Sustainable Human Resources Policy

Bayer is committed to promoting a performance-oriented corporate culture. To realize our growth strategy, we rely on our employees and their continuous development. We actively encourage regular feedback between supervisors and their employees, greater cultural and employee diversity within the Bayer Group, and innovation in all areas.

Bayer Employee survey

Employee survey: almost 80 percent of all Bayer employees seized the opportunity to put across their viewpoint about the company and their working conditions.

Bayer pursues a sustainable human resources policy. The objectives and principles are based on our corporate values, known by the acronym LIFE, which are valid throughout the world. LIFE stands for Leadership, Integrity, Flexibility and Efficiency. These values encapsulate the core elements of our corporate culture, which combines a strong focus on performance and development with a high degree of social responsibility. At the same time, they are a simple and practical guide for employees in their work.

On December 31, 2015, Bayer had around 116,800 employees worldwide. Of the total Group workforce, 112,100 employees had permanent contracts while 4,700 had temporary. In Germany there were 36,700 employees, which was 31 percent of the total Group workforce. contracts.

Respecting Employee and Human Rights

As a socially responsible company, Bayer has long been committed to upholding and supporting human rights at various levels. The Bayer Human Rights Position is rooted in a binding Group-wide directive. We respect the United Nations’ Declaration of Human Rights and are a founding member of the UN Global Compact. Our mission, life values and Corporate Compliance Policy commit all employees around the world to fair and lawful conduct toward staff, colleagues, business partners and customers.

Employee Feedback

We believe regular feedback is necessary for the continuous development of our employees and our organization and that it helps us adapt to changing requirements. Alongside our performance management system, we use 360° feedback. This insight from colleagues and business associates is designed to foster the performance and leadership behavior of our employees and support their professional development.

Our most important feedback tool at the corporate level is our Group-wide employee survey. Every two years, this gives us competent feedback from our employees on our strategy, culture and working conditions. Since the last survey in 2014, we have launched a variety of initiatives and improvements worldwide to overcome the shortcomings identified in specific areas. The next employee survey is scheduled for spring 2016.

Diversity and Internationality

Workforce diversity is vital for our company’s future competitiveness. This is particularly true for our management. Diversity improves our understanding of changing markets and consumer groups, gives us access to a broader pool of talented employees, and enables us to benefit from the enhanced innovative and problem-solving abilities that are demonstrably associated with a high cultural diversity within the company. Of the members of our Group Leadership Circle, in which 33 nationalities are currently represented, around 67 percent come from the country in which they are employed. The Bayer Group currently employs people from around 150 countries.

Another focus of our diversity strategy is on improving the gender balance, especially in management. In 2010, Bayer set itself the voluntary target of raising the proportion of women at the five highest management levels throughout the Group to 30 percent by the end of 2015. In just five years, we have increased the proportion of women in this management segment from 21 percent to around 28 percent. We aim to raise this to 35 percent by 2020.

Recruiting for the Future

Bayer endeavors to appeal to the most talented people worldwide and to retain employees for long periods by providing good development opportunities, a modern working environment and competitive compensation. In total, the Bayer Group hired more than 14,500 new employees in 2015.

Talent Management  

We are convinced that systematic people development is exceptionally important for the future success of our company. Group-wide talent management, in other words measures and tools to further our employees’ professional and personal development, is therefore a key element in our human resources policy. The basic principle is that every employee has his or her own individual strengths and talents that deserve recognition and development in the workplace.

Vacancies in the Bayer Group, from non-managerial right up to senior management level, are advertised
via a globally accessible platform.

Promoting Lifelong Learning

Selective training is also part of our philosophy of personnel development. We actively encourage “lifelong learning” by our employees as an integral element in the management of demographic change. Our aim is to empower all employees to broaden their knowledge and skills and keep up with the latest changes throughout their working lives.

We have training programs for all employees throughout the company. An overview of the various programs, together with details of their aims and uptake can be found in the following table:

Selected Examples of Trainings at Bayer in 2015

Training courses
Key aspects / goals
Attendances in 2015
Global Bayer Academy
Leadership training, general management training
Systematic management development program based on the LIFE values to facilitate a uniform understanding of leadership worldwide.
Bayer Finance Academy
Modular program for systematic introductory training and continuous professional development for employees in finance, accounting, auditing, controlling and tax
Bayer Human Resources Academy
Various training formats for HR departments to enhance their competencies as advisors and partners for the various business units
Bayer Operational Excellence Academy
Experience from the established Lean and Six Sigma concepts is used to simplify working processes.
Bayer Procurement Academy
Training in procurement-related topics, specifically for procurement staff
Open offering of self-taught and coaching programs for all procurement staff
Commercial Excellence programs at the subgroups
Practical programs to provide market-related background knowledge and improve customer orientation
More than 4,300 since 2013, including 600 in 2015
Enhancing Performance & Feedback Culture
Obligatory program for employees with personnel responsibilities with the goal of enhancing the performance and feedback culture.
Global knowledge and skills training in specific areas
Introduction to the company
A wide range of training courses are offered on these subject areas for various employee groups from all parts of the company.
81,086 employees with 302,205 attendances on 416,641 training days
Communication, working methods and project management
Business administration and law
Languages and intercultural skills
Information technology and SAP
Marketing, sales and customer focus
Research, production and technology
Group focus
Cultural and gender balance in management
Topics: economic benefit of greater diversity, differences between cultures and genders, examples of best practice in the Group; these are used to develop action plans for the individual areas of responsibility.
Corporate compliance, anticorruption
see page about Corporate Compliance
Human rights
see page about human rights
Supplier management/Supplier Code of Conduct
see page about supplier management
Workshops for the Group Leadership Circle and selected employees to improve our culture of innovation and foster individual innovative capability
Programs at the subgroups
“Fit in Production” (FIP method) (Covestro)
Qualification program for Covestro production employees aimed at achieving a comparable level of qualification at production sites worldwide. This program has been running since 2010 and has been implemented at 18 sites to date. Global curricula have been developed for 25 of the most important product lines, with 1 of these being compiled in 2015
423 trainers and FIP coaches have qualified since 2010, including 32 in 2015
Occupational safety
Web-based training on occupational and plant safety
"BayLearn" (HealthCare)
These programs cover 87 countries. Their primary focus is to support operational and technical competency enhancement and to fulfill the regulatory compliance requirement (GxP) for documented evidence that all staff have appropriate training and qualifications.
Nearly 160,000 hours of web-based training and over 128,000 hours of on-site training with more than 608,000 participants
FIT Office (Bayer Business Services)
FIT Office is a special training program that enables the company to meet changing personnel requirements from within its own workforce. It was set up specifically to support employees in applying and preparing for new positions. Its role also includes providing individual advice to place employees in suitable positions and train them in the necessary skills. The FIT Office program won the German Training Award in the category “Innovation” in 2015.
285 employees on 2,857 training days
Last updated: September 16, 2016 Copyright © Bayer AG