Human resources planning as an element of corporate planning

At Leopold Kostal GmbH & Co. KG in Lüdenscheid, MP participants from Vietnam familiarised themselves with the HR strategy of an international family business. The company, which was founded in 1912 and is still in the Kostal family’s hands, is run according to the principles of equity financing, long-term profitability, global integration and organic growth. The Vietnamese executives were especially impressed by how international the family business is – it is represented in 21 countries on four continents. The independence gained through equity financing allows the company to carry its values and vision all across the world and to put them into practice sustainably in the day-to-day operations.

Christian Peters from the department “Corporate Planning”, which is responsible for global corporate development and human resources planning, introduced his company and guided the guests from Vietnam through production. The high level of automation and the efficient organisation of production processes made a big impression. Driverless transport robots that run between the warehouse and production in order to guarantee a continuous flow of materials were a source of amazement and stirred the more playful interests of the managers. But the increasing automation also raised more serious issues: What happens to the workers when production is automated? The answer to this question lies in the flexibility of the staff. They should be capable of carrying out diversified tasks in the home company as well as be willing to take a position at one of the company’s locations abroad. In a growing organisation, the employees grow with the company. Further education and human resources development programmes are a fixed feature of Kostal’s human resources policy.

After the tour of production was over, Peters explained which aspects of HR management the international sites need to comply with. The company focuses on training and further education programmes as well as various models of performance monitoring. To ensure that the employees have the required competencies, a competency profile is first created for each job. This is compared with the local education levels. Any gaps are closed with specially developed training programmes. For this, the company has long-term cooperation with schools, universities and education centres. To monitor performance, quantitative and qualitative key performance indicators are defined. A reporting system customized to the needs of the business monitors staff performance. Local conditions regarding culture, history and education must be accounted for in the global integration of the corporate culture – that’s the only way for the company to establish its values and visions uniformly around the world.

By Rimma Kadyrbayeva
TÜV Rheinland Akademie