Management and development of people

Autogrill, more than many others, is a company of people. Developed to provide services to travellers, it bases its business on people, whether customers or employees, who are the Company’s main asset and therefore require attention and investment.

Respect for the cultures, traditions and laws of the countries in which the Group operates together with demographic changes in the Group’s workforce, growing diversification of customers and markets and new work methods make the development of human capital increasingly important.

The main lines of action in this context are: general and professional training, development of personal skills and career plans, interfunctional and international mobility projects, the guarantee of healthy and safe work places, transparency in work relationships, equal treatment and respect for diversity, team work and open communication.

66,925 people work in the business sectors and countries in which the Group operates, 82% of whom in Food & Beverage, 10% in Travel Retail & Duty-Free and 8% in Flight.

The figure for 2009 reflects the impact on workforce numbers of the transfer of certain expired contracts (with employees thus switching to new rival operators), rationalization of personnel allocation in the various operating units and a different approach to managing seasonal peaks.

Autogrill Group workforce by business sector

Food & Beverage55,24057,74058,375
Travel Retail & Duty-Free *6,55712,6648,445

* In the 2008 Report, the Retail sector was aggregated with Flight data, whereas this Report provides separate figures for Flight employees, thanks to a new reporting system

96% of Group employees work in Food & Beverage and Retail points of sale or in Flight operating units and represent the main interface with the end consumer. Autogrill’s territorial distribution favours the use of people who live near their place of work, allowing strong integration in local communities. This also makes it easier for employees to balance personal needs and work. The other 4% work in central offices supporting the sales network through various technical, organizational, administrative and commercial functions.

Diversity Management

Autogrill sees diversity as an asset for the company, so its approach to human resource management over the years has been to develop differences as factors that differentiate it from and make it more competitive than its rivals and to guarantee equal opportunities within company. Thanks to the peculiarity of its business sectors and of the countries where it operates, Autogrill has an organizational structure whose greatest force is multiculturalism. The Company operates in a business distributed across territories that are subject to demographic and cultural changes in the labour market and the consumer base.

The capacity to adapt to a territory and above all anticipate demographic trends (e.g. in nationality, age and gender) and modify the operating model, offering and business processes accordingly are key advantages and are reflected in various initiatives, such as welcome packages simplifying the induction of foreign personnel and various ways of balancing private life and work (e.g. part-time).

But diversity is not only multi-culturalism. It also means policies and concrete action to rebalance the number of women in management positions, flexible hours to reconcile work and private life, the employment of disabled people and, more in general, initiatives that favour intercultural dialogue and ease of access to service structures for both employees and consumers.

In 2009, Autogrill translated these commitments into concrete action also by adopting the Charter for Equal Opportunities and Equality at Work, an initiative promoted by Sodalitas and other manager and business associations which concentrate on corporate social responsibility. The Charter is also supported by the Italian Labour and Equal Opportunities ministries.

Autogrill’s management believe it is important to act as a catalyst for the “culture of diversity” outside the Company as well. This is why it promotes awareness raising initiatives and takes part in research/study groups to identify and develop diversity management practices. One example is the Diversity Management monitor unit organized by the SDA Bocconi, which aims to:

  • stimulate debate and comparison in terms of roles, organizational practice and culture through continual benchmarking;
  • generate knowledge and develop guidelines for operations management on the theme of diversity management through research activities;
  • promote and consolidate networking between companies engaged in these issues through face-to-face meetings and online forums.

In this context, Autogrill took part in a survey conducted by the SDA Bocconi, in July 2009, to monitor a panel of its employees in Italy and elsewhere in Europe regarding the perceived effectiveness of the Company’s people management processes (selection, development programmes, career policies, internal mobility programmes and pay policies).

The results analysis phase, which also compared perceptions mapped in other companies, is to be followed up in 2010 by the definition of a plan of concrete action. Meetings are currently being held in Human Resources to define priorities to communicate to employees along with a summary of the survey results.

Autogrill Spain defined an equality plan to foster equal opportunities and thereby help all employees, of whatever gender, nationality or religion, to improve their balancing of work and private needs. To define a new practice, all the existing procedures were reviewed and updated with new elements, such as replacement of Muslim personnel during Ramadan and uninterrupted one-month leave for foreign employees wishing to return to their home countries.

The Retail sector was also active in this field. Aldeasa, one of the Group’s two retail companies, started work to define an equal opportunities programme to be developed in concert with the unions. Autogrill retail operations in other countries, such as Chile, Malaysia and India, are moving in the same direction.

The Group acts in the conviction that adopting good practice with regard to these issues contributes to the organization’s success and competitiveness and is a reflection of its capacity to respond promptly to transformation in society and markets.

