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Recruitment, development and strengthening connections

A large part of Triodos Bank’s success is determined by the quality of its co-worker group. It wants to be a high-quality bank driven by a clear mission. Co-workers are crucial to making this happen.

This combination of factors underpins Triodos Bank’s Human Resources (HR) policy.

Recruitment, selection and support of new co-workers

  • Triodos Bank has expanded steadily over the years. This means it welcomes a relatively high number of new co-workers each year. Not surprisingly, Triodos Bank looks for professionals who understand their discipline, in its recruitment and selection. It also looks for people who are aligned with the bank’s mission and values. This means that interviews with candidates in the selection process play a major role. Tests and assessments are secondary. Because an interview offers the opportunity to explore what inspires a candidate, which choices he or she has made in their professional and personal lives and what their motives and considerations were in the intersection between the two.
  • The first few months to a year of a new co-worker’s employment are used to establish whether an individual fits their role and the organisation, and vice versa. By allowing time for this two-way process, the organisation deliberately postpones the decision about whether or not Triodos Bank and a co-worker are suited to each other. This offers the co-worker the opportunity to understand Triodos Bank’s role in society and the position they can play. It allows them to grow into their role and enables Triodos Bank as an employer to reach a fair final decision. New co-workers receive intensive support. Each branch has a central induction programme. In addition, line managers are responsible for a tailored induction for each new worker. In most business units, after a few months the new co-worker has an interview with HR providing an opportunity for two-way feedback.

Training and development

The financial sector is developing rapidly. To deal with the problems of the banking industry in recent years, governments and regulators have imposed more demanding rules on financial institutions. This can create a challenge for banks and their co-workers, including Triodos Bank. Stricter regulations put a greater emphasis on scores and figures.

Triodos Bank recognises the importance of regulation, but would like to make it part of a broader, more holistic approach. For example, when assessing potential borrowers, co-workers consider the motives and inspirations of a potential borrower and to what extent the entrepreneur creates and delivers added social value as well as figures that support the business case for a loan.

This approach to making judgements is comprehensive but demanding. It requires training and support for co-workers in their personal development. It enables co-workers to operate effectively between stricter rules and standardised methods, and Triodos Bank’s dynamic and personal approach.

Key elements of Triodos Bank’s training and development policy are:

  • To base training and development programmes on the questions and training needs of co-workers. The focus of these programmes is itself derived from the sectors and enterprises Triodos Bank serves. The organisation uses respected education and training institutes to develop knowledge and skills.
  • The Triodos Academy offers development programmes based on the values of Triodos Bank. The question of how co-workers can apply the bank’s values in their daily work is central to these programmes. The Triodos Academy offers different training and education courses, such as a Values Seminar, Management Development Programme and Visionary Leadership Programme. The courses have an international focus aimed at developing and strengthening the qualities of the co-worker group. 82 co-workers participated in the different programmes in 2013.

Training expenses per co-worker

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Amounts in EUR

2013

2012

2011

 

 

 

 

The Netherlands

1,803

1,650

1,943

Belgium

1,918

2,015

2,190

United Kingdom

934

694

1,607

Spain

1,281

1,080

976

Germany

2,332

1,765

1,658

France

3,186

419

0

Private Banking NL

4,448

2,383

3,029

Triodos Investment Management

3,517

2,821

2,202

Head office

2,914

2,205

3,142

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Average

2,055

1,731

2,020

Increase

18.7%

–14.3%

6.5%

 

 

 

 

Training days per co-worker

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2013

2012

2011

 

 

 

 

The Netherlands

2.7

2.2

2.8

Belgium

2.8

6.0

6.1

United Kingdom

1.9

1.5

1.7

Spain

7.1

10.5

4.2

Germany

2.9

2.4

3.2

France

9.0

Private Banking NL

5.4

2.9

3.9

Triodos Investment Management

2.8

2.8

2.4

Head office

2.2

2.8

2.6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total

3.7

4.5

3.3

 

 

 

 

Strengthening the involvement of co-workers

Triodos Bank invests in strengthening and deepening the involvement of co-workers. This happens at three levels:

  1. co-worker connection with Triodos Bank’s mission;
  2. the involvement with Triodos Bank as an organisation;
  3. the community of co-workers.

Triodos Bank organises a range of activities to maintain and strengthen these three layers:

  • Monday-morning meetings are vital for connecting with Triodos Bank’s mission and strengthening the relationship between co-workers and the organisation. These weekly meetings take place at all the branches and all co-workers are expected to participate in them. The annual international Co-worker Conference also aims to strengthen the connection with the mission and inspire co-workers in their work. The 2013 conference took place in Berlin and was attended by 120 co-workers from the different branches and business units. Its theme was ‘Societal renewal through Arts and Culture’. The intention is for every co-worker to attend at least one international co-worker conference. In 2013, similar local meetings took place in Triodos Investment Management and some of the branches.
  • The different business units organise a range of social activities for co-workers, varying from drinks to sporting events. These aim to strengthen the professional and social relationships between colleagues.