Apprenticeships

IWC IS LOOKING FOR EXCEPTIONAL PEOPLE

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Behind every exceptional watch is a group of exceptional people.
Switzerland is not only famous for its watches, but also for its modern training methods. Both have a long tradition at IWC. Since being founded by an American master watchmaker in 1868, the International Watch Co. has been producing innovative timepieces which enjoy an excellent reputation the world over.

Professional pride
Since the foundation of IWC, we have been training young professionals who carry our knowledge and expertise into the future. It is important to us that the trainees we send out into the world of work are outstanding professionals who demonstrate joy, pride and creativity in performing their roles. To enable us to achieve this ambitious goal, we have developed detailed IWC training courses for each profession. The courses include a wide range of clearly defined tasks which you cover during your basic vocational training, and guarantee that the training you receive is of an excellent standard.

IWC is looking for exceptional people
Our training programme is aimed at motivated young people who want to shape their future through their passion, skill and dedication. We aim to teach you as much as possible during your training. This not only includes watchmaking skills; we also want to help you think and work in an independent and entrepreneurial manner, to enjoy working on innovative solutions and to rise to the challenge of only accepting the best results.

MASTERS OF THEIR ART DON’T JUST FALL FROM THE SKY

The future belongs to the experts
We provide you with the foundation for embarking on a promising career. Of course, you also have to play your part by being motivated and reliable while demonstrating commitment and a willingness to learn. An apprenticeship at IWC will both challenge you and help you to develop your talents. Working from this base, ambitious professionals are able to further their development. If you already know that you want to go right to the top, the vocational diploma (Berufsmatura) is your ticket to a university of applied sciences.

Working together to achieve success
We will assess your newly acquired knowledge during regular training checks. These help both you and us to identify and rectify gaps in your training and thus make sure that you continue to enjoy your work. In order to deepen your understanding, you record the most important working and operational processes in your workshop book.

TECHNICAL PROFESSIONS

WATCHMAKER

SPECIALIZATION IN INDUSTRY
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Watchmakers assemble mechanical and electronic watches and ensure that these are well maintained during service. They lend support to those working on the design and production of parts, while also providing advice during the development, design and manufacture of accessories and tools for watch production. Prototype construction, trials, tests and the optimization of working procedures are also part of their job.

Career prospects
Watchmaking is a demanding profession which spans the fields of micromechanics and electronics. As a qualified watchmaker, you will work in the assembly department, design office or laboratory. This varied training programme also opens doors in the microtechnology and microelectronics sectors.

Training programme
IWC specialist programme
• External courses in basic technology
• Assembly technology
• Repair technology
• Production of tools and parts
• Tasks from the production process of the training company

The first 3 years of training are classified as basic training (Basisausbildung) for levels G and E. As part of an introductory course, you will acquire the basic skills and knowledge relating to the manufacture of simple tools, including appliances for filing, milling, turning and drilling. You will then receive a step-by-step introduction to the assembly of mechanical and electronic watches. This begins with the assembly of the basic structure and incorporates all subsequent steps, including regulation, dial/hand fitting and the installation of the movement in the watch case. During your 4th year of training, you will work with more complicated watches and repair technology. This includes laboratory work, the optimization of working processes, production equipment and quality assurance. After 3 or 4 years of basic vocational training, the programme is completed with a theoretical and a practical qualification component.

Vocational school
Your specialist lessons and the teaching of general subjects take place at a vocational school. The job-related subjects include the science of watchmaking, working principles, physics, materials science, electrical engineering, watch electronics, technical drawing, English, French, combined occupational studies (business organization, customer service, laboratory work) and professional knowledge from in-depth training (production technology, quality assurance, microelectronics). If you received excellent grades at school, you can also attend a vocational training college (Berufsmittelschule) during your basic vocational training. This provides a solid foundation for later further training.

