Learning and development

[GRI 404-2; ESRS S1-4]

Lenzing employees take responsibility for their own personal and professional development. To enable their continuous, individual development, Lenzing has developed a global Learning & Development (L&D) catalog. The catalog is part of the Lenzing internal learning management system Learn@Lenzing and allows employees to individually browse through development opportunities. It includes formal training programs as well as social learning and experiential learning opportunities.

This 70:20:10 (70 percent experience/on-the-job learning, 20 percent social learning and 10 percent formal learning) blended learning approach has proven to be invaluable in adult development. It was rolled out in Lenzing in 2021 and was promoted again as part of Lenzing’s performance management process on an annual basis. The catalog is available to all Lenzing sites in English. In addition face-to-face training opportunities, many eLearning courses are offered as well.

In February 2022 the new global Learning & Development guideline was launched to ensure processes, and the use of tools and systems, were standardized for the professional development of employees. This was done via specific training for all HR Business Partners and via email to the entire workforce.

As the global pandemic still affected many countries in 2022, face-to-face training only started again slowly. Lenzing continued the expansion of its digital training offering. A representative cross-section of the training sessions includes:

  • In the areas Commercial, Global Engineering and HR, functional academies have been set up to provide learning opportunities based on the identified needs from the competency assessment. As part of the academies, a total of 25 different training topics have been offered in 34 training sessions to more than 700 employees during 2022.

Individual learning path offerings

  • Over 120 new eLearning courses are available worldwide with the selection ranging from business topics to personal development and well-being. Courses can be booked by the employees according to their individual needs.
  • In Lenzing’s global Learning & Development catalog, more than 170 training courses (face-to-face, eLearning and blended learning courses) are available.
  • The digital content creation process has been centralized to ensure high quality eLearning. This should also maximize learning success.
  • A digital train-the-trainer program has been launched globally to promote internal knowledge transfer, and ensure that employees who already have advanced functional competencies are equipped with didactic skills to train their colleagues.

A total of 1,902 trainings of these eLearnings courses have been booked globally in 2022 via the L&D catalog. 

It is important to highlight that the goal for employees was to decide for themselves whether they really wanted to complete an entire chapter or even a course, or just watch different videos to fill their knowledge gaps. Having had a total of 3,404 learning chapters completed is therefore a great success.

Total expenditure on lifelong learning and personnel development increased from EUR 4.03 mn in 2020 to EUR 6.19 mn in 2021 and it was EUR 6.75 mn in 2022. This includes group-wide expenses by Bildungszentrum Lenzing (BZL). Therefore, the group-wide consolidated expenses for trainings in 2022 are EUR 2.48 mn. (2021: EUR 2.46 mn, 2020: EUR 1.38 mn).

Implementation of Global Performance and Talent Management

Lenzing rolled out two fundamental people development processes in 2021: Performance and Talent Management. The company is stepping up its efforts to support the development of individual employees and the company as a whole by defining significant performance and talent management processes, clarifying roles, and developing a digital system.

The global Performance Management process is there to manage, support and ensure the performance of teams and individuals with respect to goals through the use of clear and personal accountability. With easy and accessible processes and tools, the company manages performance to execute and deliver its Better Growth strategy, achieve the strategic choices and shape a culture of sustainable business performance and high engagement.

Lenzing defines performance as an action or process to accomplish a task or function in line with the company’s values. The company cares about not only what is achieved, but also how it is achieved. Together, these two aspects define the performance of an individual. Both processes were rolled out to the entire Lenzing Group this year.

Global Talent Management aims to accelerate talent development and enable promising individuals to grow with the business. The Talent Management process is designed to understand and support the needs of the Lenzing Group and to develop the right talent mix to implement Lenzing`s Better Growth strategy. Furthermore, Talent Management helps to develop a strong internal talent pipeline of successors to key positions in the future.

Talent Management

Talent Management (illustration)

Lenzing has launched the implementation of Global Talent Management for the entire white-collar workforce in 2022. Therefore, 482 (84 percent) managers have been trained in this process and learned the benefits of it. This resulted in having talent data available for 98 percent of the white-collar workforce and 777 out of 2,519 (31 percent) positions having at least one successor in place. This provides key insights regarding people and allows the business to make sounder decisions.