Work-life balance
Autogrill believes that a good balance between working life and private life is essential for boosting individual motivation, team spirit and sense of belonging to the Company, as well as improving people’s quality of life. This is why the Company takes special measures in favour of its employees, such as discounts on products under special supplier agreements and purchasing direct from Autogrill itself, as explained below.

After mapping its employees’ needs in 2007, Autogrill Italy developed a series of initiatives in response to the expectations and requirements that people expressed, stipulating various purchasing agreements on behalf of all its employees in four general areas of interest: mobility, leisure, health/wellbeing and shopping. These categories also include foreign language courses, study trips, use of gyms and sports clubs, car insurance and the purchase of home appliances, optical products and computers.

For employees at the Rozzano headquarters, an agreement was stipulated with a number of private nurseries in the area and along the main access routes. The agreement covers around 50% of the monthly costs to employees. Seven kids uses these facilities in 2009 and another two will start in 2010.

WDF employees also enjoy benefits under agreements with gyms and wellbeing clubs and travel agencies. WDF also enables its employees (from the 4th month of employment on) to buy products direct from the company at heavily discounted prices.

Autogrill is a Group with a high proportion of women, forming 60% of the total workforce.


Women presence

 Food & BeverageTravel Retail & Duty-FreeFlightGroup

In the 2008 Report, the Retail sector was aggregated with Flight data, whereas this Report provides separate figures for Flight employees, thanks to a new reporting system

24% of Autogrill Group’s top management are women.

men and women

Reorganization of hours and the introduction of flexibility, in addition to part-time, help employees reconcile their work with their personal commitments, which is particularly important for women who play the leading role in a family. 37% of Food & Beverage employees are on part-time (26% women and 11% men), against 25% in Travel Retail (21% women and 4% men) and around 7% in Flight (3% women and 4% men).

The high proportion of women is partly explained by the widespread use of part-time contracts in points of sale, which allow mothers to look after their children, or other family commitments, more easily.

The Company’s sensitivity to the needs of its employees, and especially women employees, led it to examine a series of issues including maternity, workplace safety for women and women in management positions. On these issues, coming under the broad category of diversity, Autogrill Italy pressed on with existing projects, such as leadership courses for women, crèches and flexible hours for new mothers (part-time for up to 36 months after birth) and is also examining new courses of action.

In this regard, Autogrill interviewed a sample of women coming back off maternity leave under a survey conducted by the SDA Bocconi Diversity Management monitor unit in 2008 and 2009 and provided an objective analysis of the cost of maternity and of practice in this respect at the Italian companies for all concerned (women, companies and government)

Group organization levels 2009

   Food & Beverage              
  North America and the Pacific Area  Europe   Travel Retail & Duty-Free  Flight  Group 
  Women Men Women Men Women  Men Women Men Women Men
Headquarter 340
375 447 426 486
408 169 111 1,442 
Top managers 45 90 15  99 11  28 6 71 223
Senior managers 47  55 52 68 79  98 4 24 182 245
Managers 142 120 68 71  136 124 37 35 383 350
Office staff 106 110 312 188 260 158 128 46 806 502
Sales network 18,977 12,478 14,616 7,581 3,761 1,902  1,491 3,357 38,845 25,318
Area managers 48 117 28 78  10  16 86 211
Sales point directors 658 778 157 457 20 24 835 1,259
Managers 30 82 546 524 202 187 27 100 805 893
Duty managers 498 315 1,492 1,075 1,605 680 207 458 3,802 2,528
Multitask staff 17,743 11,186  12,393 5,447 1,924 995 1,257 2,799 33,317 20,427
Subtotal 19,317 12,853 15,063 8,007 4,247 2,310  1,660 3,468 40,287 26,638
Total 32,170   23,070   6,557   5,128   66,925  

The US business’s workforce is more uniformly distributed, even if slightly skewed towards the 21-30 age band (28%), while in Europe the most numerous age band is 31-40 (31%).

Staff breakdown by age

  Food & Beverage   
  2009   2008 
North America and the Pacific Area Women Men Women Men
16-20 years 3,205 2,336 3,796 2,773
21-30 years 5,461 3,700 5,762 3,391
31-40 years 3,462 2,286 3,635 2,279
41-50 years 3,615 2,199 3,874 2,252
> 50 years 3,574 2,332 3,582 2,314
Subtotal 19,317 12,853 20,649 13,009
Total 32,170   33,658  


 Food & Beverage
 2009 2008
17-20 years660479802678
21-30 years4,3182,4974,6182,378
31-40 years5,0832,0645,0781,992
41-50 years3,4211,9123,3961,842
> 50 years1,5811,0551,458959


Travel Retail & Duty-Free
17-20 years12066
21-30 years1,253734
31-40 years1,396774
41-50 years902474
> 50 years576262


17-20 years824
21-30 years116347
31-40 years5311,051
41-50 years7301,318
> 50 years275728

Regardless of the type of work performed, Autogrill bases its relationship with employees on the highest international standards (International Labour Organization, Global Compact). The Group applies the principles contained in its Code of Ethics in all circumstances, as well as the legislation ruling in each geographical area where it operates.

