Attractiveness as an employer

Being an attractive employer is highly relevant for the Lufthansa Group

The success of the Lufthansa Group relies heavily on the competence, enthusiasm, commitment and ideas of its employees. It is particularly important to maintain and develop employee morale, to recruit new employees, to have a coordinated personnel strategy and to take steps to ensure the Lufthansa Group remains an attractive employer.

Employee retention and employer attractiveness measures are refined on an ongoing basis to maintain employee satisfaction, even during periods with heavy workloads. At the same time, the needs of the workforce vary greatly, since the Group comprises 162 nationalities.

In addition to the benefits and working conditions for employees offered by collective bargaining agreements, the Lufthansa Group provides a broad portfolio of company-specific, country-specific and generalised benefits for employees. Certain groups of employees can choose from various flexitime models, for example, so that they can organise their working hours much more independently. This makes it possible to balance work and free time on an individual basis, while also strengthen the Group’s attractivity as an employer. Specific transitional benefits, pension schemes and arrangements for taking parental leave are also on offer.

Unrestricted freedom of association is an established feature of the Lufthansa Group

The Lufthansa Group has a long tradition of working with its labour union partners in the works councils and trade unions, as well as in supervisory boards subject to co-determination rules. This practice is aimed at acting collectively based on mutual interests. The joint search for solutions in the interest of the companies involved and their employees is based on an understanding of how valuable the freedom of association is and forms part of the Group’s corporate culture.

Workforce is informed transparently

The Executive Board of the Lufthansa Group and the Executive Boards and management teams of the individual subsidiaries continuously implement measures to meet the workforce’s desire for transparency. Information about current developments and goals is provided via webcasts and podcasts, the intranet and a “news app", in both German and English. This is also intended to promote loyalty to the Company.

Viva Engage, an enterprise social network platform to which around 80,000 employees of the Lufthansa Group have access, provides a further channel for communication. Various groups have established themselves on this platform, acting on their own initiative, in order to discuss a range of issues such as initiatives on coordinating social engagement.

Key remuneration components and additional benefits are offered

The Lufthansa Group intends to make greater use of flexible structures and options in remuneration components. It is thus taking into account the specific needs of its employees in their various living situations, with the goal of making its conditions of employment more attractive.

For example, non-payscale employees and managers of Deutsche Lufthansa AG are being offered a bonus scheme. Through the Time-Out programme, a portion of these variable payments can be flexibly converted into additional time off work.

Short-term and long-term variable remuneration components form part of the remuneration received by managers and non-payscale employees. The Lufthansa Group’s goals in relation to environmental and social issues have also been integrated into this as performance targets. The variable remuneration payments are therefore dependent on achieving targets relating to customer and employee satisfaction and on reducing the Lufthansa Group’s carbon emissions.

Working and employment conditions for employees and managers are flexible and are adapted continually

New forms of work are one of six areas of focus and thus an important aspect of the Lufthansa Group’s human resources strategy. With this in mind, the Lufthansa Group has been offering administrative employees the opportunity to work flexibly, both in terms of when and where they work, for many years now. Flexibility is a key factor for both current and future employees. They are supported in this respect through training formats such as guidelines, videos and workshops. Mobile devices play an important role here and have been available to almost all of the Group’s employees for several years now. Works agreements on mobile working have also been signed in many Lufthansa Group companies. They aim to reconcile the interests of employees with those of the company concerned. Since 2022, in principle employees are entitled to spend up to 30 days a year working in other EU countries.

Flexible working time models are an established element in the Lufthansa Group and are designed to make it as easy as possible to combine work and family life. Job adverts for management positions offer the opportunity of part-time work in form of a shared leadership. This makes it possible to share a management position with another manager who also works part time. In addition, managers and non-payscale employees have the option to take sabbaticals.

Uniform performance and potential assessment enable that talent is retained

To ensure that employees have the opportunity to shape their career within the Group in line with their individual talents and interests, a standard process for measuring performance and potential has been implemented for most administrative and management staff. The above-average performers and high potentials identified are systematically networked, brought to the fore and motivated to maintain their commitment to the Lufthansa Group.

