Our focus areas
Our focus areas
We want Sekab to be a safe workplace characterized by good development opportunities, gender equality and diversity, as well as good leadership and employeeship. We all contribute to our shared work environment. Together, we take responsibility to ensure our colleagues thrive, grow, and are motivated to go to work. This approach also allows us to attract new and retain existing employees.
Sekab’s HSE policy encompasses our work with occupational health and safety. As an employer, it is our responsibility to guarantee a safe workplace, and health and safety always come first.
During the year, all staff participated in a firefighting and first aid training program, which was held in collaboration with the Fire and Rescue Service. All operators participated in a certification training program for boiler attendants and all operators were certified. Many employees also participated in programs such as “Hot Work” and “Lifting” in accordance with set time periods for each training area.
Systematic occupational health and safety work is conducted in collaboration between Sekab and employees, who are represented by safety officers. We continuously follow up occupational health and safety initiatives while working preventively to promote good health. The occupational health and safety management system is integrated into Sekab’s management system.
The organizational and social work environment, called OSE, is part of the systematic occupational health and safety efforts, in which workload and working hours are continuously followed up. OSE rounds are conducted functionally, based on questions about collaboration, special treatment, workload and mutual respect. In 2021, Sekab continued work with OSE rounds through discussions in each function. Spring’s questions addressed “room to maneuver and control” as well as “knowledge and development” and fall’s questions addressed “support and workload” and “recovery.” OSE initiatives are a part of living our values – every day.
Handling flammable chemicals daily entails comprehensive and systematic safety initiatives.
Sekab has a “vision zero” with regard to workplace accidents. An ongoing sub-goal is to reduce the number of uncontrolled incidents that could lead to serious chemical accidents. To achieve the goal, Sekab is focused on increased incident reporting, improved change initiatives including safety audits, shutdowns and check-outs, as well as training. No uncontrolled incidents occurred during the year.
Employees exposed to different risks in their work environment shall be offered health checks and exams in accordance with the occupational health and safety rules. Medical exams for night shift workers and hearing exams for factory employees exposed to sound levels covered by the legal requirement related to noise were carried out in fall 2021.
Sekab’s gender equality and diversity policy is based on the fundamental principles of legislation on equal treatment and non-discrimination regardless of gender, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, religion or other beliefs. It clarifies our work with gender equality and diversity. The variety of experiences, education, life situations and values that everyone brings to the table create a dynamic that brings new perspectives and ideas.
In 2021, Sekab has developed an updated gender equality and diversity plan for 2022–2025 in order to actively work with these issues. The employer and employee representatives for the unions review activities and goals established together. Gender pay differences are also mapped and analyzed annually. These efforts are conducted together by the employer and union organizations. No adjustments were made in conjunction with the 2021 salary mapping. The employee survey, which is described on the next spread, shows that both women and men feel they are treated equally, with an average of 9.08 of 10 possible
Sekab shall be an attractive employer with good leadership and employeeship. We will achieve this goal by encouraging development. Over time, we ensure that the company has the right expertise through strategic initiatives with skills supply plans. At the annual performance review, manager and employee establish a development/training plan together. Employees are also called in for health and safety trainings. All managers in the company undergo multi-year manager development programs.
As a part of the work with skills supply, Sekab is a member of a joint and member-owned training company. The purpose is to increase the share of requested and qualitative training programs locally through collaboration with companies in the area. The collaboration also improves opportunities for local networking among employees of different employers.
Sekab holds a continuous dialogue with universities and upper-secondary schools. We also collaborate with the municipal technology and entrepreneurship center, KOMTEK, and support their work to awaken interest in chemistry and technology in children and adolescents, which is a part of the skills supply in the region for the future workforce in chemistry and technology.
