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Corporate Sustainability Officer
Satisfied and motivated employees secure the future of the Schaeffler Group and contribute to a stable and high-performing society. We want to meet our employees’ needs with a forward-thinking human resources strategy. At the same time, as a global technology company we have both the opportunity and the duty to actively participate in shaping the social environment in many countries and supporting dialog between cultures. This is why, worldwide, we work in “Education and Science”, “Health and Social Issues” as well as “Sports and Culture” in many different ways.
Globalization, digitalization, and demographic shifts are changing the fundamental nature of how we work and live. In light of these developments, one of the central tasks of Human Resources (HR) is to create attractive, permanent employment options and to ensure we are able to win over qualified employees for our company and give them the opportunity to develop on both personal and professional levels. In addition, we must make framework conditions and working methods more flexible if we are to adapt to the expectations of younger generations.
In 2016, we reassessed our strategic approach to human resources work and created an Employees and Society Top In the apprentice workshop, our trainees learn all the important tasks, like how to troubleshoot mechatronic systems. HR Roadmap with a set of initiatives tailored to work in concert. The three key issues of digitalization, demography, and diversity are central elements of the HR Roadmap and major drivers of the innovative force the HR area has on all elements of our HR strategy.
According to the trendence Graduate Barometer, the company was one of the 30 most attractive employers for young engineers in Germany in 2016. A similar performance can be seen on an international level: In China, Schaeffler was named “Top Employer China 2016” by the “Top Employers Institute”, and received the award “Best Employer of the Year” from Chinese career site “Zhaopin.com” for the fifth time in a row.
In the competition for the best new talents, we are employing specific measures to attract young professionals. We use our cooperations with universities around the world to find these talented young people, working with student representatives and student groups. We served as the main sponsor for “Formula Student Deutschland” in 2016 for the third year in a row, a racing series in which teams of students must design a race car themselves, then race against one another in a worldwide competition.
Schaeffler ist auf dem Weg der digitalen Transformation. Dies eröffnet uns neue Geschäftsfelder und schafft neue Berufsbereiche. Bis 2020 werden in diesem Zuge mehrere hundert Stellen bei Schaeffler neu besetzt. Um vor allem den Erwartungen der digitalen Talente gerecht zu werden und sie für das Unternehmen zu begeistern, haben wir 2016 eine spezielle Kommunikationskampagne initiiert. Sie reicht von der optimierten Nutzung der sozialen Medien bis zur Entwicklung von Exzellenz-Netzwerken und -Veranstaltungen. Zudem optimieren wir unser Bewerbungssystem schrittweise dahingehend, dass es leicht mit mobilen Endgeräten genutzt werden kann.
In an era of globalization and demographic changes, having a diverse workforce is a key factor in corporate success. The Schaeffler Group signed the “Charta der Vielfalt” (diversity charter) back in 2008, obligating our company to actively support diversity and equal opportunity independent of an employee’s ethnic origin, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability status, or religion. This commitment is a fixed part of our Code of Conduct and a core component of our integrated diversity strategy. In addition, our Executive Board has stipulated that the company increase its percentage of female employees in leadership positions to 5 % and 12 % on the second management level by June 30th, 2017. Our goal is to further increase diversity in our company through structural and communicative measures.
We place a high value on ensuring that employees at all levels and areas within the company can develop both personally and professionally. The Schaeffler Academy plays a key role. It offers employees at many locations worldwide attractive continued training opportunities, for instance through E-learning units.
All talent management efforts of the Schaeffler Group are based on the 70:20:10 model of learning. It is based on 70 % on-the-job experience, 20 % exchange with others, and 10 % on-site and off-site training. Over the past two years, we have placed a high priority on developing our talent management with an eye towards ongoing demographic changes. A global, uniform, and structured talent management process gives our employees first-class opportunities for development and helps us identify workers with good potential and secure key positions for them early on.
