Getting to Climate Neutral: Global Action Day Plus Professional Development
The Schaeffler Group, headquartered in Herzogenaurach, Germany, is a leading global supplier to the automotive and industrial sectors. True to its motto “We pioneer motion,” the company has been driving forward ground-breaking developments in the fields of motion and mobility for more than 75 years.
With innovative technologies, products and services for CO₂-efficient drives, electric mobility, solutions for automotive suspensions, Industry 4.0, digitalisation, and renewable energies, the company is a reliable partner for making motion and mobility more efficient, intelligent and sustainable.
The Schaeffler Group currently has about 84,000 employees spread across some 200 locations in over 50 countries. In 2022, it generated sales of approximately 15.8 billion euros.
90 minutes of climate neutrality brainstorming worldwide
Schaeffler aims to be completely climate neutral by 2040. Its in-house production will be climate neutral by 2030, and its entire supply chain will achieve climate-neutrality by 2040. “That’s a very ambitious goal, certainly, but we are utterly determined to achieve it,” emphasises Nadja Lemke, Schaeffler’s Senior Vice President Global Branding & Marketing.
“But, of course, we will only succeed if everyone gets onboard.” Which is why Schaeffler is seeking to harness its employees’ creativity and expertise. It wants to draw together ideas from all areas of the company worldwide.
This was the thinking behind Schaeffler’s Climate Action Day, a group-wide event staged in June 2022. On that day, all the company’s employees paused their normal work for 90 minutes. For 90 minutes, they jointly focused on the challenges posed for Schaeffler and for society generally by climate change. In over 4,000 workshops worldwide, they developed a wealth of ideas for reducing CO2 emissions in their respective departments.
Climate Action Day was also to be a day of learning. Employees were to improve their knowledge of sustainability and climate neutrality through in-person and online workshops. But how, exactly?
Fully integrated learning – Digital and in-person
An animated, integrated landing page complete with chatbot, curated content and direct interfaces with Microsoft Teams and the existing learning management system. That was the winning solution devised by imc.
imc project manager Melissa Hohmann explains: “It had to be completely learner-centric. All employees worldwide needed to know at a glance how to proceed directly to their learning content. The solution needed to come across as a coherent whole and be inspiring for the learners. The learner experience had to be so engaging that the passion for sustainability felt at Schaeffler headquarters in Herzogenaurach would carry across fully to learners as far away as Mexico, China, and Australia.”
The solution provided by imc took the form of a learning portal. On the big day, the employees logged in and watched video messages from the Board of Managing Directors. These messages demonstrated that the commitment to sustainability came from the highest levels of the company. After watching the videos, the employees were able to click through the portal to various options.
They could work their way through training content or take part in group chats. Or contribute their own ideas in the four categories of Green Products, Green Production, Green Materials and Green Behaviour.
Over 23,000 ideas and documented positive outcomes
“About 23,000 ideas – that was the outcome of Climate Action Day 2022,” says Hanna Peter-Regar, Senior Vice President, Schaeffler-Academy.
“The feedback from colleagues from all around the world was resoundingly positive. We were astonished at the innovative ideas that flowed in from the individual countries. The Teams chat absolutely exploded, and the engagement via social media was massive, too. People were proud to be contributing their ideas. They were excited to be lending their support to our drive for climate neutrality. What’s more, we’ve managed to implement a lot of their ideas since then.”
imc Executive Board member Sven R. Becker is likewise delighted with the results. “We count a project as a success only if the client achieves demonstrable and quantifiable positive outcomes. That’s what drives us. Why? Because the outcomes have to be there in order for learning and professional development to be an integral part of the digital transformation.”