Socially responsible behaviour is at the heart of SIJ Group's long-term sustainable development strategy. We are aware of our responsibility as an economic entity employing approximately 3,700 people in Slovenia and abroad and with an extremely extensive network of business partners and other stakeholders. SIJ Group has a prominent position in Slovenia, and especially in the local communities where we have our production facilities. We play an important role for the people who work and live there.
We are aware that our employees are fundamental for the Group's growth and development, and that our footprints are visible in the development of our employees. We select new employees carefully and comply with the legal regulations in all countries where we operate. We provide employees with equal opportunities for employment and promotion, regardless of gender or other circumstances, and build partnerships with the local communities where our employees come from.
Due to the higher average age of our employees, the labour intensity of the industry in which we operate and the management of sickness absence and accidents, we pay special attention to occupational health and safety measures and, in particular, to the promotion of a healthy lifestyle.
EDUCATION & TRAINING OF EMPLOYEES
When it comes to skills and competences, our priorities are focused on management, metallurgy, maintenance, mechanical processing, project management, quality and work process improvements.
To improve the productivity of our well-managed production teams, we are introducing the SIJ Management School. In 2021, over a hundred SIJ Group supervisors and shift managers completed half-year courses with eight content modules. Since September 2021, directors and heads of key departments within SIJ Group companies have been attending the Executive Development Programme, which will run until the end of 2022 in cooperation with the Centre for Business Excellence at the University of Ljubljana’s Faculty of Economics. The purpose of the programme is to perfect the participants’ management and professional competencies and achieve better synergies within SIJ Group.
We encourage employees to take part in part-time studies, which we co-finance through our annual internal calls for applications.
EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER
We are an equal opportunity employer, regardless of gender or other circumstances. SIJ Group also creates job opportunities for persons with disabilities and special needs. All SIJ Group companies ensure suitable reassignment options for employees with changed or diminished work ability.
We provide stable employment for people with disabilities in SIJ SUZ and SIJ ZIP CENTER, our entities that are fully integrated into the corporate governance of SIJ Group. As a concessionary of the Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, the SIJ ZIP CENTER operates an employment and workplace rehabilitation programme, as well as social inclusion programme.
The Rehabilitation Centre for the Disabled in Koroška also operates as part of the company. The social inclusion programme has 18 full-time users, and the centre provides occupational and employment rehabilitation programmes for an average of 30 users per month. In 2021, the concession was extended until the end of 2027.
PARTNERSHIP WITH LOCAL COMMUNITIES
Through sponsorships and donations, we support and enable the better functioning and development of organisations, associations and institutions in the fields of sport, culture, education, healthcare, humanitarian projects and other socially responsible activities in local communities and wider society.
A sponsorship or donor relationship is understood as a partnership that ensures mutual benefit for the sponsor or donor, the recipient and society at large.
We strive for transparency and therefore award sponsorship funds in accordance with SIJ Group's uniform guidelines. We allocate them for sports, culture, scientific and development projects, education, humanitarian activities, etc.
We follow a threefold purpose when deciding whether to sponsor or donate:
- strengthening SIJ Group brands,
- strengthening the image of steel as a universal material in all areas of human activity (e.g. steel as a material in sport, culture, etc.); and
- supporting wider society and local environments.
We support the development of the local and wider community. We work closely with two local communities, Ravne na Koroškem and Jesenice, where we are a pillar of employment, and thus have close links with our employees and their families.
Each year, members of the SIJ Sports Club organise fundraising activities for local children and youth.
Each year, on Community Partnership Day, employees donate part of their time to do socially useful work and strengthen the steel links with local communities.
LOCAL SPORTS INCENTIVES
At the local level, SIJ Group supports sports programmes, which are also attended by SIJ Group employees and their family members. We sponsor six sports clubs: the hockey and football clubs in Jesenice, and the volleyball, football, swimming and ski clubs in Ravne na Koroškem.
In collaboration with the Olympic Committee of Slovenia, we are building sports infrastructure across the country to provide options for a high-quality, active lifestyle. The 17 steel outdoor sports grounds, which we donated to local communities in cooperation with the Olympic Committee of Slovenia, were joined in 2021 by sustainable slag pump tracks. The first such pump track was built in the city of Kranj.
PRESERVING CULTURAL AND TECHNICAL HERITAGE
As a show of thanks for its years-long support of organisations and projects working to preserve both cultural and technical heritage, the management teams of SIJ Group, SIJ Metal Ravne and SIJ Acroni were awarded in September 2021 honorary Valvasor Commendation for the year 2020.
The awards were given in recognition of SIJ Group’s particular engagement in the preservation and promotion of the steelmaking tradition in the Ravne na Koroškem and Jesenice regions. The Valvasor awards, commendations and diplomas represent the utmost recognition of museum activities in Slovenia. Among other things, we took part in the commemoration of the 150th anniversary of industrial steel production in Slovenia and the 400th anniversary of steelworks in Mežica Valley.