People

Training and professional development

Strategy and concepts

Influence of the transformation on employees

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The knowledge and skills of our employees are the foundation of our company’s worldwide success. That’s why we aim to invest extensively in their training and professional development and work to enhance our HR development programmes. We are also expanding the range of professions in which we offer training in Germany and increasing the number of programmes in our dual work-study system at German universities accordingly.

Due to electric mobility and digitalisation we are currently experiencing the greatest structural change in the history of the automotive industry. This is being accompanied by the extensive transformation of our company, which is changing the nature of professions, activities, and requirements profiles. This in turn is increasing the need for further training in many positions held by both management staff and employees. That’s why we offer a wide range of qualification programmes for new forms and types of work.

From the Board of Management to our training and qualification units and the trainers at the plant level, we pursue the goal of safeguarding our competitiveness throughout the company.

Organisation and areas of responsibility

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For example, Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Mercedes-Benz AG and Daimler Brand & IP Management GmbH & Co. KG in Germany structure the training and qualification processes with an overall system of rules and regulations.

The company-wide agreement on qualification is one of the instruments used to regulate professional training at Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Mercedes-Benz AG and other subsidiaries located in Germany. We reached this agreement in cooperation with our employee organisations. The agreement strengthens the joint responsibility of managers and employees for qualification and thus the competitiveness of our company. In addition, it serves to further standardise the qualification process and structure it more efficiently. Finally, the agreement regulates collaboration with the Works Council on the main aspects of qualification and defines the process for the needs-based planning of qualification measures.

With regard to the permanent employees, the company-wide agreements aim to reinforce and further develop their personal qualifications and to provide all employees with additional qualifications in their specialised fields and/or in terms of their leadership skills. In addition, the agreement expresses the expectation that our employees will take on an active role in the qualification process and develop new professional prospects independently. Furthermore, the agreement stipulates that an annual qualification discussion should be held by each employee with his or her supervisor in which both parties agree on the next qualification steps. Overarching qualification focal points are agreed on annually at the location level between the corporate management and the Works Council. These focal points are oriented to the production programme of the respective location, among other factors.

Throughout the covid-19 pandemic, we have extensively digitalised our multidisciplinary qualification programmes in Germany, as well as the specialised measures offered around the world by administrative departments (e.g. Human Resources, IT, Finance and Controlling, and Procurement). We have defined the strategic focal points “New ways of working”, “Digitalisation”, “Transformation” and “Innovation” for our multidisciplinary programmes in Germany.

An agreement on a qualification offensive was concluded with the General Works Council for Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, Daimler Brand & IP Management GmbH & Co. KG and Daimler Gastronomie GmbH. The agreement is intended to support the transformation of our company in the areas of digitalisation and electric mobility and represents an expansion of our existing qualification initiatives and programmes. Through the qualification offensive we networked our qualification measures across all divisions in order to create the widest possible range of learning opportunities for 2021. In the process, we separately took the varying framework conditions and development cycles of the divisions into account. The qualification offensive is part of the strategy dialogue with the General Works Council and will be continued by both companies after the Group’s split into two companies.

Strategic human resources planning

How will our workforce develop over the next ten years? Which key qualifications and skills will we need in the future in order to successfully complete the transformation and assist the “conversion” of our organisation? These are important questions that we are addressing with the help of the Strategic Resource Management system at Mercedes-Benz AG.

The Strategic Resource Management programme has been integrated into the newly founded TechAcademy Mercedes Benz Cars Operations1 since February 2021. We use it to develop and implement target group-appropriate and future-oriented qualification measures for key technologies for all locations of Mercedes Benz Cars Operations worldwide. In this process we take into account the changing personnel needs of the various locations. Our holistic approach begins with a needs analysis regarding current and future requirements and ends with the implementation of the qualification measures.

Strategic Resource Management is a methodology for observing quantitative and qualitative aspects of workforce development at the various locations. Here we take into account the effects of a variety of strategic changes such as digitalisation and electric mobility. We collect quantitative data using a digital simulation tool. With the help of qualitative processes, we analyse skills that are strategically relevant and necessary for the transformation. Here we compare specialist, methodological and social skills with future requirements. This is how we identify training needs in qualification areas that will be relevant in the future, for example.

This approach helps us identify potential quantitative and qualitative bottlenecks in specialist units early on. On this basis we aim to develop appropriate measures and to qualify staff surpluses in other units to match these bottleneck profiles in good time. Strategic Resource Management thus provides guidance and support for the transformation of the workforce and ensures that we have the qualifications we will need in the future in good time.

We used this method to identify the focus groups of production engineers and maintenance specialists for Mercedes-Benz Cars Operations1, for example. We discovered that these groups needed training in the areas of data analysis, predictive maintenance and electricity/electronics, among others. To meet these needs, we developed and introduced new practice-oriented qualification programmes that were tailored to these target groups.

