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Employee Spirit on the Up Once Again

Mood barometer: the results for Volkswagen AG are in – team discussions now underway

Volkswagen employees can see room for improvement in the way they work together, in the management culture, and in the level of integrity within the company. This insight was provided by the results of the mood barometer, which were published just a few days ago for Volkswagen AG – or, more specifically, for the German sites in Wolfsburg, Braunschweig, Salzgitter, Hanover, Kassel, and Emden.

Around 110,000 employees had the opportunity to take part, and around 60 percent of them had their say. The mood index, which was calculated from the responses to 22 questions, was slightly better than last year, having increased from 70.6 to 70.8. “The results of the mood barometer are a good sign. We are clearly on the right track in terms of our strategy and cultural change. We can see that our employees are contributing to the changes we are making – and the pace we are setting – as we reposition the Volkswagen brand,” explains CEO Herbert Diess, although he goes on to emphasize that “we still have some way to go when it comes to reaching our targets, and the same goes for cultural change. We have to keep working on improvements in the long term, which includes a specific focus on the subjects of integrity and compliance – as well as leadership and cooperation – going forward. Yet while we have certainly enjoyed some initial success, we have no plans to hold back with our efforts.”

Chief Human Resources Officer Gunnar Kilian recalls that “we got things moving pretty quickly over the last few months – cultural dialogs, the role-model program for managers, meetings with executives, the ‘KulTour,’ and much more besides. Now it looks like the measures are really paying off. Employees are already seeing improvements – particularly when it comes to the corporate and leadership culture as well as in terms of integrity and cooperation.” The Chief Human Resources Officer is especially delighted that a growing number of respondents feel they can be open and honest in sharing their own opinions and also have their say on key work-related issues.

Nevertheless, the interview phase and presentation of results are only the first part of the mood barometer. This is something Arne Meiswinkel, 
Head of Group HR Policy and Standards, is keen to underline. “The next step is all about drawing the correct conclusions in areas where employees  see room for improvement. This is why managers are asked to go through the findings with their teams. It is also important to make sure that improvements are not only implemented, but also clearly documented.” According to Meiswinkel, “It is down to managers to take swift, authoritative action when it comes to pressing ahead with improvements.”
 The results of the mood barometer are now available for all employees to see. There will be ample opportunity to discuss these findings – as well as the results of the new policy indicator – as a team until March 31.

The purpose of these discussions is 
to allow employees to work together to formulate measures that are specifically intended to improve their working environment. The steps following on from the survey – the follow-up process – were reinforced to ensure a greater level of commitment and transparency.

"The next step is all about drawing the correct conclusions in areas where employees  see room for improvement"

Arne Meiswinkel, Head of Group HR Policy and Standards