ITAB considers its employees to be its foremost asset. Attracting, involving and developing the employees is a decisive factor for the business. ITAB’s aim is to be a responsible employer that attracts and retains employees. ITAB is working to ensure good working conditions within the companies in the Group, for suppliers and with the customers.
ITAB respects human rights and the management of its daily operations are based on international conventions on human rights. The Group’s companies respect their employees’ right to organise themselves and negotiate collective agreements. The companies must also respect the right of each employee to refrain from joining a trade union. ITAB is open to offering collective agreements to employees in those markets where this is possible. The Group pays fair salaries and benefits in accordance with relevant standards in those countries where it has operations. ITAB does not tolerate child labour or work carried out under force or threat of force. There have been no instances of child labour or forced labour during 2019.
ITAB is working to provide a healthy and safe working environment. As a production company, it is important to minimize the risk of accidents and workplace injuries. Within the ITAB Group, each company is responsible for ensuring a safe workplace that complies with local regulations. Every year, the companies report their results to the Group management, which compiles a report with employee statistics. Any deviations in the number of accidents or sick leave are subject to further review.
During 2019, the number of accidents fell to 92, compared with 101 in 2018. The most commonly reported injuries were cuts. ITAB will continue to review the safety procedures for those companies that report a higher number of accidents over the course of 2020.
Efforts are being made at a local level to reduce the proportion of sick leave within the company, which increased slightly in 2019 to 3.0 (2.5) percent. Sick leave is monitored and measures are implemented in units with higher levels of absence.
Motivation, job satisfaction, commitment and participation are central factors for the Group’s employees to be able to develop within the ITAB Group; they are also important elements in the Group’s ability to continue to grow. The potential to build a career and receive further training is decisive when it comes to attracting and retaining employees. Within the ITAB Group, it is the responsibility of each and every manager to ensure that their employees’ development and career are in line with the individual’s and the company’s goals. This is followed up through ongoing performance reviews, for example. Career opportunities can also entail employees being offered positions at sister companies within the Group, thereby promoting skills development. It is possible to attend both internal and external training courses.
ITAB Academy and ITAB Executive Act are two of the initiatives conducted at Group level to develop the skills of employees. The internal training programmes provide key individuals from the companies in the Group with the opportunity to expand their knowledge, about ITAB as well as in the fields of leadership and business development. The ACT programme comprises a workshop with different films. The ambition is to give every employee a sense of ITAB's origins and the possibilities, products and solutions of the future, as well as a chance to gain an insight into the sustainability programme centred on ITAB's valuation platform.
Read more about ITAB Academy on page 35 and about the ACT programme on pages 30-31 in the Annual report 2019.
For ITAB as a manufacturing company, it is important to ensure that consideration is given to various sustainability aspects throughout the value chain. For this reason, ITAB’s responsibility also extends to ensuring good conditions for the company’s supplier chain. The Group’s companies mainly use suppliers with operations in Europe. ITAB is regularly engaged in dialogue with its most important suppliers about various sustainability aspects.
Each company within ITAB has its own guidelines and policies that regulate the demands placed on suppliers. Since 2017, a new Group-wide supplier policy has also been applied. This policy applies to all companies in the Group and establishes fundamental criteria for all of ITAB’s suppliers.
The ITAB Group has around 7,000 suppliers. An effort to review and consolidate the suppliers has been initiated.
ITAB can contribute to Goal 8, which relates to decent working conditions and economic growth. Through its responsibility in the value chain, ITAB is able to contribute to improved working conditions in the markets where the Group has operations and where its rapid growth is creating new job opportunities with a good working environment. For example, this is taking place in the area of Good working conditions, which handles issues such as the working environment, health and safety.
Board member, ITAB
Which sustainability issues are most important for ITAB?
“To ensure an operation that is sustainable in the long term, we need to balance our financial, social and environment responsibilities optimally. We cannot focus on one area and ignore another. In future, we need to continue developing sustainable shop concepts, continue working with resource efficiency and minimise our climate impact.
Finding and retaining skilled, committed employees is an important issue, and we therefore need to invest in diversity and in being an attractive and modern workplace, as young people have entirely different expectations as regards their workplace.”