Annual Report and Sustainability Report 2019


Safety, diversity and expertise

Health, Safety and the Environment & People

KONGSBERG is an enterprise based on knowledge and expertise, where the greatest asset is our employees. In order to secure the broad expertise we require and manage it in relation to our international operations, our aim is to offer a secure, exciting, attractive and stimulating workplace.

Our position

During 2019, we acquired over 3,900 new employees through acquisitions and organic growth. We extend a warm welcome to all our new colleagues here at KONGSBERG and are working systematically to integrate them into our culture through daily procedures and processes, active promotion of values and training in our business ethics guidelines.

During 2019, we acquired over 3,900 new employees through acquisitions and organic growth. We extend a warm welcome to all our new colleagues here at KONGSBERG!

KONGSBERG’s vision for Health, Safety and the Environment (HSE) is zero events, accidents or fatal injuries involving our employees, visitors, customers or partners in our global operations. In order to achieve this vision, KONGSBERG never stops working to build a strong culture. 

Safety must always come first, and our employees and partners are instructed to stop work if a safety risk arises. We all have a personal responsibility for making our joint HSE efforts preventive.

We place emphasis on the increased reporting of near-accidents and HSE observations, and these measures will contribute to reducing the number of injuries and accidents. HSE data is collected from all companies in the Group and reported to the Corporate Executive Management and the Board each quarter.

We are committed to preventing both discrimination and harassment. In this year’s global employee survey, not one employee reported that they had been discriminated against or had experienced harassment. The survey also confirms that our staff are familiar with our whistleblower system. We also perform follow-up work, with regular surveys of the general working environment. We have zero tolerance for unacceptable behaviour and motivate our employees to report such incidents.

We support and respect international human rights and labour rights that are set out in the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, ILO Core Conventions (International Labour Organization) and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. Leadership in KONGSBERG is about creating value and achieving results through people. The key to success lies in the combination of good management and dedicated employees. Managers shall exercise their leadership based on our values, the Corporate Code of Ethics and management principles. Our managers shall create an environment in which our employees are able to prosper and succeed in meeting our strategic priorities. On the basis of this, we have implemented a management development programme, Leadership@KONGSBERG, that will contribute to clarifying and quality-assuring processes for goal setting, follow-up and evaluation.

An important condition for long-term success is that KONGSBERG properly manages employee competences. The Group is aiming to increase the exchange of knowledge and staff between the business areas. Good work processes and development opportunities are important incentives in recruiting and retaining good employees. KONGSBERG places emphasis on strengthening competences and is continuously working to develop its employees. Individuals and teams who comply with our values and demonstrate desirable conduct are to be valued. This culture will help us to attract people with the right skills and behaviour to address the technical challenges of tomorrow in a sustainable manner. Every other year, a global job satisfaction survey is conducted to provide feedback on how employees experience working conditions and the working environment.

KONGSBERG wants to motivate more women to pursue their studies in technology-based subjects.

KONGSBERG will reward its employees both for results achieved and desirable conduct. We will be competitive, but not salary leaders. KONGSBERG ensures that the salaries and conditions of all employees are in accordance with local legislation, agreements and guidelines. The principles and systems for remuneration of executive management are determined by the Board. The Board has a separate Compensation Committee which deals with all significant matters related to wages and other remuneration to senior executives prior to formal discussion and decision by the Board.

Diversity and gender equality create value and make us more competitive. They expand the mindset and have a positive influence on the company’s strategy and management. The importance of this work is reflected in our HR strategy and by the Corporate Executive Management and the Board, and the work is monitored by the Compensation Committee. We work systematically and purposefully to recruit, develop and retain people of different age groups, ethnicity and gender. Our focus on diversity is reflected in promotion, recruitment and leadership development, and is monitored with periodic surveys and follow-up work.

The 2019 goal was to increase the share of women in management roles, with a focus on operational positions and international operations. The percentage of female managers in KONGSBERG has risen in recent years, and 20.7 per cent of our managers are now women. There are a number of reasons behind this increase, but a key factor has been awareness when hiring new managers. One of our initiatives to motivate women to apply for management roles has been the Female Forum. The aim of the forum is to give female managers an opportunity to meet and use the network as a tool. In 2019, the Female Forum was rolled out with global participation. It is also important to have goals and targets, and then measure the results driving behavioural change. The HR strategy includes several concrete measures supporting these targets. We have also succeeded in increasing the percentage of women we recruit, achieving 25 per cent in 2019.

Our challenges

We operate in about 40 countries, and security and emergency preparedness for our personnel is our top priority. Our ethical guidelines provide a clear framework for how we work, regardless of country and region. They give us licence to operate and are essential for our existence and reputation. Our international growth involves new partners and supplier chains, which means increased focus on matters related to both human and labour rights.