Qualification certificate
• Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a practising watchmaker after 3 years
• Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a watchmaker specializing in industry after 4 years
• Certificate of apprenticeship from the training company for both professional qualifications

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma with good grades
• Good performance in physics, mathematics and technical drawing
• Fulfilment of admission conditions

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Technical understanding
• Dexterity
• Excellent spatial perception
• The ability to concentrate for long periods
• The ability to work in a precise and tidy manner
• The ability to sit still for long periods

Training duration
• Practising watchmaker: level G – basic requirements in 3 training years
• Watchmaker specializing in industry: level E – extended requirements in 4 training years

Professional development opportunities
• Position as an area or departmental head
• Further study at a technical college or university of applied sciences
• An engineering degree at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) via a university of applied sciences or after completing your school leaving examination (Matura)
• Position as sales engineer
• Position in pre-production

EVERYTHING STARTS WITH A FRESH IDEA

For over twenty years, the Cartier Watchmaking Institute (IHC) has given watchmaking apprentices the chance to showcase their creativity and expertise through a competition – a combination of technical and artistic skills are required.

During the 2015 competition, three of our five apprentice participants received top positions. Tamara Bucher and Loris Spitzer received 6th and 7th place, and Joel Baldegger was awarded second place.

The invitation for the competition was sent to 102 apprentices from Switzerland and Glashütte (Germany), and 84 ideas were examined by the jury.

The task was to create a mechanism that indicates day and night in a creative way, but there were some restrictions which had to be taken into account. Only watch components specific to the Unitas 6497 movement were permitted. All other components had to have been produced by the participant. The use of a milling machine was prohibited as the focus of the competition is on the watchmaker’s handwork. The size of the movement and dial couldn’t exceed a diameter of 60 mm and the height limitation was set at 15 mm. Students were free to choose which materials to use for their work on the dial.

In addition to the outstanding performance at this competition, Alexander Götze came out as a winner at the Yount Talent Competition of the AHCI.

IWC is proud of their future watchmakers and happy to share their fresh ideas with you.

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POLYMECHANIC (SWISS FEDERAL VET DIPLOMA)

SPECIALIZATION IN PRECISION ENGINEERING

Polymechanics provide support to the designers. They offer advice during the development and design of tools and appliances for the production of watches. Using modern materials and computer-operated machines, polymechanics produce individual parts, monitor the production process, build prototypes and perform tests.

Career prospects
Working as a polymechanic is a demanding role which offers you a variety of development and further training opportunities. As a polymechanic, you can work at companies in the metal, machine and electrical industries. Choosing this career path provides you with good opportunities on the job market, as there is great demand for qualified specialists.

Training programme
• External courses in basic technology
• Basic company training in accordance with the IWC training course
• Partial examination after the first 2 training years
• External courses in CNC technology
• Assembly technology
• Preparation of simple design tasks
• Tasks from the production process of the training company

As part of the external course, you will be acquainted with the basic skills and knowledge for the production of simple parts. You will learn the arts of filing, milling, turning and drilling. During the first 2 years of your basic vocational training, you will gather knowledge in accordance with the model training programme and subsequently complete the mandatory partial examination. In the second part of your basic vocational training, you will deepen your knowledge further by performing mechanical tasks at the company. Special training modules will help you to expand your expertise in the areas of production and assembly. After 4 years of basic vocational training, the programme is completed with a theoretical and a practical qualification component.

Vocational school
Your specialist lessons and the teaching of general subjects take place at a vocational school. The subjects covered include mathematics, IT, physics, chemistry, technical English, materials and production engineering, drawing techniques, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, electronics and control engineering as well as learning and working methods. If you received excellent grades at school, you can also attend a vocational training college (Berufsmittelschule). This provides a solid foundation for later further training.

Qualification certificate
Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a polymechanic as well as a certificate of apprenticeship from the training company.

