[GRI 404/103-1] Whether it is in sales, buying, administration, logistics or IT, the roughly 69,000 ALDI employees make a decisive contribution to the sustained success of the ALDI North Group. All of them can be proud to work for the ALDI North Group. In exchange, they receive secure working conditions, attractive framework conditions and long-term career development prospects. Open and respectful dealings in an approach based on partnership are very important to us. Our focus is on appreciating each and every one of our employees and promoting their sense of connection with the ALDI North Group. By way of this total package, we aim to retain the loyalty of employees over the long term and recruit new talents.
[GRI 102-16, 404/103-2, 405/103-2] For three years now, we have been pursuing a clear modernisation strategy that also means changes for the employees of the ALDI North Group. They have demonstrated their dedication and commitment to systematically and consistently tailoring our range of products to customer demands – and we have tailored our personnel policy to meeting these needs. In Human Resources (HR), the mission statement and leadership principles have been supplemented since 2015 by an HR concept that supports our modernisation path. Along with the development of an employer brand for the ALDI North Group that encourages a sense of identification, hereinafter referred to as “Attractive employer”, the current focus is mainly on the development of managers and junior employees. We are also expanding our internal communication efforts.
To attract applicants to the ALDI North Group, we are present at various career and training fairs as well as recruiting events. We launched a redesigned and modernised version of our careers website in Germany in 2017 and in the Netherlands in early 2018. In addition to a wide range of job offers and information on training options, visitors can now find fascinating insights into what it is like to work at the Group as well as informative real-life stories from employees. We focus on long-term employment relationships. Most of the contracts for employees at the ALDI North Group are permanent and for an indefinite period (almost 80 per cent in 2017). Above-average employee loyalty has been a traditional feature at the ALDI North Group compared to the rest of the sector. The ALDI employees are remunerated with fair pay in accordance with their performance.
[GRI 404/103-2, 405/103-2, 102-16] Responsibility for human resources topics is established at local level at all companies in the ALDI North Group. Cross-company collaboration is exercised in regular meetings of two committees: the HR committee, with representatives of the management of the legally independent regional companies as well as of the ALDI Buying division (ALDI Einkauf), and an international circle of HR departments that has brought together HR colleagues once or twice a year since 2017 to work on international issues on a project-by-project basis. In Germany and the Netherlands, the HR department and managers from the regional companies exchange views once a quarter as part of a team of experts to ensure a practical approach to tackling issues.
The mission statement, HR concept and “real traders” leadership principles – which were developed in 2014 and emphasise the values of simplicity, responsibility and reliability, as well as focusing on recognition, openness and trust – serve as a common HR platform.
Progress and measures in 2017
Training and education: cornerstone of success
[GRI 404/103-2] The ALDI North Group’s training and education programmes are a key element in ensuring our future. We offer established training programmes in Belgium, Germany, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain.
In 2017, the number of apprentices throughout the Group stood at around 2,300 and at around 2,100 in Germany, making the regional companies in Germany still one of the biggest training providers in the German retail trade. In Germany, 82 per cent of apprentices were offered permanent employment following their training in 2017.
Alongside traditional training options, the Group provides options for twin-track studies and trainee programmes. In Germany, we were able to open the International Retail Management master’s programme to external applicants in the period under review. The number of partner universities of applied sciences and vocational academies increased to 22 (2015: 18). At ALDI Spain, 43 students completed their twin-track courses of study in 2017. ALDI Netherlands launched the Sprint Trainee Impact Programme (STIP) in 2017. In October, 34 trainees from universities of applied sciences and universities entered this trainee programme with the goal of becoming regional sales managers within 23 months. They will be trained by store managers who have been receiving preparation for this responsibility in special train-the-trainer courses since summer 2017 covering topics such as teaching methods and communication. Since 2016, ALDI Portugal has offered a trainee programmed in stores and administration.
In 2017, education focused mainly on the new design programme ALDI Nord Instore Konzept. By way of a workshop concept, we have been working since September 2017 to prepare employees for the upcoming changes at the stores affected by the programme. Our aim is to provide information, support and motivation related to the upcoming changes. In 2017, we also offered training to support the introduction of new technologies, such as a new SAP system at German and French regional companies. The ALDI Training House, a venue for trainee training courses and train-the-trainer classes, opened in the Netherlands in 2017. Forty-nine store managers already started training there last year.
Introduction of electronic time-recording soon to be completed
The introduction of an electronic time-recording system was completed at nearly all German locations in 2017. The roll-out has yet to take place at three regional companies. The system provides more transparency and fairness for structuring working hours and pay. A new compensation model is also being introduced with the time-recording system which provides the employees with many advantages. For example, the weekly working hours for store managers have been reduced by several hours for the same salary. In addition, the training compensation has been increased. In 2017, we introduced the time-recording system as planned in the Netherlands as well. All stores in the Netherlands are scheduled to be connected to the system by mid-2018.
