VAUDE’s roots and its headquarters are set in a very rural area. Tettnang -Obereisenbach, the location of the company, is home to around 1,000 residents. Many of them work at VAUDE - or have worked here in the past.
Our special sense of responsibility and commitment to the region and the local community lies therein, and maintaining a good neighborly relationship is important to us. In addition, the lack of infrastructure at our rural headquarters moved us to work toward improvements.
As a leaseholder, VAUDE took over operations of the local outdoor pool near our headquarters in Tettnang Obereisenbach in 2006 to prevent the facilities from closing. The town of Tettnang supports us and continues to cover its operating costs.
VAUDE has continued on as tenant of the local outdoor pool, idyllically situated between green meadows and forests. Otherwise it would have had to be closed.
In addition to this, members of the Förderverein, an association that supports the keeping of the pool, have provided valuable voluntary work and repeatedly assumed purchases (such as trees, for example). In collaboration with various dedicated patrons, we want to ensure that the pool continues to serve the public in the future as well.
Tettnang Mayor, Bruno Walter, endorses VAUDE’s commitment. The company provides "with the attractive family and children’s swimming pool a significant contribution for a special program." And further, "In light of discussions about our city’s finances, we have the successful three-pillar model based on cooperation between businesses, citizens and city, to thank for the fact that the outdoor pool in Obereisenbach is still in operation at the present time."
Due to both our rural location and our dedication to social responsibility, we go beyond what is expected in actively supporting a balance between work and family. In addition, women have made up more than 60 percent of the VAUDE workforce for decades.
In the past, pregnancy meant that an employee had to leave the company for at least three years because there were insufficient childcare facilities in the area. In 2001, we established a childcare center. Today, up to 31 children between six months and ten years of age are cared for in a crèche group and in a mixed-age group at the center.
VAUDE Kinderhaus Childcare Center
The VAUDE childcare center is open to all children, regardless of whether their parents work in the company or not.
Our VAUDE childcare center was created in cooperation with the City of Tettnang. VAUDE made facilities available and took over the bulk of the investment. More than 60 percent of the operating costs (staff, electricity, heating, etc.) are borne by the city Tettnang; the remaining is funded by VAUDE.
Our childcare center is not only for the children of employees; it is open to all. Mothers can go back to work soon after the birth of their child if they choose. Combined with the introduction of flexible working hours, we were able to increase the rate of female managers to 39 percent (2014: 37 %, 2013: 35 %).
In addition, we have a high birth rate at the company. In 2015 there were 36 employees on parental leave (2014: 37 employees, 2013: 45 employees). While the birth rate in Germany is 8.47 births per 1,000 inhabitants (source: Central Intelligence Agency), we recorded 26 births per "500 inhabitants” – far above the German average.
»VAUDE has made my return to the workforce very easy. I was able to freely choose how many hours a week I wanted to work, and even during the times that required me to be in the office more often, I was able to flexibly arrange my situation with the VAUDE childcare center. Moreover, a home office workplace was set up so I could work from home on days when my baby daughter was sick, for example. I don’t know anyone else in my circle of friends who had such an easy re-entry into the work world after having a child. And the two mornings per week that I’m in the office – while my daughter is being well-cared for at the VAUDE childcare center – are extremely enjoyable!«
The Tettnang-Obereisenbach region is so remote, it was not connected to the public transport network in recent times. However, in autumn 2013, the bus line “Bähnle” was introduced connecting the site to the public bus and rail network.
Well connected by bus "Bähnle"
Since autumn 2013, the remote area of Tettnang-Obereisenbach has been connected to the public transport network.
As co-initiator, we fought for two years for the creation of this bus route by which the infrastructure not only has significantly improved for VAUDE employees, but also for the people in this idyllic and remote setting.
Our company organic canteen opened in 2015 (see also here) giving employees and visitors the option of a healthy and inexpensive lunch in organic quality. Advance booking for lunch is possible at http://outlet.vaude.com/bio-kantine-mittagsspitze/
With the canteen and a kiosk directly next to the outlet store, we helped revive the small town of Tettnang Obereisenbach. Here, in addition to the organic certification of the products offered, special attention is given to regional products to support local suppliers.
Organic food at the kiosk
The kiosk is also certified organic: the fries and the sausages at VAUDE kiosk are organic. The ingredients are sourced locally.
With the expansion of our company, we are taking local interests into account as a matter of principle. For example, we intentionally make use of existing external logistics resources (e.g. warehouse rooms). We also elected to convert the company building rather than build new facilities and change the town’s landscape.
|GRI:||G4-DMA Indirect economic performance|