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma with good grades
• Passion for mathematics and geometry
• Fulfilment of admission conditions

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Technical understanding
• Spatial perception
• Ability to work in a precise and tidy manner
• Ability to think logically
• Passion for mechanics

Training duration
This professional training programme is taught at two requirement levels:
• Level G – basic requirements in 4 training years
• Level E – extended requirements in 4 training years

Professional development opportunities
• Position as an area or departmental head
• Further study at a technical college or university of applied sciences
• Further study at a university of applied sciences
• An engineering degree at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) (machine engineering, electrical engineering, IT, etc.)
• Position as a sales engineer

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DESIGNER (SWISS FEDERAL VET DIPLOMA)

SPECIALIZATION IN WATCHES

Designers prepare technical documents and drawings for production activities in the machine, watch and metal industries. With in-depth knowledge of mechanics and production engineering and as experts in the selection of materials, they work together with production staff to seek constructive solutions for the manufacture of the products.

Career prospects
Designers work in the machine, electrical and metal industries. Other possible places of work include engineering firms and public companies. Working as a designer is a demanding role which offers you a variety of development opportunities and good chances on the job market.

Training programme
• Principles of drawing
CAD (computer-assisted design) training course
• Processes
• Detailed drawings
• Assembly drawings
• Simple design tasks
• Tasks from the production process of the training company

Following a thorough introduction to the basic skills and know-how for the creation of technical documents and drawings, you will build on your acquired theoretical knowledge during workshop training. The basic training is rounded off by a course in design methods. In the area of design, we also place particular emphasis on the promotion of soft skills such as independence, creativity and the ability to work as part of a team.

Vocational school
Your specialist lessons and the teaching of general subjects take place at a vocational school. The timetable includes mathematics, IT, learning and working methods, physics, technical English, materials engineering, production engineering, drawing techniques, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, electronics and control engineering. If you received excellent grades at school, you can also attend a vocational training college (Berufsmittelschule). This provides a solid foundation for later further training.

Qualification certificate
Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a designer as well as a certificate of apprenticeship from the training company.

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma
• Passion for mathematics and geometry
• Fulfilment of admission conditions

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Technical understanding
• Excellent spatial perception
• Good mechanical understanding
• Ability to work in a precise and tidy manner

Training duration
• Level E – extended requirements in 4 training years with vocational diploma (Berufsmatura)

Professional development opportunities
• Position as an area or departmental head
• Position as a design manager
• Further study at a technical college or university of applied sciences
• An engineering degree at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) (machine engineering, electrical engineering, IT, etc.)
• Position as a sales engineer

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SURFACE FINISHER (SWISS FEDERAL VET DIPLOMA)

WATCHES AND JEWELLERY

Surface finishers are specialists in the sanding and polishing of high-quality parts. They possess mechanical expertise, choose techniques and define the various processes. They service and set up machines, know the qualities of the various sanding and polishing agents and hand-finish the workpieces.

Career prospects
Surface finishers work in the watch and jewellery industry as well as at medical-technology companies. This challenging profession requires dexterity and patience and is in demand wherever surface finishing is required.

Training programme
• Basic external course in mechanical work
• Basic training in surface technologies in accordance with the IWC course
• Training in and familiarization with the related departments
• Insights into the area of electroplating
• Trainee exchange with two cooperating companies
• Tasks from the production process of the training company

Following a thorough introduction to the use of machines and the acquisition of basic knowledge in the area of mechanics, you will be introduced to the skills involved in surface finishing. In the case and parts manufacturing department you will acquaint yourself with the various sanding, polishing and lapidary techniques. During your exchange at associated training companies, you will get to know new products, expanding your knowledge in the process. After 3 years of basic vocational training, the programme is completed with a theoretical and a practical qualification component.

Vocational school
Your specialist lessons and the teaching of general subjects take place at a vocational school. The subjects covered include working techniques, gemmology, technical drawing, production engineering and basic history, as well as the Precious Metals Act, materials, workplace safety, health and environmental protection, toxins, risks and disposal.

Qualification certificate
Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a surface finisher for watches and jewellery as well as a certificate of apprenticeship from the training company.

