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It is Corporate Social Responsibility Report of Nova Trading. It covers the activities undertaken by the Company in the area of responsibility for a defined group of stakeholders: employees, customers, contractors, local community, and the environment.
Although Nova Trading has not so far specified the CSR strategy (Corporate Social Responsibility), the Company has from the very beginning of its existence understood the importance of caring for relations not only with customers and contractors, but also with employees and local communities. Moreover, the Company has always taken the utmost care to minimise the impact of its activities on the environment.
Nova Trading abides by the rules of law which regulate the employer-employee relations. Apart from various activities connected with meeting legal obligations towards the personnel, the Company has introduced a variety of additional practices aimed at creating a friendly work environment ranging from good work conditions and care for interpersonal relations to a friendly atmosphere at work.
A considerable benefit for the company is a low rotation of its qualified employees. As a result we are able to retain in the Company the most talented of our staff thus increasing their sense of security and loyalty towards the Company and enhancing their commitment to work. Nova Trading is perceived on the labour market as a good, reliable and desirable employer.
Description of activities follows below.
Balance between professional and private life
Nova Trading supports its employees in keeping a healthy balance between their professional and private lives.
The employers have can plan their spare time because of the following factors:
- regular working hours,
- a company bus for commuters,
- processes management,
- production planning,
- holiday planning, etc.
As concerns qualified employees who are away from work for an extended period of time on a sick leave, maternity leave, unpaid leave, etc., the Company arranges for a replacement for the term of their absence and makes it possible for them to return to work safely and resume their responsibilities.
If an employee changes his or her place of residence for personal reasons, the employee is offered a similar post in one of the branches of the Company as long as such employee is still interested in keeping his or her job with Nova Trading and it is feasible from organisational point of view.
Nova Trading is not indifferent to personal problems of its employees and if a member of the staff has difficulties caused by an illness or an unpleasant accident, the company provides emergency support, among others, from a social fund.
Health care for employees
Nova Trading continues the employee health care scheme implemented through Non-Public Health Care Centres. The scheme gives all employees access to qualified medical health care and modern diagnostics. In Torun Nova Trading cooperates in this respect with a private health care provider CITOMED Centre, whereas its branches cooperate with the Damiana Medical Centre, which has its establishments across the whole of Poland.
Mother-friendly Nova Trading
Nova Trading provides the women employed at the company with free access to private health care throughout pregnancy and after childbirth (under the health-care scheme discussed above).
The Company has developed and maintained a management procedure to be followed during a mother’s absence (scheduled replacements, method of information exchange and communication during maternity leave, regular updates and current information about the situation at work, etc.). As a result the fear of employment loss has been greatly reduced. Such approach gives the company one major benefit, namely the possibility of keeping qualified women employees who are no longer forced to choose between career and private life.
As a part of an open access computer system, employees can check the availability of various resources such as company cars, conference rooms, etc. The employees can also use the same module to register their absence at work, apply for a holiday leave, compassionate leave, etc. The system also gives access to a current leave schedule and planned leave schedule of the Nova Trading personnel.
The common platform saves time and limits the flow of paper document. Consequently, the solution helped to improve the flow of information in the above spheres.
The Company Intranet site is another platform used for in-house knowledge management. All the employees have access to the Intranet storing information about the following areas:
- quality policy (quality book, procedures, instructions, application forms, etc.),
- know-how (access to articles from trade magazines, training materials, conferences, standards, tables, etc.),
- current record of contact data to all Nova Trading employees and all cooperating companies,
- an operating manual of the internal computer system,
- exchange rates, alloy additions, freight of goods, etc.
WWW recruitment system
The basis of the WWW information technology system is the recruitment process management in the Company, which more specifically deals with job applications filed by people applying for a job through the Nova Trading site.
The IT system facilitates recording, storage and management of a personal data database.
Each new employee is covered by a system of compulsory (required by law) internal trainings in areas such as workstand training, health and safety training, etc. Office personnel attend additional trainings concerning the areas covered by various Nova Trading departments so that they can have a better view at the Company as a whole, know procedures and responsibilities of individual staff members, obtain knowledge about the range of products and services on offer, are familiar with market situation, etc. During the introductory trainings, new employees also have an opportunity to meet the Board of Directors of the Company.
