Engagement and Well-Being of our People
Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, it has been a key priority for Ramboll to protect the jobs and well-being of our colleagues.
Our aim has been to ensure that preventive measures interfere as little as possible with people’s everyday work life, while at the same time ensuring that we prioritise everyone’s health and safety.
Our approach has been guided by Ramboll’s strong company values and our longstanding commitment to our employees.
We have taken a balanced view on building the financial strength of the company while also retaining jobs. To a very large extent, this approach has made it possible to secure jobs throughout the company.
Nevertheless, the impacts of the crisis have been serious. In some parts of our business, it has regrettably not been possible to avoid redundancies. Furthermore, many of our employees have seen their work circumstances change dramatically since the pandemic has necessitated furlough schemes or required employees to work remotely for extended periods.
Ramboll’s employees have shown immense dedication and flexibility when working together with colleagues and clients, under challenging circumstances. This has been a key reason behind Ramboll’s ability to effectively steer through the crisis in 2020. To contribute to the preservation of jobs, Ramboll’s Group Board, Group Executive Board and Foundation Board voluntarily took salary reductions, as did the majority of the company’s top-level managers. And in addition, the Foundation abstained from receiving a dividend.
Engagement and well-being of our people
When responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, all measures taken are in line with our company values and in accordance with local needs, regional practices and governmental support systems.
As a global company, we are well set up to work remotely, using our strong digital collaboration platforms and channels. However, the prolonged periods of working remotely coupled with the general uncertainty of the COVID-19 crisis can take its toll.
An important focus area has therefore been to ensure that all employees are equipped with the necessary guidance and tools to feel sufficiently supported.
To this end, comprehensive support sites for both leaders and employees have been created on our digital collaboration space, offering advice on how to sustain mental health and well-being during times of change and uncertainty.
Furthermore, we have increased the focus on frequent and transparent leadership communication. From the beginning of the crisis, we have implemented regular news updates and have encouraged open and honest dialogue between leaders and employees. This dialogue has been championed by our top management, which has actively engaged with employees to discuss the measures taken to manage the crisis.
To help ease the pressure for employees struggling to juggle their working and private lives, we have also introduced the possibility of joining part-time schemes and increased flexibility. In some geographies, we have also introduced furloughs.
Our efforts to protect the health, safety and well-being of our people were reflected in positive results in our COVID-19 – Employee Experience Survey. Launched in June 2020, the survey gathered direct feedback from employees on their experience during the pandemic. On a scale from 1 to 5, the overall score on ‘How satisfied are you with your job as a whole in the current situation?’ was 4.1. Even during difficult times with a high degree of uncertainty, employees have stayed highly engaged and committed, and 76 per cent of our employees found it ‘easy to continue the engagement with clients during the COVID-19 situation’, resulting in a 4.0 score.
The response rate in this year’s regular Employee Satisfaction & Engagement Survey (ESES) also remained high at 91 per cent. The overall engagement index was above target (4.1 on a 5-point scale), and the job satisfaction score increased to 4.1 (4.0 in 2019). The positive results on employees’ willingness to recommend Ramboll as a workplace (4.2) and their willingness to stay with Ramboll during the next 2 years (4.1) are encouraging.
Learning and Development
The focus on learning and development in 2020 has been driven by a commitment to expanding the focus on sustainable learning solutions and driving equal opportunities to learn.
Ramboll’s training offering has evolved to account for the increase in remote working. This meant introducing virtual learning on topics such as remote and virtual leadership and working from home. Training was also launched in the area of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI), supporting the needs on how to respond to the global conversation related to EDI, as well as Health and Safety, IT Security and Compliance in order to support ongoing developments in these areas.
In order to strengthen equal opportunities to learn, Ramboll has a strategic focus on expanding access to digital learning content on demand and on delivering global training programmes in a blended and virtual format, allowing for customized and on-the-job learning. More than 5,000 employees are currently using LinkedIn Learning content as part of supporting their daily work tasks and upskilling to new professional demands.
Employment and management relations
Basic employment conditions and constructive dialogue with management promote employee satisfaction, an inclusive working culture, and a good work-life balance.
An open and honest dialogue between employees and management is important in fostering a culture of trust. We encourage employees to raise dilemmas with their immediate manager or local management, but it is also possible to engage in dialogue in other ways. For instance, the Global Ramboll Works Council includes employee representatives from each business unit and they meet with top management to discuss topics that have a material impact on employees. In accordance with local traditions, requirements and applicable law, work councils operate locally in all business units.
The proportion of employees that is covered by collective bargaining agreements was 47 per cent in 2020 compared with 51 per cent in 2019.