Avoiding workplace accidents and occupational illnesses – that is VAUDE’s top priority. Therefore we invest in good employee training and safe technologies. With the help of our streamlined yet effective internal occupational safety organization, we ensure that risks are recognized early and that we find solutions with (preventative) measures.
An external expert for occupational safety and a company physician advise and support VAUDE in the conception, implementation and review of all aspects of fire protection and occupational safety.
Altogether, eight employees serve as safety officers to ensure the safety of employees across all company divisions – they are deeply familiar with the processes in their departments from their own experience, are confronted daily with the working conditions there day in and day out, and know which problems or dangers arise in the work that takes place. They motivate their colleagues toward safe work practices and immediately inform their managers of any insufficiencies or dangers.
They also participate in regular inspections of all company divisions to monitor adherence to regulations and the existence of risks.
The internal coordinator for occupational safety reports directly to the executive management. As a contact person for internal and external groups, she keeps VAUDE's occupational health and safety systems running.
In addition, she moderates the quarterly meetings of the Committee for Occupational Safety (ASA), which is made up of the external Occupational Safety Specialist, Safety Representatives and the senior management, the Head of Logistics Assistants, Maintenance and Manufacturing, the Occupational Health Management Coordinator and the company physician.
All managers are trained annually regarding industrial safety and health protection. Both legal requirements and safety-related expertise are conveyed. In 2016 this training fully reflected risk assessment for the different areas of activity.
With guidance from the Occupational Safety Specialist, managers also address potential physical and psychological stress at work that could lead to accidents or occupational illnesses.
Vested with this prior knowledge, they discuss specific risks and document results and action needed on the basis of a “traffic light system” with their respective employees. Thus employees gain insight into the risks of their work and can directly participate in the evaluation and establishment of preventive measures. Risk assessment is constantly updated and monitored by means of inspections with the company doctor and the Occupational Safety Specialist.
Managers and employees are trained in risk assessment so that they can recognize early signs of physical or psychological stress at work and take counter measures.
All employees who have missed more than six weeks of work due to illness in the past 12 months are offered an occupational reintegration program. An open discussion takes place covering any needs the employee has for reintegration into their job and what can be done to avoid future absences.
An external company physician is regularly available on-site as a contact person. In addition to required medical examinations (e.g. for forklift drivers or childcare employees) a variety of voluntary preventative services are offered: health protection for travel to regions with special climate-related conditions, computer monitor vision assistance, as well as employee vaccinations can all be discussed and treated during working hours.
Nevertheless, if health issues arise, employees, managers, the company physician and the personnel department work together to find constructive solutions and to remedy the causes and symptoms.
VAUDE keeps a digital record of accidents. Each injury or accident that occurred during working hours or on the way to work is documented here.
Our goal is to significantly expand the database for the evaluation and interpretation of all data related to occupational health and safety so that we can measure the successes of our prevention measures and be able to report here in more detail about the situation at VAUDE.