The Group does not use child or forced labour. Autogrill complies with the main international laws such as the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and The Human Rights Act of 1998.

Ethnic origin
Autogrill believes that the multiculturalism and linguistic pluralism of its employees represent an important asset and a key driver of growth and innovation and therefore constantly seeks ways of improving the induction of new recruits from abroad. It is also studying specific policies on the development of foreign resources.

Foreign resources are especially significant for Autogrill in two ways: on one hand they represent its capacity to move with socio-cultural change (including an increasing proportion of immigrants in the customer mix), and on the other the Group is making increasing use of foreign employees to support business development in new markets.

Ethnic origin

 Food & Beverage 
 North America 
Indian-American and Alaska natives8255137
Hawaii and Pacific islands10158159


Main nationalities the Food & Beverage sector – Europe
(Boundaries: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland)

Nationalities Women Men Total
Italian 7,332 3,742 11,074
French 1,124 2,139 3,263
Spanish 816 317 1,133
Belgium 664 407 1,071
Swiss 362 195 557
Austrian 157 60 217
Moroccan 76 117 193
Rumanian 136 20 156
Balcanian 60 46 106
Algerian 42 49 91
Sri Lanka 22 62 84
Swedish 52 31 83
Ecuador 53 11 64
Albanian 32 19 51
Portuguese 5 44 49
Other 952 777 1,729
Total 11,885 8,036 19,921


Main nationalities in the Travel Retail & Duty-Free sector – Aldeasa S.A.

Nationalities Women Men Total
Spanish 1,195 478 1,673
Rumanian 34 2 36
Italian 24 5 29
Colombian 10 6 16
Argentine 14 - 14
Ecuador 6 7 13
Peru 4 9 13
French 9 3 12
Chilean 9 2 11
British 7 2 9
Other 81 35 116
Total 1,393 549 1,942

In the last few years Autogrill Italy has become increasingly committed to multiculturalism and has achieved important results in its promotion of an organizational culture that respects differences and guarantees equal opportunities. Having made an analysis of its non-Italian employees, it produced a new version of the guidebook for foreign new entries.

Now in English and Spanish too, this publication reflects Autogrill’s understanding of the importance of the induction process for the integration of foreign employees and its use of group work and focusing on different cultures of origin. In 2009, the format for a questionnaire to be submitted to foreign employees in 2010 was defined. This will give insights into the motivational factors behind employees’ decisions to move to Italy and work in Autogrill, etc.

Since 2008, the Group has been collaborating at a multiculturalism laboratory created by Fondazione Sodalitas (an employer association promoted by Assolombarda to study social issues). A number of Italian companies on this project worked together to produce a toolkit on how to manage these issues in business organizations.

Autogrill’s American subsidiary HMSHost can boast consolidated sensitivity to ethnic issues partly because local legislation is very strict on discrimination against race, gender, colour, religion and nationality.

Autogrill’s sensitivity to people’s needs is also seen in its gradual elimination of physical barriers so that disabled customers can enjoy easy access to its services. It has designed points of sale that not only comply with legal requirements but actively seek to facilitate disabled customers and employees.

In line with the Group’s commitment to the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and with the rules drawn up by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the American business has established a policy regarding recruitment, training, induction and promotion of individuals with various types of disability.

In Italy, Autogrill and other companies organized the “Diversity at work” day (unique in Italy) promoted by Sodalitas, UNAR (national union against racial discrimination, under the aegis of the Equal Opportunities Ministry) and Fondazione Adecco, to enable big groups to meet young disabled job candidates.

In agreement with the trade unions and in accordance with current legislation requiring companies to employ a specific quota of disabled people, Autogrill has ties with a number of social co-operatives to foster job and/or learning opportunities for the disadvantaged or underprivileged, in the belief that work can contribute to their recovery and cultural and professional education. The agreement, renewed for a fourth year, with “Il Melograno”, a social co-operative, is one such example. Autogrill employed a total of 395 disabled people in 2009 (up 9% on 2008).

Indirect employment of disabled people is the approach in the Group’s operations in Spain, where the law allows quotas to be respected by using services provided by other organizations that employ disabled people.

