B.A. Aviation Management

Andreas Bieniek

"I learned how important it is to have a personal network with contacts from university and work."

An international career in the aviation industry – IU (formerly known as IUBH) alumnus Andreas Bieniek moved to Vienna for his first job at Qatar Airways. Shortly thereafter, he moved to Qatar and now he is in Finland as business manager at Finnair.

The aviation industry is very international – we learned that during our studies. After doing my compulsory internship in Germany, I was interested in moving abroad after graduation and experiencing differences to my home country. In 2011, the year of my graduation, Qatar Airways gave a presentation about their company at the IU (formerly known as IUBH) campus in Bad Honnef. I thought the career opportunities sounded very attractive and sent an unsolicited application to Qatar Airways through IU (formerly known as IUBH) Career Services.

Personal contacts acquired while studying were helpful

Coincidentally, an IU (formerly known as IUBH) alumnus was one of the people who interviewed me and he offered me a position as a business analyst at the Vienna branch. Two years later, I switched to the head office in Qatar. In the interim, I completed my master’s degree and was ready to get to know another airline. Finnair came to my attention through two former colleagues who now work for this Finnish airline. During the application process, I sat across from the same IU (formerly known as IUBH) alumnus who had interviewed me for my first job. This is how I learned how important it is to have a personal network with contacts from university and work.

Position with variety and a lot of self-initiative

As a business manager in Finnair’s commercial division based in Helsinki, I am now working together with our sales teams in China and Hong Kong. My position is part of the Revenue Management and Pricing Department and serves as an interface to branch offices. This requires a lot of analytical skills and knowledge about the Chinese aviation market. My responsibilities include monitoring the competition, analysing its impact on Finnair and initiating the next necessary steps. The job is diversified and requires a lot of self-initiative and lobbying, but in return, there is a lot of creative freedom.

I learned how airports work during my bachelor’s degree programme

The basic knowledge I acquired during my aviation management degree programme at IU (formerly known as IUBH) still helps me, every day. You gain a solid base of knowledge about the different areas of the aviation industry: how airlines and airports function and how they work together with international institutions. Even today, I still look at course materials from my degree programme if I need to prepare a topic or want to refresh my knowledge. Especially the courses about yield, network management and aviation intelligence were important in helping me meet the demands of my career.