As a leading technology company in the field of automation, we work every day to contribute to the further development and progress of society. PC-based control enables our customers to produce a wide range of goods in a more resource-saving and efficient manner, thus serving the needs of the growing world population more sustainably. In addition, our products are used in system-relevant infrastructures, such as power generation and water/wastewater systems. PC-based control technology also ensures that companies in the pharmaceutical industry can produce vital medicines, vaccines and diagnostic tests safely and reliably. In medical technology, Beckhoff products are used to create a wide range of devices that contribute to the diagnosis of disease and help people to get well again.
At the same time, we are a family business characterized by personal closeness, down-to-earth interactions and friendly cooperation in every effort. We also want to practice these qualities in our social responsibility and pass them on beyond the boundaries of our company. That is why we support selected projects with which we share common ideas.
Beckhoff is characterized by its deep roots in East Westphalia. In our local area, we support numerous sports, social and cultural institutions, projects, associations and organizations. These ensure a colorful and diverse social life, promote a sense of community, enable education and enrich our everyday life and the region. These include schools and kindergartens, sports clubs, theaters, concerts and much more.
In the same way, our subsidiaries around the world support projects and organizations in their regions that are particularly close to their hearts and strengthen local society.
Training: responsibility for the next generation
For Beckhoff, the promotion of young talent is an integral part of our company philosophy. A good education opens up opportunities and possibilities for young people to shape their own future. It is a key to the personal success of each individual – and, viewed holistically, to a society worth living in. As a globally active company, we offer young people a wide range of training opportunities in a dynamic working environment with a variety of exciting future prospects.
Beckhoff provides training in eight different apprenticed professions at our HQ in Verl. In cooperation with Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences at its Gütersloh Campus, we also offer practice-integrated engineering training in five different degree courses. Young people can choose one of these training paths, depending on their interests. For us it is important that young people receive practical training. In this way they are involved in projects from the very beginning and can put their theoretical knowledge into practice. After successfully completing their training, junior employees at Beckhoff are offered long-term and interesting career prospects.
For the training of young people, Beckhoff relies on strong cooperation with local universities. This is why we invest in the academic training of young people and have been promoting cooperation with Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences for more than 10 years by financing three endowed professorships in the field of automation technology at the Gütersloh campus. To strengthen medium-sized companies, Beckhoff Automation also supports the endowed "Management of Family Businesses" professorship at the University of Bielefeld.
In addition, we offer internships both in Germany and in our subsidiaries around the world. These opportunities give young people who are not directly trained in our company an insight into our company and into the exciting world of automation technology.
Networks: Commitment beyond company boundaries
As a globally active company, Beckhoff is exposed to a wide range of technological and political changes that influence our technologies and our business activities. We therefore remain in continuous dialog with political representatives, associations and organizations. We reflect on their suggestions and take them into account in our actions. The focus is always on successful and goal-oriented dialog for all sides.
From the perspective of developing technologies for the benefit of society, we discuss the topics of automation technology, microsystems technology, information and communication technology, including crucial wider issues such as sustainability, climate protection and energy as well as health, mobility, and safety. Site-specific issues are also important to us, not to mention training and human resources policy. In an interdisciplinary exchange with associations and federations such as Acatech, Stifterverband, ZVEI, VDMA, VDI, VDE, IEC, and IEEE, we help shape technological, socio-political, economic, and scientific conditions and drive innovation forward.
The "it's OWL" (Intelligent Technical Systems OstWestfalenLippe) Leading-Edge Cluster is an important partner for us in the East Westphalia region, where our German HQ is located. We also support research projects at universities and research institutions. Last but not least, in collaboration with associations and foundations such as the VDMA "Nachwuchsstiftung Maschinenbau" (young engineers' foundation), we design educational projects to improve the training of skilled workers.
St. John Paul II Junior Seminary in Mpanda Ndogo, Tanzania
Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world. At present (as of 2020), 60 million people live here on an area that is 2.6 times the size of Germany. The population is growing rapidly, and by 2050 the United Nations estimates that there will already be 138 million inhabitants. Currently, 45% of Tanzanians are under the age of 15. Seventy percent of people live in rural areas, where less than 20% of households have access to electricity. More than 65% of the population work in agriculture. According to the World Bank's criteria, 25% of the population are considered poor because they have to live on less than USD 1.90 per day.
We want to give young people in Tanzania access to education for a successful future. Father Walter Lükewille (1930-2015), who came from Verl, also set himself the task of doing that. He was friends with Elisabeth Beckhoff (1924-2013), who founded the Elektro Beckhoff company with her husband Arnold in 1953. After more than 45 years as a missionary in Tanzania, he continued to work for projects in West Tanzania even after his return to Germany. On the initiative of Elisabeth Beckhoff, we have been supporting some of these projects in the Diocese of Mpanda since 2005.
One example is the construction of the St. John Paul II Junior Seminary, a Catholic secondary school in Mpanda Ndogo, which has been largely funded by Beckhoff since 2009. Since the opening of the school in 2014, we have been helping to expand the infrastructure in such a way that it can accommodate 360 pupils on a permanent basis and pay for itself through the school fees of approximately 330 euros per year per pupil.
Social projects in Semonkong, Lesotho
The enclave of Lesotho is surrounded by South Africa. The small country in the south of the African continent has about two million inhabitants and is also called the "Kingdom in the sky" due to its high geographical location. Lesotho ranks 164th out of 189 in the human development index. The unemployment rate is high. Most people depend on agriculture for their livelihood.
In the village of Semonkong in the province of Maseru, we therefore support various social projects to enable local people to live an independent and satisfying life. This specifically concerns the further development of agriculture. For this purpose, the inhabitants of Semonkong are taught important basics of agriculture. Together with volunteers, they work on the water supply for the fields or implement new planting and harvesting methods. A veterinary service also helps to keep the villagers' farm animals healthy and gives important tips on animal welfare and the handling of cattle, horses, sheep, goats, donkeys and chickens. Our funding provides vaccines for animals and finances veterinary treatment.
We also support the local orphanage and the Semonkong school, where children of different ages are taught. With our support, the two institutions can ensure the provision of daily meals to children, as well as the procurement of teaching materials and the maintenance of the buildings.
Verl and football – they have long been just as closely related as Verl and automation technology. The Sportclub Verl von 1924 e. V. can look back on one hundred years of association history. The Beckhoff family has been closely associated with the club since the beginning of the 1970s. The first team from SC Verl has played continuously since 2008 at semi-professional level in the Regional League West. In the playoffs for season 2020/21, the players from Verl achieved promotion to the third division.
Beckhoff supports the association as a sponsor, together with other locally rooted mid-sized companies. Thanks to its sponsors, SC Verl can offer a wide range of opportunities in the field of grassroots sport in addition to performance-oriented football. It is important to the club as well as its sponsors that every child from the surrounding region can play football. From the minis to the A-youth, therefore, there is both performance-oriented and leisure football for girls and boys. In addition to the first team, there are also the less performance-oriented adult teams. Together, we want to promote friendly cooperation and sportsmanship in Verl.
And of course, the Beckhoff family is passionate about football! Hans Beckhoff, Frederike Beckhoff, Johannes Beckhoff, Arno Beckhoff, Stefan Beckhoff, Thomas Beckhoff, Michael Beckhoff and Jan Beckhoff have all played football with the Verl club at different times and in different positions – all with great talent (but varying degrees of success)!
At the annual Beckhoff Cup, we also determine the best team from 20 company teams!