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Human resources


Due to the increase in the backlog of orders and the commencement of operations by a number of new assets, 2010 saw a rise in the workforce from 36,468 resources, of which 13,925 with critical professional skills, at year end 2009, to 39,249, of which 15,224 with critical professional skills, at year end 2010. In addition to this growth in absolute terms, the ratio between resources that are critical for success and business sustainability and the total workforce rose from 38.2% in 2009 to 38.8% in 2010.
The year also witnessed two other significant trends. The number of female managers rose in 2010 by 0.8%, a not inconsiderable figure if we take into account the fact that Saipem’s workforce tends to be operational and the geographical areas in which personnel is deployed. Finally, local managers increased from 15.9% in 2009 to 17.8%.

Industrial relations

Saipem’s approach in industrial relations is to pay careful and close attention to the socio-economic context and to the legislation in force in the countries in which it operates, with the aim of ensuring harmonisation and optimal management, in accordance with company policy, of relations with trade unions, employers’ associations, institutions and public bodies.
2010 saw the completion of discussions with national representatives of Trade Union organisations from the Energy and Maritime sectors with respect to the following issues of interest to Saipem and Group companies:
- renewal of the agreement relating to the seagoing allowance for seamen, masters and chief engineers serving on board special vessels;
- renewal of the National Collective Labour Agreement for the Energy and Petroleum Industry for the three-year period 2010-2012, including definition of contractual increases and significant agreements on welfare (supplementary pension funds, supplementary health insurance, etc.);
- signing of new regulations for drilling operations offshore Italy, including definition of new shift regulations and specific allowances.

The increasingly globalised labour market – in which a growing number of international institutions are involved – coupled with the growing internationalisation of Saipem itself, the increasingly decentralised nature of its operations in frontier areas and finally the importance of the human factor make centralised monitoring/coordination of Industrial Relations fundamental. To this end, an information channel was created through the Overseas Industrial Relations function that aims to enable centralised monitoring of trade union activities at associate and branch companies, thus helping to ensure a global strategy/philosophy that is in line with international agreements.
During the year, the function monitored the development of talks for the renewal of work contracts in Kazakhstan, which are expected to be concluded in 2011.

Human Resources

In view of an international market that is characterised by a high degree of instability and change and in line with the new organisational structure of the Human Resources function, 2010 saw the launch of a series of initiatives aimed at recovering efficiency and improving performance. The initiatives involved the introduction of systems for coordinating and increasing decentralised personnel management offices (at Business Unit and geographical level both in Italy and abroad) and systems for monitoring and reporting on the development of significant trends connected with Italian, local and international personnel and their comparison with international benchmarks.
On the coordination and support side, new IT tools (some of which are already available for use) and training initiatives (classroom-based and on-the-job) with regard to general and specific issues (taxes and social security, immigration procedures by country, etc.) are due to be introduced. The reporting system, meanwhile, contains information on applicable legislation, references to national collective labour agreements and group guidelines, in order to ensure that a uniform approach is applied to human resources issues.
With regard to the management of resources involved in international assignments, a number of projects were implemented to incentivize and support geographical mobility, in line with international best practices.

Development, Training and Organisation

The uncertain conditions and cautious approach that continued to hold sway on the international markets and in particular on the labour markets led during 2010 to a review of training, development and compensation tools and policies in favour of a self-service/self-development approach geared towards maximising the pro-activity of resources in terms of defining their own development and training plans and seeking increased engagement with their line managers.

Selection activities focused mainly on recruiting experienced personnel and on taking advantage of market opportunities. 2010 saw a fall in the numbers of young personnel and graduates hired as well as the definition and planning of a series of initiatives aimed at technical institutes in Italy designed to enhance the group’s image and improve its ability to recruit Italian school leavers with a view to balancing out the mix of graduates and school leavers at the company.
The Saipem e-recruiting portal, eFesto, was provided with enhanced and additional functionalities to ensure greater traceability in all phases of the recruitment process and accurate and effective coordination and control capabilities.
Local Content initiatives were launched through training and development campaigns in Kazakhstan and Angola with the objective of increasing the use of local resources in operations positions. In Algeria, in collaboration with the University of Oran, training programmes aimed at young local engineers were created with the aim of developing technical/specialist skills relating to Project Control and HSE and to the Engineering & Construction sectors.

Training activities were characterised by a marked focus on ‘law compliant’ initiatives. A series of courses and seminars for Employers, Safety Managers, Safety Supervisors and workers regarding the new work safety legislation introduced under Legislative Decree No. 81/2008 was organised. In addition, e-learning courses for training related to Legislative Decree No. 231/2001 were started. The courses now include the promotion of the Code of Ethics. Training has also been developed for members of the Compliance Committees of subsidiaries in Italy and abroad.
Two important conferences were organised during the year. The first was held in order raise awareness of anti-corruption legislation and the relevant procedure adopted within Saipem, while the other was aimed at ensuring the implementation of the code of practice regulating operations with related parties, in compliance with the regulations issued by Consob. Finally, elearning courses regarding security were launched with the objective of providing resources working abroad with an adequate level of knowledge of the principal security issues.
The year also saw the start of an intensive training programme aimed at developing and consolidating the technical/specialist  capabilities and skills required for roles that are critical to Saipem’s business but that are difficult to locate on the market.
Training initiatives in the Offshore sector included a course for Prefabrication Supervisors (which commenced in 2009), a Field Engineering training course and the implementation of a training programme for Offshore Crane Operators involving a mixture of theoretical classes and practical experience at a specially-created training centre in Rotterdam.
In the Onshore area, support activities were carried out in connection with the redefinition of the role of the project engineer, while work continued in relation to the consolidation of the roles of Construction Manager and Site Assistant. The year also saw the review of the Project Management training programme.
Finally, training was commenced in support of Saipem’s investment plans, with intensive training programmes taking place for personnel assigned to new vessels that will shortly begin operations.
In terms of training for management, personnel courses were introduced for both senior and middle managers with the principal aim of enhancing leadership, communication and resource management and development skills.

Human resource development activities was the area most affected during the year by the introduction of new models and by reviews and updates of methodologies and tools. The personnel ‘segmentation’ process (i.e. the procedures and criteria used by Saipem to identify the most desirable resources on the market) received a complete overhaul. As a consequence, the young graduates monitoring process was also updated. At an international level, the monitoring and career planning system for very critical and talented resources was improved.

(units) Average workforce 2009 Average work force 2010
Offshore 12,181 13,533
Onshore 14,470 14,916
Offshore Drilling
1,531 1,508
Onshore Drilling
4,588 5,213
Staff positions
3,454 3,258
Total 36,224 38,428
Italian personnel
7,218 7,071
Other nationalities
29,006 31,357
Total 36,224 38,428
Italian personnel under open-ended contract
6,322 6,174
Italian personnel under fixed-term contract
896 897
Total 7,218 7,071

(units) Dec. 31, 2009
Dec. 31, 2010
Number of engineers
7,107 7,244
Number of employees
36,468 39,249


During the year, the ‘Feedback’ project was launched for all Italian and international managerial resources. The objective of the project is to enhance these resources’ abilities to manage and develop their staff in accordance with the Model of Excellence, which sets out the attitudes, characteristics and skills needed for success.
The programme known as ‘project Generation Y’, which was launched in 2009 and which was designed to enhance Saipem’s  policies for the management and development of young resources, was completed during the year. The initial proposals generated by the project (which were verified and validated using the results of a statistical analysis drawn from a survey of young Italians) are currently being implemented.
One of the most important initiatives carried out during the year was the engagement analysis of middle management employees (approximately 3,400, with a response index of above 70%) carried out at operating companies in Italy, France and the United Kingdom with the aim of analysing and identifying the factors driving the motivation and involvement of company resources. The results of the analysis have been communicated to all employees, while action plans are currently being implemented.

Market trends and global economic conditions, which remained essentially stable compared with the previous year, continued to  dictate a cautious attitude in relation to compensation policies, in particular variable incentive plans (including project incentives) and retention systems.

