Who we are? We are Audi

A company is only ever as good as its employees. And good work requires good working conditions. That is why the Human Resources and Organization division consistently focuses on the employees and assumes responsibility.

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Audi supports its employees’ efforts to achieve a balance between family life and work. This includes events such as the Experience Days for Audi employees in Ingolstadt. The occasion for the celebration in September 2019: Audi has been building cars at the Ingolstadt site for more than 70 years.
Audi supports its employees’ efforts to achieve a balance between family life and work. This includes events such as the Experience Days for Audi employees in Ingolstadt. The occasion for the celebration in September 2019: Audi has been building cars at the Ingolstadt site for more than 70 years.

Making working hours and the place of work more flexible and implementing agile structures and processes are important aspects of the Audi Working World. This means considering the different phases of the employees’ lives and promoting trustful cooperation.

Lifelong learning

To ensure the future viability of the company, Audi prioritizes the training and development of its employees. Lifelong learning is meant to contribute to the success of the Four Rings. Moreover, the brand has established a strategic resource and competence management system that enables the Human Resources and Organization division to plan personnel requirements for future tasks and develop employees’ competences in a targeted manner. In this way, Audi is optimally prepared for the challenges of the future.

The workforce in figures

At the close of 2019, the Audi Group employed a total of 90,640 people (2018: 91,674), with an average of 90,783 employees (2018: 91,477) over the year. This represents a year-on-year decrease of 1,034 employees (year-end figure) or around 0.76 percent (annual average). Of the total of 4,214 (2018: 5,004) employees newly recruited within the Audi Group, 1,310 (2018: 1,628) were taken on by AUDI AG.

Audi fundamentally supports the employment and qualification of local employees. The Group is convinced that these employees are knowledgeable about the region and the local market, and have good networks that are helpful for the further development of their locations. The proportion of foreign nationals 1 at AUDI AG was 8.3 (2018: 8.4) percent in 2019.

Detailed information on employee numbers

48.5 (2018: 48.4) percent of Audi Group employees were in the production area and 48.5 (2018: 48.6) percent in the non-production area at the end of 2019; the number of apprentices was 2,585 (2018: 2,582). Within the employees in the non-production area, the proportion of academics 2 at AUDI AG was 51.4 (2018: 50.9) percent. The number of temporary employees in the Audi Group showed a year-on-year decline to 1,957 (2018: 2,527). The turnover rate 3 at AUDI AG in 2019 was 0.7 percent (2018: 0.9).

Infografic: Number of employees (Audi Group), Proportion of women, Apprentices, New hires (2019)
Infografic: Audi Group workforce (Annual average figure), Proportion of Women (Excluding apprentices), Apprentices (Annual average figure), New hires Audi Group, Average age (Excluding fixed-term employees, excluding apprentices). Source: Audi AG (2019)

Fair conditions for everyone

Through collective bargaining agreements involving the unions and management at all manufacturing sites, Audi undertakes to ensure that part-time and full-time employees receive equitable and fair pay. At Audi, the activity alone determines remuneration. As an employer, Audi is also aware of its special responsibility toward temporary employees.

Based on the collective agreement for the metalworking and electrical industries relating to agency and temporary staff as well as the “Charter on Temporary Work of the Volkswagen Group,” an agreement has been reached with employees’ representatives on the deployment of temporary workers. As well as extensive qualification options, it offers the prospect of being taken on permanently subject to relevant internal factors.

Self-determined work

Audi creates leeway for various different life phases to take account of employees’ needs. The company offers many different working hours models to give people maximum flexibility for their personal path through life. In 2016, Audi’s management and General Works Council approved a works agreement that gives employees an entitlement to mobile working if this is compatible with their work task. There is also a drive to make working hours in production more flexible. In 2017, a pilot project was launched at Ingolstadt to create greater flexibility in shifts and broaden the scope for part-time work in shift systems, so that employees can achieve a better work-life balance. As of the end of 2019, there were 4,448 (2018: 3,924) employees at Audi with part-time contracts.

Family and career? No problem!

Audi supports its employees’ efforts to achieve a balance between family life and work. Employees can for instance work part-time or take caregiver leave to support family members. Many employees take up the option of parental leave. The company then facilitates their reintegration and gives employees on parental leave additional job training that will make it easier for them to resume their careers. In 2019, a total of 3,753 (2018: 3,439) employees took parental leave, of whom 1,448 (2018: 1,229) were female and 2,305 (2018: 2,210) male. On average, employees took 9 months of parental leave.