It should be noted that cultural approaches to and legislation on disability vary across the countries in which Autogrill operates. In Greece, Law 2643/1998 requires companies to have 8% of their staff from “special” categories (e.g. families with numerous children). In France 6% of the work force must be selected from disabled candidates, while in Spain the quota is 2%. In the UK (where WDF operates) Group policy on equal opportunities and personal dignity is in line with the Disability Discrimination Act.

Work organization

The Group’s business is highly seasonal, with peaks on national holidays and vacation periods, as well as highs and lows within the week and even in the time bands of a day.

Work flexibility is therefore vitally important for ensuring an adequate level of customer service, as well as helping employees reconcile the needs of private life and work and enabling them enter other work relationships complementary to their employment in Autogrill.

The Company resorts to part-time contracts and shifts organized on a weekly basis as provided for in collective agreements negotiated in the various countries where it operates.

Autogrill may offer job opportunities to people who carry out other activities during part of the day (such as mothers or students): 34% of staff is employed on part-time contracts, especially in Europe, followed closely by America and Asia.

Types of contract

Full-time/Part-timeFood & Beverage     
 Nord America and the Pacific Area Europe Travel Retail & Duty-Free Flight Group
Total32,17023,0706,5575,128 66,925


Full-time/Part-timeFood & Beverage     
 Nord America and the Pacific AreaEurope
Travel Retail & Duty-Free
Total34,53923,20112,664 70,404

In the 2008 Report, the Retail sector was aggregated with Flight data, whereas this Report provides separate figures for Flight employees, thanks to a new reporting system


Permanent/Fixed-term Food & Beverage (Europe)Travel Retail & Duty-Free
Total23,0706,5575,128 34,755


  Food & Beverage 
Travel Retail & Duty-Free
Total23,20112,664 35,865

North America and the Pacific Area are not within the perimeter because employees are categorized according to local legislation (“At-will employment”) and therefore not strictly comparable with the two types of contract used in Europe. Under such legislation, either party may withdraw from the work relationship at any time and without any liability

In this connection, Autogrill Italy respects the guidelines of both the National Collective Work Contract for tourism sector employees and the Labour Relations Code regarding “management changes” and “company transferrals”. Under the national contract, an exiting management must make a prompt formal communication of closure to the trade unions.

The Labour Relations Code states clearly that, in the case of company transfer, specific written notice must be given to trade union representatives 25 days beforehand explaining the reasons for the company’s transfer and the legal, economic and social consequences for employees.

In cases of significant changes in the organization of single companies in the Group requiring the relocation of employees, such employees should be given around four weeks notice.

Lastly, there are around 50 people working in Italy on temporary work contracts; they are mostly office staff in the headquarters and also in the sales network. In the latter case, they are Food & Beverage professionals that work during trade fairs at Rho Fiera and in banquets/catering services at the Design Café in the “Triennale of Milan”.

Relations with trade unions
Autogrill has established a fertile dialogue with trade unions in each country where it operates to find solutions matching the needs of staff with those of the organization. The Group guarantees all employees a transparent work relationship and safeguarding of their rights as employees, irrespective of the kind of contract they have or the business sector or country where they work. Such transparency in work relationships applies to various types of contract, from national and/or industry contracts, to collective and/or company contracts and also individually stipulated contracts. It is also backed up by clearly defined policy, procedures and regulations.

Examples of this include Canada, where a “Provincial Employment Standards Act” is in force, and the UK, where Works Councils safeguard the rights of employees not covered by collective labour agreements. In countries lacking laws on workers’ rights and where trade unions try to guarantee respect of workers’ rights, local management tries to remedy shortcomings by managing its employees directly according to the parent company’s policies and guidelines. All agreements with unions, including those at local level, are subject to review and renewal on a regular basis. In this context, Autogrill S.p.A. employees’ national tourist industry contract is being renewed in 1st quarter 2010 and will run till April 2013.

Trade union membership – Food & Beverage sector

 North AmericaItaly
200838%41% *

* The 29.4% printed in the 2008 report was an error

In Europe, a European Works Committee (EWC) of Autogrill employees was formed under a protocol agreement with the trade unions. The EWC meets once a year and plays an important informative and consultative role between the Company and employees’ representatives regarding the Company’s performance and prospects and its priorities regarding the company-employees relationship. In 2009, the EWC was informed of the main themes that the Company and European trade unions intend to work on together, such as training, specific Autogrill business issues, workplace health and safety and diversity management. In particular, it was agreed there will be a special focus on safety in 2010, with best practices in each European country being shared throughout the Group.

Lastly, the EWC agreement will be reviewed by the end of 2010 in light of the last European Parliament directive (2009/38/CE - “recast”) on aspects relating to information and consultation and adjustments to the new European structure of trade unions within the EWC.

