Talent Sustainability

As we expand onto the global stage, we want to ensure that our success remains well-grounded in sustainable practices. We drafted our Global Working Principles in order to comprehensively guide our working methods – independent of country, function, or product. These principles outline our company’s philosophy regarding human resources, innovation, sustainable growth, ethics and legal compliance. 

OUR ETHICAL PRINCIPLES

At Yıldız Holding our success springs from our superior work ethic. But to make that success sustainable, we must continually build on the reputation we have already earned. We strive for constant improvement in our working methods, emphasizing a strict zero-error policy.

We drafted our ‘Ethical Principles and Working Values’ to define for our employees our company vision. Beyond merely sustaining our corporate reputation, these principles are the foundation of our sustainable growth as a global player. At the same time, they guide our relationships with our shareholders, suppliers, and consumers, while shining a light on all our goals and operations.

For our outstanding success in this area we were awarded the 2014 ETİKA Turkey Ethics Award (ETİKA Türkiye Etik Ödülü) by the Centre for Ethical Values (EDMER - Etik Değerler Merkezi).

Click here to access Yıldız Holding Code of Conduct.

EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES, DIVERSITY

Youth Platform

We founded the Youth Platform to guide the younger members of our team – as well as those young at heart. We feel that the first step toward change is best taken after goals and aims have been discussed. The program nurtures new ideas and fresh approaches to product development and improvements to our work environment. The Youth Platform aims to encourage those who

• want to explore the road less travelled
• aren’t afraid to be challenged
• strive to be ahead of schedule
• focus on getting things done
• believe in collaborating toward the best solution
• aren’t afraid of change when making a difference

More Women on the Executive Board

We value the strength and perspective women bring to management. That’s why we support the Inter-Company Mentorship Program for More Women on Executive Boards. The program was initiated through a collaboration between PRAESTA Turkey and Forbes Turkey, to help increase the number of women in top management positions. We will continue to advance the power of women in strategic decision-making, and to promote equal opportunity in the professional world. Our future prosperity depends on it.

EMPLOYEE HAPPINESS

Flexible Benefits

Our Flexible Benefits Platform enables our employees to customize their non-financial benefit package according to their personal needs, while gaining important additional advantages. Employees can invest in their future through our Individual Pension System, benefiting from options such as private health insurance, life insurance, and check-ups, while easing their domestic finances with supermarket loyalty cards.

In addition, we provide free check-ups to employees at director level and above, as well as to staff over the age of 45 who have been with us for more than ten years. Even if not enrolled in our program, employees and their immediate relatives can enjoy the same advantages from companies with which we have an agreement.

‘Make Happy Be Happy’ Day

For over 70 years Ülker has been privileged to share many joyous moments with our customers and colleagues. To celebrate these fond memories we declared the third Thursday in October ‘Make Happy, Be Happy’ Day. Since 1944 we have worked to spread happiness. On this special day, we hope all of our employees will make someone happy. 

Feedback Culture

1. The  Management Effectiveness Index is a survey we take every year in order to gauge our managers’ development. The survey provides feedback from employees about their managers’ competence. The feedback acquired is an important resource for forming our managers’ individual development plans, and provides an inside view about how our leaders are perceived. In addition, this resource allows us to identify managers who help shape the leadership culture of Yıldız Holding, and those who are role models to all our employees. 

2. On alternate years we hold the ‘Voice of the Stars’ Employee Commitment Survey. This company-wide survey helps us identify our organization’s strengths ¬as well as things we might improve. It helps us measure levels of employee commitment, and gives employees a voice in creating positive changes in their workplace. We receive feedback from them in categories such as leadership, performance and rewards, communication, and talent management. Action plans are developed incorporating suggestions regarding areas for improvement, and the results are shared with all employees.

According to Sustainable Employee Commitment analysis by Towers Watson, our partner in the Employee Commitment Index, we have placed first for three successive periods, both in number of participants, and among the growing companies using the index. In the 2013 index, we achieved a commitment index of 79% and a participation level of 93%. In addition, our commitment index level is above average for Turkey. In 2015, we aim for 100% employee participation in the survey, and to reach the Employee Commitment level of ‘High Performing Companies’.

EDUCATION AND TALENT DEVELOPMENT

‘We First’ and Career Opportunities

When positions become available at Yıldız Holding, we always assess our own employees first. Our Human Resources Planning and hiring processes can offer career development opportunities for our employees through promotions, transfer between companies, or a change in role. We provide an environment where our employees can manage their career expectations, occupational and personal development, and their own careers.

Our group has dozens of different companies, with many divisions and job descriptions. We provide employees with options to vary their experiences and opportunities for development, allowing them to advance and grow in their career. We assess their applications for open positions before looking outside the group.

Our Reward System

We continually improve our performance through innovative approaches, adopting solutions which safeguard our company’s future success. To accomplish this, we think it is crucial to reward employees who improve our company through innovation and continued high performance. We have four different reward programs to motivate our employees. 

1. Stars of The Year: We designed this program to allow employees to share their best business practices, and to reward conduct which supports team work. Once a year the Stars of the Year competition receives applications from everyone who works for Yıldız Holding and its subsidiaries. We give awards to project champions in different categories. 

2. Champions of the Field: This award celebrates the ‘best of the best’ sales professionals who have made an important contribution to the success of Yıldız Holding and the companies in the group. Sales Professionals are nominated for the prize based on their individual sales performance, team management skills, success stories, and conduct supporting the values of Yıldız Holding. Winners are rewarded following evaluation of the candidates. 

3. Bright Sparks: This is our system for celebrating employees who produce inventive and innovative solutions which improve and strengthen our business processes and culture, or which address current or potential problems. 

4. Instant Reward: This reward celebrates any employee conduct or effort, which either achieves change-making solutions, or enhances the organization by reinforcing the values of Yıldız Holding. The reward gives all our managers the opportunity to show appreciation for their employees. 

Leadership Development

When we envision the future of Yıldız Holding, leadership is at the center of the picture. We don’t see leadership as a position. Rather, it is a set of expected competencies and conducts specific to each employee. The Yıldız Holding Leadership Model frames those competencies and conducts which support our company’s vision, mission, and strategy. The Leadership Model outlines the specific conduct expected from employees at every level of our organization, illustrating those leadership qualities which generate success.

In this way, leadership development becomes a priority for everyone in the organization – from senior management to the most recent employee. We align our employees’ career development plans with the leadership model, identifying each employee’s strengths and areas for improvement. Our Leadership Journey development program provides modular development programs at different levels, with each module offering various learning and development tools. We want our managers and management candidates to be constantly learning for the length of their career.

Functional Development Academies

We organize Functional Development Academies in order to consolidate the expertise of the job fields at Yıldız Holding and our companies, provide occupational depth, reinterpret business sense in light of global and future trends, increase expert knowledge, and develop abilities.

These academic programs enrich participants’ learning processes while exploring Yıldız Holding’s business style and investigating examples of best practice. The main goals of the academic studies are twofold: to make each employee the leader of their duty; and to facilitate their career through training.

In order to support these academic studies and reinforce our corporate heritage, we have initiated the operational excellence program called ‘Yıldız Road to Excellence.’ By this program, we aim to improve and extend the scope of our best operational practices, to simplify our business practices and to always be one step ahead of others by leading the competition.

Our Academies:

- Human Resources Academy
- Financial Affairs Academy
- Manufacturing Academy
- Marketing Academy
- Sales Academy

HEALTHY AND SAFE WORKING ENVIRONMENT

Work Safety and Worker Health

To apply the legal responsibilities and directives regarding Work Health and Safety at Yıldız Holding and its companies, our Health, Security, Energy, Environment (SEÇ) Department works in collaboration with the Work Safety departments of the companies in our group for the internal application and tracking of developments in this field. The SEÇ Department takes precautions against preventable emergency situations. Should an emergency occur, the department’s emergency situation plan first ensures safety of life. It also ensures job security for victims of accidents, and fulfils responsibilities towards customers, business partners and the state.

We have established ISO 14001 (Environmental Management System) and OHSAS 18001 (Occupational Health and Safety Assessment System) management systems in our companies and we undergo independent external inspections regularly. In accordance with the ISO 14001 practices we implement, we perform studies to reduce waste and enable recycling; to implement efficient water and energy usage practices; and to reduce the volume and increase the recycling rate of packaging. Through the operational sustainability platform, we apply the concept of sustainability to our Yıldız Holding values and fields of activity. With our vision to be the sustainability leader in Turkey by 2020, we take firm steps towards a sustainable future.