Diversity, employees, and people development

At a glance

  • The share of women in top management increased to 16.0 % in the reporting year
  • The Schaeffler Group actively promotes the further development of its employees  

Workforce at a glance

Part of NFRThe Schaeffler Group is transitioning towards an emission-free and connected future. This change affects not only products, technologies, and business models but also the entire workforce and the corporate culture: Work processes and structures are changing equally fundamentally as tasks, job profiles, and collaboration within the Schaeffler Group. Schaeffler employees around the world contribute their commitment, skills, and ideas to help the Schaeffler Group master this change. This trans­formation is an opportunity for sustainable success for the company and its employees. The aim is to make the necessary changes for employees in a forward-looking and socially responsible manner. 

The Schaeffler Group continuously invests in the qualifications of its own employees and at the same time recruits new employees with the skills required in the future. To attract and retain employees in the long term, the Schaeffler Group aims to foster an attractive and sustainable working environment that supports flexible forms of work. The company also promotes a management culture that aims to create a diverse, healthy, and safe working environment.

The human resources strategy comprises four core elements: (1) Active Sourcing and Recruiting, (2) Talent Management, (3) Training and Learning, and (4) Health, Safety, and Environmental Protection. There are also two overarching action fields: (1) Diversity and (2) Digitalization. The respective departments regularly report on key developments to the Human Resources Board department.

Schaeffler Group employees

Employees, total83,36282,77382,981
Of which female 1)19,107
Of which male 1)64,255
  1. Figure was first reported in 2023 reporting year.

In the reporting year, the Schaeffler Group employed 83,362 (prior year: 82,773) employees as at December 31, 2023. The average length of service of employees in 2023 was 12.4 years (prior year: 12.2). The average age of employees was 41.1 years (prior year: 40.9).

Distribution of employees by region1)
  1. The regions represent the regional structure of the Schaeffler Group.
Part of NFR

Attractive working conditions

Part of NFRAs a global family business, the Schaeffler Group makes every effort to achieve the best work-life balance possible. All Schaeffler regions create conditions for working from anywhere. The formal regulations are specified by the applicable regional or local guidelines and laws. In Germany, the Schaeffler Group, as part of the “Future of Work” program, follows the approach of enabling the design of hybrid working models depending on work tasks, business requirements, and personal preferences. The respective managers are responsible for implementing the hybrid working models.

All managers and employees have access to a “Future of Work” guide with suggestions and tips for implementation. In addition, all employees have access to a workshop concept for developing a team working model. This includes, for example, job-sharing models, which can be achieved by individual coordination with a manager. In close cooperation, a full-time position is split between two people, who then share the responsibilities.

And to accommodate individual circumstances such as caring for family members, the company enables all employees in Germany to reduce their working hours with an income adjustment. The company complies with relevant legal provisions on parental leave models. Regional programs complement these requirements, for example, allowing employees to work from home after their parental leave. A mentoring program for returning to work after parental leave is provided for managers and, after coordination, also for employees without management responsibility. 

Older employees have the option of reducing their working hours as part of partial retirement and also leaving the employment relationship early. Since early retirement is often associated with a decrease in subsequent retirement income, the Schaeffler Group can increase payment into retirement with collective bargaining agreements in Germany, thus minimizing reductions in income upon retirement.Part of NFR



of employees in Germany are covered by collective bargaining agreements

Part of NFRThe Schaeffler Group aims for fair wages for all employees. Wages are structured in a way to acquire and retain talented individuals and reward good performance. Since rules differ around the world, remuneration is structured on a country-by-country basis. Just about every Schaeffler location has either collective agreements or payment systems that have been agreed on with the Works Councils through a company agreement. Each location also observes the legally guaranteed minimum wage in the respective labor markets as well as principles such as equal pay.

The Schaeffler Group uses a job assessment system to enable comparison of functions of the individual countries. This system guarantees non-discriminatory determination of pay based on functions in the respective local markets. As established in the Code of Conduct, the company advocates an unprejudiced working environment that appreciates everyone. Varying pay for essentially the same work is primarily the result of different levels of relevant experience, expertise, and performance. Examples of selective, performance-related pay components in Germany are the collectively agreed performance appraisal or the variable pay system in the non-tariff sector. A profit-sharing model is being used in the Greater China region.Part of NFR

Consideration of employee interests

Part of NFRAll employees have the opportunity to address their concerns directly. The company also works with employee representatives in a constructive interaction based on trust.

The Schaeffler Group respects the right of its employees to freedom of association and collective bargaining, which is also firmly established in the Code of Conduct. Because collective bargaining agreements are subject to country-specific provisions, these are negotiated locally. Collective bargaining agreements in Germany cover 97.1 % (prior year: 97.2 %) of employees. This also includes the management of the Schaeffler Group. 

The Schaeffler Group is interested in working with advocacy groups to shape the fundamental transformation taking place in the industry and identify balanced solutions. The company’s approach to any necessary job cuts is as socially compatible as possible, implementing rules on partial retirement and severance agreements with both parties. Internal relocation and normal fluctuation are also used as instruments.

Employee feedback is crucial to successfully and sustainably transform the company. To increase employee engagement and identify potential for improvement, the Schaeffler Group conducts employee surveys approximately every 18 months. The 2023 online survey was available to employees 1 in over 50 countries and 23 languages. Topics such as belonging and equal opportunities, leadership, collaboration, and communication were the focus. The survey also included questions on the perception of the Schaeffler brand and the digitalization of the workplace. Internal and external benchmarks are used in the evaluation. Overall, the results confirm a high level of employee satisfaction and a high degree of identification with the company. The Schaeffler Group communicates specific findings from the survey within the company. Global and local measures are recorded centrally and should subsequently help implement the identified potential for improvement. 

