Co-worker community

Our mission is to make money work for a sustainable society with human dignity at its core. Our co-workers are essential to achieve this mission. We want to create a living, learning community of co-workers; a working environment that’s inspiring, healthy and welcoming. Our goal is to foster a workplace where each co-worker finds room to address the important questions of our time and each individual can work effectively in line with the mission and values of our organisation.

In 2018 we moved towards working more together, and in a more digital way. This development comes from three key drivers:

  1. to deliver more impact by working better together between business units and adopting new innovative ways of working;
  2. to create efficiency gains by harmonizing processes and making continuous improvements;
  3. to be able to respond to regulatory demands.

New structures and ways of working have been developed. This will help us to adapt more easily and quickly to what the world demands from us. And it will mean we are better able to create impact in line with our mission.

The following table provides a summary of progress against the prospects identified in the 2017 annual report. This table is explored in more depth in the text itself.

Our key objectives for 2018


How we did


Progress at a glance

● ● ● Met     ● ● ○ Mostly met     ● ○ ○ Partially met     ○ ○ ○ Not met

We will continue the Process Improvement Accelerator programme to embed the lean approach in the organisation by organising international trainings, supporting local training, developing guidelines and background information and connect co-workers to share best practices and dilemmas. In the coming year we will give special attention to engaging senior and middle management, while at the same time continue to empower all co-workers to work efficiently. This is and will be closely connected to group-wide efficiency assessments and other relevant initiatives.


Continuous improvement has gained momentum in the organisation.

Trained capacity increased and in some business units a good working Continuous Improvement infrastructure is set up.


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We continue to work on the learning organisation, with focus on enabling all to live the essence and mission of our organisation in the day-to-day reality. We will create clear learning opportunities that allow all co-workers to adapt to what the coming years asks from us, both in terms of license to operate skills, as well as our specific relationship approach. We will continue to explore new ways of learning both online and offline. Continued effort to open up and connect with the relevant debates around us.


Working together with partner organisation Institute for Social Banking, co-hosting their Summer School and Expert Exchange Labs.

Continued offer of internal Academy programmes on the connection with the mission of the organisation.

New creative ways to learn explored further in the Triodos Academy programmes broadening our work forms offer.

Implementation of group-wide computer-based training.


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Further development of a strong employer branding approach, highlighting our vision on working for Triodos Bank, and what we expect and offer in terms of working conditions and learning and development opportunities.


The international employer brand story was developed. Creative concepts to share the employer brand story in, and outside, Triodos Bank prepared for launch early in 2019. The employer brand added to the new website and will be developed further online in 2019.


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Continuous improvement approach

We have built up internal capacity to facilitate Continuous Improvement and made this approach an integrated part of the Operations community throughout the organisation.

We continued to offer group-wide training and, in the business units, local training initiatives have been connected to create a common language and under­standing of Continuous Improvement. We have taken initiatives to promote this approach to all co-workers. Among other things, a group-wide Continuous Improvement week took place, inviting all co-workers to think about small steps every individual can take to reduce time and resources needed for work, and to free up time and energy to create more impact.

A learning organisation

To be able to deal with the challenges of the future, we need to create a learning organisation, that holds enough opportunities for co-workers to train themselves, to learn together with their peers, and to learn from interacting with stakeholders around the organisation.

Efforts continued to create enough opportunities for co-workers to deepen their understanding of Triodos Bank’s mission; events included the Global Alliance for Banking on Values’ (GABV) Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), and internal values seminars, both for new and long-standing co-workers.

Together with our network we created opportunities to learn with and from others. We co-hosted a successful summer school with the Institute for Social Banking in Barcelona. And we delivered an Expert Exchange Lab on Credit and Loans processes in values-based banking. And we engaged in the international leadership development track of the GABV, designed to develop the leadership capacity of our own organisation and the wider movement.

In 2018 we created a necessary step up in our group-wide approach to regulatory training demands by implementing a group-wide computer-based training on topics such as Security Awareness and GDPR.

Being a learning organisation also means learning from, and exchanging with, the outside world. Examples during the year included a series of public debates on the Energy Transition and the role of the financial world in that transition, in Amsterdam.