Using temporary employment contracts to help ensure additional flexibility

Our cooperation with external service providers and temporary-employment agencies is an important strategic instrument for quantitative HR planning. Our use of temporary workers enables us to react more effectively to fluctuating production requirements and market conditions.

We have concluded agreements that enable us to flexibly adapt our workforce strength. The provisions of the company agreements “Safeguarding the Future of Daimler” and “DMove” have been extended until the end of 2024 for the Mercedes-Benz Group AG and Mercedes-Benz AG locations in Germany. In our concept, temporary workers supplement the permanent workforce; they do not replace it. Because temporary employment contracts enable us to react flexibly to market fluctuations, they make it possible for us to keep our permanent employees working at the company.

Measures

New professional requirements resulting from the digital transformation

The digital transformation in the company is changing the requirements profiles of many jobs and making it necessary for staff in many positions to gain new expertise. Here we are relying on a wide range of needs-based qualification measures for our employees, as well as the targeted recruitment of talented jobseekers with digital expertise. We are also expanding the range of professions in which we offer training and are increasing the number of dual work-study programmes offered at universities in Germany accordingly. We are also developing a management culture and organisation that are geared toward the digital transformation, and we are supporting this transformation by offering qualification measures for the entire workforce. During the reporting year, our professional development activities focussed once again on IT skills and professions as well as high-voltage and battery technology. We also continued to expand our range of digital learning formats and introduced a new online platform designed especially for managers.

One example of such a digital learning format is the Digital Readiness Programme, which focusses on the transformation and on methodological, technical and cultural aspects of digitalisation.

Another example is the “Tech Academy” in the area of research and development, which offers numerous future-oriented qualification programmes for employees. The focus here is on a competitive qualification portfolio for the enhancement of electric/electronic (EE) skills, with an emphasis on software and hardware. Many of these programmes are also available in online formats.

Trainees and students

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During the reporting year about 1,300 trainees and participants of dual work-study programmes began their vocational training at the Mercedes-Benz Group in Germany.

We have standardised the content of our training programmes in Germany across all locations and divisions in our training system. Current relevance, user-friendliness and possible cases of duplication are checked regularly by a dedicated committee. Our goal here is to ensure the high quality and efficiency of our training programmes.

The company also offers dual work-study programmes for internationally recognised bachelor courses of study at various Group locations throughout Germany. The lectures are supplemented by practice-related assignments in Germany and abroad. Because of covid-19, there were no assignments outside Germany in 2021.

Our training programmes are fundamentally needs-based, and we continuously review our portfolio of training professions and courses of study in Germany. In this review process we are not only reacting to current developments but also anticipating future requirements and technological innovations. For example, we have analysed our training programmes for IT professions and expanded them to include digital professions for IT in the industrial area, and we have also introduced a course of study that focusses on the interface between IT and electrical engineering (embedded systems). This also involves the design and launch of new internal qualification components for our trainees that address topics such as cybersecurity, programming and data-based decision-making. These components also include extensive qualification programmes for the trainers themselves.

Development dialogue

In 2019 Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, Mercedes-Benz Bank AG and Mercedes Benz Mobility AG introduced the digital feedback programme known as “Development Dialogue” for their trainees and dual work-study programme participants in all plants and offices in Germany. This mutual feedback enables the young professionals as well as their trainers to continue their personal development.

Dealing with new technologies

Mercedes-Benz AG enables its trainees and employees to learn about new technologies, for example. We have set up special “Innovation Areas” and “Future Workshops” at our training centres. These spaces are equipped with new technologies such as 3D printers, virtual painting and welding facilities, and augmented-reality and virtual-reality headsets. Here our employees and trainees can get to know these future-oriented technologies and apply them in practice.

During the reporting period we paid special attention to the technologies that are currently shaping the transformation in the automotive industry. For example, we designed learning content focussing on the topic of high-voltage systems in cooperation with trainees at the Mercedes-Benz locations in Sindelfingen and Stuttgart-Untertürkheim. Physical learning media with digital learning content were used here. We also worked increasingly with learning methods such as gamification, peer-to-peer learning and interactive digital learning platforms. These methods were also specially developed and tested in the Innovation Areas.

Customised career paths

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The Mercedes-Benz Group promotes and supports the professional and personal development of its employees. We make sure that our people have the right skills and the means to continuously improve them, and in this manner we ensure that our employees remain effective and employable over the long term in a changing environment — and that they never lose their innovative capability.

