People

Safe and healthy work

Maintaining and promoting the health of our employees is a very high priority at Daimler. For example, we design our workplaces in line with ergonomic criteria and offer health maintenance programs and occupational safety training. In everything we do, we focus on the health and safety of our employees. That’s because we want to prevent accidents and illnesses from happening in the first place.

Taking on social responsibility

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Enabling employees to work under safe and healthy conditions is part of our social responsibility as an employer and an expression of respect. In addition, maintaining our employees’ capabilities and productivity is of crucial importance for our business success.

How we ensure safe and healthy working conditions

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Our occupational safety strategy sets high standards for the design of workplaces and work processes. Moreover, we are systematically striving to reduce occupational and health- related risks.

Highest standards for everyone

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The Daimler Group operates on the basis of globally uniform guidelines for risk prevention. Our Occupational Health and Safety Policy and our Guidelines on Occupational Health and Safety serve as overarching, internationally valid Group regulations. They are based on international standards and national laws and emphasize the managers’ obligation to act responsibly. However, they also underscore the employees’ own responsibility.

In November 2019 the Group companies updated the Occupational Health and Safety Policy. The revision seeks to ensure that the safety standards continue to be upheld in the Group’s new structure. For example, the safety standards for equipment and processes should be uniform at all of our locations, as should our due diligence audits.

The policy also describes the structure, operation, and continuous improvement of our management system for health and safety at the workplace. The management system is based on the ISO 45001 standard. These requirements also apply to external companies and their employees. We regularly check external companies to see whether they are meeting the standards – in some cases several times a year.

Since 2019 Daimler has also been committed to achieving Vision Zero. This global campaign aims to prevent job-related accidents and illnesses and to promote the employees’ health, safety, and well-being. Many companies and partner organizations, including the World Health Organization, take part in this campaign on the international level. The main reason why we joined this campaign is to send a clear signal to all of our employees and to show them that we take the prevention of serious accidents and job-related illnesses very seriously.

Risk management: Systematic assessment and elimination of risks

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We want to prevent our employees from suffering accidents or having their health impaired. Our Health & Safety unit is therefore pursuing a preventive approach and evaluating the potential risks of workplaces and work processes at an early stage.

Digital risk assessment tool OiRA

A key role in the evaluation of potential risks of workplaces is risk assessment. The introduction of the online tool OiRA (Online interactive Risk Assessment) in late 2018 has digitized parts of this risk management process. OiRA is provided by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work and was expanded for our purposes. OiRA enables users to make risk assessments on desktop computers, tablets or smartphones. The tool shows the user specific risks associated with a particular area. The user then only needs to decide whether the suggested measures suffice to reduce the risk to an acceptable level. This risk assessment is then used as a basis for automatically generating instruction documents. We cooperate closely with the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work in this area.

To prepare for the launch of OiRA, we initially conducted pilot projects in which we created risk assessment templates. The focus was on the large production units that harbor a high level of risk potential: foundries, engine assembly areas, press shops, body shops, and assembly units. To be able to continuously adjust risk assessments to changes in regulations, these templates can now be centrally updated.

OiRA is now a part of our regular operations at all of our German locations and in Kecskemét (Hungary) as well as at smart in Hambach (France). The system is multilingual and will be supplied to other international locations in the future.

Uniformly assessing risks

Irrespective of OiRA, we uniformly assess the risks of new facilities along the entire process – from the call for bids to the acceptance stage. This uniform assessment is based on the safety concepts that we expect to receive from suppliers in accordance with our product specifications. The planner is assisted by occupational safety specialists, from the initial idea to the standardized acceptance process. Hazardous substances are evaluated by specialists who know how to assess chemical risks. We also use suitable methods to assess the mental and ergonomic stress of workplaces.

