15. Equal Opportunities

The company discloses in what way it has implemented national and international processes and what goals it has for the promotion of equal opportunities and diversity, occupational health and safety, participation rights, the integration of migrants and people with disabilities, fair pay as well as a work-life balance and how it will achieve these.


HOCHTIEF has signed the Diversity Charter, clearly stating its position on diversity, tolerance, mutual regard and fairness. We work together with people who differ in many ways, including age, gender, nationality, religion and social background.

Our goal is to promote diversity and the awareness of its importance, as shown by many initiatives pursued in 2018: Girls' Day events, programs focusing on the inclusion of socially disadvantaged groups, as well as awards from outside organizations for equal-opportunity efforts within the Group. CIMIC and Turner held training sessions in dealing with unconscious bias again in the reporting year. Flatiron launched the Talent Growth Initiative in 2018 to support underrepresented groups.

We are responding to demographic change and its diverse influences with a broad-based age structure. A good distribution of expertise and experience along with long-term transfer of specialized knowledge contributes to the successful implementation of our projects.

In the construction industry, people with disabilities can generally only be employed in administrative positions. At job interviews with people with severe diabilities, a disability officer is always present to ensure all options are fully explored. The proportion of severely disabled employees at HOCHTIEF in Germany was 3.8 percent as of December 31, 2018. Since we fall below the legally prescribed five percent, we pay corresponding compensation payments.

Occupational safety and health

Since our core business is construction, safety is a top priority in our day-to-day work and accident-free projects are our primary goal. For this reason, safety is anchored in the Code of Conduct, and the accident frequency lost-time injury frequency rate (LTIFR) plays a key role in our company as a non-financial performance indicator.

In 2018, our activities focused above all on near misses and unsafe situations, also discussed at the annual Occupational Safety Day held on project sites and in offices. To further raise awareness and provide notably industrial employees with a suitable feedback tool, we started setting up information boards at selected construction sites in Germany. Those involved can report hazardous conditions, near misses and also offer suggestions for improvements. This approach has proven to be successfully on projects in the United Kingdom.


At HOCHTIEF, the organization of occupational safety, health and environmental protection (OSHEP) is based on a guideline that defines Group-wide standards in this area. The OSHEP Center, our internal competence center for occupational safety, is responsible for organizing and fine-tuning measures in these areas. Employees at the OSHEP Center coordinate occupational safety matters at Group level and report directly to the Executive Board and remain in regular contact with the cetral liaisons of the division.

In addition to our prescribed standards, our companies develop their own supplementary processes and structures to integrate occupational safety and health protection in all project phases. These processes and structures are based on international standards such as BS OHSAS 18001. In 2018, 85.1 percent (2017: 87.1 percent) of HOCHTIEF's active employees worked in certified areas.

Early hazard indentification

HOCHTIEF places high demand on the performance and understanding of their subcontractors and suppliers in the fields of occupational safety, health, and environmental protection. To ensure this, all parties involved are required to sign HOCHTIEF's Code of Conduct for Business Partners before construction begins. The selection of our subcontractors is also subject to high demands on their performance in terms of occupational safety, health and environmental protection.

In project activities, the efficiency control of occupational safety and environmental protection measures is carried out by the respective safety experts of the units. The OSHEP Center is supported by HOCHTIEF's internal audit department that regularly checks up on the structures and measures implemented at construction sites.

Work-related accidents and illnesses

Since safety is a central principle of our corporate principles and has overall relevance for the entire Group, the lost-time injury frequency rate (LTIFR) is a non-financial performance indicator at HOCHTIEF. The figure records accidents per million hours worked and takes into account accidents with at least one day of absence in accordance with the standards of the International Labour Organisation ILO. In 2018, the LTIFR was 1.37 (previous year: 1.23) due to an increase of the number of accidents in the HOCHTIEF Europe division. Our goal is to reduce the frequency of accidents in the Group to 0.9 by 2030.

Accidents and incidents, including near misses, are recorded using a structured reporting system. All companies define accidents at work on the basis of the guidelines of the Recording and Notification of Occupational Accidents and Diseases of the International Labour Organization (ILO). We use the findings to develop concrete counter- and preventative measures. During feedback interviews, managerial staff help employees to process situations that gave rise to accidents. More and more frequently, we are currently pursuing behavioural-based prevention approaches in order to sustainably avoid dangerous situations.

In addition, we offer employees the "Fit for Work - Fit for Life" health programme, which focuses in particular on the well-being of our employees: the focus in 2018 was on drug abuse and addiction. 

Work-life balance

We support the individual life plans of all employees through our working conditions. We offer various measures and programs designed to give them personal space to plan their lives, including part-time models, the possibility of home office, flexible working hours, and telecommuting. These options allow employees to better reconcile professional interests with private or family concerns.

Employees can check, improve or protect their health through targeted preventive measures. Check-up examinations, health screenings and vaccinations are offered at several locations. In addition, we offer further occupational safety and health seminars within our qualification programme.

Competitive salaries

Regular reviews of our principles for fixed and variable remuneration components enable us to pay in line with market conditions and performance. The objective classification of remuneration is supported by internal analyses and external benchmarks, which also enables us to meet the requirements of the German Corporate Governance Code. Regardless of gender, the remuneration of each individual employee is largely determined by his or her job, qualifications, responsibilities and experience.


In order to make a contribution to pension provision beyond the statutory pension systems, we offer our employees at many locations various pension provision models - for example insurance offers or the possibility of deferred compensation. The models offered depend on the framework conditions and pension systems in the local countries.

Further information can be found in the 2018 Group Report starting on page 97.