To ensure the long-term success of our company, most Schaeffler Group production locations in each country train their own employees. The company encourages them to use the German dual training system. There are currently training centers working on a German model in China, Mexico, and Eastern Europe. Secondary school graduates have the opportunity of completing a dual Bachelor’s program at our company, then continuing to build their qualifications through a Master’s program while they work. Furthermore, we offer successful college graduates attractive training and early career opportunities through a trainee program.
The digital shift of production and the service industry will change today’s occupational profiles. Cross-disciplinary skills like networking, interdisciplinary collaboration, or being open to change will be even more in demand on all levels of qualification. To meet these changing requirements in our training work, Schaeffler has initiated the project “Training of the Future”.
Demographic change means that the average age of the workforce is steadily increasing, mainly at the Schaeffler Group’s German sites. To avoid any disadvantages for the company that could result from this shift and to fulfill our employees’ needs, we are implementing sustainable and forward-thinking health and occupational safety policies. In addition, we support our employees and their families by offering social counseling, for instance on how to handle physical or mental illnesses or how to re-enter the workforce after a long sickness.
To protect and promote the health of our employees, we continuously review and improve working conditions and ensure adherence to occupational safety regulations. This is a central and fundamental personnel policy in the Schaeffler Group, and is also reflected in our policies related to environmental protection, occupational medicine, and occupational safety. We use a comprehensive EnEHS management system (Energy, Environment, Health, and Safety) to consistently implement these policies. It has already been enacted at almost all of our production locations worldwide, and is certified in accordance with the international OHSAS 18001 standard.
Workplace health management at Schaeffler is a key element of our human resources strategy. We are continuously expanding health management even as we make it more systematic and implement workplace health management measures across the group. These measures are based on the framework guidelines of the Luxembourg Declaration on Workplace Health in the European Union. Our goal is to create a company characterized by healthy employees and by ergonomic and safe workplaces. We will achieve this through comprehensive measures and actions that encourage both employees’ physical and mental health.
We further expanded our “Boxenstopp” (pit stop) health program during the reporting period. The program is intended to target the main causes of absenteeism. Through our campaign “15 Minuten für Ihre Gesundheit” (15 minutes for your health), we are helping our employees at a growing number of locations learn about their own health and physical condition in a doctor’s check-up. They can also learn about any medical treatments they might need or how to change their lifestyles. In 2016, we expanded this service to additional locations. We have now reached 80 % of our employees in Germany.
The younger generation, in particular, expects their employers to move towards more flexible working hours and to start programs in support of work-life balance. We fulfill these expectations by expanding our employee and family-friendly solutions. The satisfaction and motivation of our employees is a key factor in the success of Schaeffler.
We have established a goal for our human resources strategy to develop more flexible models of work and to improve the conditions of the mobile workplace. In doing so, we are responding to the needs and requests of Schaeffler employees, actively utilizing the opportunities offered by our modern working world. We already offer various working hour schedules such as part-time labor, partial retirement, or shift work arrangements for couples where both partners work in production. We also introduced two models for employees to work in their home offices in the second quarter of 2016: the short-term “sporadic home office” model and the long-term “regular home office” model. If the employee has a suitable work station in his or her own home, and if it is possible to organize their work appropriately, employees are able to perform up to 40 % of their monthly work hours in their own home office.
Sports encourage both physical and mental health, making a key contribution to the performance and capabilities of our employees. That is why we encourage our employees to play sports through company sporting events.
The Schaeffler Group values the establishment of long-term collaborations that are based on trust. That’s why we try to fulfill the expectations of our employees through competitive compensation, attractive benefits, and comprehensive pension plans.
We pay our employees wages that are in line with the market and individually adjusted to the employee’s duties, success, experience, and performance. This is a fundamental human resources policy principle within our company. Pay also includes bonuses for success or performance based on agreed targets. Employees of the Schaeffler Group also look forward to social benefits matched with current and future needs.
