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  • Almost 14,000 people employed in the HUGO BOSS Group
  • Global employee satisfaction at 70%
  • Employee development and remuneration the focus of human resource management

Human resource work aligned with mission statement

The core task of global human resource management at HUGO BOSS is to create an environment and to oversee the processes to facilitate goal-oriented and responsible behavior by employees in accordance with the corporate vision – “Be the most desirable premium fashion & lifestyle brand”. The five corporate values – quality, passion, respect, cooperation and innovation – form the principles underlying daily working relationships and describe the corporate culture.

Number of employees as of December 31 (bar chart)

Slight increase in workforce in 2017

HUGO BOSS had 13,985 employees at the end of 2017. The slight increase in the workforce reflects the Company’s strengthened retail, IT and online activities. However, the increasing automation and digitization of the production process resulted in a decline in the number of in-house manufacturing employees. The average age remained unchanged at 35 years (2016: 35 years).

Employees by functional area as of December 31 (in %) (pie chart)


Industrial, commercial and administrative employees as of December 31 (in %) (pie chart)

At the end of 2017, 9,683 employees (2016: 9,357) of the total workforce were in commercial and administrative positions, while 4,302 employees (2016: 4,441) of the total workforce were assigned to industrial activities. Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements, Note 8

Regional distribution of employees reflects global orientation

Employees by region as of December 31 (in %) (pie chart)

The Company’s global positioning is also reflected in the employee numbers. 79% of the Group’s employees were based outside Germany last fiscal year (2016: 80%).

Employees in management (graphic)

High proportion of women in management positions maintained

At 59%, women account for the majority of the HUGO BOSS Group’s workforce (2016: 59%). Women held 47 % of the positions across all four management levels at the end of December 2017 (2016: 45 %). The Managing Board had set a target gender quota of at least 30% women in each of the two management levels below the Managing Board to be achieved by June 30, 2017. At that time, the target was slightly missed with a share of women of 28% at the first management level. This was due to a higher share of men among new hires than originally planned. Decisive for this development was solely the qualification of the respective applicants. The target at the second management level was clearly exceeded with a share of women of 45%. The Managing Board has now set a target gender quota of at least 30% women in the first management level and 35% in the second management level below the Managing Board to be achieved by December 31, 2021. Indeed, the company strives to keep the share of women on these two levels at least stable, but it also feels obligated to the principle to hire only those applicants with the most suitable qualification even if this results in a lower share of women. Corporate Governance Report

Group-wide employee survey conducted for the first time

HUGO BOSS has been conducting annual employee surveys since 2015 to find out how employees view their employer, their working environment and their responsibilities. In 2017, the survey was conducted across the entire Group for the first time. With a participation rate of 66%, overall satisfaction came to 70%. At HUGO BOSS AG, an overall satisfaction of 77% was recorded (2016: 72%). On the basis of the survey results, measures in three areas – employee development, executive development and fair compensation – were defined.

Systematic employee training and development

For the purposes of systematic employee training and development, further training courses are available to employees, allowing them to expand their personal and professional skills beyond the requirements of their current position. Thus, employees across the entire Group successfully completed around 83,000 e-learning courses in 2017 (2016: around 80,000). The existing individual training offerings were broadened by a centrally coordinated employee development program. Employees aiming to qualify for the position of senior manager or team leader in the future must participate in the course. The program modules aim to develop employees’ social and professional skills.

Executive training expanded

Executive training also underwent further expansion in 2017. Thus, managers have the opportunity of undergoing a multi-day self-reflection training course to develop their own personality. To nurture future department heads, leadership trainers have been appraising executive skills and developing optimization measures since 2017.

Flexible working hours growing in importance

Flexible working hours were a key focus in 2017. Thus, individual part-time models and a home-office system were introduced and utilized by more than 500 employees. In addition, child-care facilities are available for families during the summer vacation. Nutritionists, balanced menus at the campus restaurant and the annual Health Days also contribute towards employees’ personal well-being and performance capabilities.

HUGO BOSS takes the health and safety of its employees seriously

HUGO BOSS has defined Group-wide standards for achieving additional improvements in occupational health and safety. To this end, inspections and hazard assessments were performed at several of the Group’s own retail stores. Potential hazards were detected, evaluated and addressed. Occupational health and safety teams were involved in the development phase of the new store concepts to assess and, if necessary, revise the furniture designs at an early stage.

Group-wide job assessment project commenced

A Group-wide job assessment project was launched in 2017 to heighten the transparency, traceability and acceptance of the Group’s compensation scheme. This involves assessing positions according to uniform criteria and allocating them to corresponding salary bands in order to facilitate a better internal and external comparison of salaries.

Employee remuneration based on transparent system

Employees in central functions subject to collectively negotiated wage agreements in Germany are remunerated on the basis of the collective agreements of the Südwestdeutsche Bekleidungsindustrie (Southwest German textile industry). Retail staff are remunerated in accordance with the collective agreement for the German retail industry. Employees in retail and distribution receive a fixed salary and a variable component that is tied to quantitative targets. For instance, the remuneration of employees in the Group’s own retail stores depends on the achievement of service standards and guidelines defined as standard throughout the Group. The collectively negotiated agreements of the South West German textile industry and the German retail industry provide for proportionate vacation, Christmas and annual bonuses.

Non-tariff employees receive a basic salary plus a 13th monthly salary installment and a short-term incentive, of which half is linked to Group targets and half to the achievement of qualitative and quantitative personal goals. The compensation scheme for management at the two levels below the Managing Board also includes a long-term incentive program that corresponds to that of the Managing Board. Compensation Report

All employees participate in the Group’s success through an annual employee bonus that is linked to the achievement of the Group targets. On top of this, HUGO BOSS makes an important contribution to providing for its employees after retirement, offering them a wide range of company pension schemes. In addition to the contractually defined salary components, employee benefits include clothing entitlement, a transportation allowance and access to the arts and cultural offerings sponsored by the Group.

HUGO BOSS enhancing its appeal as an employer

In addition to supporting employees in maximizing and enhancing their potential, human resource work at HUGO BOSS also seeks to maximize the expertise available within the Company by specifically recruiting new staff. To this end, HUGO BOSS reaches out to potential employees via its digital presence, holding lectures, training and workshops at its Metzingen office and attending job fairs to position itself as an attractive employer. In 2017, HUGO BOSS was again rated as one of the Top 100 most attractive employers in the annual survey conducted by the Universum and trendence institutes. The “Working in Fashion” study conducted by the textile industry ranked HUGO BOSS fourth out of 3,500 participating companies (2016: second). It scored particularly well in the segments career opportunities, training offerings and working internationally.

Last year, digital platforms continued to grow in importance for recruiting talent. Thus, the Company is increasingly pursuing an active sourcing approach in which potential employees are directly approached via social media. Last year, recruiting particularly focused on retail, IT and online.

Training offerings to be broadened

In addition to the recruitment of experienced staff and graduates, vocational training continues to hold an important status. The Company had 75 apprentices and Cooperative State University students last year (2016: 82). 29 new apprentices and students began their training in 2017. Starting in 2018, professional education will be widened to include apprenticeships for retail assistants and studies for “online media” to ensure the long-term availability of suitably qualified staff in the strategically important areas of retail, IT and online.

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