In the main countries where the Group operates, regarding work relationships, there was a limited number of legal actions. In Autogrill Italy, with a total of 11,689 employees, there were 107 disputes in 2009 (11% down on 2008). Action was mainly to challenge dismissal for just cause or to nullify the reasons adopted for the stipulation of fixed-term contracts. At a European level, out of a total of over 5,000 employees in France and Spain, there were 39 disputes. Lastly, in the Travel Retail sector, there were 38 disputes at Aldeasa S.A., which has a total of over 1,900 employees.

Remuneration and benefits

Labour cost

 Group Total
Social charges199,037190,712
Staff severance fund and similars29,34429,703
Other costs77,96982,507

The Group’s remuneration policy is based on a system of incentives to encourage fidelity and reward hard work, while fostering a sense of belonging and attracting top resources. The system is constantly brought into line with market benchmarks for the various jobs.

In an initiative to develop and improve Autogrill’s corporate governance system, the board of directors set up a Human Resources Committee to consider proposals made by the CEO and the management on policies regarding the strategic development of human resources and maintain proper alignment between the personnel pay system and the creation of value. The Committee will also make proposals to the board regarding the CEO’s remuneration and that of other directors holding special offices. The Committee is formed by non-executive directors, as recommended in the Corporate Governance Code.

Benefits vary across the geographical areas in which the Group operates, in that local law may include or exclude certain services and/or welfare and insurance funds (health insurance, accident insurance, maternity or paternity funds, disability). Pension funds are a typical example of a benefit, especially in European countries where local legislation and sometimes Group companies as well, promote this type of benefit. Employees may choose from time to time whether to participate in equal share with the Company in establishing a pension fund or draw on an additional pension fund according to the base value of their gross salary.

In most countries, employees also benefit from a purchase discount, which may vary from 15% to 35% on products in points of sale. There is also the possibility, at the moment only for retail employees in the UK, to buy products sold in points of sale at strongly discounted prices direct from a dedicated internal site and with delivery direct to their place of work free of transport charges. The objective for 2010 is to extend this type of agreement to employees in other business sectors and countries.

Development of human capital

Assessment of skills
In 2009, on completion of the process of integration of the companies acquired in 2007 and 2008, the Group’s human resources department co-ordinated the activities of HR functions in the various business sectors and countries and the standardization of human resources management systems.

To this end, it launched the Global HR Platform (GHRP) project to build a platform common to all countries and sectors and introducing a standard terminology for people management (grading, professional families, KPIs, etc.).

Other initiatives were taken, in line with this GHRP project, to review performance and skills assessment systems which grew out of work co-ordinated in different countries and sectors and are currently being applied in Autogrill Italy and the Corporate structure.

The objective for 2011 is to integrate the system into management practice and extend it to the other business units. Autogrill is working towards a consolidated HR management system and culture based on two distinct aspects: the role and development of the individual on one hand and operating performance on the other.

The process in question will drive personnel training and development initiatives over the coming years.



The new system is based on eight distinct skills (vision, innovation, flexibility, customer orientation, transversality, team work, guidance and coaching of employees, and intercultural and interpersonal intelligence) and reflects the organizational requirement of interpreting roles with greater managerial effectiveness in increasingly complex and structured contexts.

Until the system can be extended to the Group’s other countries, existing systems for assessing and developing local performance, carried out annually for both central office and point of sale employees, will continue to operate. Such systems provide the basis for ad hoc training programmes (specialist and managerial) supporting the development of resources in their various roles.

International job rotation
The critical macro-economic situation in 2009 did not deflect Autogrill from its management of talent. Human capital development is also carried forward by job rotation between different countries, an important factor in cultivating the Group’s most promising talent.

Autogrill sees mobility as an opportunity to build its employees’ knowledge and capacities and enable them to explore new contexts, thereby strengthening their sense of belonging to the Group, as well as enhancing their professional profiles. Mobility is not unidirectional: it can mean international experience for certain roles, inter-departmental rotation within the headquarters in a given country, between headquarters and sales network or within the sales network. In 2009, there were five moves from Italy to other countries (Spain, Greece and the UK) and two towards Italy (from France). Further, the Group’s main projects in 2009 (integration of retail business, global purchasing, optimization of investments, customer satisfaction, ICT Shared Service Unit) involved at least 50 people from eight countries.

A “vacancies” section was created in the Group area of the Company’s intranet (Aconnect) to increase the visibility of job opportunities within the organization at an international level and enable employees to apply for them.

In Italy, sales network personnel now have the opportunity to further their careers by contributing to the development of the business either in the network itself, as managers of Autogrill stores or catering services on Grandi Navi Veloci ferries (management of merchandize, personnel, customers, product quality/quantity control, service standard compliance and administrative procedures), or at headquarters, in the information and communication technology (ICT) department.

