We have been in business for more than six decades, but our Organizational Culture remains young, dynamic and in constant evolution. This is primarily due to the encouragement we give to our employees to be proactive, to be open to new experiences, to exercise their creativity and to spearhead human development - of both themselves and others.
The results of our two-yearly organizational climate surveys demonstrate how our culture connects with our employees. With 79% of people responding spontaneously, our engagement rate in 2021 was 85%, unchanged on the previous survey.
However, we set up our Diversity Committee in 2021 in the pursuit of continuous improvement. Comprised of six representatives from different departments, the new team is working to disseminate the topic in our Company. Monthly meetings were conducted in 2021 to determine an action plan. The initial initiative adopted was an internal awareness campaign about Diversity and Inclusion.
This and other initiatives are aligned around Our Commitment, a program that presents the conduct expected of employees and which also underpins all of our policies and practices. Divided into seven pillars, with two exclusive to leadership, Our Commitment clearly and transparently presents what is expected and what is unacceptable in our Organization. It aims to nurture the development of different capabilities that go beyond technical skills.
Commitments for all of us:
- Talking Frankly - maintaining close, respectful and equitable relations open to different and/or innovative perspectives;
- Leave it to Us - thinking about the collective and acting responsibly and proactively;
- Building the Future - being creative and innovating daily in the workplace;
- Excellence in Every Detail - targeting quality for external and internal clients;
- Our Performance Defines Us - understanding and practicing continuous improvement of processes and results as a sustainability factor.
Additional commitments for leaders:
- Leaders Developing Leaders - leading by example by following Our Commitments and understanding that its principal mission is the development of new talent;
- Always Connected - thinking outside the box does not suffice; our leaders must live outside the box and know how to foresee trends as well as sharing expertise.
In 2021, the Performance Feedback Program focused on enhancing performance assessment and career development processes. To continually increase the buy-in into our Culture, during this period leaders underwent training and coaching focused on open dialog and quality feedback in order to nurture the development of fresh talent.
Carried out in partnership with Fundação Dom Cabral, our Leader Development Program (Leadership Trail) also began to be offered to managers, coordinators, specialists, supervisors and master professionals. In its second edition, in 2021 the main topics addressed were: People Management, Agile Methodologies, Digital Mindset, Systemic Vision, The Role of a Leader, Economic and financial management, Innovation and Transformational Leadership. One of our People Management targets for 2022 is to define and implement an Individual Development Plan (PDI) so that each professional can appropriate their professional trajectory, own their career development and count on the support of managers.
We have three specific initiatives for the professional training and development of young talents, which comprise the Gateway Program. In 2021, our Young Apprentice Program had 65 participants who after undergoing training at SENAI were included in the labor market as production operators or technical assistants. The Internship Program provided this experience to 15 students from high school and technical schools. Our Trainee Program gives newly graduated candidates an opportunity to learn about our processes and build a leadership career. In 2021 we selected four trainees, who after undergoing one year in our training program, were hired to work in Technology and Production.
Education is the greatest benefit
We encourage each person to take ownership of their development, which is why we believe the best benefit that can be offered is education. Our assistance provides financial support so employees can take technical or higher education courses and so that their children can study in primary schools, high schools, university preparation courses and higher education courses. Furthermore, since 1980 our employees’ children aged between three months and five years have been entitled to free teaching in our Human Development Center (CDH). It uses a proprietary methodology to develop language, reasoning and social skills through interactive recreational activities. CDH benefited 442 children in 2021.
In technical training, the Career Trail and Leadership Trail were conducted remotely, as a result of the ongoing pandemic. With an investment of R$ 3.5 million, in 2021 we offered training and coaching in matters ranging from leadership skills through mandatory courses about Regulatory Standards. As a differential, we also encouraged training in different skills through specializations - in Brazil and overseas, as well as paying for language courses. To gage effectiveness, we determined metrics and standards for the training, providing greater transparency and visibility to the opportunities the Company offers.
Occupational health, safety and well-being
Embedded in the Integrated Management Policy and monitored with the Integrated Management System (SIG), the health and safety practice for our employees and service providers has its own structure, supported by outside service providers and a strategic five-year plan.
