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Securing our skills pipeline

ATTRACTING AND RETAINING PEOPLE

From a resourcing perspective, AngloGold Ashanti and the broader mining industry are potentially faced with serious skills shortages, with few students studying mining engineering and related fields, and even fewer entering the industry. Preliminary internal findings of an overview of the global and regional training capacity for mining-related engineering skills suggest that globally, demand exceeds supply by a significant margin, particularly in respect of mining engineering, geology and metallurgical graduates as well as post-graduate mining related specialisations.

Implicit in achieving our mission is the attraction, retention and development of people, with the primary strategic objective recognising that ‘People are the Business’ and organisation development as a strategic value driver.

‘People’ refers to all of our stakeholders including our employees, peers and the local communities which host our operations. Local communities and non-resident nationals of countries in which we operate are potential sources of skills, although there are several hurdles to overcome. These range from lack of access to quality education resources in some cases, our obligations in terms of the South African Mining Charter of 2004 and similar localisation legislation in several countries in which we operate and our operating presence in often high risk, remote locations as we compete for scarce skills with a variety of commodity producers across the entire mining, finance and engineering spectrum who may be based in more attractive locations.

Our people management system provides the model and context for our people and organisation development strategies within a framework of our values, managerial leadership and engagement practices. Much ground was gained in 2011 in rolling out this system, however there remain ongoing socialisation and change management challenges associated with such a large change initiative.

Our focus to date has been on embedding an understanding of levels of work, role accountabilities and authorities and working relationships across the organisation. Going into 2012, our focus will delve deeper into the effectiveness of our people management processes in order to build capabilities, retain key skills, develop a reliable talent pipeline and ultimately to engage our employees, local communities and the industry. With regards to a talent pool development process, our efforts in 2012 and beyond will be centred on applying an effective talent review and management process, using social media and e-learning technology opportunities as well as industry collaboration, to ensure that we have a clear picture of the organisation’s talent, their aspirations and development needs.

The ongoing risk assessment of real and perceived threats to skills shortages therefore remains high on our agenda and we will continue to track the situation and key development opportunities as we drive change through the implementation of our organisational model and manage the strategic challenges associated with developing and managing our long-term skills pipeline.

Italia Boninelli, executive vice president - People and organisational development

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...making people more effective will give them more job satisfaction and make us more productive.

Italia Boninelli,
Executive vice president – People and organisational development

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AngloGold Ashanti strives to increase the number of women in mining. Featured here is the preparation of grade control samples for assay at the Navachab mine in Namibia