Audi restated its commitment to a family-friendly corporate culture in joining the Family Pact for Bavaria in 2017. To actively promote the compatibility of family life and work, the company has a regular and steadily growing block of places at day care centers in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm. Audi also has partnerships with day care centers and schools at the international Audi sites in Győr (Hungary), Changchun (China) and San José Chiapa (Mexico). In addition, the company enables employees and their families to handle everyday errands (grocery shopping, postal and dry cleaning services) by using the Audi service lockers directly on the plant perimeters. This saves them time and also helps to ease traffic loads around the plant.

Infografic: Number of men and women on parental leave (2019, Audi Group)
Infografic: Number of men and women on parental leave (AUDI AG, 2019)

Optimal conditions for good ideas

Audi profits from the imaginativeness of its employees and believes it is very important to encourage employee involvement. The Audi Ideas Program 1 collects suggestions for improving existing processes. In 2019, around 54.4 (2018: 55.5) percent of ideas put forward were realized, producing savings of around EUR 101.3 (2018: 109.1) million.

The regular employee survey is another way in which Audi promotes employee participation. This survey gives Audi employees a means of voicing their opinion anonymously on various matters and highlighting potential improvements. 40,886 (2018: 42,173) employees took part in the AUDI AG “Stimmungsbarometer” in 2019. The results are presented in the individual organizational units and discussed with the employees.

Opportunities and risks of future forms of work

The Audi Works Council plays an active role in shaping the digital transformation and thus the future at Audi. As part of the project “Vision Ingolstadt 2030: Digitalized work and the future of co-determination” initiated by the employee representatives and the IG Metall Ingolstadt trade union, employees, shop stewards and Works Council members conduct a dialogue with start-up ventures, politicians and scientists about the digitalization and humanization of the working world. This project has given the Audi Works Council the opportunity to take part in the EdA project – a joint initiative funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research entitled “Empowerment in a digital working world – developing sustainable concepts for digitalization.” Specifically, the Audi Works Council was in charge of the sub-project “Developing new concepts for a participation-oriented corporate culture in the digital working world.”

The sustained transformation of the automotive industry – digitalization, globalization, electrification, disruptive business models – presents major challenges for co-determination and thus for corporate culture. Both sides of the social partnership have to work on a wide range of structural issues as well as questions of corporate and collective bargaining policy. A new, empowered co-determination culture 4.0 – i.e., one that is open, transparent, participation-oriented and agile – adds direct employee participation to the established form of institutional co-determination. Works Council and trade union members, as well as the management at Audi, are called upon to take action in this area.

In the course of the EdA project, various events took place under the title “Werkstatt Audi.” The sub-project “Developing new concepts for a participation-oriented corporate culture in the digital working world” attempted to adapt traditional large-group methods to the respective organizational needs and action areas. Whether fishbowl discussions, BarCamps or world cafés – they all shared a common theme: participation orientation as a means of achieving more personal and responsible empowerment at Audi. During the EdA project phase from 2017 to 2019, the Audi Works Council gathered a wide range of experience and ideas on the topic of employee participation and empowerment in terms of both methods and content. Much of this has since been incorporated into both the Audi corporate culture and the participation culture of the Works Council.

Infografic: Audi Ideas Program
Infografic: Audi has optimal conditions for good ideas. The Audi Ideas Program collects suggestions for improving existing processes. This was a big success in 2019.

Company benefits in Germany

Audi offers its employees a high level of job security and attractive financial remuneration components. In Germany, employment contracts are drafted on the basis of the collective agreement between the Südwestmetall Employers’ Federation, vbm (Bavarian Employers’ Associations for the Metalworking and Electrical Industries) and the IG Metall trade union. Thanks to additional company agreements with employee representatives, they are above the agreed level for the industry. In addition, there are collective/works agreements on employee participation in the company’s success and collectively agreed gratuities.

Employees in Germany benefit from the company pension scheme, which comprises both defined contribution and defined benefit plans. For the former, the company pays contributions to public or private-sector pension plans on the basis of statutory or contractual requirements, or on a voluntary basis.

Retirement benefit systems are based predominantly on defined benefit plans, with a distinction being made between those benefit systems financed through provisions and those that are financed externally. In addition to a company pension scheme and the possibility of topping up retirement benefits individually through deferred compensation, Audi endeavors to make the transition from working life to retirement more flexible. A works agreement has been reached on the further development of partial retirement, for instance.

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