A world of instability and multiple threats require a higher degree of security for our information and intellectual property rights. We rely on having loyal employees who follow our standards of confidentiality and integrity. Risk management and vulnerability analysis are tools for applying the right level of security.

Due to digitalisation and accelerating technological development, our employees need to upgrade their skills continuously. Moreover, this will lead to new knowledge requirements in the future. KONGSBERG is a global company with employees located throughout the world. This leads to major variations within language, culture and ethnicity, and requires good and effective leadership. Knowledge sharing and collaboration through networks across the established structures provides added value for the company and is expected to become a more usual working method.

We must communicate effectively and through appropriate channels both internally and externally. Both our social media profile and our employees should reflect this in relation to the outside world.

Goals and activities

Further develop our global organisation and actively pursue diversity to foster an environment and a culture where everyone feels included
  • Goals for 2019 - what we said


    This is a new area for follow-up from 2020.

  • Goals for 2019 - what we said

    • We are maintaining our focus on diversity (gender, ethnicity, etc.), gender equality and inclusion with a continu­ed focus on the following:
      1. Increase the focus on diversity in our international operations.
      2. Strengthen the focus on social exclusion.
      3. Place female managers in operational positions.
  • Goals for 2019 – what we said

    • Securing the continua­tion of the Group’s reporting and activities relating to HSE after the integration of new companies in KONGSBERG.
    • Sharing experiences and cooperating through a new and larger HSE network.
    • A continuous focus on improving established KPIs.
  • Goals for 1919 - what we said

    • Continued focus on increasing the completion rate and quality of the appraisal interviews.
    • Carry out global employee survey.
    • Mapping of strategic competence.

Health, safety and the environment

A process of continuous improvement where everyone can contribute through commitment and awareness

KONGSBERG has a zero vision. We aim to ensure that no incidents, accidents or fatal injuries occur.

A process of continuous improvement where everyone can contribute through commitment and awareness

KONGSBERG has a zero vision. One of our goals is to prevent all incidents, accidents or fatal injuries involving our employees, visitors, customers and partners. Through a proactive and open HSE culture, we are continually striving to achieve this goal. Safety must always come first – Our employees have the authority to “Stop work”.

Our HSE KPIs have once again seen a positive development this year. The targeted increase in reported near-accidents and observations has been achieved.  

KONGSBERG grew throughout 2019, not only organically, but also through two major acquisitions. The activities and operations of the new businesses are high-risk from an HSE perspective. Through the introduction of a new “KONGSBERG Global HSE Day”, we introduced the “KONGSBERG Life-Saving Rules”, which are based on the rules developed by the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers (IOGP). These are nine life-saving rules within areas where there is a high risk of accidents occurring. They can be linked to the various types of activities and operations in which the “new” KONGSBERG participates. At the same time, we will also contribute to a common basis for the Group’s proactive HSE work. The rules are a supplement to the established governance system for HSE. The aim is for them to direct attention on risk areas with relevant issues, and act as a topic for discussion for the various activities and locations within KONGSBERG. The KONGSBERG Life-Saving Rules are intended to ensure focus and attention, to bring us closer to our zero vision and boost our efforts to build a strong and proactive HSE culture.

Our HSE work is being continued with goals concerning continuous improvement and focus. The zero vision and safe@KONGSBERG is our goal.

Equality and management

Young Professional Advisory Board

Young Professional Advisory Board

Developments within professional life have led to fierce competition to attract and retain the greatest talent. We have to think in new, more sustainable ways to stand up to the great changes we are facing. We also have to involve younger employees. When young people evaluate their career goals, they are just as interested in how the Group develops people and society as they are in products and services. Young people communicate in a different way and look to get more out of working life than just money. They want a future-oriented workplace that paves the way for business models and uses technology to ensure that products and services are produced in a way the Earth can sustain.

In light of this, the Young Professional Advisory Board (YPAB) was established in 2018. YPAB consists of a total of ten representatives between the ages of 24 and 31, with different types of education and experience. The board has representation from all three KONGSBERG business areas, and meets at least twice a year. Representatives serve on the board for two years. This group is an advisory body for the CEO and other senior management, related specifically to profiling and strategy work.

The board is used as a consultative body for the Group's strategy, to capture trends and ideas which may have an impact on its content and implementation. The board members have also reviewed the Group's HR Strategy and provided input on its content. They advocate suggestions and opinions on behalf of the age group they represent.

The board provides input on how the Group should position itself to ensure it is attractive to the younger age groups, both internally and externally. It offers its views on the Group's values and behaviour, which influences management principles and future management training within the company.

Corporate management is extremely happy to be working with young and talented employees who can both challenge and share new knowledge, something that is vital in our strategic work.

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