In spring 2021, an employee survey was conducted in order to measure employees’ experience of working together and acting based on Sekab’s values. Both of these parameters are factors for success for our business concept. The response time was four weeks in order to ensure participation from all shifts and to provide plenty of time to complete the survey. The survey was sent out to 79 people and 53 of them responded, which is a response rate of 67 percent. The responses were given on a scale of 0–10, measuring the degree to which the employees agree with the different statements. In general, the survey had high points with a total average of 8.1. Sekab’s employees perceive good engagement; they feel creative, and they feel heard. They also feel that the workplace is equal in terms of gender; they feel respected, and they trust their function supervisors and colleagues.
In fall 2021, all functions worked with the theme “collaboration between the functions” as well as “trust in the management team,” which is based on our view that it fosters engagement and trust, and feeds creativity, when we see one another in person and work together. By answering questions and offering viewpoints on how trust and collaboration can be even better, we created a good foundation for continuing work on the corporate culture in the coming years, as well as clarifying the goals and visions. One such clarification of the strategy and goals is the strategic platform, HELA Sekab (where HELA stands for the Swedish words for Sustainable, Efficient, Profitable, Attractive). This platform launched internally at the end of the year.
The coronavirus pandemic continued in society in 2021. Naturally, we have followed the recommendations of the Public Health Agency of Sweden as a starting point. Employees at the factory are not able to work remotely. They have followed general guidance, kept a distance, disinfected their hands, and taken rapid tests when necessary to keep the factory running. On one occasion during the year, a rapid test was also carried out via occupational health care to reduce concern.
The white-collar workers who have been able to have periodically worked from home, where their workspaces were equipped with office chairs and screens in order to create a good work environment. Teams meetings have been a regular element of the year. Trips have been limited and have only been carried out in prioritized cases according to the needs of the operation.
In September 2021, the management team decided, based on reduced case numbers in the county, that all employees could return to the office. Personal offices, extra cleanings, and opportunities to maintain distance and use hand sanitizer created a work environment that allowed for a safe decision to return. This was celebrated with a pleasant shared coffee break outdoors.
The diagram shows the number of unwanted incidents, on average in the past five-year period, that could have led to a severe chemical accident.
Number of unwanted events
The goal is to “Reduce the number of uncontrolled incidents that could lead to a severe chemical accident to a maximum of one occurrence per five-year period.” We achieved this goal already in 2020, and no such events occurred in 2021. Because the goal is long term, we continue to follow it.
The diagram shows sickness absence as well as sick leave lasting longer than 14 days (darker fields).
Sickness absence, %
Sekab has a considerable share of men among blue-collar workers. The share of women is slightly higher among white-collar workers, evening out the gender distribution overall.
Gender distribution, %
among different groups in Sekab
* Including the Board of Directors of the parent company, Sekab BioFuel Industries AB (BFI). Board work for BFI and Sekab BioFuels & Chemicals is carried out concurrently.
Performance reviews are an opportunity for employees to express their thoughts, ideas and wishes related to the collaborative climate, work environment, skills development, work tasks and relationships to colleagues and managers. For managers, performance reviews are an opportunity to provide employees with support, reminders and motivation to achieve established goals. Sekab actively works to ensure that 100 percent of employees always have an annual performance review.
Share of completed performance reviews, %
Alternative development channels are increasing and are a positive addition to skills development overall, as the initiatives can often be carried out without travel. In 2021, a large share of training programs, meetings and other occasions were canceled due to COVID-19. Instead, alternatives such as webinars have been carried out remotely. During the year, online trainings were able to be carried out on topics including labor law, wage formation, internal communication, quotes and contracts, as well as sustainability. On-site training programs included training in production equipment, fire safety and first aid, which were done at Sekab’s and the local fire and rescue service’s premises.
Number of training hours per employee
We want to be a communicative organization with space for information, discussion and reflection, which generates trust and is a precondition for an organization’s existence, goal fulfillment and success. We have made good progress along the way and here are several examples of structured opportunities for communication:
In addition, the intranet is another important information channel. It contains necessary information for completing work, as well as information on new hires and news from management.
Sekab cares about its employees and does not differentiate between white-collar workers, blue-collar workers, shift workers, day workers, women or men.
All employees receive the same benefits and offers, such as: