Remuneration & social benefits

Remuneration and social benefits

The remuneration package of Linde employees comprises not only a fixed salary component but also variable remuneration components depending on the position of the employee within the Group. We also offer our staff various additional benefits in line with the conditions which apply in the different regions. These benefits include occupational pensions and contributions towards health insurance or medical screening. In 2014, Linde spent EUR 3.536 billion on personnel expenses (2013: EUR 3.423 billion), of which EUR 3.069 billion related to salaries including social security contributions (2013: EUR 2.974 billion) and EUR 293 million (2013: EUR 281 million) to pensions.

We regularly review the remuneration levels of our employees using internal and external comparisons to ensure that they are appropriate and in line with the market. During the reporting year, 46.5 percent of our staff were employed on the basis of collective wage agreements (2013: 45.6 percent). In 2013, we carried out an exemplary analysis of the salaries of employees not employed on the basis of collective wage agreements. The main focus was the head offices of Linde AG, Linde Gas, Linde Gas Germany and Linde Engineering. The analysis did not reveal any significant differences in the remuneration of male and female employees in comparable positions. In 2014, we provided selected managers who are responsible for staff in the South Pacific region with information on the topic of equal pay for male and female employees, in order to raise awareness of this important issue.

We use a Group-wide IT system to ensure comparable and fair staff appraisals. This system includes performance evaluations which are binding for all managers and job evaluations of all executive positions within the Group. The evaluations take account of such criteria as transparency, equal opportunities and pay in line with market conditions. Managers’ pay is based on the performance of both the Group as a whole and of the individual employee. Senior managers also participate directly in the company’s growth in value through share option schemes. In 2014, managers below Executive Board level invested in 24,639 Linde shares via such a scheme. For each of these shares, the plan participants are entitled to an additional Linde share on the expiry of the four-year qualifying period.

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Remuneration and social benefits

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014

 

2013

 

2012

 

2011

 

 

As a result of the first-time application of the revised accounting standards, the sites in the scope of our reporting changed in the 2013 financial year. Accordingly, the key financial, environmental and employee KPIs for 2012 were adjusted retrospectively. In addition, the KPIs for employees, occupational health and safety and environmental protection for the year 2012 were retrospectively adjusted to account for the effects of the acquisition of the US homecare company Lincare.

Personnel expenses (in € billion)

 

3.536

 

3.423

 

3.117

 

2.653

Pension costs (in € million)

 

293

 

281

 

241

 

190

Staff covered by collective wage agreements (in %)

 

46.5

 

45.6

 

45.1

 

53.5

Retired employees receiving pensions by Linde

 

30,941

 

31,006

 

31,118

 

31,112

Employees in more than 50 countries have access to occupational pensions and healthcare benefits. Around 80 percent of our employees are members of occupational pension schemes. Through defined benefit plans, 26,755 active employees are being paid an occupational pension and a further 17,181 former employees have acquired a vested claim to a company pension. In total, 30,941 pensioners are drawing an occupational pension within the Group. At Linde, globally binding rules apply to the modification, introduction or closure of pension plans. Any such measure must be agreed with the Global Pension Committee, which is composed of the Chief Executive Officer, the Chief Financial Officer and experts in accounting, finance and human resources.

In the course of 2014, we extended the range of optional additional benefits we offer our employees in a number of regions. These included, for example, free health checks and the extension of insurance cover to include not just employees but also members of their families.