SUCCESS STORY

Martin Schramm

B.A. Business Administration
Part-time Studies

MARTIN SCHRAMM, B.A. BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, TACTICAL PRODUCT MANAGER

"In addition to the good reputation, the combination of online and live seminars impressed me."

After his vocational training as an IT System Assistant, Martin Schramm wanted to broaden his career horizons – and decided to study Business Administration at IU International University part-time alongside his job. Today, he is part of the co-founder team of the start-up how.fm, which offers training and self-help for workers and employees.

HOW MARTIN BECAME A PART OF IU

After completing my training as an IT System Assistant and at the beginning of my professional life, I developed the desire to improve my professional qualifications to enhance my career opportunities. Especially in the agile environment of software development, it is an advantage to understand all the other processes within a company – that's why I wanted to take a broader approach and decided to pursue a bachelor's degree in Business Administration. Since it was not an option for me to take a career break, a part- time degree programme seemed to be the right choice. In my search for the right university, I came across IU. In addition to its good reputation and positive reviews from graduates, I was convinced by its flexibility and the combination of online and live seminars. The possibility of taking individual courses completely online if work gets tight is worth its weight in gold. Additionally, the short distance to the nearest IU campus was a major advantage for me.

THE MOST FLEXIBLE PART-TIME STUDY PROGRAMME

When I began my studies, I not only changed my place of residence but also my job – and joined Rheinfabrik as Product Development Manager. I was able to integrate my business studies smoothly and flexibly into my new work routine. I usually studied the lecture notes in the morning before I went to work. I was able to attend the on-site seminars two evenings a week after work, and I used the weekend to take the respective exams.

DEALING WITH LEARNING STRESS

Compared to other part-time models, IU offers the highest degree of flexibility. This made it possible to organise and complete my studies as planned, regardless of my place of residence or location. The tutors and professors were very competent and always available to answer my questions. The quality of the teaching and study materials is very high, and the online campus provided me with the perfect basis for preparing content for the classroom sessions during the self-study phase. Especially in the elective subjects, I was able to acquire valuable basic knowledge for my professional career. This knowledge was then discussed individually with lecturers and fellow students in the classroom lessons, and my know-how was consolidated and deepened. In this way, I was ideally prepared for the exams. The regular attendance of the classroom sessions basically helped me to structure my studies and to follow them through consistently.

Studying is like a marathon, not a sprint. That's why it is smart not to undertake too much at the start but to reach your goal with patience and constant discipline.

KNOWLEDGE FROM MY STUDIES IS USED DAILY IN THE STARTUP

Since 2018, I have been working as a member of the founding team in our young startup how.fm. how.fm digitalises the on-boarding and further training of "blue-collar" workers, i.e. industrial workers and craftsmen. As Tactical Product Manager, my fundamental task is to further develop our product how.fm together with the development team based on customer feedback. This includes prioritising new features, planning and implementing innovations, and release management of our product. In software development, we use a

combination of agile development methods derived from Scrum and Kanban. Studying at IU has provided me with a helpful toolbox for planning and implementing projects, which I frequently use in my job.

Besides product management, I support our sales team with customer acquisition and product launches. Furthermore, our entire team supports topics such as recruiting, the onboarding of new employees, the further development of the corporate culture as well as the support of public events such as trade fairs and startup talks. I benefit every day from the Business English language skills that I learned during my studies. Additionally, courses such as Organisational Psychology and Human Resource Management have improved my soft skills.

To enhance my management skills even further, I am now planning to pursue my MBA through the IU Distance Learning programme.

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