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Jan - Program Manager Product Management

“Arrival 0:32 h. Journey time: four hours and 30 minutes,” says the voice of Jan’s satnav device every Sunday evening at around 8 p.m., when the qualified commercial computer scientist sets out from his home in Münster on the 559-kilometer drive to the Vogtland region. Jan is one of a number of colleagues who commute between west and east and between their families and their workplace almost every week. They live in the likes of Hamburg, Münster, Frankfurt and Stuttgart. “It’s not unusual to travel for your work. After all, it’s pretty normal for people to commute or work away on installation projects,” says Jan. An interesting job is worth commuting for. “This company is growing, new products are being developed, we’re entering new markets. The world of solutions and the entire sector is in a transition phase, the retail industry is reinventing itself as we speak. Although my previous employer was based close to my home in the Münsterland region, my work was nowhere near as dynamic as this.”

This company is growing, new products are being developed, we’re entering new markets.

At home, his three children are busy with school, sport clubs and their friends. During the week he catches up with his family via Skype or a wide range of other communication channels such as telephone, email and text messaging. He mainly uses his time in Vogtland to work hard during the day and – as a sports lover – to do some sport in the evenings: climbing, mountain biking, running. Then at the weekend his time is for his family. And he often has a break from commuting during holiday periods because his family usually joins him in Vogtland.


Discovering a new part of Germany

“Thanks to my work we’ve discovered a region that we never knew before.” This year the family celebrated Christmas together in the town where Jan works and then spent some time exploring the Saxony region, and in the spring the family’s eldest son will be doing a work experience placement at GK Software. Jan: We’re discovering a region of Germany that we never knew before. For us, before reunification, East Germany seemed more remote than the USA. We knew more about what life was like in America than in this part of Germany.” Now, work is bringing west and east closer together.


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