One of our greatest assets is our workforce – our human capital. We have 29,000 employees around the world.
Our employees serve our customers and ensure we innovate and develop products and services in an increasingly digital and competitive world. Attracting and retaining talent is a challenge, and we need to have the right measures in place to help with this. This is why we appointed our Global Head of HR, Carla Mahieu, to the Management Board.
Our employees need to feel both engaged with the company and empowered to perform their jobs. We measure this with an annual survey, which, amongst other criteria, assesses employee enablement and engagement. Unfortunately, this year’s results were disappointing.
Our employee engagement score decreased 8 points to 63, and our employee enablement score dropped 11 points to 64. We believe these declines were largely the result of uncertainty due to necessary cost reductions and restructuring to ensure our business is in the best shape for the future.
When restructuring, we try to keep compulsory redundancies to a minimum. We reassign staff within the company where possible and provide training, career advice, and access to external recruitment services for those leaving the company. While we lost some roles, we also made just under 3,300 new hires to ensure we have a diverse range of skills and employees.
Our employee engagement score is 63, down from 71 in 2015
Our employee enablement score was 64, down from 75 in 2015
The number of people employed by Aegon around the world
This year, we used a new global employee survey supplier: Culture Amp. We retained the methodology previously used to compare engagement and enablement scores. In future years, we will replace employee enablement with more relevant metrics to help us track the delivery of our strategy and our cultural transformation. We also revisited our leadership competencies so that we can model and accelerate behavioral change at every level.
Investing in our workforce
We paid our employees almost €1.5 billion in salaries and just over €800 million in other benefits. Our training spend was also up 6% to almost €15 million. This equates to over €600 per employee. We also offer other benefits such as part-time and flexible working, parental leave, health checks and paid volunteering time. We invest in a Technical Development Program, and in Aegon’s Analytical Academy to develop, attract and retain key talent, and strengthen our expertise across functions and geographies.
In 2016, our employees took part in more lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) celebrations than ever before, including Edinburgh, Scotland; Amsterdam, the Netherlands; and St. Petersburg, Cedar Rapids, Little Rock, and Dallas in the US. This reaffirms our commitment to our diverse workplace, which was acknowledged by Workplace Pride’s 2016 National Coming Out Day competition, in which Aegon was chosen as overall winner.
Transamerica made a huge leap in the Human Rights Campaign’s Equality Index, from 20 to 90 on a scale of 100. This reflects our hard work in ensuring everyone is welcome at Aegon with our inclusive policies, beliefs, employee resource group and community engagement.
Ringing in the changes
By monitoring calls we can intervene if our communication is inadequate, incomplete or unclearZsófia Hontiné Sohajda, Customer Relationship Development Expert, Aegon Hungary
CASE STUDY: FINDING THE RIGHT TONE
In Aegon Hungary, we’re achieving simpler and clearer customer relations through multiple means, such as the use of VoiceAnalytics® software to detect positive and negative emotions on calls. Zsofia Hontine Sohajda, Customer Relationship Development Expert, and her team provide call center colleagues with evaluation and coaching. The initiative has reduced average call times by 19 seconds, and saved 263 hours of work per month.*
“By monitoring calls we can intervene if our communication is inadequate, incomplete or unclear,” she says.
Zsofia and her team were nominated as ‘most customer-centric’ in the 2016 Global Aegon Awards. “If customers understand better, they trust us more. If they trust more, they remain loyal,” she says.
* January-June 2016, compared to the May 2015 baseline