The key sustainability figures relate to V-ZUG Ltd headquartered in Zug, V-ZUG Cooling Technology Ltd headquartered in Arbon and the overseas subsidiaries, in particular V-ZUG (Changzhou) Special Components Co. Ltd, located west of Shanghai. Detailed figures are shown for the period 2018–2020 (three years). Any exceptions are noted and key figures relating to the Swiss market, irrespective of the organizational unit, are labelled accordingly.
Circular products and services key figures
V-ZUG appliances are energy efficient
The proportion of V-ZUG appliances supplied with an energy efficiency rating of A or higher has plateaued over the last few years at around 97 %. The launch of our new dishwasher led to a significant increase in the share of appliances with an A+++ rating in 2020.
Some appliance categories do not have any energy rating. At V-ZUG, these categories are hobs, warming drawers and microwaves. The share for these categories remains steady at around 18% of all appliances supplied.
We are investigating what causes faults
The fault rate rose by 13.8% in 2020 compared to the previous year. In comparison with the base year 2015/2016, the rate has fallen by 11.5% overall. The increase from 2019 was the result of malfunctions with built-in electronic components and issues with the tubs in dishwashers. If the fault rate increases in this way, we work hard to get to the bottom of the causes and introduce remedial measures as quickly as we can. We are continually investing in the quality of our products and manufacturing processes.
Longer response times, but more faults remedied first time
If an appliance develops a fault, we want to be on site quickly and to resolve the problem on the first visit, if possible. The response time and the rate of faults resolved first time are therefore key performance indicators for our Service and Support teams.
The rate of faults resolved on the first visit continued to increase and reached a new peak of 91.4 % in 2020, which is the culmination of continuous training and optimising different process steps.
The average response time has been increasing since 2018 due to the changeover to SAP in 2018 and 2019. The system issues partly caused by this process have now been resolved and stabilised.
The pandemic and subsequent measures for protecting employees and customers presented challenges for the service teams in particular as they carried out their work. Protective measures such as quarantine and shielding for vulnerable people meant that there was frequently a lack of available staff, making response times longer than the long-term average.
Fortunately, results from direct customer satisfaction surveys were positive despite this, reporting that 95 % of customers were either delighted or very satisfied with their service.
Employees key figures
Part-time: an increasingly popular working model
85% of our employees work full-time. The share of part-time employees rose again in 2020 to 15% (2019: 14%). Part-time work often comes up during the recruitment process, and we even receive regular requests for it internally. V-ZUG tries its best to accommodate such requests, which change depending on an employee’s personal circumstances or stage of life. This also fosters a healthy mix of generations: 18% of our employees are below the age of 30, 50% between 30 and 50, and 32% over 50. We are making a deliberate effort to employ people across the full range of ages, and we are investing specifically in the employees’ education, further training and employability.
More women at top management levels
The share of women at top management levels in V-ZUG has risen steadily over the last few years. The percentages shown relate to the total number of women on the Board of Management (BoM), Executive Board (EB) and in level 1 senior management. This places V-ZUG above the Swiss average (according to the 2021 Schilling Report, 18% of top management are women).
The share of women working at V-ZUG in total (including BoM) has stood between 20.5% and 22.0% over the last three years. In the last two years we have managed to increase women’s representation in management positions to match the proportion of women in the workforce overall. The share of women in management roles, i.e. BoM, EB, heads of department, project managers and senior management levels 1 to 3, was 17.1% in 2018 and increased to 20.3% by the end of 2020.
In addition to achieving a healthy gender mix equally distributed over all levels, equal pay for equal work is also a priority for V-ZUG. That is why we have an external body check our equal pay. The L&M-Aba-24® certificate, which is valid for four years, confirms that there is no discrimination in the pay levels of our employees. It is next due to be renewed in 2021.
With regard to the BoM figures, it should be noted that V-ZUG Holding Ltd was founded on 28 November 2019 and was entered on the commercial register on the same day. Gender balance on the Board of Management is therefore only shown for the end of 2019 and 2020.
Turnover rate fell slightly
We welcomed 246 new employees to V-ZUG in 2020. During the same period, 194 people left the company. This is equivalent to a turnover rate of 11.2% (excluding retirements and apprentices), falling 0.8% compared to 2019. We consider the slight upward long-term trend in turnover to be connected to the ongoing transformation process, which impacts the organisational structure, processes and the areas and scope of work.
Occupational accidents: a rare cause of absences
V-ZUG recorded 75 occupational accidents in the year under review. These caused around 7,000 hours to be lost and accounted for almost 7% of all hours lost, remaining unchanged from 2019. Around half of them were minor accidents (e.g. bruises and cuts requiring absences of less than three days). They occurred most frequently in production and service and usually because of negligence and stress. Occupational health and safety is therefore one of our key quality concerns. We are taking targeted measures, raising awareness and training our employees so that they are well informed about occupational hazards and better equipped to take personal responsibility.
Lower absenteeism thanks to fewer accidents occurring outside of work
The lost hours rate in 2020 was 3.5%, down 0.2% compared with the previous year. The reason that the figure fell despite an increase in employment at V-ZUG in the same period is due to the unusually low number of hours lost caused by non-occupational accidents. In 2020, 11% of accidents occurred outside of work; in 2018 and 2019, this figure was around 15%. We put this decline down to the restrictions on sporting activities during lockdowns related to Covid-19. Illness was the most frequent cause of absence, accounting for 83%. The share of illness-related absences rose by 4.5 percentage points in 2020, but this increase is put in perspective when we consider the fact that the number of employees at V-ZUG rose by around 3% in the same period.
Environment, energy and climate key figures
Absolute energy consumption remained stable
The absolute energy consumption at V-ZUG was 113.2 TJ in 2020. This included electricity (43.1%), natural gas (28.8%) and fuel oil (6.3%), as well as diesel (21.7%) and petrol (0.03%) in our vehicle fleet. Energy consumption remained relatively stable compared to 2019 (-0.3%). Fuel consumption fell thanks to fewer service trips, improved vehicle technology and optimised route planning. In contrast, we used more natural gas in 2019 and 2020 as we needed to increase the temperature of our enamelling oven by 20°C to maximise quality in the surface technology system.
Reduced CO2 emissions
The direct and indirect CO2 emissions recorded by V-ZUG totalled around 4,500 tonnes CO2 in 2020. There was a decline of 4% compared to 2019 as we consumed less diesel and V-ZUG employees rarely travelled by plane due to Covid-19. This meant that CO2 emissions remained at the same level as in 2018 despite the fact that we had to increase the temperature of our enamelling oven by 20°C to maximise quality in the surface technology system, consuming more natural gas as a result.
Society and sustainable growth key figures
V-ZUG regularly audits its suppliers. There were considerably fewer audits in 2020 due to stricter supplier registration requirements and travel restrictions caused by Covid-19.