A qualified and motivated workforce of employees who feel at ease in the workplace pave the way for
Klöckner & Co to generate added value – for employees, for the Company and hence also for our customers.
If we are to keep the entire workforce motivated, recruit new talents and secure employee loyalty, we need a working environment characterized by long-term security, supportiveness, professionalism and mutual respect. Such a working environment is vital to Klöckner’s success – and for every one of us to be able to develop and realize their full potential.
Dedicated and qualified employees are a key factor in our success as a service provider. To this end, we provide a wide variety of further training and personal development opportunities for employees. A further focus is on nurturing new talents. Particularly with a view to demographic change, recruiting and securing talent for the long term is central to our corporate success. Our Group-wide HR strategy is based on the pillars of leadership and corporate culture, systematic performance, talent and succession management, and improvements to make us an even more attractive employer.
Throughout the Group, our employees have access to job-specific, in-house training and language courses, including via our Group-wide Digital Academy. This enables our employees to take part in online training on a voluntary basis during working hours. The Digital Academy provides numerous online courses for users, mostly with the aim of enhancing digital skills. We place a special focus on the future of employment against the backdrop of digitalization and the fourth industrial revolution. All employees are to be given the opportunity to acquire digital skills at their own pace. The E-Business License course offered to all employees by our Supervisory Board member Prof. Dr. Tobias Kollmann, for example, equips them with the tools they need to successfully navigate the digital economy. Users’ feedback and requests are also taken into account in the development of new course topics so that they have a hand in shaping future training packages.
In parallel, there are internal measures to foster young talents, such as the Emerging Leaders Program – a development program for the upcoming generation of branch managers. The program refreshes and trains the skills needed for future-focused branch management. Topics range from contemporary business administration knowledge and sales training to leadership skills and design thinking methods, as an effective toolkit for innovative and customer-centric business practices in the context of our digital transformation.
For career starters and students, Klöckner & Co offers internships and working student positions, where they can apply and consolidate content from their studies in real-life business situations. Our German activities in this connection follow the quality standards of the “Fair Company” initiative, for which Klöckner & Co reaffirms its commitment each year. We also offer a large number of apprenticeships and equivalent programs to provide young people with a career entry point while ensuring that Klöckner is able to secure well-qualified young talents.
Occupational safety is a key issue for us as a steel distributor with a high percentage of wage earners employed at our branches. A healthy and safe working environment both protects our employees and ensures smooth process workflows. Compliance with occupational safety regulations and laws forms the basis for safe and healthy workplaces.
Since 2013, our occupational safety activities have been brought together under the “Safety 1st” initiative in Europe and similar initiatives at our American country organizations. In line with our Group-level objectives, these initiatives are geared to raising occupational safety awareness among employees and feature a broad package of measures to reduce accident numbers. Officers at each country organization are responsible for the regional implementation of adopted measures, subject accident causes to plausibility checking, perform risk analysis and coordinate cross-location training. Accidents are always avoidable and preventive action enables us to avert loss or harm to employees and our business in advance.
For Klöckner & Co, fair working conditions are the basis for the motivation and hence the productivity of our employees. A working environment characterized by mutual respect and free from discrimination of any kind is a necessary precondition for comittment and creativity.
In general, we strive to increase diversity in our workforce as well as foster creativity and an innovative spirit in the Company with employees of differing cultural backgrounds, lifestyles and values. For us as an international Group, serving our customers every day in numerous countries around the world calls for a strong global team with a high level of diversity. In total, we employ people from some 70 different nationalities in our Group. Recruitment criteria are based exclusively on professional aptitude. In accordance with collective agreements, we also do not differentiate in terms of payment.
There is no doubt that our measures geared to advancing women in management positions are bearing fruit, as demonstrated by the results of the "Women's Career Index" for the years 2015 to 2018. This independent annual survey is regularly conducted by the "Women Career Index" of Barbara Lutz Index Management GmbH and is based on objective corporate facts and figures relating to the promotion of women in decision-making positions. In 2018, we were honored for the fourth year in a row as one of the top ten companies among more than 160 participating companies.