of employees hired on permanent contracts
million euro
used by employees in 8 areas
with Hextra in 2017
of the variable remuneration
of managers was dependent
on achieving sustainability targets

Case study

HextRA is Hera Group’s new welfare plan

The HEXTRA experience continued in 2017, Hera Group’s welfare system offering a wide range of initiatives and services tailored to meet workers’ needs and to increase individual and family well-being in economic and social terms. A flexible welfare share of Euro 360 (up compared to Euro 200 in 2016 and which will reach 385 in 2018) was assigned to each employee, to be used for the HEXTRA offer.

This positive experience counted on 8,569 members in 2017, equal to 98% of the potential population, with Euro 3,313,560 used by employees thanks to an important new feature. First of all, extension of the plan to colleagues with non-open ended contracts with at least six months’ experience in the company, the introduction of a “prize” in the form of an individual scholarship for university students (40 scholarships for a sum of Euro 750 each); opportunities to encourage a greater knowledge of languages A summer in the world with inter-culture, (10 scholarships for a sum of Euro 2,000 each) for secondary school students; management of the IV edition of the summer camps and, in line with the previous year, the allocation of an additional education quota for employees who have school-age children for a total investment of over Euro 490,000. My Junior Chef, the awareness-raising event promoting healthy diets involved parents and children in amusing labs to learn through play the principles of the food pyramid and prepare a traditional Italian dish together. Furthermore, with in Hera energy is worth more users can have access to a promotion for the supply of free market gas and electricity and can benefit directly from the value that all employees, day after day with their jobs, help create with a view to reaching an increasingly shared and participated welfare.

All these decisions bear witness to the Group’s constant attention towards its workers as a key factor to achieve its corporate objectives through continuous investment in the development of the Plan and place us among the main national companies in the field of corporate welfare.

This direction is confirmed by the results of the 1 year of HEXTRA questionnaire: a satisfaction survey on the current offer of services and on the emerging needs of employees in order to emphasise the central role played by people in the development of the plan and to stimulate the creation of a common participatory welfare culture. The start was excellent as proved by 91% of overall satisfaction towards the HEXTRA proposal. This result was achieved thanks to clear information and presentation of the portal services, to the usefulness attributed to each of them and to the positive impact on work-life balance. In fact, access to HEXTRA to request the reimbursement of expenses or the digital purchase of goods and services, either in the office or at home, positively affects daily organisation and is in line with the Group’s sustainability principles and agility.

Social certification Sa 8000

In May 2017, Hera Spa successfully passed the maintenance inspection of the SA8000 management system for renewal of the system validity, certified by DNV GL. The good outcome of the verification ended with no non-compliance being detected, just one finding classified as observation and 4 improvement opportunities.  During the inspection, DNV GL closed all the findings of the previous years.

Among the many strengths highlighted, the awareness of working for a company the guarantees excellent working conditions, the constant attention to training and development, and strict central monitoring of compliance with the standard by suppliers. Within this context, the Group is involved in significant activities to raise awareness in suppliers. Among the positive results, the certifying agency also detected the start of activities by the Social Performance Team on specific issues such as the laundering and supply of work clothing and Personal Protection Equipment. It also checked that all the reports received during the year were handled by seeking shared solutions. The need for a more effective involvement by colleagues not provided with a PC station, was among the opportunities for improvement, while the only observation concerned the supply of working clothes. The Social Performance Team examined this issue in further detail assisted by an inter-functional work group.

2017 was also the year in which the adjustment activities to the new SA8000:2014 standard continued. The new SA8000 standard provides important and significant changes to the requirements needed to comply with the standard. The main innovation is the creation of a new governance tool, featuring joint and balanced participation by management and workers’ representatives, the Social Performance Team. This body met twice during 2017 and performed the required monitoring and risk assessment activities regarding work conditions and SA8000 requirements. The aim of this activity is to suggest to Top Management any corrective or improvement actions for the functioning of the system. In 2017, 3 reports were opened and addressed within the SA8000 management system.

In 2017, even AcegasApsAmga obtained Sa 8000 certification and set up a Social Performance Team composed of AcegasApsAmga and Sinergie representatives. The Group companies with this certification in 2017 rose to 4 (53% of the Group’s workforce).

