Our people are the most important asset of our business. To sustain and expand our operations, we need a safe, healthy, and engaged workforce.
Aspiring to be an employer of choice, Rössing Uranium provides longterm and rewarding employment by investing in our people throughout their careers. We believe that through employment creation we are making significant contributions to society and the Namibian economy and contribute positively to our partnerships with local communities and other stakeholders.
We recognise the importance of attracting, developing, and retaining people with diverse backgrounds in our business and realise the benefits of developing the skills of others. It is the mandate of the Training and Development section to see that this commitment is demonstrated and aligned to Rössing’s needs and objectives.
We understand that our operational environment may be hazardous, and for this reason the identification and management of material risks are crucial in our business approach. We consistently strive to create a zero harm working environment, regardless of where our people work or what type of work they are engaged in.
“We recognise the importance of attracting, developing and retaining people with diverse backgrounds.”
WORKFORCE AT A GLANCE
At the end of 2020, Rössing Uranium had a workforce totalling 955 compared with 1,000 at the end of the previous reporting year. The average number of contractors at the mine decreased from 1,029 to 645.
(Above) Sam Teofelus (Diesel Mechanic) working on the engine of a haul truck in the Maintenance workshop.
Employee relations continued to be an important focus area for our business during 2020, as Rössing strives to maintain and strengthen harmonious relations with its workforce. The mine experienced no industrial action in 2020. The MUN and Rössing were able to agree on annual wage increases by June 2020 after the dispute in this regard was referred to conciliation.
TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT
Rössing’s training and development strategy focuses on re-skilling, upskilling and building capabilities across the company to enable the workforce to deal with the increasing challenges in the business environment, as well as the complexity of the new technology and business improvement initiatives being introduced. To achieve our people-development objectives, we support a blended approach to learning, introducing an online learning platform.
We initiated the first-ever online High Performer (HIPO) and Courageous Conversation training programmes. A total of 38 leaders attended this training, which created a platform to challenge their thinking around leading in times of uncertainty, assisted them to craft their personal leadership signature and discover approaches that drive business results.
These leadership programmes aimed to enhance leadership capabilities in managing their teams, particularly during these challenging times, and enable them to drive the right behaviour to achieve results.
In addition, more than 223 operators received refresher training in compliance with licenses-to-operate and safety requirements.
Whereas ten vocational trainees are reported at the end of December 2020, a total of 48 vocational trainees were taken through the Rössing job attachment programme ranging from 6 to 12 months.
Financial support was provided to four bursary recipients for undergraduate studies on a full-time basis. A total of 26 full-time employees were awarded financial assistance through the correspondence studies scheme to obtain a formal tertiary qualification.
A total of 35 dependents of the mine’s employees received financial assistance through an educational assistance programme to provide the children of permanent Rössing employees and pensioners an opportunity to further their education at an accredited institution or at a vocational training centre.
In addition, Rössing collaborated with the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology of the University of Namibia and accommodated two lecturers to enhance the quality of engineering education and the professional development of their academic staff through industrial-engaged internships.
We are proud to be the first employer that opened this opportunity to academic staff. The objective of the industrial-engaged internship is to equip the academic staff with valuable practical experience to enable them to better understand and link academic programmes to the real work environment.
Vocational education and training levy
Rössing has participated in the Vocational Education and Training Levy submission since inception and has paid N$7.4 million for the 2020 training-levy cycle.
A total of 48 vocational trainees completed their job attachment as part of their tertiary curriculum, whereby they were exposed to on-the-job learning within their various disciplines. Further opportunities to support vocational trainees will continue during 2021.
We further invested in technical training and our total training cost amounted to N$20.6 million for 2020, representing 2.6 per cent of the company’s salary cost.