With the working world becoming ever more international, we believe it is important to create clarity regarding how different positions are valued using a transparent assessment process. That is why we introduced the “Schaeffler Global Job Grading System” to provide a uniform global basis for evaluating different positions. We are using this system to create the groundwork for a common, positive understanding of the value of work within our company.
A groupwide sponsorship guideline ensures that funds provided by the company are used in a targeted manner, serving to add value to our enterprise. We give preference to supporting organizations and projects near our branch locations and factories. Any payments to individual persons, or to organizations and initiatives that do not work towards the common good are excluded, as are payments intended to generate profits or those that do not conform to the Schaeffler Code of Conduct.
Education, training, and scientific research are key factors for success in the Schaeffler Group’s business model. That is why we have been supporting young engineers around the world for over ten years through our Formula Student program, helping them turn their abilities into practical success.
The Schaeffler FAG Foundation, established in 1983, is a major player in the Schaeffler Group’s involvement in education and science. The purpose of the foundation is to support science, research, and teaching in scientific and technical fields related to bearing technology. The foundation sees itself as a bridge between science and the economy that brings together peoples’ visions and goals in research, teaching, and private enterprise.
Charitable projects are another pillar in Schaeffler’s social commitment. We believe it is our duty as a responsible company to have a positive influence on our world. In India, large portions of the population are not able to afford professional medical care. That’s why FAG Bearings India initiated a mobile health center as part of its HOPE initiative. It provides free access to medical care, early detection and treatment services, and family planning aid to around 88,000 people from 51 villages near its location in Vadodara.
Our employees don’t just make a key contribution to our corporate success, they also contribute to the greater good through their volunteer work at many locations. The initiative of one committed employee at Schaeffler Korea grew into the “Evergreen” CSR program at that location in 2013. Over 200 employees and 40 students have invested more than 19,000 hours in social projects since that time.The Schaeffler Group supports the South African government in promoting equal opportunity for citizens who previously experienced social or economic discrimination as part of the “CSR Program South Africa.” As a sponsor, the company took on the costs for the “ACVV Khayalethu Youth Centre” orphanage.
Sporting and cultural activities help teach values and mobilize forces for positive social development. Promoting these kinds of activities is a natural part of our work at the Schaeffler Group. We have a long tradition in the area of motorsports, matching up with the portfolio of products we offer. Our technologies have always been involved in successful competitions – from the German Touring Car Championships (DTM) to the electric car racing series Formula E, the World Endurance Championship (WEC), or the 24 Hours of Le Mans race.
Besides sporting events, we support the areas of music and culture. We are careful not to interfere with the artistic freedom of the artists we sponsor. This commitment is highly important to our company, once again offering us the opportunity to generate added value for the society apart from our core business.
An Employee Day was held at the Herzogenaurach location in September 2016 to celebrate Schaeffler’s 70th company anniversary. The event was attended by around 30,000 employees and their families.
By the end of 2017, Schaeffler will be introducing a team leader concept for production worldwide that is unique in the industry. The job of a team leader is to manage and support their team as an active part of the production process, and to discover weaknesses in and potentials for improving production processes.
Especially as our workforce continues to age, back pain is one of the most frequent and most costly reasons for absenteeism on the job. In response to ongoing demographic changes, we have initiated an important concept for preventing back pain through our “Boxenstopp” program “Rücken aktiv” (active back).
Peak performance incentive for young engineers: The Schaeffler Group has been supporting a variety of teams and events through financial donations, products, and technological knowledge under the Formula Student program for over ten years.
Earth Day has been held annually in over 175 countries since 1970. The goal is to encourage appreciation for the environment and inspire attendees to question their own consumer behaviors. In 2016, our employees once again took part in a variety of actions to celebrate the day.
Schaeffler started a new motorsports chapter in 2014 by joining the first electric racing series in the world, Formula E. The series offers the perfect stage to meet the challenges posed by the mobility of tomorrow. The goal of the race is to represent a vision for the future of the automotive industry, to encourage research and development surrounding electric vehicles, and to continue increasing interest in these vehicles.