For a rewarding career
At Elders our most important asset is our people. Our priority is to provide them with a safe working environment and a supportive working culture which in turn drives growth and development.
Health and safety
Safety continues to be a critical and non-negotiable objective of Elders as we continue to improve our work health and safety systems to achieve our goal of zero harm in our business.
Our safety performance
Last financial year Elders had three lost-time injuries, which was up from two the previous year.
Our employees say:
- my work area is safe: 91 per cent (down from 92 per cent last year)
- I always prioritise safety when undertaking an activity: 94 per cent (up from 93 per cent last year)
- we practice what we preach – Nothing is so important that it cannot be done safely: 92 per cent (up from 90 per cent
- if I identify a safety issue, I know my manager will act on it – 91 per cent (up from 89 per cent last year).
Our commitment to establishing and maintaining a safe and healthy work environment is set out in our Work Health and Safety Policy and implemented through our Work Health and Safety Management System (WHSMS), which responds to our evolving business requirements.
The policies and procedures which underpin our WHSMS apply to all our employees and our contractors, in all our workplaces – whether they are worksites we control (like our branches, warehouses or offices), or sites our Workers work in which we do not control (like customer properties or saleyards).
Our WHSMS reflects the requirements of various state-based work, health and safety legislation and our Safety Manual (updated this year) draws on the key principles of AS/NZS ISO 45001: 2018. Our WHSMS is monitored periodically and evaluated to ensure its suitability and effectiveness.
Our sites are audited by our safety team and externally by AgSafe to ensure compliance with our WHSMS and that appropriate safety standards are maintained.
Employee attraction and retention
The success of our business is reliant on us attracting, retaining and developing the best people in agriculture and all aspects of the business, and ensuring our people are engaged and enabled to create meaningful work outcomes.
We demonstrate our commitment to the development of our workforce through our investment in learning and development programs, remuneration and reward frameworks and succession and retention models.
Career development is a standing item of every employee’s annual personal development plan and performance review. This year we spent over $1 million on professional development and continued to provide internal training programs virtually, in person and online. Training programs for employees are developed based on their experience and position within the organisation.
Workers beginning their careers in Elders or the agribusiness industry are supported through work experience, school-based trainee placements and professional development programs, including:
- our Graduate Agronomy Program
- our Livestock Sales Trainee Program
- real estate agent introductory training
- monthly property management training.
We also periodically take on candidates for work experience in other roles throughout our business, including corporate roles at our Head Office.
Employee Effectiveness Survey
This year, despite the continued challenges presented by working through COVID-19 and associated social distancing and travel restrictions, we achieved record results through our annual Employee Effectiveness Survey.
- employee engagement: 78 per cent (up from 76 per cent)
- employee enablement: 79 per cent (up from 76 per cent)
- employee effectiveness: 64 per cent (up from 59 per cent).
We recognise that a diverse and inclusive workforce is critical to achieving our objective of attracting, retaining and leveraging talent.
We are committed to providing a workplace that promotes equal opportunity and an environment that is free from all forms of discrimination, including race, colour, national extraction, social origin, age, marital status, family or carer responsibilities, sex or chosen gender, sexual preference, religion and physical ability. Our Diversity and Inclusion Policy sets out the key elements of a diverse organisation and the value derived from embedding diversity.
For several years, redressing gender imbalance has been the focus of our diversity program given the significant gap of female representation in leadership positions across the agriculture industry. Since setting our Board-approved measurable diversity objectives, we have made steady progress.
This year, we continued to increase the representation of women on our Board and number of female team leaders, exceeding our FY21 targets. We also increased the representation of women in management positions across the organisation by 2, to 18 per cent. Although Elders has not reached its target of 25 per cent, there has been significant progress with an 80 per cent increase in the representation of women in management positions since our target was first set in FY17.
To drive continued improvement on redressing gender imbalance, Elders launched:
- unconscious bias training to managers as part of its Frontline Manager program
- a gender de-coder for job advertisements, aimed at assisting managers with developing position descriptions and advertisements to encourage more female applicants
- an internal pay equity review, providing initial insights to our Board on gender pay equity
- gender specific reporting to management during Elders’ annual remuneration review.
Our broader diversity program
During the reporting period, we took steps to extend the scope of our diversity program to include other categories of diversity. This began with the conduct of a staff survey to identify the present diversity of our workforce. Our survey revealed that within our workforce:
- 7 per cent have a disability or impairment
- 3 per cent identify as LGBTQI+
- 7 per cent speak a language other than English
- 44 per cent are primary carers
- 4 per cent identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander
- 10 per cent were born outside of Australia
- 83 per cent of respondents stated that they felt safe to be themselves at work.
We are now developing strategies to improve on these findings and further our diversity objectives. We will also launch new diversity targets, continuing to focus on gender imbalance while extending our scope to cover other categories of diversity.
Further analysis of gender pay equity will continue through the next reporting period to identify and redress any issues. We will also continue to report annually to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency outlining our workplace profile in accordance with the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Cth).
For more information refer to the 2021 Sustainability Report.
Are you interested in a career that can take you further? Learn more about a career with Elders.