The approximately 7,800 people employed in the German cement industry play a vital part in the industry’s economic success. In 2015, the plants produced around 31 million tonnes of cement. At roughly 4,000 tonnes of cement per employee, staff productivity has increased by around 40 percent since 1995. Since 2011, the number of people employed at the German cement works has increased by 200.
With gross annual income averaging 53,096 euros, the cement industry is among the top 20 percent of the producing industries’ sectors. Around 96 percent of all employees (not counting apprentices) in 2011 had a permanent work contract. The average job tenure of 20 years is markedly above the German national average (10.8 years).
Industry invests in apprenticeships
The demographic development and the average age of the people employed – high at 45.5 years – pose great challenges for the cement industry. The industry meets these challenges not least through its above-average number of apprentices: almost 10 percent of its employees in 2011. Throughout Germany, the average across all branches of industry in 2010 was only 6.0 percent. Wanted is a broad range of qualified specialists from plant electronics engineers, industrial mechanics and industrial administrators to construction material testers and chemical technicians. The chances of being taken on upon completion of an apprenticeship are good: in 2011, roughly 62 percent of all apprentices were taken on at their company.
Staff qualification requirements increasing
Innovations in process technology and the propagation of automation have increased staff productivity enormously since the mid-nineties. In the cement industry – a modern, high-tech industry – employee qualifications are thus more and more important. The proportion of semi-skilled and unskilled labour in 2011 was only 11 percent. Besides apprenticeships, employee training is afforded major significance within the companies. Continuous job training utilising state-of-the-art qualification measures such as e-learning is regarded as highly important. External seminars and training courses, for example as control room operator or plant supervisor “limestone/cement”, also play a major role.
At the usually more rurally located production sites , the cement industry is one of the largest employers vocational trainers. By placing orders with craftsmen and service providers, it supports the regional economy. The industrial sectors primarily constituting the cement industry as well as the up- and downstream sectors employ around 80,000 people in Germany.