Diversity management

METRO GROUP is one of the leading international retail and wholesale companies. Our employees are just as diverse as our customers, stores and suppliers. During the reporting period, people from 170 countries worked for METRO GROUP. The average age of our workforce was 38.7 years (2012/13: 38.2). We also open the way for older workers to participate in the working world. During the reporting period, METRO GROUP hired 861 full-time equivalents (2012/13: 717) in the 50-plus age group. Internationally, the total was 974 (2012/13: 1,027) employees. The share of members of the workforce in this age group totalled 20.0 per cent (2012/13: 18.8 per cent). In Germany, they made up 34.5 per cent (2012/13: 33.0 per cent). During the reporting period, we also employed 6,082 (2012/13: 5,883) people whose level of disability is recognised as severe in Germany. As a result, the rate exceeds the minimum legal requirement of 5 per cent. Our company also works to support the long-term provision of training positions for people with disabilities: in one reflection of this effort, our sales lines began in 2007 to promote the “Verzahnte Ausbildung mit Berufsbildungswerken” (Integrated Training with Vocational Education Centres) project organised by the “Bundesarbeitsgemeinschaft der Berufsbildungswerke” (German Association of Vocational Education Centres). This programme makes it possible for young people with disabilities to receive occupational training.

Since July 2014, Galeria Kaufhof has worked in cooperation with vocational training centres to allow people who are unable to carry out their previous jobs to re-enter the workforce. Our sales line enables participants to complete the practical portion of their retraining to become retail sales specialists in the department stores.

Our Real sales line has also directed its attention to young people who have been unable to find a training position or are not fully prepared to assume such a position, who have learning difficulties or are socially disadvantaged. They are given the opportunity to take part in a company job-entry qualification “Einstiegsqualifizierung, EQ” programme. This is a national occupational orientation programme in Germany that is part of the National Pact for Career Training and Skilled Manpower Development. The young people get acquainted with working life over a period of six to twelve months. The initial qualification programme serves to open doors to a training position or job. During the reporting period, more than 70 young people at Real took part in the EQ programme. About 50 per cent began an apprenticeship position after having completed the programme.

In addition, many Media Markt and Saturn consumer electronics stores are cooperating with the German Federal Employment Agency to, for example, support young people by providing job-entry qualification programmes while they become integrated into the vocational process.

During the reporting period, METRO GROUP refined its strategy for promoting inclusion and diversity. Our company strives to take a leading position in this area within the trade industry. As part of this effort, we are initially concentrating on our METRO Cash & Carry sales line, which operates 766 stores in 28 countries. The goal is conscious recognition and appreciation of varying needs so that employees are able to commit themselves to the company and a wide range of resources can be employed. The strategic approach consists of the elements Lead, Link and Live. The Lead element targets the activities of managers, who are to promote inclusion and diversity within the organisation and live these principles in their leadership style. The Link approach connects worldwide programmes with the activities of the decentralised and centralised units. It also reinforces the integration of inclusion and diversity into human resource processes. The Live element involves the practical transfer of inclusion and diversity to daily company life, such as in employee networks and at events. In addition, employees and managers are to consider inclusion and diversity in their daily business decisions and dealings with each other.

METRO GROUP has been represented on the board of directors of Charta der Vielfalt e. V. (Diversity charter) since 2013. During the reporting period, we teamed up with 16 other companies to create a regional diversity network. For the second German Diversity Day in June 2014, the partners organised the first event in Düsseldorf for the North Rhine-Westphalia region. The focus of the event was on allowing the nearly 100 top managers who were invited to share their experiences.

Equal opportunities on the job

As part of our diversity management, we promote equal professional opportunities for men and women. In 2011, together with other listed German companies, METRO GROUP voluntarily pledged to increase the share of women in management levels one to three. During financial year 2013/14, METRO GROUP renewed its voluntary pledge to increase the share of women in management positions. By 2017, the share of women in management positions (levels one to three) is to reach 25 per cent. At METRO AG, the share of women in the first two management levels below the Management Board should also amount to 25 per cent by 2017. These objectives have been incorporated into our recruiting and succession planning and correspond with the Supervisory Board’s objectives for the Management Board.

For more information about the objectives regarding the composition of the Management and Supervisory Boards, see the corporate governance report.

The share of women in the entire workforce was 53.8 per cent as of the closing date of 30 September 2014 (30/9/2013: 55.1 per cent). In management levels one to three, 18.5 per cent of managers were female as of the closing date of 30 September 2014 (30/9/2013: 18.5 per cent). The share of women in management positions is particularly high in countries outside Germany: as of the closing date of 30 September 2014, 21.0 per cent of managers in countries other than Germany were female. The Women in Trade (WiT) employee network now has about 130 members. The network intends to help to raise the share of women in management positions over the long term, to promote internal and external dialogue and to create better working conditions for women in the company. The network is internationally active and is aimed at colleagues in all countries.

Work-life balance programmes based on phases of life

Our headquarters in Düsseldorf has three day care centres with 238 full-time slots for children from the age of four months. The staff speak German and English to the children. In 2014, we once again offered a holiday childcare programme at our company headquarters. More than 150 children of employees took part.

Galeria Kaufhof opened a new parent-child office in its headquarters in Cologne so that parents can bring their children to work with them in emergencies. Since 2010, the headquarters of Media-Saturn in Ingolstadt has been certified as a family-friendly company by the Hertie Foundation. As part of an array of measures aimed at supporting work-life balance, Media-Saturn in Ingolstadt offers holiday childcare as well as nursery slots for children of employees.

The share of part-time employees at METRO GROUP rose slightly to 28.4 per cent compared with the previous year’s period (9M 2012/13: 27.8 per cent). In Germany, 44.8 per cent of our staff work part-time (2012/13: 44.8 per cent).

METRO GROUP wants to support employees in all phases of life – and that includes the care of loved ones. In cooperation with the German carers’ organisation Deutscher Pflegering, METRO AG began offering its employees two service models in March 2014: The online care portal offers information about the topic and includes an index with more than 25,000 care providers. The care hotline allows employees to discuss their questions directly with caregiving experts.