happy reading!-

Hilti
is wereldwijd marktleider als toeleverancier van de bouw. Zij ontwikkelt en produceert haar eigen producten en diensten. Binnenkort kun je via de MAA kennismaken met Hilti terwijl je vaart over de Amsterdamse grachten, tijdens het ‘Start your summer with Hilti’ evenement. We spraken met Marien Adema, die tot januari van dit jaar werkzaam was als hoofd marketing bij Hilti en op dit moment hoofd is van de afdeling engineering.

Hoe is het om op de marketingafdeling van Hilti te werken?
“Bij Hilti werken we wereldwijd met meer dan 23.000 collega’s; de helft daarvan is dagelijks in contact met de klant. We werken op de marketingafdeling intensief samen met onze direct salesforce, dat betekent dat al onze marketingmedewerkers in direct contact staan met onze klanten.
Het draait bij Hilti om technisch complexe producten, en door zelf de verkoop en de marketing van deze producten in de hand te houden, kunnen we een meerwaarde bieden. Dit werkt in twee richtingen; op basis van de klantbehoefte geven wij het beste advies aan de klant en op basis van feedback van onze klanten ontwikkelen wij nieuwe producten. Zonder onze eigen direct

“Als marketing/sales manager geef je ook trainingen”

salesforce zou er een dealer of distributeur tussen ons en de klant in staan. Op onze manier kan de feedback van onze klanten direct worden teruggekoppeld aan onze eigen R&D. Als marketing/sales manager geef je ook trainingen, bijvoorbeeld tijdens onze Wave. Dat is een dag, georganiseerd door de marketingafdeling, waarop onze salesforce kennis maakt met en de nieuwste producten.

Het is dus heel afwisselend om op de marketingafdeling van Hilti te werken en je hebt veel direct en persoonlijk contact met onze klanten!”

Wat doet Hilti op het gebied van online marketing en digitalisering?
“Wij zien ze als twee verschillende dingen. We zien een enorme digitaliseringsslag in de bouwsector. Vooral Building Information Modelling (BIM) maakt grote stappen en maakt het mogelijk om een bouwproject tot in het laatste boutje of moertje te simuleren. Je bouwt eigenlijk een digitale maquette.

“BIM maakt het mogelijk om het bouwproject tot het laatste moertje te simuleren”

Voor Hilti betekent dit dat al onze producten veel eerder in het proces beschikbaar moeten zijn voor de klant in een digitale versie, zodat ze kunnen worden meegenomen in de simulatie van het bouwproject. Wij zijn al betrokken voordat er wordt begonnen met bouwen.
Tegenwoordig is alleen een goede website waar informatie over onze producten beschikbaar is dus niet meer genoeg. Er is behoefte aan een complete digitale versie van het fysieke product met alle eigenschappen die

daarbij horen, denk bijvoorbeeld aan onderhoudskosten en productiviteit van onze producten. Marketing is nauw betrokken bij het digitaliseringsproces en

0775.00.013-Boormachine_930x400het communiceren van deze digitale competenties naar de klanten.
Op het gebied van online marketing hebben we nu extra kanalen waarmee we contact met de klant kunnen hebben. We zien daarbij video als speerpunt, omdat dat het beste medium is om onze technisch complexe producten te demonstreren.”

Onder de marketingstudenten leeft de vraag: hoe het staat met de mannencultuur binnen Hilti, bestaat deze?
“Natuurlijk staat de bouwindustrie bekend als een mannenwereld, maar dat wordt steeds minder. Op de traditionele bouwplaats zag je vroeger over het algemeen geen vrouwen, maar de tijden zijn veranderd. Als vrouw kun je zelfs jouw competenties extra benadrukken: als jij bijvoorbeeld een nieuw generatie boorhamers presenteert, zullen de klanten misschien in het begin een vooroordeel hebben. Als jij dan kunt laten zien dat je goed bent in je werk en alles weet over het product, dan heb je daarna ook hun volledige vertrouwen gewonnen. Je wordt bij ons volledig op kennis en competenties beoordeeld en geselecteerd, of je dan man of vrouw bent maakt dus niet uit.”

Tenslotte, heeft u ons in een eerder interview verteld dat het overbrengen van enthousiasme en passie voor de producten belangrijk is als marketeer bij Hilti. Wat is uw favoriete Hilti product?
“Daar hoef ik niet lang over na te denken, dat is X-BT draadbout. Ik ben bij Hilti begonnen bij offshore en scheepsbouw. In die sector geven ze miljarden uit om constructies te bouwen en te onderhouden die extreme weersomstandigheden kunnen weerstaan. Het grootste probleem is echter: roest.  Vroeger ontstonden er problemen door het gebruik van bevestigingssystemen (boren en lassen) die de coating tegen het roesten beschadigden. Dit had allerlei gevolgen voor de veiligheid van werkomgeving. Hilti heeft in samenwerking met onze klanten een nagel ontwikkeld die je in staal kunt schieten, zonder dat je de coating beschadigt.

“Veiligheid en productiviteit, samengevat in een mooi klein nageltje”

Ik vind het zo’n mooi product, omdat daar alles in samenkomt wat wij als organisatie doen. We hebben het product ontwikkeld door middel van onze directe klantrelaties die als voedingsbron dienden voor onze R&D afdeling. Daarnaast hebben we onze klanten een stukje veiligheid en productiviteit kunnen bieden. En dat allemaal samengevat in een mooi klein nageltje.”

Ben je nieuwsgierig geworden naar Hilti?  Meer informatie en carrièremogelijkheden kun je vinden op: https://www.hilti.nl/managementtrainees#
Meld je hier aan voor het ‘Start your summer with Hilti’ evement: http://www.ma-amsterdam.nl/events/hilti

Door Marjolein Tromp