Siemens Dialog
14.04.2024, 18:04 Uhr

Siemens Europe Committe meeting for Siemens Gamesa

  • 21.12.2017
  • International

On December 8th, 2017, 23 union representatives from Spain, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands met at Munich to discuss with the management of Siemens Gamesa the an-nounced restructuring of Siemens-Gamesa which includes 6 000 job cuts worldwide.

Representatives from Spain.

Kristina Birkkjaer, Denmark.

Ron Arndts, Netherlands.

Roy Lund, Norway.

The meeting was invited by the Executive Committee of the Siemens Europe Committee (SEC), which was represented by Harald Kern (Germany, Chairman), Roy Lund (Norway, Speaker of the North West Europe region of the SEC) and Margherita Milite (Italy, Speaker of the South West Europe region of the SEC). The CEO of Siemens-Gamesa, Mr. Tacke, and the new head of HR, Mr. Fernandez-Combarro, took part in the meeting. All union representatives criticized the management´s communication of the announced re-structuring.

In Denmark, the union´s right for information was clearly violated. This was even admitted by the management, but was justified by the requirements of the Spanish Corporation Law. The company has already fired workers in Denmark. This was done in a very negative way, which was also criticized by the union representatives.

All participants of the meeting agreed, that the management´s communication was chaotic and especially in countries, where there is only a small number of Siemens-Gamesa employ-ees, there are no contact persons at HR for the union representatives at all.

There was general criticism of the integration process of Siemens Wind Power and Gamesa, too. The union representatives do not see, that much has happened since the meeting in Bil-bao in April.

The participants of the meeting also criticized, that redundancies were announced, although the management still expects more market growth in the wind power business. There is no clear strategy, how this growth should be handled while so many jobs will be cut.

At least, there should be other solutions than just job cuts. The union representatives hope for an improved communication in the future and that they will be included in the process of integration of the company.

(Report: Dirk Linder)

Comments on Siemens Gamesa:

Jesús Fagundez and Ferran Navarro, Representatives in the SEC, Spain:

An extraordinary meeting of the Siemens European Committee (SEC) took place in Munich on 8 December last, and as the only item on the agenda: the situation of Siemens Gamesa Renewable. In addition to the participation of representatives from the countries with the greatest presence of this company at European level, representatives from the most represented workplaces were invited to this meeting. In the presence of the company's maximum representation, the delegates expressed their utmost repulsion and outrage at the decision and the way in which the company has tried to adjust costs at the cost of reducing jobs.

From the representation coming from different places in the Spanish State (represented by 5 delegates from CCOO, 1 from UGT and 1 from LAB) we attended this meeting in recognition of this body representing workers at European level to express, not only our strongest protest for the forms of communication and the content of it, but also to express our solidarity with all the workers affected.

Kristina Birkkjaer, SEC member, Denmark:

During the last month union representatives and management have negotiated the terms and conditions, for the employees being laid off in Denmark. Negotiations where concluded as soon as possible due to Christmas holiday, because we did not want to ruin Christmas for anybody waiting for a letter of resignation, that would or would not come. Last week the layoffs where made effective. All individuals who are laid off, are going to receive help in finding a new job. This is just one part of the agreement, that has been made between union representatives and management in Denmark.

We think, the meeting last week with the representatives from management of Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy and Siemens AG, has been constructive. We felt, that they listened to our concerns about the recent developments in the company and hope, that they will take our points into consideration in the future. We from Denmark also had a talk with Javier Fernandez-Combarro our new head of HR, about having a follow up meeting with him, next time when he is in Denmark, which we are really looking forward to. Then we are able to talk more into detail about the situation in Denmark.

Ron Arndts, SEC member, Netherlands:

On Friday, 08th of December 2017, during the SEC extended Executive Board Meeting in Munich, in discussion with Markus Tacke,  we learned that based on the current and future market situation, organizational restructuring was mentioned to be unavoidable now. Levelized Cost of Electricity (LCOE) is the business driver within wind power. The cost level looks simply too high to be competitive due to the enormous and aggressive market pressure. The market growth in Giga Watt in Onshore is relatively limited to 6%. In Offshore this growth is much higher, around 20%. Siemens Gamesa wants to have focus on  1 technology per Section. That leads to making choices. In Offshore the choice has been made for Direct Drive Technology, which will be further developed. In the Onshore market the focus is on ‘geared’ technics. However, as long as there is demand from the market to different technologies in the Onshore market will remain. In general, Direct Drive Onshore business, mostly coming from Denmark, will be restructured. The idea that production is going to low cost countries in this very competitive market to be able to stay profitable, is very bad for employment, especially in Denmark. The Spanish production locations are limited hit. Spanish unions, also part of the meeting were relatively, quiet during the meeting.              

The communicated measures should be very closely monitored to find out, if these are really the right way forward, to see, if the management is really in control after a couple of profit warnings the last fiscal quarters. Furthermore, there should be tuned very carefully what the timeline is exactly in the several countries with regard the restructuring plans and how this relates to the remaining capacity of employees in the organization. We should avoid stressed out situations in the company. Last but not least, is it anyway necessary to restructure in so many smaller countries up to 150 employees. It really doesn’t make sense in all cases, especially not in countries where growth is expected the coming years, like in the Netherlands. Especially growth markets didn’t get the attention that may be expected.

Roy Lund, Norway, Speaker of the North West Europe Region of the SEC:

After a period of some disturbing news in the media and also some misinformation within Siemens-Gamesa, this meeting was fortunately organized quickly. With the top management present and open to direct and critical questions, this meeting turned out to be very constructive. Still, there are more questions that need answers in the future, and, hopefully, these can be handled at local level. As for the continuous integration process, a working group is set in place. The first meeting is planned for January 2018. This will help to build a good information channel and a good culture for consultation.