Our highly qualified and committed employees are the driving force behind ALTANA’s success. So one of our top priorities is to ensure that all colleagues can tap their full potential. This includes increasing diversity in our management teams and exemplifying our values (empowerment to act, appreciation, trust, and openness). To this end, we offer various development opportunities for our employees and promote a feedback culture that caters to advancement and knowledge sharing.

Keep Changing Agenda Expanded

Within the framework of the revision of the Keep Changing Agenda for the future, in the coming years we will once again focus strongly on the people at ALTANA, among other topics. The international trend of ever-increasing competition for specialists and executives (“the race for talent”) has taken hold in all our employee markets. In order to continue to position ALTANA as a well-known, responsible employer that appeals to, develops, and retains colleagues from different generations and regions, the company’s management has defined two main topics.

Promoting Talent and Developing Potential in an Integrated Way

The ability to attract, retain, and motivate suitable candidates is becoming the most important issue to ensure consistent development of our talent for the future.

ALTANA wants to give every employee – regardless of their position – the opportunity to unlock their full potential, and the employee’s willingness to change is an integral part of the process. To meet this challenge in a structured way, we are successively bringing together various talent management tools. The aim is to offer tailored development measures at various stages of the employee journey that are coordinated and interlinked. Examples include a development program geared to specialists’ career paths and digital learning. Both instruments were implemented in the year under review.

Strengthening Specialists’ Careers
In addition to the classic management career path, the integration and further development of our experts is also of the utmost importance for ALTANA’s success as a specialty chemicals company. Due to specialists’ long affiliations with the Group companies, a great wealth of knowledge is bundled in the workforce (for example, in the areas of laboratory, production, IT, HR, etc.). Our experts accept a great deal of responsibility for a project or a functional area in the company without having direct management responsibility.

For this target group, we piloted a new development program in Germany and the U.S. in 2022 that is expressly tailored to the needs and requirements of these colleagues.

The main aim of the program is to provide the participants with the necessary tools to meet the requirements of their respective roles and to undergo personal development.

The content is offered in a mix of face-to-face sessions and virtual elements to increase accessibility and learning success.

Initial assessments show that the program has been very well received, and that this new way of learning is attracting a lot of interest and thus contributing to employees’ personal development. We plan to expand this initiative and involve more employees.

Digital Learning
In line with our goal of continuously promoting the development of our employees and establishing a learning culture, we gave a total of 2,200 staff members access to a competence library offering various courses in the reporting year. This initiative will be expanded in the future so that everyone can benefit from the advantages of digital learning. This means boosting the efficiency of knowledge transfer, moving closer to the individual workplace, and synchronizing the timing of learning needs and learning opportunities. To supplement the competence library, we have made additional compliance courses available in the U.S., which have been very well accepted by users.

Strengthening our Attractiveness as an Employer

In addition to developing our workforce, positioning ourselves as an attractive employer worldwide is also very important to ALTANA, because only with the right employees will we be able to master future challenges and exploit growth potential. In this context, it is crucial to understand the requirements of future employees and at the same time to meet the needs of our existing workforce.

As part of the Management Development Program (mdp) project “Employer Attractiveness @ ALTANA,” five of our management talents conducted a total of 80 interviews with future managers or colleagues who have taken on a management role for the first time. The aim was to better understand what this target group finds appealing about ALTANA as an employer and what can be improved. The final results of this project are expected in the first quarter of 2023. But it can already be seen from the preliminary results that ALTANA’s strengths lie in interpersonal relationships and its corporate culture, financial stability, and the image of its products, among other things. The respondents still see room for improvement regarding ALTANA’s efforts to prepare for future generations of employees as well as the exchange of opportunities between regions or countries.

Employee Survey
ALTANA conducted an employee survey in September and October 2022, in which employees worldwide were asked to evaluate their working conditions, their manager, the local company, the division, and ALTANA as a whole. For the first time, moreover, employees were given the opportunity to provide feedback in free-text form on what they like very much or not at all about their local company and ALTANA. In all, 74 % of the workforce took part in the survey.

The workforce rated the sense of belonging and satisfaction at 5.81 (Employee Engagement Index) on a scale of 1 (none at all) to 7 (total). The rating for overall satisfaction was 5.84, 0.24 points higher than the industry benchmark. This confirms ALTANA’s workforce’s high level of satisfaction with the company.

A comparison with the last survey in 2017 shows that the assessments remain very stable. The strengths of ALTANA as a whole continue to include the topics of activities and tasks, recognition and appreciation, direct leadership, and identification with the company. Processes and cooperation as well as stress and career opportunities are the areas where the greatest need for improvement is seen. In 2023, improvement measures will be drawn up and agreed upon, and implemented in consultation with management.