Monthly lunch meetings also brought new visions and ideas to the co-workers from external experts, including British economist Kate Raworth and former Dutch finance minister Dijsselbloem. Triodos Bank also has weekly Monday meetings in all its business units creating a powerful opportunity to learn and share, supported by an active online internal platform.

Employer brand

Triodos Bank’s international employer brand story was developed in 2018. With a clear employer brand, we aim to attract and retain co-workers. We want to share how we work and how the work of each individual contributes to the overall mission of our organisation.

Creative concepts to share our employer brand in, and outside, Triodos Bank, and on and offline, were prepared for launch in 2019. This work will be developed further during the year.

Our co-worker community in figures

Triodos Bank continues to be a growing organisation, although the rate of growth has slowed as part of deliberate efforts to manage our development and costs.

In 2018, the total number of co-workers increased by 50 new co-workers (2017: 106). The total number of co-workers at Triodos Bank increased by 3.6% in 2018, from 1,377 to 1,427.

The balance of men and women, the age of the co-worker group and levels of sickness is similar to previous years and remains at a reasonable level.

Gender equality is important to us. In 2018 Triodos Bank employed 703 women (49.3%) and 724 men (50.7%). The share of women in management positions is 39%. The objective for Triodos Bank is to have no more than 70% of its board positions to be held by either gender. Triodos Bank currently meets this goal in both its Executive and Supervisory Boards.

Both overall attrition and attrition in the first year of employment stayed the same as the previous year at 9% in 2018. Absenteeism through sickness was 3.8% in 2018, slightly above a target of 3%.

Fair rewards for all co-workers

Triodos Bank believes people should be properly and appropriately rewarded for their work, and pay is an important element of this.

The organisation monitors remuneration both within the company and in relation to the rest of the financial and banking sector, and wider society.

In The Netherlands, which is home to the Executive Board, the Head Office, Triodos Investment Management and the Dutch branch, the ratio of the highest full-time salary to the median full-time salary was 5.6 in 2018 (2017: 5.7). This ratio is also reported in the Key Figures section at the start of this report and uses the GRI methodology.

In addition, we have calculated the ratio between the lowest and highest paid in The Netherlands, and in 2018 this was 9.9 (2017: 9.9). Some specific cases are excluded from this ratio, for example when very junior co-workers are recruited for an apprenticeship or people with development needs are appointed to create job opportunities for vulnerable people.

These ratios are reviewed and discussed within the Executive Board and with the Supervisory Board in the light of developments inside and outside the organisation. We seek a healthy balance between the external developments (competition and tensions in the labour market, good inflow and outflow of co-workers) and internal consistency. Maintaining this balance presents challenges, as our business evolves, so we have defined a bandwidth as a guiding principle. For the ratio highest to median this stands at 7 and for the highest to lowest: 1 to 10.

For more information on the international remuneration and nomination policy please refer to page 110 of the annual accounts.

Diversity and inclusion as a responsibility

Triodos Bank’s responsibility is to create a welcoming work environment for all. It wants to avoid discrimination of candidates of any kind.

A diverse co-worker community contributes positively to Triodos Bank’s effectiveness and vitality. We not only speak about diversity, but also about inclusion. We continued to launch initiatives in 2018 to recruit those at a distance from the labour market. We actively engaged former refugees in our co-worker community. Several business units have connected with organisations that create internships for refugees, which have led to permanent contracts.


Triodos Bank will continue to strengthen the organisation in 2019 and beyond, in line with the new three-year business plan. We will continue to foster a strong co-worker community: able to act in the now, with an eye on the future. The organisation will support co-workers so they are committed and engaged, understand and are aligned with our essence, mission and strategy, and are able to work in a changing, regulated environment.

Triodos Bank’s goal is to help connect co-workers to our mission, the organisation and each other. The intention is to promote meaningful jobs with a clear purpose, sufficient autonomy and with clear requirements for individual’s skills, knowledge and experience. Together the co-worker community will be equipped to adapt to changing circumstances, be resilient while maintaining an open mind for new developments and opportunities to help move to a sustainable society with human dignity at its core.

The following priorities have been set in this context:

  • A step-up in our organisational development by having sound and clear ways of working within, and between, units. This will make sure we work more efficiently and are visibly in control
  • This will include designing and implementing an Organisational Culture Programme to enable leadership and co-workers to take their role and responsibility in the change.