Arnold Kieferle

Design, Media and Communication Design
Campus Stuttgart

Occupation following studies: Graphical User Interface Designer, AUDI AG
Where do you work now and what is your position?
I work at AUDI AG in Ingolstadt as a Graphical User Interface Designer.

What does your role entail?
Part of my job is the development of digital designs on existing interior displays, such as the MMI (multi-media interface), the virtual cockpit, the air-conditioning system and apps that can be used in and out of the vehicle on smartphones and wearables. In line with AUDI's DNA  we provide impressive interaction design as well as an intelligent user experience. As a designer,you become part of many different development stages - from the show car to the finished production model. As an AUDI employee, you have a great deal of responsibility right from the start and are responsible for bringing your own projects forward. But of course this only works by having a strong, cross-departmental team, to which everyone brings their own skills and capabilities.

What inspires you in your role?
It is fun and I face new challenges every day. We shape the future and that inspires me! Every day there are changes and new techniques in and around the vehicle. We have reached a point in the automotive sector where innovative, digital links have to be created as standard. Breakthroughs in design, not only induce passion when driving, but also joy in operation. The interfaces between man and machine that we develop create a fascinating product experience for the customer. You have to be able to operate these interfaces quickly and intuitively and must also maintain an emotional appearance, particularly in the automotive sector. That is why this job is not only extremely exciting for me, it's also my passion.

Did you imagine you'd be doing this kind of job before you began your studies?
Yes absolutely. It was clear from the beginning that I would take a role in the digital direction. I distanced myself from print publishing and media from the start. It is important to me to keep moving, to integrate new media and develop my digital designs.



Did the teachers and projects at the university prepare you for the work you're doing today?
I got a really good insight into various aspects of design through the wide range of projects and courses offered. I appreciate that variety in my job today. At the same time, personal preferences and interests were not neglected. We often had a great  leeway in designing our student projects. I was really happy about that – as it enabled me to always get the best out of the projects.

At which company did you do your internship semester and how would you rate your experience there?
I did my internship at a small Stuttgart advertising agency with about 30 employees. It was interesting and  I learned a lot. Due to the size of the agency, the range of tasks was also much broader than at Jung von Matt / Neckar, where I worked for two years after my bachelor's degree.



How was your contact with your fellow students? Are you still in touch today?
During the study period we all had a lot of contact. That's not so intense today as many of my former fellow students are scattered across Germany. Thanks to Facebook and Co. that's not a problem, but regular contact has become less frequent. But what is good is that as a Macromedia student you start to build up a network from day one. Nothing is more important than good contacts, especially in this sector.

How do you experience digital transformation in your workplace?
When it comes to change and transformation we are seeing increasing digitalization. This will of course have an impact on our jobs. Many see it as a threat at first, but I can see clear benefits for all of us. We are becoming more and more connected, vehicles become more intelligent and we gain more time for more important things. There is still so much to come and it will be really exciting!



How important is it to be "open to change" to be successful today and in the future modern, digitally driven world of work?
It's extremely important. In my opinion, anyone who isn't open to change has lost. You simply can't hang on to old processes. We have to reinvent ourselves every day and try to make everything even better. It is a constant process for me, because things change so much on a daily basis. Digitalization also creates new jobs that can be fun and offer plenty of freedom as well as new development opportunities.

 

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