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Creating value for and through our people

At a glance
Why are our employees considered material stakeholders?
In an increasingly challenging operating context, it is the innate passion, knowledge, skills, attitude and innovative spirit of our employees that enable our collective success.

How did we create value for our employees in 2017?    
Through our employee value proposition (EVP), we attract, develop and retain high-performing people and reward their contributions in a fair and commensurate manner.  
  • R8 902 million paid to employees
  • 18 085 employees worldwide
  • Training spend R110 million

How do we engage with our employees?   What are their concerns?   Our response/our strategic response   Related strategic goals
  • Individual balanced scorecards aligned to strategic plans
  • Individual Perception Monitor (IPM) survey
  • Workplace safety training
  • Employee wellness programmes
  • Mentorship and coaching
  • Leadership and executive development programmes
  • Staff forums
  • Bargaining and negotiation forums with trade unions
  • Town hall meetings
  • Inspiring work environment
  • Career development
  • Workplace health and safety
  • Recognition and reward
  • Diversity and inclusion


  • Proactive learnerships and talent engagement programmes
  • Foster relationships with unions through employee representative forums
  • Intellectual capital reviews
  • Talent and measurable performance management
  • Improve diversity and inclusiveness through women in leadership
  • Graduate development programmes
  • Drive profitable growth
  • Instil a high-performance culture

Looking ahead
The focus will be on change management and education for our people aimed at driving the appropriate value-enhancing behaviours aligned to our bold ambition.

LA1 to LA16

Understanding the value balance

We understand that a balance exists between the value we deliver to our employees and the value we receive from them. We seek to communicate the value our organisation can offer employees – both our existing and potential employees. This value refers to the unique differentiators that define Barloworld as an employer and what our organisation stands for, including our vision and distinctive culture, as well as rewards for their contribution and professional growth. To help create a high-performance organisation, this set of unique benefits is encapsulated in our employee value proposition (EVP) and demonstrates the value we offer to our employees in return for the passion, skills, and capabilities they bring to Barloworld.

Integrated Employee Value Model

Holding ourselves accountable

Our Individual Perception Monitor (IPM) is traditionally conducted every second year and was last conducted in 2017. The survey measures employees' perception of the degree to which they experience the various elements of our EVP. Detailed analysis is undertaken for each dimension, identifying the areas for improvement and formulating appropriate responses.

2017 areas of development   Progress
In 2017, the dimensions of “Grow” and “Thrive” remained a challenge for a number of divisions to meet the target rating.   During the year, these areas were addressed through additional emphasis on management’s role in employee development, career progression and the creation of career opportunities.

Considering the high level of change permeating the organisation, we believe it is important to maintain our finger on the pulse regarding employee sentiment, especially concerning our achievement of EVP elements we believe enable us to attract and retain top talent. The survey was, therefore, once again undertaken in 2017. It uses a four-point scale with the aim to achieve an overall rating of 3 or better. Our target is to achieve an overall rating of 3.20.

In 2017, all divisions participated in the survey. The results of the survey indicated below. We are looking at ways to address the concerns raised from the survey.

Division/business unit   Overall (maximum score
4 points)
Equipment – Southern Africa   2.98  
Equipment – Russia   3.25  
Equipment – UK   2.66  
Automotive Head Office   3.29  
Avis Fleet   3.04  
Avis Budget Car Rental   3.20  
Motor Retail   3.10  
Digital Disposal Solutions   3.25  
Logistics   2.99  
Power South Africa   2.97  
Corporate Office   3.09  
  Development programmes
  Apprenticeships/learnerships 1 797 apprentices/learners
  Executive development programmes
184 executives to date
  Leadership development programmes
687 to date
  Training outside public practice (Chartered Accountants)
51 TOPP students trained
39 bursars
  Study support
218 employees

The role of human capital in delivering against our revised strategy

As part of our revised group strategy, we identified human capital as a critical enabler of delivery. We recognised that there is a need to actively manage our human capital centrally to ensure we are driving group targets forward.