In addition, employees’ experiences, for example, during the onboarding phase or when leaving the company, are recorded. In this context, surveys of employees who are leaving the company were piloted. These automated surveys are to be successively expanded and supplemented, for example, by new employee surveys during onboarding. 

A 360 feedback tool is available to employees 2 and managers to promote individual development and obtain feedback on leadership and collaboration. Moderated workshops also allow for feedback from the team to the manager.
 Part of NFR

Diversity and equal opportunity

Part of NFRThe Schaeffler Group values multicultural experiences and diversity of its employees and considers these the global organization’s strengths. The differences and uniqueness of all employees promote innovation and make the company more competitive in the future. That is why the company strives to create a working environment without discrimination, intimidation, and harassment. Using various global measures, the company promotes equality and inclusion and aims to ensure that all employees feel valued and empowered to contribute their experience and ideas.

The Diversity and Inclusion strategy is based on the pillars of commitment, awareness, and transparency. It aims to firmly anchor diversity management in the company, make it more visible and reinforce issues of importance at all levels, especially at the management level. Among others, the aim is to achieve the target quota of 20 % for women at the first two levels below the Board of Managing Directors by the end of 2025. In the reporting year, the ratio increased to 16.0 % (prior year: 15.0 %). This is because women are given greater consideration in succession planning, especially at the level directly below the Board of Managing Directors. 

Proportion of women at Schaeffler Group

There are targeted mentoring programs for female students and internal female talent, for example, on E-Mobility or in STEM 3 subjects, to promote gender diversity within the company. Regular exchanges, workshops, and events give them valuable insights into the company’s practices. In addition to these internal programs, cooperation with external companies and associations also aims to support women in building cross-industry networks and to enable their advancement to management positions.Part of NFR

Promotion and development

Part of NFRThe accompanying Performance & Goal Management process is transparent for employees, designed to promote their individual performance and ongoing development. Managers and employees agree on individual goals and discuss behavior as well as the functional expertise required for a career within the Schaeffler Group. Development measures are discussed that are relevant both for the current position as well as for the potential next career step.

Annual Career & Succession Discussions are also held based on this. In these, the next career steps and early succession for key positions in the company are discussed.

The new Strategic Workforce Planning & Top Talent Management division was created this year to better align global talent management with different target groups within the company. In the future, it will translate the Group-wide strategy into the workforce-related priorities and implement a framework that will enable solid succession planning for defined key positions at L1 and L2 management level. It is also intended to promote the appointment of top talent to key positions.Part of NFR

Employee training


web-based training courses are offered worldwide by Schaeffler Academy Germany

Part of NFRFor the Schaeffler Group to successfully transform, the qualification of its own employees and a culture of lifelong learning are essential. The Schaeffler Academy organized retraining and training courses for employees as global qualification programs, such as Fit4Production, Fit4Digital, and Fit4Mechatronics. They include modular training courses with defined learning paths considering the different backgrounds of the respective target groups.

To implement the Schaeffler Group’s sustainability strategy, it is important that all employees are aware of the relevant interconnections and actively participate in them. Since 2022, employees have the opportunity to learn more about climate change mitigation through voluntary online training, among other things. The climate training was completed by 2,566 (prior year: 1,627) employees in the reporting year. 

Overall, 446 online training courses were available to employees worldwide in the reporting year (prior year: 360). The average number of training and development hours per employee came to 8.0 hours in the reporting year (prior year: 7.4 hours). Employees have access to e-learning courses and classroom training sessions in the Learning Management System (LMS). In the reporting year, there were 102,943 participations (prior year: 93,724) in e-learning courses and 64,414 participations (prior year: 7,291) in classroom training sessions. The figures are reported on a global level starting in the 2023 reporting year. The increased participation in e-learning courses is due in part to the growing range of training courses. Mandatory training is excluded from the figures in order to increase voluntary learning in the company.

Qualification and training1)

Web-based training courses offered, total 2)446360250
Average number of hours of training and 
education per employee 3)
Of which male 3)
Of which female 3)
Total participation in e-learning courses 3) 4)102,94393,724169,795
Total participation in classroom training sessions 3) 4) 5)64,4147,2914,553
  1. Key figures excl. Ewellix.
  2. Offered worldwide by the Schaeffler Academy Germany.
  3. Value starting in 2023 without mandatory training. 
  4. Includes the global learning activities documented in the Learning Management System (LMS) for the first time as of 2023. 
  5. Key figure collected worldwide for the first time in 2023. 
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Leadership training

Part of NFRThe Schaeffler Group’s Leadership Essentials describe the behavior managers should exemplify across all levels in daily collaboration. The following human resources tools were adapted for this:

  • Performance & Goal Management
  • Hiring process
  • Upward and global 360° feedback
  • Programs and training for the continuous development of managers at local, regional, or global level 

The flagship program is the Global Leadership Excellence ­Program, which was launched as a pilot program in 2022 and successfully continued in 2023. Each year, up to 30 managers selected from the top two management levels globally have the opportunity to engage in topics related to strategy, leadership, and sustainable value creation as part of the program. The core of the program consists of three modules that take place in the USA, Singapore, and Berlin. These are accompanied by virtual training sessions and management coaching. Two groups have already successfully completed their program; a third group started their learning journey with the kick-off in September 2023.Part of NFR

1 External employees, temporary workers, working students, and trainees were not included.
2 External employees, temporary workers, working students, and trainees are not included. 
3 STEM is an umbrella term and stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

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