Next to addressing the Environmental theme in Alfen’s sustainability policy, the Social topics are addressing how Alfen manages its relationships with its workforce, the societies in which it operates, and the political environment.
Freedom of Association Policy
The right of workers and employers to form and join organisations of their own choosing is an integral part of a free and open society. Our people are key to the success of the business. We are committed to promoting an open and inclusive workplace where all employees feel more engaged and inspired to achieve their maximum potential. Alfen recognises and respects the basic right of all employees to associate freely, to join or form a trade union and bargain collectively. Where employees are represented by a recognised trade union, we are committed to establishing and maintaining a constructive dialogue with their chosen union. We are committed to bargaining in a constructive manner to seek mutually beneficial collective agreements that protect and improve the company’s business model while delivering competitive pay, benefits and work life balance for our people. Alfen fully respects and supports workers democratic rights to participate or not participate in trade unions without fear of intimidation, pressure or reprisal. We support the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) Declaration on Fundamental Rights and Principles at Work, including the ILO declaration on the freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining.
Working hours policy
Alfen ensures that its working hours policy complies with the applicable working hours acts of the country where the company is registered or have personnel working on its behalf.
Alfen denounces all forms of discrimination. Discrimination is when a person is treated differently or excluded, for example from a job opportunity, because of their race, gender, religion, cultural background, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, political opinion, family responsibility, age, social origin or any other status. It has the effect of nullifying or impairing equal opportunity. Alfen has measures in place to prevent discrimination towards customers and employees. These include our Code of Conduct and Whistleblower policy, which expects all employees to create and maintain a safe working environment and to speak up and report misconduct. We make a conscious effort to include all.
Further details can be found in the Diversity & Inclusion policy which can be found here. The Code of Conduct can be found here. The Supplier Code of Conduct can be found here. The Whistleblower policy can be found here.
Diversity Programmes Policy
We promote diversity and inclusion at Alfen not just because it is the right thing to do. We promote diversity and inclusion because it’s essential for delivering on the Alfen strategy. Diversity increases our pool of potential candidates. It helps us attract and retain the best and brightest talent. It allows us to better understand different customers and technical challenges. It makes us more adaptable, helps us to avoid group-think, and contributes to disrupting the status quo. In order to stay a step ahead, we need teams with a healthy mix of contrasting perspectives and backgrounds. These kind of teams are more creative, faster to adapt and more inventive with their solutions. Diversity does not exist without inclusion. When employees feel included, they feel a sense of belonging that drives increased positive performance results and creates collaborative teams who are innovative and engaging. Employees that feel included are more likely to be positively engaged within the organisation. Higher employee engagement drives higher levels of productivity, retention, and a company’s overall success.
Human Capital Development
Human capital can be broadly defined as the stock of knowledge, skills and other personal characteristics embodied in people that helps them to be productive. Pursuing formal education (early childhood, formal school system, adult training programmes) but also informal and on-the-job learning and work experience all represent investment in human capital. Our people are key to the success of the business. To ensure a sustainable success, Alfen offers and provides learning opportunities to all Alfen workers. This is ranging from the mandatory training and education required for the job as well as educational opportunities to enlarge the knowledge of our workers for further specialisation or career development within Alfen.
Alfen has a yearly assessment cycle where last year performance is discussed as well as personal development and target setting. A Personal Development Plan is applicable in case of further career development or to improve personal performance.
Alfen acknowledges that for continuation of growth talent is required to make this growth happen. Therefore a dedicated recruitment team is active to ensure that the open vacancies are filled with competent candidates. Alfen policy is to assess first whether the open vacancy cannot be fulfilled with internal candidates. If this is not possible, external candidates are recruited.
Alfen acknowledges as well the current limitations in the availability of technical personnel. For many years now Alfen has an in-house trade school (Alfen Academy), where young people start their apprenticeship within Alfen to become an electrician in combination with normal school activities to obtain a college diploma as well. With this initiative, Alfen ensures a stable source of technical personnel.
To ensure a sustainable success, Alfen offers and provides learning opportunities to all Alfen workers. This is ranging from the mandatory training and education required for the job as well as educational opportunities to enlarge the knowledge of our workers for further specialisation or career development within Alfen.
Collective Bargaining Agreements
For Alfen B.V. and Alfen ICU B.V. the Metalektro Collective Labour Agreements (the 'CAO' or ‘CLA’) applies. The Metalektro CLA consists of a standard CLA and a CLA for senior staff.
Health and Safety Management System
To ensure a healthy and safe workplace to work, Alfen has set-up health and safety management system based on the requirements of the countries where Alfen is registered or have personnel working on their behalf, and the ISO 45001:2018 requirements. The system is included in the Alfen Integrated Management system (AIM) to control its processes. This management system is set-up as per the requirements of ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015, ISO 45001:2018, ISO 27001:2013 and ISO 50001: 2018 and certified towards these standards accordingly. Alfen has a QHSE policy where for the safety part it has adopted the ‘safety differently’ approach which in summary looks at what goes well, and to enforce that in order to minimise what goes wrong, instead of looking only at what goes wrong.