External companies

We also conduct risk assessments for our cooperation with external companies and derive appropriate measures from the results. We randomly check to see that these measures are complied with, depending on the scope of the cooperation and the risks. These risk assessments of external companies and the random checks will also be digitized in the future and depicted in OiRA. Furthermore, we supply external companies with an instructional video that teaches employees about work safety-related matters in an easily comprehensible way.

Responsibility for safety and health at the workplace

Occupational health and safety issues are managed by the Health & Safety unit, which is part of Human Resources and under the direction of the Chief Group Physician of Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, and Daimler Truck AG. The Health & Safety unit is divided into six competence centers: Occupational Safety, Occupational Medicine, Company Healthcare, Integration Management, Ergonomics, and Social Counseling. Each competence center controls the occupational safety and health management processes in line with regularly updated policies that are valid throughout the Group.

Our managers are responsible for ensuring that all internal policies and legal requirements for occupational health and safety are complied with. When they take up a position, they have to confirm the transfer of these duties in writing. They are provided with assistance by the experts at Health & Safety. Each location must regulate the responsibilities and specific obligations in line with local conditions.

The Board of Management receives a Health & Safety report at regular intervals and is, among other things, given monthly updates about the frequency of accidents. A Group crisis unit, in which the Board of Management is also involved, steps in whenever extraordinary incidents such as serious accidents occur.

Our targets

Our overarching objective is to prevent health risks and maintain Daimler employees’ health and physical well-being over the long term. We have set ourselves additional verifiable individual objectives in order to accomplish this task.

Every organizational unit within the Daimler Group defines and pursues occupational safety objectives on a regular basis. We utilize a top-down approach for defining our objectives and programs. Here, the general overarching strategy is developed by the Chief Group Physician and the Chief Safety Engineer and then discussed with the Board of Management. This general strategy, which is binding for all organizational units at Group companies, is based on our occupational health and safety guidelines and occupational safety strategy, as well as the results of audits and reviews.

In addition, Health & Safety annually defines targeted upper limits for accidents at our various sites and units. This approach is supplemented by annual agreements on objectives with the respective body responsible for personnel. These agreements also include the implementation of measures related to occupational health and safety.

#covid19 #coronavirus

We publish this report as people all around the world are fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic. Containment of the virus is a challenge of historic proportions – for the individual as much as for society, for governments as well as for corporations. It takes national and international solidarity and flexibility to overcome this crisis.

We at Daimler are determined to contribute our part and support to the best of our ability. We have taken numerous steps to protect our employees, slow down the spread of the pandemic, and fulfill our social responsibility. Constantly updated information can be found here.

How we are assuming responsibility for occupational health and safety

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Sustainable health and occupational safety management is part of the social responsibility we bear toward our employees. We employ a preventive approach for maintaining workplace safety and the health of our employees. This approach is designed to help prevent work accidents, work-related illnesses, and occupational diseases to the greatest extent possible. In addition, we are continuously enhancing our concepts to ensure that workplaces are attractive, ergonomic, and safe.

Health management: care, advice, support

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Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, and Daimler Truck AG offer their employees comprehensive advice on occupational medicine. This care is supplemented by the measures and services of the company health program and the social counseling service.

At Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, and Daimler Truck AG, the health management system focuses on forward-looking solutions that range from the job-related “Daimler GesundheitsCheck” and the ergonomic design of workstations to an IT system that makes it easier to permanently reintegrate employees suffering from limitations imposed by their health. We want our health management system to provide added value particularly for people suffering from mental health issues or diseases of the locomotor system.

Medical care for employees

At Daimler, occupational medicine includes various measures for the prevention of work-related illnesses and occupational diseases as well as health maintenance in the workplace. Moreover, we provide all employees with acute emergency healthcare that includes the diagnosis and treatment of acute illnesses and accident-related injuries. This lies within the area of responsibility of our plant physicians worldwide. All employees have free access to our plant medical services and to social counseling as well as to the basic services of our company health promotion programs. These basic company health promotion and emergency healthcare services are also available to our contract workers.

