Bayer: about the company, working conditions, aptitude tests and employment
Bayer AG (Bayer) is a German multinational pharmaceutical company, one of the three largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. The company is headquartered in Leverkusen, Germany. Bayer is focused on pharmaceuticals for humans and animals, consumer health products, agricultural chemicals, seeds and biotechnology products.
The company was founded in Barmen in 1863 as a dye factory, but its first and most famous product was aspirin. In 1898, it registered the Heroin trademark for the drug diacetylmorphine, which until 1910 was sold as a cough suppressant and a non-addictive substitute for morphine. In addition, Bayer introduced phenobarbital and prontosil, the first widely used antibiotic to be awarded the 1939 Nobel Prize in Medicine, as well as the antibiotic cipro (ciprofloxacin) and the Yaz birth control pill (drospirenone).
In 1925, Bayer was one of six pharmaceutical companies that merged to form IG Farben, the world’s largest chemical and pharmaceutical company. After World War II, IG Farben was requisitioned by the Allies in view of its criminal role in the Nazi use of slave labor in concentration camps and the use of people for medical tests. In 1951, the company was split into six constituent parts, and then they were merged into three: BASF, Bayer and Hoechst.
Bayer played a key role in the industry in post-war West Germany, quickly regaining its position as one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical corporations. In recent times, the company has acquired a number of significant assets and became the owner of Merck & Co with such well-known brands as Claritin, Coppertone and Dr. Scholl’s. In 2018, Bayer acquired Monsanto, a leading manufacturer of genetically modified crops. Bayer CropScience is currently developing genetically modified crops and pesticides.
Bayer business structure
The company’s activities are divided into 4 main subgroups:
• Bayer HealthCare AG develops, manufactures and markets products for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease.
• Bayer CropScience AG is a leading supplier of insecticides, fungicides, herbicides and seed treatments.
• Bayer MaterialScience AG is a renowned supplier of high-quality materials and innovative system solutions used in a wide range of products for everyday life.
The central service functions are grouped into three service companies:
• Bayer Business Services GmbH is the Bayer Group’s competence center for IT business support and scientific services.
• Bayer Technology Services GmbH – the technological backbone of the Bayer group of companies, is engaged in the development of technological processes, as well as the design, construction and optimization of production processes.
• Bayer Industry Services GmbH & Co. OHG is the operator of the chemical park, provides the basis for the smooth operation of production facilities and offers any client a tailor-made portfolio of services.
Bayer Group comprises 385 consolidated companies in 83 countries. As of 31 December 2020, Bayer employs 99,538 people worldwide, of which 23,398 are in Germany, representing 23.5% of the Bayer Group’s total workforce.
Working conditions at Bayer
Bayer is one of the world’s leading companies with competent leadership and streamlined HR processes. But the conditions in specific departments are still created by specific people – the leader and his team. In our article, we will not consider cases of interpersonal conflicts and other problems of a private nature. Let us speak about the systemic features reported by many Bayer employees in most countries.
• high wages – higher than the average for the industry and region. Middle and top-level managers say that often the level of salary becomes a decisive factor and even a kind of dependence – already at the middle level, a manager’s salary can reach 10,000USD and higher.
• a large amount of quality training. Many Bayer employees note the high level of education and training at this company.
• comfortable working conditions, beautiful offices and workplaces. The company has modern office and industrial premises, where it is pleasant to be.
• a good team in production units. Bayer’s employees in the factories speak positively of their colleagues and supervisors.
• high-quality products that are comfortable to work with and promote.
• the prestige of working in such a company. A good line on a resume.
• the possibility of internships and relocation to foreign divisions of the company.
• medical and health insurance, food at the workplace, corporate sports sections and holidays.
• large volume of work and high load. This is reported by many Bayer employees in most countries and departments. Despite the well-functioning business processes and a large number of staff, many employees are still overloaded.
• frequent long hours. This is a consequence of the high load. The life-work balance is not good in sales and distribution and office departments. In these divisions it has become commonplace that the working day lasts 9-10 hours.
• strict sales plans and deadlines. This also resonates with high load and overtime. It is customary for the company to work to achieve high results. Employees who fail are easily fired.
• authoritarian management system in most departments. Despite the fact that Bayer is a Western company, in many countries and divisions, the management of the company, according to the reviews of its employees, is built on authoritarian principles. Many Bayer employees say it is not customary for the company to make team desicions in many of its divisions and regional offices. All decisions are made by the head and his immediate deputies. Not all employees are comfortable with this.
• non-transparent system of career advancement. This is another drawback reported by many Bayer employees. There is practically no rapid growth in this company. There is also no system of mentoring and personal career counseling for employees.
As a conclusion, we can say that if you want to work in Bayer you should be prepared for high volumes of work, long hours and slow career growth. But this pays off with high salaries, the prestige of working in a company of this level and broad prospects.
How to apply for a job at Bayer
Bayer job ads can be found both on the official Bayer website in the Careers section and on the main job search sites. We recommend that you send your resume and cover letter through the official website of the company.
We’ve already written about how to write a competent resume and cover letter. Read about it in our articles.
The applicant selection process includes an initial online or phone interview, several different Bayer aptitude tests and a final face-to-face interview.
Bayer aptitude tests
As of 2020-2021, according to our data, Bayer does not use aptitude tests to measure intelligence. Mandatory psychometric tests are only tests for personality and professional characteristics in the form of situational tests and personality questionnaires.
There are four main professional categories that Bayer situational tests are used to assess and measure. These are communication skills, teamwork, decision making and emotional intelligence.
• SJ tests for communication skills assess your ability to communicate with colleagues, managers and clients via different situations that may take place in your job.
• The teamwork SJ tests measure how effectively you can work as a team member, manage your team and reward your subordinates.
• The decision-making segment is designed to assess your ability to solve problems and mitigate conflicts.
• Emotional intelligence tests assess your skills in working with people and how you are able to perceive feedback from employees and clients.
Situational tests are scenarios of situations that can occur in the workplace with 4-5 options for actions that can be taken in such a situation. Which answer you choose can tell a lot about your behaviors, skills, and experience. For situational tests, see our articles:
Hogan questionnaires are used as personal questionnaires for applicants for low-level and managerial positions. The Hogan Personality Inventory measures your everyday personality, also known as the bright side. This personality questionnaire assesses how you treat others. Employers use this score to determine how well you work with others, tend to lead or prefer to follow directions, and how successful you are as a leader or performer.
Interview at Bayer
The final screening test for applicants for the Bayer job is a panel interview.
A panel interview is part of a face-to-face interview that is usually done in person at one of Bayer’s offices. Unlike other face-to-face interviews, in which you talk to one or at most two recruiters, in a panel interview you care to speak with 4-5 interviewers: a representative of the HR department, managers of several departments and team leaders. The questions that you may hear in a panel interviews are usually competency-based. But you can also expect situational questions, in answering which you will need to describe the situation that you faced and were able to successfully resolve. If you are applying for a technical position, you may also be asked technical questions to assess your professionalism. Panel interviews can take several hours.
To prepare for your interview, read our articles on good interview tactics:
Bayer is one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies. In this company you can find interesting work, high pay and opportunities for career and professional growth, but at the cost of high workload and frequent overtime.
If you are looking to get a job at Bayer, we recommend taking all possible situational tests and personality questionnaires that you find on Aptitude-Tests-Practice.com.