Four critical areas have been identified as key areas of focus:

1. Talent management
2. Performance management, including remuneration and reward
3. Communication and change management
4. Diversity and inclusion

Talent management

Against the backdrop of the strategic repositioning of the group and the challenges that lie ahead, having the right people in the right place is a priority for us. We assessed our existing human capital matrix to leverage the skills and practical experience already available within the organisation. We seek to undertake a gap analysis in order to acquire or grow talent from within to help position the group for long-term sustainable performance. Part of this process involves a futuristic view of employees in their aspirational roles rather than their current roles.

During the year, Barloworld successfully launched a new talent management programme. Through focused talent identification, recruitment, individual employee development plans, career paths, training and development programmes, competitive reward systems and tailored succession planning, we are in a strong position to meet the organisation's future needs without losing sight of the current perspective.

It is important to note that the divisions and their business units also conduct training and education programmes aimed at employee development, some of which are aimed at addressing gender imbalances in technical career choices.

In line with a goal to strengthen management and leadership capabilities, we continue to develop our leaders through leadership and management training programmes. Our leadership ethos of coaching and development focused our efforts on creating an "inclusive" culture for all Barloworld employees. Similar programmes have been cascaded to lower levels within the organisation.

Performance management, including remuneration and reward

Compensation plays an integral role in the successful delivery of Barloworld's revised strategic objectives. As such, talent acquisition and retention is carefully linked to compensation strategy, enabling us to meet material targets. The cornerstone of this strategy involves an alignment of pay and performance and driving sustainable performance at all levels.

Our group remuneration philosophy addresses financial and non-financial elements. It includes guaranteed pay, short-term incentives, long-term incentives at the senior levels, quality of working life, performance, recognition, development and career opportunities. Guaranteed pay is generally benchmarked to local remuneration surveys.

As we seek to align compensation to evolving external and internal expectations, reward structures are regularly reviewed and adapted on a needs basis. During the year, our remuneration and reward philosophy and policies were revised to align with the amended operating model, emphasising alignment with the business strategy and bold ambition. We have also identified key performance indicators for each individual and are tracking these.

For more information – see Remuneration report.

Addressing the gap

The group is committed to removing unfair discrimination in pay scales. Analysis is conducted across the group on the gender pay parity.

Communications and change management

2017 was characterised by the restructuring measures that formed part of the group's revised strategy. The focus was on optimising efficiencies across the business. Beyond the actual number in job reductions, we recognise that these changes have had profound implications for the group's entire workforce, affecting personal and professional morale, company culture and productivity. In seeking to manage these changes in a socially responsible manner, we ensured close cooperation with relevant parties based on mutual trust and sought to engage and communicate with our employees regularly to foster a more open and transparent environment and improve the flow of information during this difficult time of change.

During the year, the group unfortunately reduced staff through retrenchments and redundancies by 767, to better align the business to its revised strategy, improve efficiencies and prepare it for future challenges under tough market conditions.

Ensuring strength through diversity

At Barloworld, we see diversity, a confluence of race, gender, demographics and experience, as a competitive advantage.

While great progress has been made, diversity and inclusion remain a key focus area for Barloworld and continues to be central to our success in all of the jurisdictions we operate in. The principle of equal opportunities for all is applied fairly and justly.

Central tenets of the group's approach to equality include:

  • Prohibition of unfair discrimination on the grounds of gender, race, religion, disability, age or sexual orientation
  • Proactive pursuit of programmes and initiatives to achieve our equality objectives
  • Complying with legislation in all countries in which it operates
  • Identification and elimination of employment barriers which unfairly discriminate.

By identifying diversity and inclusion as a strategic focus area, we ensure group and individual commitment to equality in the workplace across all operations.

