Our employees

Our employees are our most important asset. They create the dynamics that characterize our international corporate culture.

Employee related data

At year end 2014 Bekaert had 28 440 employees (*) (GRI G3LA1)

  Region TOTAL
  EMEA North America Latin America Asia Pacific  
Blue collars 4 894 1 241 6 096 9 198 21 429
Male 4 347 1 189 5 964 8 873 20 373
Female 547 52 132 325 1 056
White collars 1 359 243 1 893 1 908 5 403
Male 903 154 1 332 1 372 3 761
Female 456 89 561 536 1 642
Management 631 158 262 557 1 608
Male 545 135 233 445 1 358
Female 86 23 29 112 250
TOTAL Male 5 795 1 478 7 529 10 690 25 492
TOTAL female 1 089 164 722 973 2 948
GRAND TOTAL 6 884 1 642 8 251 11 663 28 440
(*) Early 2015, 2 000 additional employees joined Bekaert, following the successful closing of the acquistion deals with Pirelli and Arrium.

Breakdown by employment type

Headcount versus FTE broken down by region

Region Headcount  FTE
EMEA 6.884 6.837
North America (*) 1.642 1.642
Latin America (*) 8.251 8.251
Asia Pacific 11.663 11.643
(*) there are no part-time employed employees in North and Latin America.

Attracting and retaining talent

We are committed to provide equal opportunity in employment and to respect the rights and dignity of each employee. We recognize and appreciate the cultural identity in the countries in which we operate and do business. We promote equal opportunity and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of age, race, nationality, social or ethnic descent, gender, physical disability, sexual preference, religion, political preference, or union membership.

The recruitment, remuneration, application of employment conditions, training, promotion and career development of our employees are based on professional qualifications only.

Our hiring policy states that every new employee receives a copy of our Code of Conduct which explains our policies and procedures with regard to business ethics. All new managers are required to sign a compliance statement.

We offer competitive salaries and benefits designed to enhance the financial, physical and well-being of our employees and their families. While our offerings differ from country to country and are often integrated with local social security, we provide a wide range of employee benefits that may include retirement benefits, healthcare plans, service awards, labor accident disability coverage and paid leave. For more detailed information on employee benefits we refer to section 6.15 of the annual report. (GRI G3 EC3).


Benefits provided to full-time and part-time employees that are not provided to temporary employees (as "interim workers"), by significant locations of operation (> 1000 employees) (GRI G3 LA3).

  Belgium  China Slovakia US
 Life insurance   yes yes yes yes
 Health care  yes yes no yes
 Disability and invalidity coverage  yes yes yes yes
 Parental leave  yes  yes yes yes
 Retirement provision  yes no yes yes
 Stock ownership  no no no no


Communicating with our people

We recognize the right of any employee to join or to refrain from joining a trade union. 82% of our employees worldwide are covered by collective bargaining agreements (GRI G3 LA4).

We encourage communication with our employees and their representatives.

  • Direct information meetings are held in all plants worldwide, regular information meetings are scheduled with Unions in all unionized plants worldwide.
  • Annually, we hold 4 interactive teleconferences with all managers worldwide.
  • We organize 1 International Management Conference worldwide per year.

Learning and development

In order to encourage the continuous development of all employees, the group targets are deployed into team and personal targets for everyone. Bekaert’s performance management system enables the evaluation of teams and individuals as they relate to the set targets, as well as their way of working.

Bekaert attaches great importance to offering continuous learning and development opportunities its employees. Such programs not only include technical and function-specific training, but also leadership modules that help our people develop and cooperate in a global business environment.

  • Average n° of training per employee category & per gender (cfr GRI G3 LA10): On average 38 hours of training
  • % of employees who received a performance review (cfr GRI G3 LA12):



Stepping up technology leadership by continued employee development

Bekaert has engaged and challenged its employees in an innovation competition in 2014. After several jury rounds, the FastForward game brought about three winners out of eight nominations from an impressively longlist of new ideas. The winning ideas are being turned into reality by dedicated teams.

Sustainable support tools

In 2014 Bekaert launched an internal Learning & Development portal. In a first phase, the web based tool was rolled out for all managers worldwide. It provides an overview of all available trainings, both traditional classroom courses and e-learning modules. The portal also serves as a monitoring tool since it keeps track of each manager’s training history.