Personnel selection
Autogrill is constantly seeking to employ professional staff, particularly those in contact with customers. The Group prefers internal recruitment because it allows people to have gradual, complete training and gain experience in the Group’s various businesses.

In Italy, 6 to 12 month internships in a particular sector of the organization are the main channel of entry for young graduates. Numerous trade fairs and university presentations are additional means by which Autogrill meets new graduates.

Regarding the sales network, the constant need for directors and managers means Autogrill Italy also launches manager recruitment campaigns every year, aimed at attracting young graduates interested in acquiring professional experience in the world of organized catering.

Co-operation with universities
The academic world is a valuable source of young talent. In many of the countries where Autogrill works, the Group has relationships with major universities and professional schools, involving participation in events and stipulation of agreements.

In America, thanks to cooperation with the National Association of College Employers, the Group participates in job fairs, conventions and career days to attract new professionals to its local sales points. HMSHost provides many job opportunities for students during their university breaks through its partnership with the Council on International Educational Exchange, a non-profit organization founded in 1974 in the United States to promote education and international university student exchange.

The European business (France, Spain and Belgium) has various agreements with universities and the principal professional schools recognized by the European industry association, Horeca (Hotel, Restaurant and Café), as well as by organizations representing other sectors of business,.

In Italy, the Group continues to work with Parma University on the “Master’s in Brand name Catering Store Management”. The various partner companies offer job opportunities to participants displaying strong organizational ability, good interpersonal skills and interest in the catering sector. The Master’s requires two internships and classroom work, with the goal of understanding the store manager role. The teaching staff consists of academics, consultants and managers from the sponsoring companies, whose task is to ensure that educational goals are effectively achieved.

Every year, Autogrill Italy takes part in employment fairs, including the BIP (international placement exchange), which brings together all Italian and a number of foreign universities to establish and consolidate collaboration relationships, and BIPONLINE, the first virtual fair Autogrill has participated in, through Emblema. The Company also goes to other job fairs, events organized at the main Italian universities (Bocconi, Cattolica, Luiss, Università Statale di Milano and Iulm), where it meets students and presents its current job and internship opportunities.

In collaboration with Università Bocconi, it also organizes career guidance interviews to help steer new graduates towards professions in line with their personal attitudes and their academic qualifications. Such guidance is provided by HR experts from various companies, university staff and external consultants who explain how the job market works and provide details of the main functional areas.

In 2009 in Italy, Autogrill also supported “Young people and Enterprise”, a project devised by Fondazione Sodalitas in collaboration with Assolombarda. The Project’s main activity is providing guidance and skills for young people seeking work after completing their studies and fostering the development of a culture based on the values of work, enterprise and social economy. It organizes a 2-day course (totalling 14 hours) with collaboration from Fondazione Sodalitas member companies, including Autogrill, and under the aegis of Assolombarda, local education authorities and the Politecnico di Milano.

Lastly, Autogrill Italy supported the “Master’s in Corporate Citizenship. Integrated social responsibility strategies” organized by Fondazione Fondaca. “Autogrill” was one of the case histories studied on the course. Some of the participants in this Master’s course were invited to analyze the Group’s last sustainability report. A number of interesting considerations emerged, shedding light on how to improve the exposition and clarity of contents for the new report. The experience was positive not only for the participants but also for Autogrill’s people. Increasingly active involvement of stakeholders makes it possible to understand demand in advance.

In the Retail sector, there were meetings between the management of Aldeasa (Spain) and school and university students. In Chile, an agreement was defined with the Santiago chamber of commerce to manage supply and demand of work for locally managed points of sale.


The level of competition and constant pace of change in Autogrill’s markets make it essential to pay particular attention to the development of its resources. Training is an important part of an individual’s career development, as well as being an investment for the Company. As such, it must have a return for the business in terms of behaviour, improvement of processes and effectiveness of decision making.

To privilege internal growth, employees’ careers are managed on the basis of a clear, structured development programme co-ordinated by Human Resources in conjunction with Operations for positions in the sales network and with individual departments for positions in headquarters.

In 2009, Autogrill Group invested nearly six million euros in training for its employees in Europe. On average, employees did around two days of training each over the year.

There was a decrease in the number of hours and cost of employee training reflecting an absence of substantial changes to operating processes on the sales network (which would have necessitated ad hoc training), limited developments in mandatory training and a reduction in the number of new entries. However, the Group continued to work on fine-tuning existing courses and training modules and also adopted new technologies and user formats thanks to an e-learning platform implemented on the intranet portal Aconnect.

