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Inner Strength

HR – dialogue with the employees

“Perfect Moments” are what we promise our partners and guests throughout the world. But it is only the passion and commitment of our employees that allows us to fulfil such an ambitious promise. Travellers’ needs all over the world are becoming more complex and varied, and our society is changing all the time, which is why Kuoni depends on the skills of employees who can sense and understand the spirit of the times and who feel comfortable working in an environment of continual change.

In 2010 Kuoni’s worldwide workforce numbered 8 772 on average (full-time equivalents). This is 3.3 % lower than in the previous year (2009: 9 070 full-time equivalents).

Functional HR organisation

As the Kuoni Group has grown larger and established a presence in an ever-increasing number of countries, it has gradually built up an HR organisation that meets the needs of a multinational company and its workforce. More and more of the common HR processes have been standardised to make them easier to implement in different countries, though due consideration is always given to local requirements and laws. As a result, HR has become more efficient, while new career paths have been opened up and existing ones expanded.

One example of this is the introduction last year of uniform hierarchical levels and more meaningful job descriptions throughout the whole group. These facilitate a fact-based assessment of a role’s value within the company, so we can ensure that salary policy is transparent and fair – both within the company and compared to other businesses. This also lays a foundation for better recruitment and management development decisions, especially with regard to career planning, succession planning and international transfers.

Kuoni Business Competence Set

Standardised definitions and evaluations of our employees’ key strategic competences help to increase the quality of managers’ work with their employees – starting with recruitment and including staff appraisals, succession management, promotions, skills gap analyses and management and training programmes.
The Kuoni Business Competence Set, introduced worldwide in 2010, provides customized tools for competence-based interviews, 360 degree feedback and internet-based personality analysis. Assessment of potential and current employees is now based on four cornerstones: “managing the business”, “growing the business”, “leadership” and “customer orientation”. These cornerstones cover various competences, which are adjusted to suit the specific job.

First global employee survey

Kuoni Group conducted its first ever global employee survey in December 2010. Staff could answer the online questionnaire in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Thai or Russian. The survey was carried out by a respected external provider, so the information given by respondents could be treated in strictest confidence and comparisons could be made with other companies. Employees in all business units were given the opportunity to deliver detailed feedback on their level of satisfaction with their current job and working environment, the corporate culture in general, their colleagues at work, the company’s management and the work processes used at Kuoni. All of this input will help Kuoni to identify its strengths and weaknesses more accurately as well as to optimise the efficiency of the company, the commitment of employees, and management styles. The high response rate of 71 % underlines the credibility of the survey. Survey results and analysis will be presented to management and staff in the first quarter of 2011; each management team, supported by HR, will then define and implement concrete follow-up measures. The plan is to conduct a survey of this type every year in future.

If Kuoni is to continue on a successful path in the years to come, it has to be able to rely on employees who are motivated and flexible in the face of change and innovation. This makes it all the more important to listen to the real driving force – our employees – and to establish a continuous dialogue as the company as a whole seeks to move forward.