Compensation policies regarding the fixed and variable components of remuneration remained on average at the levels recorded in 2009, with almost complete coverage of local inflation rates and compensation of critical positions at around the market median. In relation to management incentive schemes, the current short-term monetary incentive scheme, which is linked to individual performance and the long-term monetary scheme, linked to the company’s performance in the long-term, was confirmed during the year for Italian and international managerial resources.
Individual annual monetary incentives, which were based on actual 2009 management performance, were paid out in April to 222 Italian senior managers, representing 79.3% of the total, with a total cost outlay of 96.5 million (22% of total compensation at January 1, 2010). The new targets for 2010 for the same population of senior managers were also defined. Additionally, July 2010 saw the allocation of deferred monetary incentives to 221 senior managers, representing 78.9% of senior managers, with a total cost outlay of 95.3 million.
Finally, the Board of Directors approved a new long-term monetary scheme to replace the stock option plan that ran until  2008, in order to ensure that the compensation package remained in line with the market average. The scheme was implemented in October 2010 for 70 critical Italian resources, representing 25% of Italian managerial resources.
The international Global Grading project, which was completed during the year, involved the development of an internal grading system based on typical positions in Saipem’s market sector. This, together with the introduction of a new system for the calculation of expatriate compensation packages is designed to aid the interpretation of compensation analyses, the definition of local compensation strategies and the coordination of actions aimed at ensuring mobility and obtaining international wage comparisons.

In terms of communication activities, the year saw a continued effort to enhance the intranet portal with the addition of new functionalities allowing for the introduction of interactive features such as forums, video sharing and message boards. As part of the drive to extend the intranet functions to overseas companies and feature more local content, 2010 saw the launch of a number of channels in French aimed at more than 2000 users.
New content was also added to the portal in relation to development activities, such as the Model of Excellence, the site for Knowledge Owners and the results of the Engagement Survey of Middle Managers, which were commented on in a video and a powerpoint presentation.
A new corporate video entitled One World One Word was launched to coincide with the commencement of a campaign to enhance the corporate image and reinforce employees’ sense of belonging.

During 2010, Saipem’s organisational strategy and actions moved towards the creation of a structure capable of providing the business with a high level of operational flexibility and the maximum possible efficiency, while optimising the available financial, technical and human resources.
In this context:
- initiatives were carried out to optimise procurement processes with the objective of mitigating the risks associated with price volatility and reducing the time required to purchase goods and services by ensuring greater involvement of the Business Units from the project acquisition phase;
- the project launched to increase the competitiveness of the Drilling Business Unit was concluded during the year. The project comprised the definition and implementation of a series of organisational changes that regarded structures and processes with the aim of maximising the unit’s effectiveness and efficiency.
The above organisational initiatives were conducted without compromising Saipem’s governance model, which ensures an effective system of separation and reciprocal control of responsibilities and powers. The changes currently being implemented in national and international regulatory and control systems in fact identify a governance model geared towards achieving a continuous effort to improve the design of certain critical company bodies, systems and procedures (appointment of management and control bodies of subsidiaries, system of management for powers of attorney, definition of organisational structures), as central to the management of an enterprise.
Other actions included:
- the start of a review of the current system of procedures and regulations with the aim of rationalising and increasing the effectiveness of the documentation used to provide guidance and regulate the company’s operations and at the same time enabling the company to respond more rapidly to organisational changes and developments in the applicable external regulatory framework;
- the systemization of the organisational structures and governance models of Saipem SpA branches, which included the issue of a standard Matrix of Authorizations applicable in all branches.verso la formalizzazione della Matrice di Autorizzazioni standard applicabile a tutte le filiali.
As part of the organisational restructuring initiatives, the Quality, Health, Safety, Environment and Sustainability function underwent a reorganisation during the year. This consisted of the adoption of an organisational model that has already been implemented in a number of staff and business support functions with the objective of increasing the effectiveness and rapidity with which the function responds to the needs of the business units. With regard to foreign operating companies, an important organisational restructuring initiative was completed at Saipem sa with the aim of providing the company with a high level of flexibility to facilitate the management of workloads relating to the Onshore and Offshore business units. This involved the creation of two new positions responsible one for the joint management from a human resources perspective of the Onshore and Offshore business units and the other for the centralised management of the engineering competencies required for the implementation of onshore and offshore projects.