Stefan Oberndorfer is an intern at Porsche Informatik – for the third time now. This time he is working in the CROSS 2 Service department. A year ago, he completed his senior high school project with us, alongside his triplet brothers, Thomas and Michael. This autumn he will start a degree course at university – and maybe one day he will return to Porsche Informatik yet again. In a recent interview with Lisa Oppacher he explained what he enjoys so much about working here and what plans he has for the future.
Stefan, what are you going to study at university, and why?
In autumn 2019 I’m beginning a bachelor’s degree in Business Information Systems at Vienna University of Technology. I am interested in the way information and communication systems are used in business and society. What interests me about this subject area is not just the development and application of these systems in the business context, but also how they are used to generate commercially valuable data, information and knowledge. What appeals to me about the course in particular is that it is interdisciplinary – it combines computer science and business, so that you learn about two completely different subject areas.
You and your brothers also worked here a year ago. How did that come about?
It all began when I was a student at the Technical High School (HTBLuVA) in Salzburg: in summer 2016, I had to do an eight-week work experience placement. So I applied to Porsche Informatik, and they took me on. It suited me very well here, right from the start. So in summer 2017, I came back for another internship.
Then for our senior year at school, my two brothers and I set ourselves the challenge of finding a final project that reflected our interests as a team, and also fitted into the scope of activities at Porsche Informatik. So early on we set about gathering some initial ideas and discussing them. After my positive experience as an intern I thought right away that it would be pretty cool to do a project working with Porsche Informatik. During my second internship I discussed this with my contacts at Porsche Informatik. After a short time we settled on an idea and thus the foundation was laid for our final-year project, with the company’s cooperation. They gave constant feedback and helped us with specialist technical knowledge and experience – that really enhanced our project.
What was your final-year project about?
“Intelligent parking solutions” – a topic that turned out to be of great interest to the whole team, since the management of parking in cities and towns is really an everyday problem. So we set up the “easy Park & Go” project. Parking spaces are expensive and often in short supply – there is a lot of unmet demand. So the aim of our project was to make the management of parking as efficient as possible and provide access to parking spaces on a flexible and transparent basis.
“easy Park & Go” is an intelligent reservation system for parking spaces, allowing dynamic management of the resources available, especially for parking in congested areas. It makes it possible to allocate parking spaces fairly and to largely avoid empty parking spaces. A web application coordinates the allocation of parking spaces, on a fair and transparent basis, resulting in efficient occupancy of the spaces available. Furthermore, an access system was developed, based on a QR code, to check the validity of parking and entry permits.
And what brought you back to Porsche Informatik again this time?
That’s simple – it is fun to work in an innovative company that is actually participating in digital transformation and helping to shape it. My first two internships at Porsche Informatik were really great experiences and gave me wide-ranging insights into an exciting field of IT. It just gives you a real kick every day, to know that you are actually involved in shaping the future.
What were your first impressions of Porsche Informatik?
Very, very positive. Really! It was a very friendly welcome, right from the first day, and I was always brilliantly supported. If I had any questions, I always felt I could ask anyone and they would help. Friendly colleagues and supervisors – in the team where I was based, or the department, or right across the company – that was what particularly impressed me. I felt very well looked after, as I do again now. One for all and all for one!
What are you working on right now?
I am currently working on a project to automate the “requirement controlling” process within the CROSS 2 department. To put it simply, it’s about monitoring the way certain requirements are handled and identifying discrepancies. Reports need to be generated regularly to provide an informative overview and to maintain a clear picture of the planned and actual progress of projects. Producing these reports currently takes a lot of effort and time. So I am working on a solution to automate this process in the future, so that it can be done with a minimum effort.
What do you particularly enjoy about your work?
As I said before, what I really love is the friendly atmosphere throughout the whole company. If the environment suits you, you feel good at work, and in the evening you are already looking forward to the next day and the interesting tasks ahead. I think the feel-good factor is hugely important, so that you can be productive and efficient, and have fun along the way.
What would be your advice to someone considering applying for an internship with us?
Don’t hesitate – jump in, fasten your seatbelt and get going! Porsche Informatik offers an almost unlimited range of possibilities for getting your career on the road. If you are interested in IT, Porsche Informatik is the perfect place for you, because you can get practical involvement in real projects from launch and development through to the finished product, and help to shape them yourself. Communication with customers is an important aspect too: to make sure the product is good, it is important to address customer preferences and priorities. In short, you can do whatever you are most interested in and what excites you the most. Of course, first you need to find out what your strengths and preferences are. An internship at Porsche Informatik is the perfect way to gain experience and learn a lot.
What are your plans for the future?
Well of course I want to get a good bachelor’s degree first, and then a relevant master’s. That way I hope to gain as much knowledge as possible and develop all the essential skills I need for my future career. I have heard something about the International Management trainee programme in IT & Digitalisation. It sounds really exciting, so that traineeship would be my first preference after I finish at university – it sounds like the best possible preparation for an interesting and hopefully successful career.