What it takes to be a good employer

UWT GmbH, one of the most employee-friendly enterprises in Germany, has already received numerous awards. During an on-site visit in spring, 19 executives from Kazakhstan also had the opportunity to learn about the personnel management practised by this globally active specialist in level measurement technology for solid bulk and liquids. The question of who decides that an enterprise is among the best employers was discussed, as were the working atmosphere and the workstation equipment. The multiple winner of the “Great Place to Work” award was glad to provide information.

 “As the managing director, I have seen over the years that happy and healthy employees achieve much better results than we can normally expect”, said Uwe Niekrawietz, partner and managing director of UWT, summarising his enterprise’s personnel management strategy, and explained: “We accept the responsibility and create the appropriate framework in which our employees can unfold their potential and their skills and put them to full use in their work. Our strategically aligned and methodically sound personnel work forms the basis for excellent performance and is the source of motivated and satisfied employees.”

The personnel strategy also includes regular employee surveys and benchmarking, in which the company is supported by the internationally active Great Place to Work research and consultancy institute. These anonymous surveys evaluate points such as workplace culture and employer attractiveness, appreciation, remuneration, leadership feedback, health promotion or career opportunities. The survey results confirm the employees’ high level of satisfaction with measures to promote health (97 %), a good working environment in the form of buildings and equipment (96 %) and attractive fringe benefits (99 %). 97 per cent of the employees like the fact that special events are celebrated at the firm, and 96 per cent confirm that UWT is a very good place to work. Feedback from the surveys and external, so-called culture audits is used to draw up individual executive feedback.

During their visit, the Kazakh managers were particularly impressed by the employee-friendly workstations at UTW – in both the office and production buildings, the intrinsically motivated and capable employees, the corporate health management system and the massage, meditation and rest area – but also the fruit baskets and beverages provided for the employees. Aidyn Zhanbolatov, managing director of a Kazakh furniture factory, was impressed by the working atmosphere at UWT: “The corporate culture and the trusting relationships between the management team and the employees that we experienced at UWT should be published in management guidelines as golden rules for personnel management and examples of best practice.” Yaroslav Pitkow, head of a steel refining business in Kazakhstan, agreed with him: “I have never seen such family-like personnel support anywhere other than at UWT.”

The plant tour with UWT employee Alexandra Woloschin also provided strong impetus for the MP participants on production management, logistics and customer support. In addition, there was ample opportunity for the exchange of technical information on products for level limit measurement and level measurement used in different branches of industry. Hence, the business people from both countries could determine cooperation potential and the Kazakh executives were able to develop their personnel management skills further.

Export-Akademie Baden-Württemberg Photos: © EABW