Social responsibility

Human resources

At 31 December 2017, the workforce of Getlink was of 3,400 employees:

  • 76% of men vs 24% of women
  • 72% in France vs 28% in the UK
  • Group workforce by subsidiary
    • Eurotunnel: 2,581
    • Europorte: 777
    • Getlink: 19
    • ElecLink: 15
    • CIFFCO: 8
  • 44 years, the average age of the Group's employees in 2017
  • 46% of employees are aged under 45
  • 296 recruitments for the Group in 2017, of which 86% are on permanent contracts
  • 281 young people on apprenticeship, on professional training or on internship contracts were part of the Group's teams in 2017
  • 67% of the Group's employees worked shifts in 2017 to ensure continuity of services, 24/7, 365 days a year
  • 109,072 hours of training dispensed to Group employees in 2017, an average of 32 hours per employee.

The Group has developed a human resource policy that considers the personal development of its 3,400 employees and their employability as an absolute priority.

Focus on some of the 2017 initiatives

Recruitment, training, commitment

Integration of young people

Proof of employee commitment to the Group’s objectives and the vitality of a corporate culture built up throughout a company’s history filled with many different challenges, employee turnover has always been very low since Eurotunnel’s launch. One natural consequence of this fundamental asset is that many of the employees who started work here 25 to 30 years ago will start to retire from 2019. Getlink has been preparing for this situation for many years by focusing its recruitment policy on rejuvenating its workforce whilst facilitating the transfer of skills. In France, apprenticeship schemes, professional contracts and international voluntary internships (VIE) are routinely used, meaning that Getlink’s French workforce permanently includes some 200 apprenticeships of all types.


CIFFCO, subsidiary dedicated to training, develops a wide range of training courses designed specifically for Getlink’s teams, delivered either face-to-face or via the MyLearning intranet platform. Among the topics covered in 2017 were:

  • Fundamentals of employment law (contract and working time, civil and criminal liability), for managers
  • Development of a digital culture for executives
  • A “serious game” on how to conduct professional interviews
  • Driving with care
  • Safety of mobile tools
  • Remaining vigilant against corruption
  • Getting to know and applying legal good practice
  • What to do in the event of a terror attack.

Pay policy

Remuneration and savings

Getlink’s remuneration policy offers a wide variety of individual increases, bonuses based on individual performance, incentives for collective performance, and savings plans that are supplemented by the company. Employees using the schemes reinvest these savings in Getlink shares, highlighting both their confidence in the Group’s outlook and the extent to which their personal interests meet those of their professional community. Employees under French legislation are also able to benefit from a Group Savings Plan (PEG), featuring a mutual fund into which payments are supplemented by the company.

A Collective Retirement Savings Plan (PERCO), also launched in 2016, aims to increase employee savings based on capitalisation, and to make savers aware of the expected fall in their pay-as-you-go pension scheme. Since 2015, employees subject to UK employment law have been able to use a system similar to the French PEG, known as a Share Incentive Plan (SIP), to which more than 63% of eligible employees have already subscribed. Both the SIP and the PEG can be boosted by shares received as part of the free share award programme.

Employee shareholding

Since 2011, all Getlink employees present since the launch of the programme, with the exception of senior executives, have received a total of 1,010 free shares. This proactive policy associating employees with the performance of the business, combined with other incentives, has led a 16-fold increase in the employee share ownership in the Group’s capital.

Working conditions

Workplace safety

Inscribed at the very heart of railway culture, the safety of customers, employees, sub-contractors and all other stakeholders is an intangible principle which guides all of Getlink’s actions.

For the Fixed Link, the continuous availability of the first-line management, the deep commitment of the Executive Committee, and the strengthening of Safety teams within the operational departments have contributed to a significant improvement in this area. In line with the target set, lost-time accidents fell by more than 40%, demonstrating the effectiveness of the actions undertaken.

Communication campaigns aimed at inspiring safety culture are regularly broadcasted to employees, such as "The Safety goes to the movie", a campaign composed of ten video spots featuring operational teams.

Eurotunnel teams are also working on a big data project to help prevent work-related accidents. The experiment is based on the analysis of nearly one million basic data items over the past 6 years, from which algorithms are used to identify combinations of factors that may lead to work-related accidents. By identifying those situations and circumstances in which risk is increased, effective preventive actions can be taken.

As is the custom each year, Europorte organises its Safety Week, which looks back at actions undertaken and is centred on a specific topic. Members of the Executive Committee make more than 60 site visits across France filled with edifying discussions on staff safety, incidents related to non-compliance with procedures and equipment incidents.

Social dialogue

The Group regularly engages in dialogue with employee representative bodies and maintains direct relationships between directors and all employees regarding strategic policies and social issues. In 2017, for instance, two agreements were signed between Eurotunnel and the French trade unions, including one on the right to disconnect, which restricts the times at which employees may be contacted by email or text message outside working hours, and rules of good conduct regarding the use of the internet and messaging systems. As regards to the agreement relating to the end of working life, it gives employees the option to gradually reduce their working time in the two years prior to the date on which they can retire on a full rate, without affecting their pension amount.

As for Europorte, an agreement on working time was signed by all trade unions as part of the railway reform act. Specifically, it allows better visibility of work schedules, the establishment of the Time Savings Account and the creation of a quarterly monitoring assessment.

To find out more on the CSR, please refer to the 2017 Corporate Social Responsibility Report of the Group.