How did you get to the Czech Republic, Lucian?

L: I drove. (laughing) I knew Prague from before since I had a good friend here. I went to visit him and discovered that Prague really suits me. So, I decided to move here. I felt I needed some change; life is too short to spend it all in one place.

What was your occupation before joining ExxonMobil?

L: I worked in IT for many years – network administration, web design, and development. But then I got bored with it. Even if you do something you like, at some point you just have enough. At least I do.

V: This is actually my first job; I started here fresh from the university four years ago.

What are the main responsibilities of the Procurement Department?

L: It’s all about buying stuff. Whenever the company needs to buy something, it’s our responsibility to get it. Furniture, laptops, raw material… Basically, we attend to the needs of our colleagues who want to buy something and we treat them as our clients.

V: We are divided into Procurement Associates and Buyers. The Procurement Associates buy goods and services from suppliers which are already under contract with ExxonMobil. They are divided into various categories, such as IT, equipment & material, craft labor, transportation & logistics and so on. On the other hand, the responsibility of the Buyers is to purchase services or materials that ExxonMobil only needs once in a while and; therefore, has no long-term supplier for it, e. g. wall painting.

What does your position entail?

V: I am a Procurement Associate for Transportation & Logistics. I specialize in buying industrial packages. On top of that, I am also an ambassador. It means that I am presenting the company at universities and job fairs, talking with students and preparing workshops. I really enjoy the communication with students. I am responsible for the University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice, which is my alma mater.

L: I work as a Procurement Associate for Efficiency Contracting. All the contracts that do not belong to any of the categories mentioned by Veronika belong to EC. These range from furniture to shuttle services and repairs. I oversee two of our UK branches.

What was your career path in ExxonMobil?

V: This is my third position in four years. I used to work as an Agreement Assistant, then an Agreement Coordinator and since the beginning of this year I have been a Procurement Associate, all in the area of transportation & logistics.

L: I have been working for ExxonMobil for almost 6 years. I was hired for a Customer Service position in Fuels&Lubes, which is a totally different department. Since June this year, I have started working as a Procurement Associate. So, I am still kind of getting used to that.

What do you enjoy the most at work?

V: Communicating with the suppliers. It’s really important to maintain good relationships with them. I have meetings in various places around the world; and sometimes we visit their site… I typically travel once in two or three months. It’s interesting that I am often the only woman and the youngest person in the meeting room.

L: Negotiating. I really enjoy it. After a while, you build mutual respect with the suppliers.

What particularly do you like about ExxonMobil?

L: The multiculturalism. About 50% of ExxonMobil employees are foreigners and we have almost 70 nationalities here!

V: I completely agree. I really enjoy the international environment, that’s what I've always wanted. Also, the work–life balance really means something here.


Are there any special benefits?

V: From my experience as an ambassador, what students like to hear the most about is our massage program. We are allowed to take 20 mins per month during our working hours for a massage that takes place right in the building. We can also use our “benefity card” to pay for flight tickets, dentist appointments, pharmacy purchases etc. We have language courses 3 hours per week and we can choose from 16 languages.

L: I like the flexibility. It’s not a problem to take a home office. You can talk to your supervisor and work from some other place than the office.

Is there anything that you would like to change in ExxonMobil?

L: Maybe the amount of bureaucracy. There are too many lists to fill in, reports to write etc.

V: ExxonMobil is a giant. Sometimes, it takes ages to find the right person who would help you with your problem. But I guess this is a problem with all the huge corporations.

What do you like to do when you’re not working?

V: I like nature, reading books, dancing. And I also love sewing!

L: I like mountains, hiking and riding my motorcycle; actually, there are some nice roads in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, my preferred one is Špindlerova Bouda.

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Veronika and Lucian consider multiculturalism one of the best things in ExxonMobil. Do you want to become a part of a company, where you meet people from all around the world? Check out open positions!


photo by Adeline K.