Company health promotion programs

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We want to motivate employees to develop healthy lifestyles and reinforce their sense of personal responsibility regarding health issues. This objective is promoted worldwide with the help of campaigns, counseling, and qualification offerings, as well as with preventive, therapeutic, and rehabilitation measures. All of our plants in Germany have health centers on their premises or cooperate with health centers located near the plants. Through our healthcare centers, we offer our employees innovative concepts for the prevention and treatment of problems with their backs and joints, for example. Our cutting-edge fit@work program enables them to perform fascia training directly at their workstations in order to strengthen their tendons and ligaments.

Social counseling service

Our social counseling service offers all staff members coaching and advice in situations marked by conflict or crisis with regard to one’s personal affairs or one’s role in the company. The counseling focuses on strengthening the individual’s personal resources. Within this context, we also offer unit-specific workshops as well as courses for managers that help them improve their psychosocial leadership skills.

Green light for ergonomic workstations

Daimler pursues a dedicated ergonomics strategy and has concluded a company-wide agreement with regard to ergonomics. In this agreement, we commit ourselves to addressing the issue of ergonomics even more systematically and sustainably than before and to giving our workstations an ergonomic design. The strategy encompasses the following principles and goals:

  • No unhealthy workstations
  • Maintenance of our employees’ capabilities
  • Appropriate assignments for all employees
  • Lowering the sickness rate by reducing the frequency of musculoskeletal disorders
  • Managers take on responsibility for keeping the employees healthy

In order to implement these requirements, we focused on the following measures and areas of action during the reporting year:

  • Use of ergonomics standards in all areas of development, planning, and production
  • Responsibility for ergonomics from the concept stage up to series production
  • Continuous ergonomic improvements
  • Qualification of employees and managers
  • Introduction of the ergonomics strategy on international level
  • Age-appropriate workstations that will remain viable in the future

IT system for ergonomics assessment

In 2018 we digitized the ergonomics assessment of our workstations. This IT system is used, among other things, to create workstation profiles so that disabled employees can work in line with their capabilities. The JobMatch tool helps us do this. In addition, the IT system helps us evaluate the ergonomic design of workstations. The result is shown as one of the traffic light colors. This helps us to determine a workstation’s potential for a more ergonomic design and institute targeted measures.

We now use this traffic light system to evaluate all newly created workstations during the planning stage. In this way, we want to avoid workstations with associated ergonomic risks in advance.

#DigitalHealth

How is digitalization affecting the health of our employees, and how can we use digital systems to promote their health and safety? Such questions are being addressed by our #DigitalHealth initiative. During the reporting period, we evaluated and discussed a variety of external studies concerning the effects that digitalization has on employee health. On this basis, we have added digital health issues to our existing qualification measures. Examples include the programs “TopFit@Daimler – Healthy Leadership” and “Pit Stop – Health in an Age of Acceleration.” Furthermore, we have developed a new qualification measure as part of our personal counseling services: “Navigating in choppy waters – psychosocial leadership skills in the digital world of work.” Another result is the development of the “Health & Safety Cockpit”, which provides managers with a quick and easy overview of the relevant key figures from health management.

Health and safety in production

There are many technical means for preventing accidents in production. Here are a few examples:

Human-robot cooperation (HRC)

We use our modular HRC safety concept at all production facilities. This highly sophisticated concept ensures that the relationship between man and machine is safe in all situations. This concept serves as the basis of the EC declaration of conformity, which is a precondition for our facilities to obtain the CE label for safe machines. The concept can be flexibly used regardless of whether a robot takes on an assisting or service-supporting role or operates completely automatically.

Industry 4.0 and exoskeletons

Another important issue involves the use of wearable computing systems and exoskeleton systems, which can help simplify work processes. Exoskeleton systems are worn on the upper body. They help employees carry out physically strenuous work such as lifting heavy objects. They can also benefit employees whose physical strength or capabilities are limited in their work.

