Engaging with stakeholders for mutual benefit
Engagement with employees is critical to maintaining our strategic focus and motivating employees to give their best. Employee engagement reduces employee turnover and has a positive impact on shareholder returns.
Engagement is undertaken on a wide range of issues, many of which are specific to the local context. In South Africa, for example, employee indebtedness is a continuing priority and is being tackled through a three-pronged approach involving training, counselling and assistance, see more details on these initiatives.
In late 2014, a global survey was conducted with the aim of gauging the level of employee commitment to the business. The survey highlighted some strengths in terms of the way we work. For example, employees across the business believe that the organisation is values driven, with almost 90% of respondents indicating that they understand and support the group’s values. The work which has been undertaken across the group on safety has also been widely embraced, with safety being highlighted as a positive dimension across the business in the survey results.
Areas highlighted through the survey as requiring attention and possible intervention are ethics, managerial effectiveness (trust and decision making), as well as senior leadership practices, with employees wishing to see greater consistency between what is said and what is done.
Actions are already under way in many regions in response to the survey and are expected to continue during 2015. In the South Africa region, for example, employee surveys gave a clear indication that the level of engagement between managers and the rest of the workforce needed to be strengthened, highlighting in particular the visibility of leadership. A strategic communications and engagement plan is being developed in the region, aimed specifically at internal communications. On this basis, the AngloGold Ashanti CEO led a series of mass meetings in South Africa at the end of 2014, discussing issues such as safety, production and the overall company direction with employees. Employee feedback from these meetings is being used to inform employee engagement efforts between the company and employees both in South Africa and in other regions.
Arising out of the employee engagement survey the South Africa Region has launched a digital employee engagement platform where employees are encouraged to share work related issues with management. This platform is monitored regularly. In addition, the Chief Operating Officer of the South African Region meets with organised labour quarterly to present company results and region-specific developments.