Committed to people

Vesuvius' ambitious business plan is supported by a three-legged Human Resources strategy:

For each strategic focus area, examples of the most recent HR programme implemented at Vesuvius are described below.


Image: Ann Smith — Champaign - USA

H — "hire and resource"


"Vesuvius is a well-established and highly respected company where I will have a chance to develop my skills and be trained to become a professional engineer. The Columbus project is a great opportunity to work in a professional environment and it is an interesting cross-cultural experience."

Michal Smola, graduate from the department of Chemical Technology, Kracow's University of Technology (Politechnika Krakowska), participant in the 2011 Columbus programme. In January 2012, Michal was appointed as Project Engineer with the Foundry Business Unit in Hengelo (Netherlands).

Vesuvius looks at diversity in its broadest sense, recognising the importance of getting the right balance of independence, skills, knowledge and experience, both on the Board and across the business.

As a global business Vesuvius employs some 11,000 people (excluding those employed in joint ventures) in 30 countries; our management grades alone comprise over 50 nationalities. Diversity is therefore an integral part of how Vesuvius does business. The benefits that different perspectives can bring are widely recognised and in recruiting employees Vesuvius draws on a varied range of backgrounds and expertise, benefiting from all dimensions of diversity including cultural and gender diversity.

For the third consecutive year, the Columbus programme has helped rejuvenate our employment base by encouraging promising young graduates, from emerging countries, to join Vesuvius and start an international career. This graduate intake is a corporate resource and is funded centrally.

In 2011, five graduates from Poland and one from the Czech Republic commenced their careers in China.

In 2012, a graduate exchange programme was introduced and three graduates from both India and China exchanged places. In 2013 a similar programme is planned with Brazil and India.

T — train and develop

We aim to grow our technical expertise and strengthen our learning organisation. For this we rely on local training initiatives as well as well-developed Corporate Training programmes and heaTt, the Vesuvius technical university.

heaTt courses, all internally developed, were delivered to 340 customer-facing employees in 2012 by our own specialists. Each Business Unit offers different levels of courses suitable for beginners right through to the expert.

Our technical university ensures that Vesuvius maintains its competitive advantage in delivering an enhanced technical service to our customers. In 2012, we developed an additional seven courses and can now offer 32 technical modules for delivery worldwide.

"heaTt is a very powerful training platform. Experienced colleagues gave me a detailed insight into our products and their applications. I am better positioned now to successfully partner with our customers and elaborate solutions for their specific needs. heaTt significantly contributed to raise my confidence in front of the customers."

Emiel Herdenberg, Account Manager, for Advanced Refractories in the Netherlands, after attending the heaTt Advanced Refractories training in Oxselosund, Sweden.

In 2012, we delivered the third and final session of our industrial marketing programme, Pulse, developed in cooperation with INSEAD. As a logical follow-up to our Boost! programme, developed with INSEAD for 120 senior managers, a new programme for middle managers was designed with the Vlerick Business School: Wings.

The pilot was successfully delivered in April 2012 covering a wide range of business management topics including the strengthening of leadership capabilities and skills. The programme will run for four years to allow all of our middle-managers with people-management responsibilities to attend the course.

Another 2012 initiative centred around the UK Bribery act.

In response to the UK Bribery Act, the Company's Code of Conduct was revised and recommunicated to all employees in 2011. New policies on anti-bribery & corruption have been developed. Together they require that employees and others working on behalf of the Company do not engage in any form of bribery or corruption.

An anti-bribery and corruption compliance programme has been established throughout the Group, and is being implemented through a targeted face-to-face training programme. An e-learning module has been developed and is being rolled out globally, as local language versions become available, to relevant office-based individuals. New employees, if relevant, will go through the training as part of their induction process. The compliance programme includes undertaking risk assessments and engaging with others working on behalf of the Company to ensure that their standards comply with Vesuvius' policies.

R — retain and motivate

Image: Living the Values Awards Ceremony — Bruges, Belgium — April 2012

Award winners from Belgium, Brazil, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Spain, Thailand, the United Kingdom, the USA and Vietnam

As a way to optimise the talents of our employees and provide continued development opportunities, several HR programmes have been deployed worldwide.

During the People Review process, local, regional and global management personnel discuss their people in a structured format, they identify the strengths of their organisation and define the areas for improvement.

The Performance Management Process contributes to formalising the career aspirations of our employees and assists in structuring training plans.

High Potentials are identified at local, regional and global level and individual development plans are devised by their managers to support their career development.

More recently, Vesuvius has launched the Living The Values Awards, a worldwide initiative to encourage nominations for the colleagues who have best demonstrated the five Group Values at work: Embracing Diversity, Cooperation, Creativity, Reliability and Integrity.

The Awards process culminated in a ceremony, held in Bruges, Belgium, in April 2012 during which the fifteen award winners, seven individuals and eight teams, were presented with their awards by the Vesuvius Executive Committee. Each winner nominated their preferred charity to receive a donation.

"People are judged according to their results but our Group Values should be at the core of everything we do — and the key to helping us deliver positive results", François Wanecq, Chief Executive, Vesuvius plc



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