At Porsche, occupational health and safety are foundations for motivation and willingness to work. Occupational safety is therefore an important goal for Porsche and its employees. An organized and structured occupational health and safety management system ensures a uniform approach and is designed to ensure that legal provisions are implemented. This helps to prevent workplace accidents and occupational diseases as far as possible.
In line with the statutory regulations, the central occupational safety processes are standardized and set out in the Group guideline on occupational safety. This guideline is a major element of Porsche’s compliance management system. It applies to the whole workforce at Porsche. The managers are to ensure that their employees are familiar and comply with the provisions of this guideline. Specialists in occupational safety and works doctors are available to all employees in an advisory capacity. Generally speaking, the entire workforce of the relevant companies is represented through the legally defined representatives in the occupational safety committees in accordance with the Occupational Safety Act. The revision of the guideline was completed in 2022. It will be extended to include provisions on health protection to form the basis for a certifiable occupational safety management system in the future.
Due to ongoing automation and digitalization, the world of work is changing and becoming more challenging at an everfaster pace. Therefore, safe working conditions and ergonomic workplaces are exceptionally important. According to Germany’s Act on Occupational Physicians, Safety Engineers, and Other Occupational Safety Specialists (ASiG), the Occupational Health and Safety department is responsible for advising in this field. Each department is responsible for realization. Representatives of the department tour the existing workplaces on a regular basis and assist with risk assessments and standard operating procedures.
Safety experts offer advice on the design of workstations, equipment, and installations. Their main focus is on preventing accidents and risks to health. Construction and installation sites are overseen and monitored by special construction experts beyond what is required by law. Porsche refines current safety standards on a continuous basis.
In the event of workplace accidents, the causes are analyzed in detail and measures are implemented to avoid future accidents. Porsche measures the occurrence of workplace accidents in all organizational units with the “occupational accident index” and reports them internally each month. Ever year, Porsche and selected subsidiaries in Germany set targets to continuously improve employee safety in the workplace.
Preventative health management
At Porsche, health management encompasses all of the measures that contribute to the health of employees. In addition to safety systems and the provision of local medical care for employees working at German sites, there are services for preventative health promotion in the workplace. Health Management also offers courses on topics such as healthy eating, relaxation techniques, and effective self-management. Employees can access individual physiotherapy advice and seek treatment for acute disorders. On the basis of the Occupational Safety Act, works doctors assist with the design of healthy and ergonomic workplaces. They also perform preventative examinations on employees, offer advice, assist with the organization of first aid, and help reintroduce employees to the workplace after illness. Regular safety inspections are conducted to verify that the specifications are being implemented. Key occupational safety indicators are collected and compiled in a detailed occupational safety report.
The Health Management division is responsible for all health promotion activities, structures, and processes. Moreover, a number of company health departments are responsible for providing medical care at work. As a preventative discipline, occupational health care plays a key role in occupational health management. The works doctors’ responsibilities include analyzing the effects of work on employees. They also promote the employees’ health and productivity and assist Porsche in planning and creating healthy labor conditions. Occupational health care also encompasses emergency paramedics as part of first-aid organization, meaning acute and emergency health care is always guaranteed at the plants.
Porsche has a targeted occupational reintegration management system in place for restoring employees’ capabilities after longer periods of illness: for example, the affected employees are reintroduced to the strains of working by means of gradual workplace reintegration. Porsche’s Health Management division also provides social counseling to those with psychosocial stress and support for those in difficult life conditions.
All the employees are represented in occupational safety committees by statutory representatives. The site-specific committees meet four times each year. All employees are briefed on occupational safety at least once a year to ensure that they are kept up to date on specific hazards and rules of conduct. The intranet also contains a broad range of information and education on health and safety in the workplace.
In 2022, Porsche rolled out a communication campaign designed to raise employee awareness and motivate them to behave safely at work: the campaign provides information in various ways about hazard spots, current topics, and statements from the management and employee representatives.
To avoid risks to other companies’ employees at its sites as much as possible, Porsche stipulates detailed rules of conduct. These apply to construction sites in particular, but also to the procurement and assembly of machinery and equipment.
Ongoing support during the Covid-19 pandemic
Porsche’s emergency response organization dealt in detail with the coronavirus crisis in 2022. Porsche initiated a range of measures to protect the health of its employees, such as notifying affected departments and communicating with authorities. A telephone help desk and central mailbox were used by employees as a point of contact for all queries relating to coronavirus. Administrative employees can work remotely for their own protection. All employees have access to first, second, and booster vaccinations. The comprehensive safety policy also featured self-tests for employees and testing points offering PCR tests.