Training programmes address all levels in the organization and are structured to meet the various areas of technical and managerial development. In store training provided by area trainers, internal personnel but also store managers themselves, plays a fundamental role in Autogrill, which believes that experience gained on the job in each point of sale represents a source of excellence to be shared. This sort of training can be calibrated on one hand to transmit professional competences (creating a link between the Company and new entries), and on the other to update competences and keep experienced professionals, multi-task operators and managers abreast of business and market changes.


Type of training course Food & Beverage – Europe
(Boundaries: Italy, Switzerland, Spain, Belgium, Slovenia, France, Denmark)

  HoursCosts (€)HoursCosts (€)
In-store training207,1923,958,828239,5904,946,425
Technical-professional training17,645464,01816,507484,768
Managerial training8,669432,77619,940881,568
Workplace hygiene, safety and health28,342689,45429,384604,735
Other 15,367283,66811,557389,849
Total 277,2155,828,744316,9797,307,346

In the Food & Beverage sector, in North America and the main European countries (Italy, Spain, Belgium, Switzerland, Denmark, France and Slovenia), this type of training is provided directly in points of sale or training centres. In Italy, training of duty managers and apprentice managers and the updating of directors is provided by 16 training units along the network, true centres of excellence.

In the Retail sector in the United Kingdom, there is special training for fragrance sales personnel to improve their knowledge of products and capacity to guide customers in choosing fragrances on the basis where they are going. There was very positive feedback from employees involved in his at Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester airports, where stores saw significant improvements in management and customer satisfaction parameters.

Each country manages its training programmes independently, which also boosts team spirit. Courses may be suggested by the employees themselves and/or by the human resources department and are provided by consultants or nationally recognized training bodies. Although there were no specific campaigns in 2009, there were projects in Spain and Italy.

In Spain, Autogrill organized training courses (provided by the Lausanne Ecole Hotelière and Madrid’s AEDE Business School) for central office personnel, managers and young store managers/assistant managers, to update their skills and knowledge of Food & Beverage activities, as well as courses in Marketing, Finance and Control and Human Resources on the business management front.

In Italy, in collaboration with CIBIESSE CFMT Business School, two training modules were produced (“Collaborate to win” and “Team management”) to strengthen interpersonal communication and the organizational integration of people.

Funding for training
Where possible, Autogrill Group tries to make optimum use of funding available from national and international sources.

Autogrill Italy applies every year for funding of specific training courses from the Fondo For.Te. (Fondo Paritetico Interprofessionale Nazionale per la Formazione Continua nel Terziario – a national training fund for the services sector), recognized by the Ministry of Labour. In 2009, Fondo For.Te. financed around 25% of the Company’s total training costs and monitored the funds used, the training itself and the staff involved. Community funds are also used in other European countries to cover personnel training costs.

Workplace health and safety

The Group’s constant commitment
Autogrill’s commitment to guaranteeing the health and safety of its employees and consumers is constant, as shown by its regular updating of policies and procedures and its introduction of new devices and technologies to maintain even higher standards of safety for operators who serve customers everyday.

In all the countries where Autogrill works, health and safety issues are managed by special formed committees, made up of both employees and management, who meet regularly to monitor compliance with current regulations and analyze and resolve any problems, through specific training, for instance, or by introducing new individual safety devices.

Employees are not the only focus and end consumers and suppliers are also safeguarded, as declared in the policies adopted in each country, the most significant examples are in the USA, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom.

The American business has a Health, Safety and Risk Management policy containing all the information needed to ensure the safety of employees at work. Further, every point of sale has a “safety team” composed of management and operating staff whose task is to map the most common causes of accidents (through specific audits) and propose new equipment, individual protection devices or modifications to existing procedures.

The Italian business has an integrated policy embracing the following management systems:

  • ISO 9001:2000, ISO 22000:2005 and UNI 10854:99: food quality and safety;
  • ISO 14001:2004 and CE regulation no.761/2001: the environment;
  • Decree Law 81/2008 and subseq. amendments: workplace health and safety;
  • SA8000:2008: social responsibility.

Autogrill Italy has a Health and Safety Committee which meets twice a year to monitor accident levels, medical supervision and occupational illnesses, assess risks, analyze causes and seriousness and plan improvements needed to mitigate the identified risks, which may range from new accident prevention measures to specific training courses. To further reduce the risk of accidents, Autogrill (in collaboration with a partner) developed an avant-garde safety shoe for sales network employees. It is a lighter, more comfortable and safer development of the model in use in 2008.

On the health front, the Group organized annual medical check ups (general, eyesight or specialist where necessary) for its employees in various countries. In Italy for example, 3,900 medical check-ups were carried out in 2009 (up 17%), while check-ups on demand dropped by 70%, partly due to the introduction of the new safety shoe. Medical assistance in Italy is provided by a team of around 20 doctors. In 2009, the Group produced a guide to the prevention of H1N1 flu in its main countries; the campaign was accompanied by supply of suitable hygiene materials.