As the Lufthansa Group continues its economic recovery, its talent programmes – including its apprenticeship and trainee programmes – are being further expanded and enriched with new content, in particular relating to sustainability. This creates a broad and attractive portfolio of development and commitment opportunities for above-average performers and high potentials.

Organisational foundations and responsibilities

The responsibility of the overall topic of employer attractiveness lies primarily within the areas of HR Policies, HR Services & Digitalization, HR Executives as well as Employer Branding & Talent Management. The HR Policies, HR Services & Digitalization and HR Executives departments report directly to the Executive Board member for Human Resources & Infrastructure. The Employer Branding & Talent Management department reports directly to the Executive Board member for Brand & Sustainability. These departments are jointly responsible for maintaining and further strengthening the Lufthansa Group’s position as an attractive employer. Topics such as compensation and benefits, employer branding, talent management and human resources marketing, which have a significant impact on employer attractiveness, are firmly established within these departments.

The Lufthansa Group strives to become more attractive as an employer

The aim of the Lufthansa Group is to position itself as an attractive employer. It has set itself the long-term goal of featuring among the top ten employers in Germany. Attractiveness as an employer is considered from both an internal and an external perspective. 2023 was mainly defined by the continued increase in flight operations due to the high level of demand for flights, particularly during the summer months. Since the Group still has significant staffing requirements, employer attractiveness (as perceived by external applicants) is a crucial factor.

At the same time, the Lufthansa Group’s employees make a decisive contribution to passenger satisfaction and thus to the success of the Company. Another important goal is therefore to increase the motivation of existing employees and improve the level of employer attractiveness within the Group. The Lufthansa Group measures this by means of the Engagement Index from its annual employee survey “involve me!”. The goal is to further improve on the 2022 figure of 2.4. The results are measured on a scale from 1 (best) to 5 (worst).

Employer value proposition is introduced to enhance the Group’s attractiveness as an employer

In 2023, an employer value proposition (EVP) was developed as a means of establishing a clear strategic position for the Lufthansa Group on the job market. In particular, company values, development opportunities and solid relationships were identified as core areas of strategic focus, and some initial measures are currently being implemented which cover the various phases which employees pass through during their time with a company. These phases comprise recruitment, preparation and onboarding, the performance phase, the growth and learning phases and finally the exit process. The aim of this is to enable the Lufthansa Group to design, manage and improve the employee experience, from recruitment right through to the end of the employment relationship. In its focus on development opportunities, for instance, the Group intends to work on strengthening mosaic careers, which offer scope for following horizontal or downward pathways in addition to purely vertical ones. In the context of the EVP, the updated employer brand “Lufthansa Group careers” has been introduced. This was accompanied by three major marketing campaigns, which supported the successful recruitment of more than 14,890 employees in the reporting year.

Sustainable mobility offerings for employees are being expanded

The Lufthansa Group has expanded its electromobility offering for company cars by providing financial support for electric vehicles. More than 50% of newly ordered company cars were fully electric in the reporting year thanks to this measure. In addition, 104 charging stations for electric vehicles were installed in the employee car park at the Lufthansa Aviation Center in Frankfurt in 2023. Overall, there are 212 such charging stations in Germany.

As well as the contribution to the “job ticket” for use of public transport, which the Group’s employees have been offered for many years now, the Lufthansa Group has been allowing its employees in Germany to lease bicycles again since 2023. Around 60,000 employees are thus able to lease a bicycle on favourable conditions and around 4,000 lease agreements were concluded in the reporting year.

The results of the previous year’s employee survey are being implemented

As a result of the 2022 employee survey “involve me!”, core areas of action have been defined for the Lufthansa Group as a starting point for the follow-up process in the Group companies. Establishing a feedback and dialogue culture was one joint area of action. For this purpose, measures were developed in most Group companies to improve communication and dialogue within the Company. For instance, discussion formats for managers on their development within the Company were established at Lufthansa Technik, while continuous communication channels were set up at Lufthansa Airlines via its WE TAKE OFF TO TAKE CARE programme. This is intended to give employees a better understanding of the airline’s basic orientation, by means of specific strategic areas of action. In the employee survey conducted in the reporting year, the question relating to the “culture of feedback and dialogue in the company” already received a more positive response.