Employee communication: direct and creative
We are expanding our internal communication efforts as part of our HR concept. The goal is to expand the available formats, make them more up to date and offer further dialogue opportunities. In Germany, we have been publishing a quarterly employee magazine since April 2017. Belgium and Poland followed suit in early 2018. We are also increasing the frequency and scope of ad hoc communication with employees in stores in Germany through flyers, posters, brochures and videos, among other media. ALDI Portugal set up a monthly employee newsletter in 2017. We also regularly publish CR newsletters tailored towards an internal target audience in Belgium, Denmark, France, Luxembourg, Poland and Portugal.
In 2017, we organised creative employee competitions. Employees in Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg, France, the Netherlands, Portugal, Poland and Spain had the opportunity to answer the question “Why do you like to work at ALDI?” by creating their own submissions to illustrate what makes their day-to-day work at ALDI so special. In Germany, the 70 winners in categories such as “image, photo, text” or “most creative store” received attractive prizes at an awards ceremony in November. Throughout the ALDI North Group, more than 2,370 took part in the competition by submitting some 660 poems, comics, music videos, sculptures, recipes and paintings.
Corporate runs promote employees’ health and strengthen their sense of identification with the ALDI North Group. We participated in such running events in seven of the nine ALDI North Group countries in 2017. For example, ALDI Poland regularly takes part in the Katowice Business Run, which donates its entry fees to charitable causes.
Promotion of responsible leadership
[GRI 404/103-2] Managers at the ALDI North Group have great influence in their capacity as role models. First employee surveys have indicated further potential for bringing the “real traders” leadership principles to life. That is why we are focused on promoting responsible leadership behaviour through a variety of measures – from management conferences that bring together attendees from across regions, hierarchies and positions, to one-day workshops designed to help improve communication, self-management and leadership skills. A toolbox additionally provides helpful tips and useful information on leading with respect. The “Simply Sales” project targets executive employees of ALDI Buying by giving them the opportunity to spend a Saturday working at a store in order to experience the day-to-day work of employees and demands of customers on site. They can leverage their practical experience to support regional companies in their core business through appropriate services.
Targets and status
[GRI 404/103-2/3] Our goals are to expand employee communication and promote responsible and appreciative leadership. We measure our progress through employee surveys, among other measures. Performance indicators such as the average length of service or the number of apprentices provide further insights. Awards such as Deutschlands beste Ausbildungsbetriebe (Germany’s Best Companies for Training and Apprenticeships)confirmed the success of our HR efforts once again in 2017.
Field of action: employee appreciation
|Objective||Status||Target date||Target value||Target relevance|
|Increase in employee communication||new||2019||More channels of communication for ALDI employees, among other things||Germany|
|Development of a training programme for enhancing managers’ skills||new||2019||Concept||Poland|
Number of employees by field of work and gender on the reference date 31 December (headcount)
|ALDI North Group||of which female||ALDI North Group||of which female||ALDI North Group||of which female|
|ALDI North Group||58,179||39,757||64,079||44,012||69,367||46,842|
1 This category also includes employees released for the works council and maintenance staff.
Average length of service with the company (in years)
|ALDI North Group||6||6||9|
1 A more precise calculation method results in a more accurate value for the ALDI North group compared to the previous year’s values.
2 The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).
Proportion of employees by employment contract and gender on the reference date 31 December (in per cent)
|Temporary||of which female||Permanent||of which female||Temporary||of which female||Permanent||of which female||Temporary||of which female||Permanent||of which female|
|ALDI North Group||16.5||66.3||83.5||68.7||19.7||67.3||80.3||69.1||21.3||62.6||78.7||69.5|
1The information regarding the legally independent companies of the ALDI North Group in Belgium and Luxembourg has been combined for the purposes of a simplified presentation (refer to “Subject of the report”).
Number of apprentices and twin-track degree students on the reference date 31 December
The vocational training model based on the German pattern is not used in all countries, and the data on the number of apprentices are therefore restricted to the countries of Denmark, Germany and France. The system used in the Netherlands and Spain is currently not included in recording the performance indicators because the vocational training models are not identical. In Germany, a twin-track degree course with in-service training is also offered.
|Apprentices||Twin-track students||Apprentices||Twin-track students||Apprentices||Twin-track students|
We take responsibility for safe and fair working conditions and compliance with environmental standards wherever we can make a difference
“The highest quality – the lowest prices”: in order to keep this promise, all ALDI North products undergo tough quality checks. For employees in Quality Assurance, it is a demanding job.
Our seasonal and regional product range played an essential role in our offerings. Our responsibility for these products stretches from the warehouse to the point of sale and beyond, including the more sustainable production of resources throughout the value chain.
Being an ALDI employee above all means embracing our shared values: simplicity, responsibility and reliability. That is what we stand for in all we do, wherever we are located.
Numerous non-food products that ALDI sells, such as textiles, toys and furniture, are manufactured in Asia. The team, ALDI CR-Support Asia Ltd is responsible for monitoring the labour and social standards of production sites.
For many products, packaging is essential for protection and quality assurance. That is why we focus on recyclable materials and, in some cases, on multiple-use systems.
We take responsibility for the protection of our environment and its natural resources. As a retailer, reducing waste and dedicating ourselves to fighting food losses play a central role.
Empowering our customers to choose a responsible, affordable and healthy approach to consumption is part of our corporate responsibility (CR) philosophy. Which is why we are continually expanding our range of more sustainable products.