There are formal groups to disseminate initiatives related to health, accident prevention and emergency response, such as our Specialized Occupational Health and Safety Service (SESMT); the Internal Accident Prevention Committee (CIPA); the Emergency Response and Action Brigade (BARE); and the Occupational Health and Safety facilitators.
We have a training matrix for employees that carry out risky activities, but above all remind them of their right to refuse to carry out tasks considered unsafe, as safety comes first always.
In respect of health, our Environmental Risk Prevention Program (PPRA) determines actions to control, reduce or eradicate risks in order to protect the physical and mental integrity of employees and service providers, while our Occupational Health Surveillance Program (PCMSO) establishes flows to carry out examinations for employees joining the company, periodic examinations, returning to work and upon dismissal.
To prevent occupational illnesses and/or injuries, our plan includes programs for: breathing protection, hearing preservation, inorganic lead control (specifically for employees exposed to the risk in our manufacturing facility), sharps injury prevention, in addition to the health service waste management program. All documents and information related to employee health are kept confidential, in accordance with the Brazilian General Data Protection Regulation (LGPD - Law 13.709/2018).
Alert in the fight against Covid-19 (PDF47)
Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, in 2021 our priority remained protecting the physical and psychological health and well-being of our employees and their loved ones. Our Covid response committee continued working actively, maintaining measures that had already been adopted in line with guidelines issued by national and international health agencies and bodies.
Our administrative and support staff continued working from home in 2021 and the emergence of the Omicron variant at the end of the year led us to keep them there. Prevention and control measures were maintained for operating personnel coming into work, such as: social distancing rules when commuting to work, daily temperature checks, using masks and sanitizer gel and testing whenever necessary. We maintained an around-the-clock telephone number for all employees: in the event of any symptoms or doubts, employees simply need to call the number to get advice from a health team.
In addition to programs providing psychological support to employees and their loved ones, we continued our internal campaign #TodosJuntos, as a way of reducing the impact of social distancing rules on people. In place since 2020, the initiative kept all of our employees informed and connected, regardless of their location or their form of working - telecommuting or in-person.
Our social responsibility governance prioritized sharing value with society in 2021, especially in the city of Araxá and Minas Gerais state. With this in mind, when inaugurating the expansion of our manufacturing facility in November we signed a memorandum of intent with the Minas Gerais state government, in order to drive the social and economic development of the Araxá region, creating more direct and indirect employment opportunities, boosting revenue for the municipality and its surroundings, as well as implementing production activities that add value and technology to the state.
This protocol expands the engagement scope that our Technical Social Investment Committee (CTIS) is making on five fronts: social, health, sport, education and culture, whose total projects amounted to roughly R$ 46 million in 2021. More than just receiving, assessing and defining the investments (subsidized and unsubsidized), CTIS is also tasked with monitoring the implementation and progress of the project to guarantee that the initiatives generate the greatest social impact and become independent and sustainable in the mid- and long-term.
Our overarching commitment in Araxá is to support children and adolescents, and to do this we have sought to expand our work in partnership with the local government, public prosecution service and social organizations working locally. For professional training, for example, in 2021 we closed an agreement with SESI in Araxá also opening two new technical courses in the city: one in electromechanics and one in land surveying.
Although the ongoing pandemic has delayed works, we continued building the Araxá Cultural Center, which will build a library and theater with the capacity to accommodate 500 people. With a computerized infrastructure and rooms for individual or group studies, the library will meet the requirements of Uniaraxá and the local community. A further two examples are the Cerrado Scientists and Eye on the Future projects, which comprise our Environmental Education program.
We also produced the series “Transformational People”, broadcast on the Company’s social networks and local TV. The series reports stories and experiences of citizens in Araxá who are driving social transformation. A number of the projects addressed in the series received technical management support and financial backing from the Company by way of some of the municipal funds managed by the Araxá municipal government. Our core goal in this project was to acknowledge and provide a platform to the role played by these people, who are dedicating their talent and efforts to transform other people’s lives..