In June 2009, Autogrill France launched two projects in partnership with Caisse Nationale d’Assurance Maladie des Travailleurs Salariés (CNAM-TS). The first concerned the application of workplace risk prevention principles in the building concept design phase, in new constructions and renovations or extensions of existing buildings. The second focussed on accident prevention through listening and envisages the involvement of all employees in occupational risk assessment in the workplace, as well as operating and support services management for the implementation of preventive measures.

World Duty Free, in retail sector, is also committed to ensuring high workplace health & safety standards for its staff and customers. The constant drive to improve in these matters is reflected in its health, safety and environment policy and its encouragement of suggestions from employees. World Duty Free has OHSAS 18001:2007 certification, an internationally acknowledged workplace health & safety standard.

In the last two years in Europe, the overall number of accidents fell from 991 to 841.

Injuries trend Boundaries: Italy, Belgium, France and Spain


Types of accident, Food & Beverage – Europe (Boundaries: Italy, Belgium, France and Spain)

Slippage and falls186195
Bumps and contusions126137
Materials handling116132
Accidents during travel196212

Accident indexes
(Boundaries: Italy, Belgium, France and Spain)

Frequency index20092008
(no. of accidents 1,000,000/worked hours)35.9339.91
Seriousness index  

(no. of days of absence per accident 1,000/worked hours)


At the end of 2009, Autogrill launched the new intranet portal, “Aconnect”, in Italy and United Kingdom. It’s a vitally important tool of communication, information, collaboration and company-employee contact.

Produced by an international team of colleagues from different parts of the Group, Aconnect was the latest step in the integration of the new business sectors, reducing distances between countries, businesses, functions, headquarters and network, and encouraging collaboration between people. The project will have a development and rollout in various stages, starting with the integration of traditional processes, such as internal communication, publication of procedures, manuals and organization charts to boost the sharing of information between different countries and businesses. In 2010, services supporting day-to-day activities will be added on.

Profiling and arrangement of content will further develop the portal. It will also become possible to load and read confidential documents, use online collaboration functions, document, material and photo sharing facilities and professional conferencing, chat and community services (web 2.0).

Major work on the infrastructure made it immediately possible to access the portal and web services non-company PCs (e.g. from home, hotel, etc.) as well. Aconnect was developed on an open source platform that on one hand cuts costs and on the other enabled the development of a set of competencies in the Company. The choice of an internally managed platform brings more effective publication, higher efficiency in processes and greater flexibility.

For the entire duration of the scheduled roll out of Aconnect, countries like America, Spain, France and Belgium will continue to produce their own newsletters to actively engage their employees and in some cases consumers as well. Content will be on initiatives, projects and activities in local structures, as happened in 2009.

Autogrill Spain launched an original initiative in 2009, a competition for its employees to find the best “green” idea to use in Spanish points of sale.

The three winning ideas, chosen out of numerous suggestions, were to:

  • monitor consumption of utilities (energy and water) for each point of sale, in a bottom-up effort to reduce consumption;
  • communicate the Company’s environment commitment to both personnel and consumers;
  • use digital signature readers in cash transactions to reduce the use of paper.

The competition was also a good opportunity to encourage employees to use equipment in locations intelligently and continue their focus on environmental protection.

Autogrill Italy moved in the same direction. Before the start of the summer season, it launched a communication campaign on saving resources and safeguarding the environment entitled “Small Gestures for Big Results”. The point of this sustainability campaign was to alert all employees to the need to save water and light and sort waste.

The central importance of people in Autogrill is also reflected in numerous initiatives to involve employees. Convinced that the motivation and satisfaction of its people are key to achieving objectives, the Group organizes regular surveys to define and implement improvement plans.

In 2009, the traditional annual convention for all point of sale managers and the top management of Autogrill Italy was replaced by a tour to meet the managers in 17 locations throughout Italy. This innovative idea of meeting small groups grew out of a desire to facilitate exchange of opinions and discussion, and to collect questions and suggestions.

All point of sale managers in the Italian network (around 30 every meeting) were involved.

The General Manager Italy, the sales manager and relevant channel directors took part in all the POS meetings.

In 2009, World Duty Free ran a survey (“Talk Back”) of its employees. It obtained 90% redemption and registered a positive judgement of the Company from 79% of employees (on the Employee Engagement Index EEI). Employees proved highly positive about the Company in fact, declaring they were proud to work in WDF (74%), wanted to continue working in its for another 12 months (77%) and felt stimulated to do their best in WDF (79%).