Over Euro 63,500 collected by employees towards local non-profit organisations

The second edition of HeraSolidale – Hera Group’s internal initiative to promote support by employees to local social realities – was completed. Relaunched in April 2016, associations were chosen as part of HeraLAB (with the exception of the areas of Forlì-Cesena, Padua, Trieste, Udine and Gorizia where the non-profit organisations were chosen by the company), the local multi-stakeholder committee established by the company to provide a structured channel for listening to and discussing with local communities. 44 associations were identified, four for each local area, on which workers expressed their preference by using a real voting system and so established the 11 beneficiary associations.

Ending in December 2017, 575 workers joined the project, accepting to donate Euro 1, 3, or 5 (or another amount) every month which was withheld directly from their payslip. This successful project allowed employees to collect Euro 33,275 over this two-year period: an amount that, in emphasising its commitment towards Corporate Social Responsibility, Hera decided to double and to which Euro 30,276 must also be added, donated from employees through Hextra, the integrated corporate welfare system.

The third edition of the project is expected to be carried out during 2018. The Group employees will vote for 5 non-profit organisations out of 15 proposals selected according to the following criteria: reputation and transparency of activities, contribution to one or more goals of the 2030 UN Agenda, and intervention areas of relevance to Hera services (accessory criterion).

Diversity and inclusion index: Hera in the top 100 world ranking

Hera ranked 14th in the world in the diversity and inclusion index of Thomson Reuters with a score of 77.25 out of 100, improving its performance by almost six points compared to 2016 (71.5) and rising 46 positions in the global ranking. The ranking compiled by Thomson Reuters, one of the leading companies in the field of economic and financial information, analyses more than 6,000 global companies for their diversity and inclusion performance through environmental, social and governance information. The 100 companies included in the index are those that obtain the highest scores with regard to a range of factors spread across four areas: diversity, inclusion, people development and controversies. Hera also ranked second in the world in the utility sector, and first in Italy.

HerAcademy: the strengthening of Hera Group’s corporate university

The contribution of HerAcademy initiatives to producing and sharing strategic know-how both for the Group and its stakeholders continued in 2017. Hera’s Corporate University was founded at the end of 2011 with the aim to enhance liaison and dialogue with the eco-system of reference, that is with institutional academic stakeholders, business schools and with national and international corporate universities.

Specifically, the “Industrial system transformation: how organisational models and the labour market change” workshop was organised in Bologna in 2017, during which the results of the “New Horizons of the Possible” research produced by Harvard Business Review Italia and The Ruling Companies were anticipated. Furthermore, the sixth edition of the university orientation initiative for the children of employees approaching university enrolment was carried out: the event was organised by the University of Bologna with the participation of academic guests and some Group directors. The fourth edition of the orientation initiative that supports the children of employees approaching the world of work was developed. Furthermore, the same edition was also delivered for the first time to a NEET (not engaged in education, employment or training) group, with the support of a cooperative from Bologna.

The System for the development of potential

The process for Group’s development was launched in 2015 and is based on the evaluation of performance and managerial skills. The aim is to optimise development actions focusing on the management and growth of individuals. The scope of application includes the entire Group and involved around 5 thousand persons including white-collar workers, middle managers and managers (57.8% of the total). Regarding training in 2017, 822 evaluators were involved and training classrooms were set up for the new evaluators (22 classrooms) and 19 information desks for all employees. A total of 126 meetings for calibration of the performed assessments were also carried out.

In compliance with the results of the development process, specific training initiatives were set up, including targeted technical training courses, high-level training, Executive MBA, access to exclusive dialogue networks and the already mentioned elective programme: a training process organised together with the Bologna Business School aimed at providing an integrated view of corporate actions and at strengthening managerial skills.

Sustainability in the management bonus system and in the performance bonus

Aspects that refer to sustainability are present in the bonus system for managers and middle managers and the systems for the determination of the performance bonus used by the Group. The performance bonus is influenced by indicators that are associated with quality, work and service safety and the environment while the incentive system, which is connected to the balanced scorecard, provides for a part of the incentive to be connected to the achievement of sustainability projects.

In 2017, 25% of the variable remuneration of Group managers and middle managers was linked to sustainability project objectives: improvement of quality, environmental impact, image, personnel involvement, professional development and involvement of stakeholders.

Up to 25% of the performance bonus for managers, white-collar workers and blue-collar workers is related to shared objectives related to quality, environment and occupational safety.