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma
• Fulfilment of admission conditions

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Technical understanding
• Steady, skilful hands
• Patience and ability to work for long periods
• Ability to work in a precise and tidy manner

Training duration
• 3 years

Professional development opportunities
• Attendance of external courses
• Position as area head
• Position as departmental head

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SURFACE COATER (SWISS FEDERAL VET DIPLOMA)

Surface coaters are experts in the area of surface technology. They coat watch parts and workpieces in electrochemical baths, protecting them from corrosion and increasing their resistance to wear and tear in the process. They ensure the right chemicals are used and operate the systems and their measuring and analytical devices.

Career prospects
Surface coaters work at electroplating companies or within the electroplating departments of companies operating in the precious metals, watch, jewellery, printed circuit board and electronics sectors. Testing and research laboratories are an additional possible place of work. In the age of electronics and technical perfection, this demanding profession has a real future and offers a variety of development opportunities.

Training programme
• Introductory external courses
• Basic electroplating training in accordance with the IWC course
• Deepening of basic application knowledge and creation of logs
• Performance of production tasks
• Laboratory work and calculation of values

Following a thorough introduction to the basic skills and know-how in the area of electroplating, you will learn how to apply the various coatings to workpieces. You will periodically check the condition of the chemical bath and will be responsible for the operational maintenance of the electrolytes. You will learn how to perform production tasks independently and how to create the required logs. In the laboratory, you will help to perform various tests and analyses and also issue the relevant instructions.

Vocational school
Your specialist lessons and the teaching of general subjects take place at a vocational school. The subjects covered include physics, chemical principles, analytical methods, workplace safety and environmental protection as well as basic working techniques, chemical (currentless) and physical finishing, electrolytic and chemical finishing, working techniques in specialist areas, specialist calculations and technical drawing. If you received excellent grades at school, you can also attend a vocational training college (Berufsmittelschule). This provides a solid foundation for later further training.

Qualification certificate
Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a surface finisher as well as a certificate of apprenticeship from the training company.

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma
• Good performance in physics and chemistry
• Fulfilment of admission conditions

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Interest in chemical and technical processes
• Passion for materials science, electronics, physics and mathematics
• Physical fitness (work primarily performed while standing)
• No predisposition to allergies
• Ability to work in a precise and tidy manner

Training duration
• 3 years

Professional development opportunities
• Position as an area head
• Position as a departmental head
• Swiss Federal Diploma as a master electroplater
• Position as an electroplating technician
• Qualification as a chemist (Swiss HTL qualification)

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ADMINISTRATIVE EMPLOYEES

ADMINISTRATIVE EMPLOYEE (SWISS FEDERAL VET DIPLOMA)

Administrative employees possess a wide range of skills and specialist knowledge and perform demanding administrative tasks. Administrative employees compose letters and memos, write minutes and develop concepts. They clarify matters, make purchases, plan and organize. They contact customers and suppliers from around the world by phone, fax or online and are able to speak and write well in two languages.

Career prospects
Administrative employees work in the economic and administration sectors at enterprises ranging from small companies to international corporations. As a trainee, you will receive standardized basic training which will allow you to work competently in a variety of industries and roles in a commercial environment. Working as an administrative employee is a demanding role with a variety of development opportunities.

Training programme
• Practical introduction to various departments
• Gathering information – in writing and by phone – including in foreign languages
• Organization of meetings, discussions and negotiations
• Providing information and advising customers
• Various administrative tasks

As an administrative employee with extended basic professional training (profile E) and with a vocational diploma (Berufsmatura) (profile M), you have a high degree of specialist knowledge. As part of your practice-oriented basic training in various work settings, you will be introduced to specialist areas of the administrative sector on a semi-annual basis. You will perform your practical assignments in the following departments: procurement and customer services, financial accounting and pre-production and sales and marketing. You will master the various means of communication and will be in contact with business partners from around the world.

Vocational school
The duration and intensity of the vocational school courses depend on the selected profile. As a rule, they generally range from 1 to 1.5 or 2 days per week. The job-related subjects are as follows: information, communication, administration, economy and society, German, foreign languages and external courses.