Various channels for raising employee awareness

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We are increasingly using media such as videos, wikis, and web-based training courses in order to make employees more aware of ergonomics and occupational safety issues. Examples from 2019 include a new film for managers that addresses their occupational safety responsibilities and tasks.

In addition to providing initial instructions, we regularly hold additional briefings, which are always mandatory. We have also developed special online training courses for certain areas of work, including offices, production areas, and development units. In addition, OiRA, our digital risk assessment tool, generates workstation-specific instructions directly on the basis of its risk assessments.

How we evaluate the effectiveness of our management approach

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We want to design workstations that promote health and effectively prevent accidents. To make this possible, we have our work processes evaluated and we document and transparently report all incidents.

Auditing of production sites extended

We monitor the implementation of the corporate policy on occupational health and safety internally by means of safety due diligence audits. These audits address areas such as safety and accident management, risks arising from dangerous activities, fire and explosion risks, risks posed by ambient conditions, and risks associated with equipment and machinery. Our Health & Safety staff inform the respective unit managers as to what risks, if any, have been identified in the audits, and then make specific recommendations for eliminating them. By the end of the reporting period, 20 percent of all production locations operated by majority holdings had been audited in this manner. We are striving to increase this figure to 100 percent by 2023.

Various locations have their occupational safety and health management systems certified independently by external certification agencies in accordance with the ISO 45001 (formerly OHSAS 18001) standard in addition to the safety due diligence audits. In 2019, approximately 100,000 employees were working at production locations with a certified management system. This corresponds to around 40 percent of our global workforce at the production locations.

Accident documentation and accident statistics

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Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, and Daimler Truck AG utilize a cross-site accident documentation system in conjunction with a standardized statistics system. This ensures that the database is correct by enabling users to access the locally stored hours of attendance, lost days, and organizational structures. This accident documentation can be used as the basis for various findings such as the causes of accidents, the areas where accidents tend to occur, the pertinent tasks, and the equipment that causes accidents. These findings show that the accidents that occurred in 2019 were due to human behavior in 74 percent of the cases, while 17 percent were caused by technical defects and nine percent by organizational shortcomings. Mandatory analyses are made after every accident in order to determine the sequence of events. The affected units are also required to initiate preventive measures.

Transparent reporting paths

An effective reporting procedure helps us achieve our occupational health and safety targets. That’s why all of our locations have to report accidents and accident statistics to Health & Safety. This information is used as the basis for monthly reports of the Group’s accident statistics. Every three months, the Human Resources & Labor Relations Director also receives a report containing the accident statistics of the business units.

Accident frequency*
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2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

*

Recording rate Daimler production sites (Mercedes-Benz AG incl. Vans, Daimler Truck AG incl. Buses) worldwide: >99%.

Occupational accidents

3,284

3,444

2,766

3,152

2,957

Accident frequency (Number of occupational accidents with at least one day of absence per million attendance hours)

8.8

9.4

7.5

7.7

6.8

Participants in health training*
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2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

*

Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, Daimler Truck AG

Shift workers

438

556

500

544

460

Managers

361

433

465

487

311

Participants in health trainingPLUS*
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2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

*

Daimler AG, Mercedes-Benz AG, Daimler Truck AG

Shift workers

228

219

184

206

252

Managers

115

123

245

242

304

Provider/Privacy

Daimler AG Mercedesstraße 120
70372 Stuttgart
Germany
Tel.: +49 711 17 0
E-Mail: dialog@daimler.com

Represented by the Board of Management: Ola Källenius (Chairman), Martin Daum, Renata Jungo Brüngger, Wilfried Porth, Markus Schäfer, Britta Seeger, Hubertus Troska, Harald Wilhelm

Chairman of the Supervisory Board: Manfred Bischoff

Commercial Register Stuttgart, No. HRB 19360
VAT registration number: DE 81 25 26 315