Empowering employees for leadership tasks

The qualification programmes for managers at the Group teach a wide variety of skills in the areas of leadership, agile work methods and the digital transformation. Courses are available to all management personnel worldwide starting at the Team Leader level. New managers receive especially extensive support during the first 365 days after their appointment. The team leader development programme also makes it possible for employees to take on management tasks at the Master Craftsman level — for example, in the production units of the Mercedes-Benz Group. This programme focusses in particular on skills such as pioneering spirit, interpretation, flexibility and digital skills. Because of new requirements generated by the transformation — in the area of digitalisation, for example — the programme was completely restructured in the course of the reporting year. We initially introduced the relaunched team leader development programme at the production units of the Mercedes-Benz Group in Germany in 2021.

International talent training programmes

INspire is the name of a series of international talent training programmes launched in 2018 that optimally prepare young professionals for their careers at today’s Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, Mercedes-Benz Bank AG and Mercedes-Benz Mobility AG. Depending on their wishes and skills, the trainees can pursue a career in a specialised field or as a manager. We have hired 91 highly talented individuals since the INspire programmes were launched; 40 per cent are women and 27 per cent of all talents hired come from outside Germany. INspire replaced the previous CAReer training programme in 2018.

Study while working with the Mercedes Academic Programmes

Mercedes Benz Group AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, Mercedes-Benz Bank AG and Mercedes-Benz Mobility AG set great store by the continued individual academic education of their specialised workers and managers. That’s why we offer the Mercedes Academic Programmes and other programmes at all Group companies in Germany. These programmes offer employees who have been at the company for at least one year the opportunity to study while they continue to work — regardless of their age or their professional development until that point. We provide such employees with financial support and an accompanying programme. Our focus in 2021 was on courses of study that support the transformation of the Mercedes-Benz Group.

Recruiting and retaining talented young people

The function of the Human Resources Development unit of the Mercedes-Benz Group is to recruit and retain highly qualified employees for challenging work responsibilities. Our Global Employer Branding provides the basis for making talented new jobseekers aware of our company and recruiting them. Our career website and our social media channels (“@mercedesbenzcareers“ on Facebook and Instagram) support all of the activities in the area of employer branding.

We utilise an “always on” approach for online marketing in order to remain permanently visible to our target groups. With the help of a variety of advertising materials such as our “In for Change” image film, our “People of Change” series of employee profiles and online banners, we aim to increase various target groups’ awareness of the Mercedes-Benz Group as an attractive employer and to make ourselves better known in general.

Alongside these advertising measures, we also consider it especially important to interact with interested jobseekers in person, for example at national and international career fairs and recruiting events conducted by our specialised units both online and on site. Due to the covid-19 pandemic, it was not possible for us to stage or participate in physical events in the normal way in the year under review. We therefore made greater use of digital formats, and because of their success we will continue to use these formats in the future.

During the reporting year the Mercedes-Benz Group placed particular emphasis on the recruitment of IT and software experts for our future Mercedes-Benz Operating System (MB.OS). This system, which was largely developed in-house, is a data-supported and flexibly updatable software and hardware architecture. We aim to use this system to intelligently connect the vehicle with the cloud and with the Internet of Things (IoT). We expect MB.OS to be finished and installed in Mercedes-Benz vehicles in 2024. In a special area of our career website we offer talented jobseekers from the world of IT who are interested in this area all the important content and information about MB.OS — for example, interviews with our software experts, who provide insights into their work and various theme areas, as well as current job offers at the “Sindelfingen campus”. In order to reach software experts in a targeted way, we launched a social media campaign in Germany called “Next Big Thing”, which could be viewed from September to November on the Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube platforms.

Throughout the entire reporting year we received a continuous stream of well-qualified job applications for the MB.OS positions.

Moreover, in 2021 we agreed with the Works Council — with the approval of the bargaining parties — on a new set of conditions for new employees in the area of MB.OS at the Sindelfingen location. These conditions are specially tailored to the needs and requirements of these software engineers. The focus is on more flexibility and individual responsibility in the structuring of working times and an even more strongly performance-oriented remuneration system. Employees who are already working in the area of MB.OS have been able to switch to the new system since January 2022.

Commitment to school education

The Germany-wide STEM educational initiative “Genius — The young knowledge community from Mercedes-Benz” was founded ten years ago. Genius conducts workshops to get children and teenagers enthusiastic about technology at an early age. Among other things, the initiative offers them the opportunity to serve as reporters at our facilities and publish stories about suitable topics. In 2021, the young reporters covered the topic of sustainable mobility in several reports.

Through the Genius initiative we also emphasise our social commitment to school education. Genius also provides teachers with practice-oriented digital instruction materials and organises further education measures for teachers in Germany. These courses address topics related to the future of mobility. Our employees serve as Genius ambassadors in these courses and in technology workshops at our locations.

Effectiveness and results

The effectiveness of our management approach

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In order to assess the effectiveness and success of a qualification measure, the Mercedes-Benz Group analyses the extent to which the employees have been able to transfer the skills they have learned to the specific tasks and activities performed by the participant in question. One assessment method is the annual qualification discussions between managers and their employees. For these analyses, we also use the talks between the Human Resources units and the specialist units about strategic qualification requirements.