Performance indicators
Engagement Index improved year-on-year

The Engagement Index provides information about the Company’s attractiveness as an employer. This has been tracked by the voluntary annual employee survey “involve me!” since 2015 and enables a comparison with employers in many different sectors. This index measures the extent to which employees identify with the Company, as well as their level of commitment and their willingness to recommend the Company to others. The survey was carried out again in 2023. With the exception of the LSG group, which was sold over the course of the reporting year, all major Group companies were included. While the employee survey carried out in the previous year was narrower in scope, a more detailed survey was implemented in 2023. This alternation between comprehensive and shorter surveys corresponds to past practice.

The results are measured on a scale from 1 (best) to 5 (worst). In the reporting year, the Engagement Index value was 2.2 and increased by 0.2 compared with the previous year’s level of 2.4. This positive trend has been driven partly by the improved assessment of the feedback and dialogue culture in the Company. Another factor is employees’ improved assessment of the leeway they have for successfully accomplishing tasks assigned to them and of their greater enjoyment of work. Economic stabilisation and trust in the management’s decision-making in order to safeguard financial success also played a key role in the more positive engagement results. Overall, the indicator showing employees’ level of pride in working for their company has also increased.

The results of the employee survey are presented to the Executive Board and Supervisory Board and are also considered and discussed in depth by the Management Boards of the various companies. The managers of the Lufthansa Group and the business segments will use the results of this survey as a basis for identifying measures together with their teams with the aim of improving the Engagement Index results.

Since the 2023 financial year, the Engagement Index has been assigned a 10% weighting for the Executive Board’s short-term variable remuneration. ↗ Remuneration report

Labour union partners are firmly established at the Lufthansa Group

For the Lufthansa Group, it goes without saying that no one will suffer any positive or negative discrimination because they are a member of a trade union or not. The Lufthansa Group allows all of its employees to join or form a trade union. As of 31 December 2023, of the 63,176 Lufthansa Group employees in Germany, 76% were covered directly by collective bargaining arrangements. The remaining 24% are largely managers and non-payscale employees in senior positions. However, many of the arrangements for these non-payscale employees are also based on the collective bargaining agreements. A few companies are not subject to any collective agreements. In the Europe region, 98% of employees at Austrian Airlines and 87% of those at SWISS have an employment contract covered by collective agreements.

Employer ranking has improved among key target groups

To position itself as an attractive employer for university graduates in particular, the Lufthansa Group places emphasis on the opinions of young people in employer rankings. It makes use of the ranking exercise carried out by the Trendence Institute for this purpose. In the reporting year, the Lufthansa Group in Germany improved its ranking among economics students from 16th place in the previous year to 9th. For this target group, it thus achieved its goal of once again being rated as a top ten employer. Engineering students placed Lufthansa Technik 16th (previous year: 15th). Lufthansa Systems and Lufthansa Industry Solutions took 45th and 70th position among IT students (previous year: 34th and 65th).

In the professionals category, economists rated the Lufthansa Group 18th (previous year: 15th) in the Trendence ranking, while engineers put Lufthansa Technik in 15th place (previous year: 15th). Among IT workers, Lufthansa Systems garnered 54th place (previous year: 34th) and Lufthansa Industry Solutions 66th place (previous year: 72nd).

The Lufthansa Group attributes the decline in ratings in these business segments to follow-on effects of the coronavirus pandemic and the related restrictions on working conditions. In addition, the marketing activities which commenced in the reporting year initially focused on Deutsche Lufthansa AG and were only expanded later in the year.

Moreover, the specialist magazine JUVE Karriere Steuern rated Lufthansa Group’s tax department as an attractive employer in the tax field and ranked it in 5th place. 

Lufthansa Group Annual Report 2023