Upon arrival, the students were greeted by the head of the personnel department Ing. Šárka Mašková and the interns from ŠKODA AUTO University – David Brancuzský from quality department and Dominik Chamrád from logistics department.
Firstly, students attended a presentation about the company focusing on its global presence, introducing the product portfolio in plants in Libáň, Liberec and Nymburk. The students then joined the head of the personnel department for a short discussion on potential internships in Magna. Since it is an international company with 312 production plants, 83 development centres in 29 countries all over the world and more than 130,000 employees, there is a prospect of future employment.
After a brief introduction, the students took a tour around the plant. First, they explored logistics – incoming goods (pellets – as one of the primary input materials, PVC powder for the manufacture of artificial leather as well as parts purchased in the Czech Republic and abroad in a ratio of 50:50 ).
After visiting the storage facilities and input materials, the tour moved to production. First, the students were introduced to a patented method of the company called SLUSH (production of artificial leather). This is a very complicated production process that enables the company to create leather that is shaped precisely as the dashboard. The artificial leather is made for the new generation models of ŠKODA OCTVAIA, YETI and AUDI A5. Preparations are currently under way for a new project for VW for SUVs made by ŠKODA, AUDI and SEAT.
The tour then continued to the injection moulding facilities. This method, which starts with simple pellets (about 10 types of different pellets such as ABS, PP, PE...), is used to make for example the top dashboard part for the latest ŠKODA FABIA, also for door panels and individual door components for ŠKODA SUPERB, armrest for MINI COUNTRYMAN, armrest for SUZUKI S-CROSS, door frames for AUDI A1 as well as rear facing for AUDI TT3 CABRIO. A special metal mould is made for every product, which can be changed during production on the individual machines. We have a total of 31 injection moulding machines and each of them uses several product moulds every day. Fun fact: the machine used for producing the top dashboard part for the new ŠKODA FABIA, occupies an area of 119 m2! If required by the customer, the parts can be coated with leather imitation. This production process is called laminating and is very complex and costly.
The tour ended in the assembly workshop, where the armrest for MINI COUNTRYMAN and the dashboard of ŠKODA FABIA are completed. The finished products are then packaged and shipped to customers.
And what did students say about the visit?
“Thank you very much. Over the past year, I visited several plants thanks to my studies, but Magna Libáň was the most surprising one. A perfect welcome, friendly community and the overall level of preparation for a student visit were exceptional. Everyone who was in charge of any part of the tour had prepared carefully and the tour, therefore, had no weak moments. The introduction dealt with history, basic facts and the main principles of the company. Then we went on the already mentioned tour of the plant which was very thorough. We were shown the production and assembly of dashboards, door panels, armrests and many other parts. The logistics department and the warehouses were just the icing on the cake. Finally, I would like to thank especially Ms. Mašková and her team as well as our colleagues and schoolmates for the professional presentation.”
“The excursion to Magna was very interesting. First, we got all the information about the company (from products to employee benefits). Then we visited the operations, first we saw the logistics department and incoming goods. This was followed by an extensive tour around the company’s production facilities. It was very interesting to see how the pellets are used to make dashboards or armrests. We had a chance to see all these products up close. The tour itself took about 3 hours and was filled with detailed descriptions of all the processes. I would like to thank both the management of the company and my schoolmates, who did a great job, for the entire excursion.”