Race, gender and disability are addressed in employment equity, transformation and empowerment targets in South Africa, in line with legislation. Localisation and gender objectives are set in non-South African operations in accordance with local demographics and legislation. Required employment equity plans and progress reports are submitted in South Africa and other southern African countries. These plans set out employment targets that address race, gender and disability.

In South Africa, Barloworld follows the Department of Trade and Industry's (dti's) Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) scorecard with the target for all South African operations to achieve a level 4 or better according to the revised B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.

We would like to reach a point where we no longer view diversity and inclusion as a separate imperative but as a natural extension of the way we conduct ourselves in business.


The empowerment of women remains one of Barloworld's top priorities under the transformation umbrella. We made significant strides towards this objective in 2017. Of the total headcount of 18 085 employees, female employees account for 28.12% of the workforce. Female employees constituted 35% of our total recruitment drive during this period. 945 new women recruits joined the organisation.

The percentage of women at the executive level fell to 21.95% – a decrease from 22.22% the previous year, while women at senior management improved to 27.59%, up from 26.41%. Through external recruitment or promotion, five women were added to the top three levels of our organisation.

2017 also saw an increase in the number of women at middle management level, from 35.45% to 36.59%.

Programmes that support gender diversity

Women in leadership development programme

One of the leading Barloworld Equipment imperatives for 2020 is to develop a diverse and inclusive workforce through achieving high performance. One of the initiatives to support this imperative is the women in leadership development programme (WLDP). This programme was piloted at the beginning of the 2016 financial year and aimed at emerging and current women leaders within the organisation.

The outcome of the WLDP is to engender self-mastery through real world behavioural change and leadership confidence. The WLDP is not a traditional management training programme, nor is it an academic qualification; it is an integrated, coaching-based system of development that challenges participants to enhance their existing leadership skills as well as experiment with new behaviours. The WLDP challenges participants to rethink their leadership brand and to build a personalised leadership toolkit that works in the way they need it.

Throughout the course the 17 women formed a close bond of camaraderie, enabling them to ideate new business initiatives, including assisting the 2018 WLDP cohorts and facilitate coaching.

The Barloworld Transport Training Academy

The Barloworld Transport Training Academy is a fully accredited training centre, registered with the Transport Education Training Authority (TETA) and Department of Higher Education, and was established to address key skills requirements and development needs in the transport sector.

Numerous learnership and apprenticeship programmes are available through the academy for both employed and unemployed learners throughout southern Africa, one of them being the professional driver learnership programme (PDLP). The objective of the PDLP is to equip learners with theoretical and practical work experience that will enable them to develop tangible skills that are employable and income-generating. The academy has spearheaded a first-of-its-kind PDLP for women drivers and during the year, 40 additional learners were incorporated into the programme.

Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE)

In our South African operations, the number of African, Indian and Coloured (AIC) employees grew to 74%. There was an AIC decline at the executive level from 40.00% to 35.89%, while senior management level AIC increased to 34.85% from 29.58%.

Employees by ethnic background

Employees by ethnic background

SA business un

Localisation of employment

As a part of the communities in which we operate, Barloworld continues to focus on the reduction in the number of expatriates and the localisation of the workforce. We seek to acquire and draw from local skills, localise job creation and develop skills. This makes economic and social sense and gives us our licence to operate in the varied geographies that we operate in.

The percentage of expatriates reduced from 1.15% in 2016 to 1.06% in 2017.

Keeping our people safe and healthy

The safety and well-being of our employees is vital. We want our employees to go home each day not only unharmed but also thriving. We continue to roll out safety training initiatives that aim to eliminate work-related injuries and entrench a culture of safety.

Our health and safety scorecard
We regretfully had three work-related fatalities in 2017 (2016: one) but continue to strive to have zero-harm in our operations.   LTIFR*

LTIFR remained static against prior year.
  HIV statistics (South Africa only)*

For data including discontinued operation see: 4.13

Barloworld LTIFR approach