Employees are the most important asset of Vantaa Energy
Vantaa Energy wants to be an upward-looking, well-managed workplace that cares for people. We invest in, e.g. the development of occupational safety, management work, and training young people into future experts.
Vantaa Energy is a reform-oriented and stable company that takes care of its employees. We want to offer our approximately three hundred employees an excellent and constantly developing personnel experience. In our view, this experience is built, e.g. of management that cares about people, inspiring work community and opportunities to develop skills in an evolving company. Our human resource work is based on the personnel strategy drawn up in 2020 and, e.g. on the Code of Conduct. In 2020, we also negotiated a local agreement with our employees in a good spirit of consensus.
For Vantaa Energy, year 2020 was highly successful from the viewpoint of human resource work. We implemented a major reorganisation when we established the electricity sale and service companies Ensin Palvelut Oy and Oomi Oy. We also expanded our heat business to Järvenpää and Tuusula, and launched development projects aiming for the phasing out of fossil fuels already in 2026. The brightest highlight of the year was undoubtedly the record result achieved by Vantaa Energy. This is thanks to our employees, without whom we would not have succeeded in this.
– Our employees are truly committed to their work. No one can achieve this alone – it has required the input and cooperation of all employees, describes Anu Henttonen, Vantaa Energy’s Chief Human Resources Officer.
On the other hand, the year was tinged with shades of grey due to the coronavirus pandemic, which also impacted the employees of Vantaa Energy. Office staff were working from home for a large part of the year, and we made various arrangements to ensure safe working conditions for those working in the power plants. All in all, we were spared from the worst of the pandemic – for example, moving to remote work took place smoothly due to appropriate tools.
We are training young people into experts of the future
The employment of young people is very important to Vantaa Energy, and its significance has been underlined further during the coronavirus pandemic when many companies employing young people have found themselves in difficulty. Every summer, we employ young people, for example, in various mechanic and engineering tasks. In 2020, we recruited a total of 31 summer employees. We received just under 1,000 applications, which illustrates the level of interest towards our jobs. Some of the summer job vacancies were filled by experts who were already working for us in the previous year.
– We want to train young people into energy experts of the future, says Henttonen. Many of our employees continue part time even after the summer job, and some stay in the house permanently, she smiles.
Henttonen points out that the wishes of young people with regard to jobs seem to be quite similar to those of other generations. Overall wellbeing is emphasised, and it is important that the employer is supportive in this matter. In the summer jobs, careful orientation, good management work and a review of safe working methods are key issues. These will be our priority areas in 2021.
Towards a zero-accident workplace
Vantaa Energy’s target is to bring down the number of accidents to zero by 2025 at the latest – it is a matter of priority for us to guarantee a safe workplace. We take care of occupational safety in many ways. For example, all city energy units have their own occupational safety teams with monthly meetings, focusing on ways to improve the level of occupational safety. The development ideas and observations presented in the teams are handled by the Group-level occupational safety team, which swiftly implements any changes.
Our employees can report any safety deviations to the occupational safety management system straight away after an incident, with their own phone and photo. In the event of accidents or near-misses, they are reviewed in accordance with thorough processes within ten days of the incident.
In 2020, a total of seven accidents took place in our Group, four of which resulted in absence from work. The number was halved from 2019, which shows a good trend. The accidents are usually slips and falls, as well as hand injuries from the use of tools. Although the number of accidents decreased, near-misses were reported at Vantaa Energy more actively than before: the number of reported near-misses was higher than in the previous year, a total of 19 (10 in 2019).
Currently, Vantaa Energy is developing an occupational safety strategy and operating plan, which will be published during spring 2021. Raising the standard of occupational safety requires constant observing and monitoring, and development of procedures of the entire personnel.
Development programme raises management work to a new level
As managers play a key role as builders of personnel experience and reformers of the company, Vantaa Energy launched a project in early 2021 aiming to raise the standard of management work. The extensive development programme gathers together all managers of Vantaa Energy. The programme was started with manager appraisals, and it is continued with diverse training events and workplace learning trials during 2021:
– We want to improve the managers’ preparedness to make minor and major changes efficiently while putting people at the front and centre, describes Henttonen.
Vantaa Energy’s Chief Human Resources Officer Anu Henttonen develops Vantaa Energy’s personnel experience and builds a workplace where employees thrive, achieve things, and are well and happy.