In addition, at the end of a qualification measure the participants can provide feedback on their experience using a standardised survey. We use the survey results to assess the effectiveness of the measures and adapt their content or didactic approach as necessary.

We also collect data on the number of days employees spend participating in qualification programmes. This indicator enables us to make quantitative statements about both mandatory and voluntary qualification measures. In order to also be able to draw qualitative conclusions about our qualification measures, we use the results of our employee survey. This enables us to assess their success and effectiveness. Through these measures we expect to draw reliable conclusions that we can use to assess and adjust our management approach.

Results

The Mercedes-Benz Group aims to ensure that its training programmes are up to date and thus of high quality. That’s why we have redefined the portfolio of professions for our training programmes and for the Dual University for the period until 2025. We have adapted the professions, the courses of study and the recruitment figures.

In addition to using the previously mentioned indicators about the qualification days, we try to arrive at conclusions about qualification topics with the help of our employee survey. During the reporting year the majority of the employees of the Mercedes-Benz Group replied “Yes” to the question of whether their work environment is helping them to acquire or enhance the skills they need for the digital transformation. This leads us to conclude that we are basically moving in the right direction. We want to continue expanding our activities in this area in the future and to promote the skills that are necessary for the transformation.

In 2020 we launched a programme known as “Leading Transformation” that was specially designed for managers around the globe. Over a period of four months, the programme’s participants examined the challenges the transformation presents to our Group and to their own areas of responsibility. During the reporting year, we launched an additional programme component that supports managers with issues relating to the transformation and innovation in their units and teams.

In 2021 we also successfully introduced a new online learning library that is available worldwide. The library enables employees to use videos and podcasts they choose according to their individual work topics at any time as part of their self-directed learning process. By means of the online learning library, we have complemented our existing portfolio with interactive and needs-specific learning offers and enabled our employees to receive individualised advanced training.

The study conducted by the Trendence Institute provides an important external indicator for measuring our attractiveness as an employer for digitally talented jobseekers. Our interim goal was to be listed among the Top 7 favourite employers by 2025 and subsequently to maintain this position. We already exceeded this goal when we (in Germany, as the former Daimler Group) were listed in sixth place during the reporting year.

1 Mercedes-Benz Cars Operations = Production & Supply Chain Mercedes-Benz Cars

Qualification measures, training and professional development (full-time and part-time employees)1
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2017

2018

2019

20203

20213,4,5

Training and continuing education costs (in € m)

114

124

129

112

93

Investments in employee qualification (in € m)

121

123

114

80

62

Qualification days per male employee per year2

3.0

3.2

2.7

1.7

1.6

Qualification days per female employee per year2

3.5

3.7

3.1

1.9

1.2

Qualification hours per employee per year2

21.0

22.0

18.9

11.9

11.2

1

Mercedes-Benz Group AG and Mercedes-Benz AG

2

Note: Because we are increasingly using learning formats that are integrated into the work process, the number of qualification days and -hours doesn’t necessarily correspond to the actual amount of qualification received.

3

Decrease due to the covid-19 pandemic (combined with lockdowns and short-time work at our sites as well as decimated on-site qualifications).

4

The spin-off and hive-down of the Daimler commercial vehicle business as an independent company in December 2021 makes it impossible to compare these data with the data from the previous years.

5

These data have been adjusted due to the spin-off and hive-down of the Daimler commercial vehicle business as an independent company, nonetheless, they still contain minor uncertainties as adjustments for combined locations and units can first be made in financial year 2022.

People starting their careers1

 

2017

2018

2019

2020

20212,3

Trainees

1,726

1,729

1,750

1,616

1,164

Dual University

218

214

225

218

135

Total number of people starting their careers

1,944

1,943

1,975

1,834

1,299

1

Mercedes-Benz Group Germany

2

The spin-off and hive-down of the Daimler commercial vehicle business as an independent company in December 2021 makes it impossible to compare these data with the data from the previous years.

3

These data have been adjusted due to the spin-off and hive-down of the Daimler commercial vehicle business as an independent company, nonetheless, they still contain minor uncertainties as adjustments for combined locations and units can first be made in financial year 2022.

Provider/Privacy

Mercedes-Benz AG Mercedesstraße 120
70372 Stuttgart
Germany
Phone: +49 7 11 17-0
E-Mail:
dialog@mercedes-benz.com

Represented by the Board of Management: Ola Källenius (Chairman), Jörg Burzer, Renata Jungo Brüngger, Sabine Kohleisen, Markus Schäfer, Britta Seeger, Hubertus Troska, Harald Wilhelm

Chairman of the Supervisory Board: Bernd Pischetsrieder

Court of Registry: Stuttgart; commercial register no. 762873
VAT ID: DE 32 12 81 763