Qualification certificate
Swiss Federal VET Diploma as an administrative employee as well as a certificate of apprenticeship from the training company.

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma or comparable basic training
• Good command of typing upon commencing training

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Interest in commercial work
• Logical thinking and a good ability to grasp new ideas and tasks
• Spoken and written eloquence
• Independence and reliability
• Organizational skills
• A flair for numbers

Training time
This professional programme is taught at IWC Schaffhausen at two different requirement levels:
• Profile E – extended basic training in 3 years
• Profile M – extended basic training with vocational diploma (Berufsmatura) in 3 years

Professional development opportunities
• Department-specific further training
• Federal PET Diploma examinations, e.g. finance and accounting specialist, marketing planner, HR specialist, management assistant, banking professional
• Advanced Federal PET Diploma examinations, e.g. expert in accounting and controlling, banking expert, marketing head, technical managing director
• Qualification in business management from an institute of higher vocational education
• Qualification as a business economist from a university of applied sciences

Information Technology

IT SPECIALIST (SWISS FEDERAL VET DIPLOMA)

GENERAL FOCUS

The work of many heads and hands goes into every machine; every tool as well as every watch. IT specialists play an increasingly important role in this long chain of people. They guarantee the provision of functioning IT architecture, something which every department is now reliant on. Thanks to their expertise in the areas of business administration, support, networks, servers, backing-up data and project management, they make a major contribution to the success of a company.

Career prospects
IT specialists (general focus) work in the service, industrial and commercial sectors as well as for public administrative authorities. Following your basic vocational training, you will possess a solid basis for quickly developing further in the IT sector through ongoing further training. You will have very good opportunities on the job market for specialists, as in the IT industry some 80% of employees have come from a different career background with basic vocational training in other subject areas.

Training programme
• Business Engineering
• Web Engineering
• Application Engineering
• Service management
• Hardware management
• Network management
• IT project management

Following a thorough introduction to the fundamental areas, which you will also cover in various courses at the training centre, you will quickly grow into your role as a specialist as you perform your daily work. In our IT department, we attach particular value to providing a broad training programme which covers all areas of IT. However, creativity, independence and the ability to work in a team are also skills that are high priorities for us.

Vocational school
Your specialist lessons and the teaching of general subjects take place at a vocational school. The subjects covered include electrical engineering, IT, English and mathematics. If you received excellent grades at school, you can also attend a vocational training college (Berufsmittelschule). This provides a solid foundation for later further training.

Educational requirements
• Secondary school diploma
• Good performance in physics and mathematics
• Fulfilment of admission conditions

Required skills
• Fluency in German, both spoken and written
• Passion for mathematics and English
• Ability to think logically
• Enjoyment of trying out new things

Training duration
• 4 years

Qualification certificate
Swiss Federal VET Diploma as a computer scientist as well as a certificate of apprenticeship from the training company.

Professional development opportunities
• Position as area head
• Position as departmental head
• Further training at a technical college or university of applied sciences
• Swiss Federal Diploma as a business data processing specialist at a university of applied sciences
• An engineering degree at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) via a university of applied sciences or after completing your school leaving examination (Matura)

SEE YOU SOON AT IWC

Do these career paths sound interesting to you? Or perhaps you have already found your dream job in this list?
A three-step selection process will allow both you and us to establish whether your chosen career is right for you:

Step 1 – Information afternoon
Step 2 – Technical test*
Step 3 – One-week taster course*

*IT specialists and administrative employees will go through a different selection process.

IWC Schaffhausen
Branch of Richemont International SA
Baumgartenstrasse 15
8201 Schaffhausen

If you are interested in basic vocational training at IWC, please use the following contact addresses:

Technical Professions
Telephone +41 (0)52 235 75 67
E-Mail

Administrative Employees
Telephone +41 (0)52 235 74 07
E-Mail

Information Technology
Telephone +41 (0)52 235 75 69
E-Mail

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