Respect is the mutual currency at voestalpine, and constant learning is the driver behind all developments and innovations.
The voestalpine Group knows precisely to whom it owes it business success: “It’s the contribution made by every individual,” confirms Max Stelzer, Head of Human Resources at voestalpine AG. “Treating one another with respect even under the stress of busy working life is one of our management principles and strengths,” says Max Stelzer. And how this principle is put into practice at voestalpine is clear: thanks to our employee survey, we have it black on white that respect is an integral part of our behavior, not something to which we just pay lip service.
"Treating one another with respect even under the stress of busy working life is one of our management principles and strengths."
Employee survey: a massive 77% took part
In place since 2003, voestalpine’s employee survey makes the company itself its strictest auditor when it comes to satisfaction in the global workforce. Carried out every three years, the last survey was undertaken in 2016. Believe it or not, 77% of employees from Linz to East London took part in the survey—anonymously, of course. A total of 79% confirmed their conviction that their performance contributed to the company’s overall success. “That underscores that we are on the right track, and that people at voestalpine feel noticed and appreciated,” says a delighted Max Stelzer.
The three ‘E’s: esteem, effectiveness, efficiency
A further highlight of the survey: 78% of participants said they permanently strove to make improvements in their particular area of work. “This shows us that, apart from esteem and respect, right across the company we also work on our other two management skills: the values of effectiveness and economic efficiency which have clearly been understood throughout the organization.”
It is self-confidence and the tools to strive for improvement—a goal shared across the Group—that the company offers its employees. Plus respect for human performance, and a wealth of professional development opportunities, as the figures for 2018 show: 791,589 hours and a budget of EUR 54 million for continuing professional development.
“There is a learning process behind every improvement process,” knows Max Stelzer. He sees learning as “the readiness to tackle the new, and to develop one’s own skills.” And the annual appraisal dialogue between each employee and their manager is the best way for each individual to achieve this. This talk is used to discuss potential and appropriate professional development steps.
"There is a learning process behind every improvement process."
A richly varied development plan
“This forms the basis for planning each training course or inviting employees to attend one of our many internal specialist training programs, from the masters course through to the Sales Academy,” Max Stelzer explains. voestalpine’s internal development plan indicates what options are offered to whom, and when. Also mapped out on the plan is the value:program for (prospective) executives. Development opportunities for apprentices are also included, in the form of language studies abroad, outdoor training events, and participation in European and international Skills Championships where our employees regularly achieve success.
Our path to a green future
We are upping the pace of emissions reduction. greentec steel from voestalpine is Austria’s largest climate protection program. Starting in 2027, this program will reduce Austria’s annual CO2 emissions by almost 5%. 2024 marks the start of the partial shift from the blast furnace to the electric arc furnace (EAF) route—once unresolved funding issues in Austria are clarified.