Management Approach

Vonovia has grown successfully over the past few years. We will continue to pursue our growth strategy, not just in Germany but across Europe. This presents our HR management with a wide range of new tasks and challenges, as for our growth strategy to be successful, recruiting employees and establishing HR activities with a long-term focus is essential. We need qualified and motivated employees throughout the company that will stay with us for a long time. There is particular demand for such employees in the Vonovia technical service (VTS) and residential environment, where our employees are in close contact with our customers. As BUWOG and Victoria Park were in the process of being integrated into Vonovia in 2018, we will dedicate this chapter exclusively to the reporting of Vonovia Germany data. Thus we ensure them to be comparable to the data in last year’s sustainability report.

The number of employees we employ rose by 451 in 2018, from 8,448 (December 31, 2017) to 8,899 employees (December 31, 2018) – an increase of approximately 5.3%. 102-8, 401-1

In 2018, the turnover rate was 14.8%. 401-1

We aim to place each employee in an area suited to their strengths, and to purposefully develop their skills from there. Performance, appreciation, responsibility and team spirit are all important elements of our HR work and our corporate culture. By investing in the digitization of our company, we intend to adapt the processes and structures of our HR management, which is organized as a shared service within Vonovia SE, to the growing number of employees, and to make it more efficient.

We search for applicants both within and outside of the company in order to fill vacant positions with the right employees. We particularly encourage existing employees to fill specialist and management positions and provide specific training for this. The majority of the employees who joined the Group with the new subsidiaries were successfully integrated into our structure in 2018 and are already benefiting from our HR development program (see chapter Training and Education).

Employee numbers by area

Employee numbers by area (pie chart)

We are continually expanding our range of offers and provide our customers with numerous services that use our own resources. This “insourcing” helps us to meet our social responsibilities and create secure employment for various qualification levels. In order to fill vacant positions quickly, we endeavor to position ourselves as an attractive employer (in the sense of an employer brand) for new employees on the labor market and to boost this image with our existing employees. Boosting our attractiveness as an employer is an important task in the competition for qualified employees. This is something we began working on in 2018, for example, by concentrating on occupational safety, health management (see chapter Health Management and Occupational Safety), and balancing career and family (see chapter Balancing Career and Family).

Diversity is also a key topic at Vonovia; we respect and encourage diversity in the company as it has a positive impact on our business operations in all areas. We employ people of all age groups and genders, from different nationalities and cultures, and with a whole range of educational backgrounds. We also employ people with disabilities. This diversity is a particular benefit when it comes to contact with our customers, who come from all over the world. We thus ensure equal opportunities for our employees and a working environment that is free of discrimination, where appreciation, tolerance and respect are the underlying principles (see chapter Diversity and Equal Opportunities). In addition, we have committed ourselves to further increasing the number of women in management positions at Vonovia (see chapter Corporate Governance Report, AR 2018).

Employees by contract type 1)

Employees by contract type (pie chart)

1) Temporary employment contracts excluding interns, trainees, students, temporary staff, marginal employees, employees with pre-retirement part-time work arrangements, those on leave of absence, part-time employees, those on parental leave, bodies and external staff

We take our social responsibility seriously at all of our locations. Our growth creates secure and stable employment; we only employ temporary workers in exceptional cases and do not outsource positions abroad. By reintegrating craftsmen activities we ensure that our high HR standards are applied to these Vonovia services. The majority of our employees (89%) is working under permanent employment contracts.

This results in material topics for Vonovia in relation to employees. These have been added to the materiality matrix according to their relevance:

  • Training and Education
  • Health Management and Occupational Safety
  • Balancing Career and Family
  • Diversity and Equal Opportunities

In the following chapters we will deal with these topics in more depth and explain their relevance at Vonovia. We will describe the management approach, challenges, opportunities and risks, targets, measures and indicators for each topic.

Co-determination is also a material topic. Corporate co-determination and employee surveys conducted throughout Vonovia help us to evaluate our internal corporate approach. We ensure that all applicable laws are adhered to at all of our locations; for example, laws relating to individual and collective employment rights. No corresponding breaches were determined at any of our locations in 2018. Works councils, for example, have been established in all of Vonovia’s business areas. The exchanges between the works councils and management are constructive and based on mutual trust. In the event of significant changes within the company, we inform our workers within the legally prescribed notice periods. 402-1, 407-1