The QHSE policy statement can be found here.
Health and Safety Certifications
The ISO 45001:2018 Management System certificate can be found here. The certification covers all Alfen N.V. entities except Alfen Elkamo, which has its own certification.
Alfen monitors its QHSE performance and reports about its lagging indicators and more importantly about its leading indicators. The Lagging indicators are Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate (LTIFR), Total Recordable Rate (TRIR), Fatality Rate (FAR) and Severity Rate. The safety performance can be found here.
Scope of Social Supplier Standards
To ensure that Suppliers conduct their business on the same level as Alfen, a supplier Code of Conduct has been developed covering all relevant ESG topics that suppliers are required to address. This Supplier Code of Conduct can be found here.
Conflict Minerals Policy / Conflict Minerals Programmes
Conflict Minerals Suppliers are expected to ensure that parts and products supplied to Alfen are DRC conflict-free (do not contain metals derived from “conflict minerals”; columbitetantalite (tantalum), cassiterite (tin), gold, wolframite (tungsten), or their derivatives such that they do not directly or indirectly finance or benefit armed groups through mining or mineral trading in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or an adjoining country). Suppliers are to establish policies, due diligence frameworks, and management systems, consistent with the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas, that are designed to accomplish this goal.
Supply Chain Monitoring
Based on the criticality of the Suppliers towards the production process of Alfen, supplier evaluation is continually performed by the purchasing department on KPI’s like timely delivery, price, responses, and deviations. In addition to this, for critical suppliers, audits are executed by the Alfen QHSE department in collaboration with the purchasing department to assess the actual implementation of the Alfen requirements.
Product and Service Safety Programme
Alfen ensures that its products and services are safe for use and are of such quality standards that these last for a long time. To ensure this, Alfen has developed the Alfen Integrated Management system (AIM) to control its processes. This management system is set-up as per the requirements of ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015, ISO 45001:2018, ISO 27001:2013 and ISO 50001: 2018 and certified towards these standards accordingly.
In case of unwanted events (i.e. QHSE related incidents) these are investigated by a multi-disciplinary team with QHSE in the lead. Methodologies used are ranging from 5 x why, 8D, up to Kelvin TOP-SET.
During production dedicated QC team ensures that the final product has received a Factory Acceptance Test (either manually or automated). Where required a site Acceptance Testing is performed by dedicated Commissioning engineers.
For each product line of Alfen dedicated After-Sales / Service teams are established to ensure that malfunctions, disturbances, and complaints are adequately and swiftly handled. Based on the level of service contracts, 24/7 monitoring of the products is also possible.
The ISO 9001:2015 Management System certificate can be found here. The certification covers all Alfen N.V. entities except Alfen Elkamo, which has its own certification.
Human Rights Policy
The UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights also outline the corporate responsibility to respect human rights. Beyond this, businesses are increasingly recognising their own moral, legal, and commercial responsibility. The OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights form the basis for what businesses should adhere to and are as such adopted by Alfen.
On the one hand, businesses can hinder human rights, as evidenced by reports around the world of unsafe working conditions, migrant worker exploitation, and harm done to communities. On the other hand, businesses can help advance human rights by offering access to decent work, creating higher living standards, protecting people’s rights and procuring goods in a responsible manner.
Our business centers around trust, as we can only maintain our stakeholders’ confidence and preserve our company’s reputation by acting with professionalism and integrity. This, and more, is all outlined in our Code of Conduct which can be found here.
Everyone working at Alfen is expected to adhere to this code of conduct. It builds on our values and behaviors that underpin our way of working – and is based on the policies and guidelines we follow in our daily business.
We value our employees and seek to be a good employer. We promote the personal and professional growth of our employees by providing excellent primary and secondary benefits and development opportunities. This creates an environment where our people not only do well but can also do good.
We provide a healthy and safe workplace where mutual respect is key and discrimination isn’t tolerated. Our whistleblower policy allows employees to safely and confidentially air any concerns, should they arise. The Whistleblower policy can be found here.
Having a workforce that reflects the diversity of society and a working environment in which a diverse workforce can feel comfortable being themselves are important priorities for Alfen. Our employees should be unafraid to voice different opinions.
The human rights we consider fundamental and universal for our workforce include the right to freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining, and freedom from discrimination based on race, color, sex, religion, political opinion and national and social origin.
We have implemented a Supplier Code of Conduct that determines the level of social, environmental ethical requirements towards a supplier which can be found here. Suppliers are required to agree to Alfen’s Supplier Code of Conduct and confirm that they operate in line with the principles of the UN Global Compact. These principles encompass human rights, forced and child labor, fair labor conditions, environmental protection and anti-corruption amongst other topics.
Alfen supports eliminating all forms of forced labor and child labor. It has therefore developed a Modern Slavery Policy which can be found here.
Activities in Sensitive Countries
Alfen operates in the countries of the European Union and European Economical Area. Furthermore in the United Kingdom, and Switzerland. Alfen has no activities in sensitive countries.