Milestones 2022

  • 2,300+ employees have set their performance goals in SuccessFactors, that is 88 percent of the white-collar employees.
  • 95 percent of the 1,200 people from last year’s Scope, successfully completed a performance review of their performance goals 2022.
  • 1,000+ employees have filled in their talent card and shared their background and ambitions.
  • 84 percent of all 563 people managers have been trained in the Talent Management process.
  • 2,400+ employees have data on potential, performance, retention risk, potential development availability and succession options.
  • 777 succession plans for key positions that provide a next possible career step for employees.

Talent targets

1. Sustainable talent management

Lenzing prioritizes the development of employees by differentiating employees by talent, identifying learning gaps and anticipating development needs, and implementing development actions. The Talent Management approach has been launched for all white-collar employees and there are plans to consolidate the process for the blue-collar workforce in a pilot group in 2023. A new Talent Management digital eLearning module will be available in 2023 on the different parts of the process so that new joiners can learn about the process, as can employees who want to consolidate their process knowledge.

2. Global leadership program

The new global leadership program will be launched in 2023 for the first target group. In the following years, all managers will embark on this leadership journey. This program focuses on enabling behavioral change toward increased accountability, feedback, openness and teamwork. Lenzing believes that higher engagement will lead to higher efficiency in how it achieves its goals and create engagement and belonging for the employees. Additionally, the company ensures that the new purpose to “Advance our world with better choices”, and the Better Growth strategy, are implemented and well understood within the entire Lenzing Group.

3. Re-skilling & up-skilling the employees

The company believes that reskilling and upskilling are essential for developing a talent-leading company like Lenzing. To achieve employees’ full potential, learning must be extended beyond traditional training methods. Lenzing strongly believes in a blended learning approach for the best results. This approach is also clearly reflected in its digital training portfolio. Lenzing continues to offer shorter, more individual, Lenzing-specific learning opportunities so that all employees can build their own learning path and thus maximize their learning success.

4. Strategic talent actions

The growth of both Lenzing and its employees is a win-win situation and a smart approach to staying on top of best practices. Workforce development allows Lenzing to have the best talent in the field and tends to build strong cross functional relationships. By investing in people and showing them that the business care about their growth, it also promotes employee engagement, retention and attraction. Therefore, rigorous talent actions will be planned and followed up quarterly with each business area to track progress against delivery.

5. Committed to diversity and inclusion

Lenzing has started its journey towards a more diverse, equitable and inclusive company and is committed to the implementation of different coordinated actions aiming to raise awareness of diversity and gender equality. Engagement workshops, employee resource groups to discuss women, ethnicity and LGBTQI+ topics, train the trainer programs, and diversity training are some of the actions that are taking place during the upcoming months.

Competency framework

The Lenzing Competency Framework concept was developed in 2020. Each framework consists of leadership and functional competencies. The leadership competencies align with the Better Growth leadership model and are globally consistent for all Lenzing employees. The functional competencies describe the required level of competency for the specific business area. By assessing employees according to the expected competencies of their job role, Lenzing is able to systematically identify its employees’ strengths and development needs. It can then leverage these insights to provide individual learning opportunities and prioritize different training initiatives. In 2021, almost 200 colleagues from the Commercial area assessed their own competencies.  The Commercial Academy was developed based on the insights from the competency assessments. In 2022, the concept was rolled out to the first set of target groups in Global Engineering and Human Resources. In total, more than 300 employees assessed their own competencies.

Lenzing will roll out the competency framework to all white collar employees in the coming years to be able to analyze the development needs of individuals and teams.

Skill matrix

Mid of 2021, Lenzing started to develop a global skill matrix for the production area. The project started as a local pilot at the Lenzing site, but with a global mindset. The objectives of the Lenzing skill matrix are versatile. First of all, the Skill Matrix will support Lenzing in ensuring that employees are equipped with the required skills to perform tasks in a safe and quality focused manner. Furthermore, the skill matrix will enable Lenzing to fulfill legal and ISO requirements.

Integrated Manufacturing Capability Approach (IMCA)

The IMCA project (Integrated Manufacturing capability approach) should enable both white and blue collar employees in Viscose/Modal at the Lenzing site to constantly develop themselves according to the area’s vision.

A structured people development approach can be implemented for operational staff that focuses heavily on blue-collar employees. Since this area is one of the first departments to have instituted a standardized yet tailored skills matrix in place, so called “learning paths” will guide people to achieve the required skill levels and enable them to succeed in their respective roles and workplaces. In addition, a performance and talent management process for blue collar areas is in Scope to be piloted. This project can be seen as a blue print for a structured people development process in operational areas that will be globally available in the near future.

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