Long-serving Nova Trading employees attend external trainings in the areas related to their duties. Such trainings are held depending on the current needs.
Nova Trading also holds trainings on health and safety for temporary employees and for all cooperating companies. What’s more, first aid training is also given to a number of selected employees.
Employee education subsidies
Nova Trading fully or partially covers the costs of education undertaken by its employees. Each application for subsidies in this area is examined individually. One criterion taken into consideration is the close relation between the field of education and the range of duties / the nature of work performed by the applicant.
Traineeship and training periods at Nova Trading
The Company has for years assisted pupils and students in gaining knowledge and skills useful for their future professional career.
Traineeship and training periods are organised at the Purchase Department, the Marketing Department, the Logistics Department, the Sales Department, and the Administration Department.
The first step one needs to make to start a traineeship or a training period at Nova Trading
is to submit a CV and a cover letter to the Human Resources Department or directly to the Head of a given department. Trainees are accepted depending on the current needs of the Company, both during holidays and school / academic term. Apart from performing some assigned tasks, trainees are also trained in the specific field of their department.
“After hours” – supporting employees in their spare-time activities
The Nova Trading Intranet site is the place where employees can share their interests with others, show their achievements in various areas, present pictures taken during trips and holidays, etc.
Contests for employees’ children
The Company also organises fine arts contests for employees’ children. The participants receive awards and occasional diplomas. The children’s works are then on display in the Company’s office.
Always on time
Offering a wide range of mill products available directly from the warehouse as well as efficient logistics and frequent shipments of goods to predetermined and fixed destinations, Nova Trading provides its customers with opportunities for optimisation of storage costs and minimisation of capital investment in production facilities (just-in-time deliveries). The Company becomes not only a supplier but a permanent and reliable link in the chain of supplies.
The customers of Nova Trading have stated that the greatest assets of the Company included its reliability, punctuality, diligence and a sense of responsibility. All this is possible due to good communication along the network including the Purchase Department, the Sales Department, the Service Centre, the Warehouse, the Logistics Department and freight forwarders cooperating with Nova Trading.
Technical consultancy / trainings
Since the products offered by Nova Trading require specialist knowledge in the field of stainless steel, aluminium, grades, physical and chemical properties, etc., the Company has implemented a range of activities with a view to increasing the customers’ awareness in these areas.
The Sales Department personnel provides customers with specialist knowledge by answering all queries concerning issues such as application, processing, and properties of stainless steel and aluminium. They advise on stainless steel and aluminium suitable for a given purpose and provide assistance in completing all products necessary for construction of a specific system. They also analyse orders for mistakes and errors.
Nova Trading also holds technical trainings for the personnel of individual purchase departments of its key customers.
Educating the market
Nova Trading takes measures to increase the market capacity hindered by inadequate knowledge, lack of experience and poor access to information.
Having established an information base on its website and distributing printed trade materials published by various branch institutions, the Company educates the general public on stainless steel and aluminium.
As a member of the Stowarzyszenie Stal Nierdzewna (SSN), Nova Trading financially supports the organisation in its activities focused on promotion of stainless steel and education of the market. The Company co-finances free trade trainings, the Internet site, the SSN stands at various fairs and conferences as well as publishing of specialist manuals and booklets.
As a result of all these activities, knowledge of stainless steel and its products is more widespread and customers have a better understanding of how to work with this specific material. The long-term consequences of such approach include growth of sales, increased number of customers, and improved cooperation and communication with business partners.
Activity in trade circles
Nova Trading is actively involved in the trade it deals in. The objective of the involvement is to further develop the market and to bring mutual benefits for all companies distributing stainless steel in Poland. An illustration of the active involvement of the company in the stainless steel industry is the participation of the Directors of the company in various trade seminars as lecturers during which they share their view about the current market situation, point out business obstacles and suggest various remedies to overcome trade difficulties. Since Nova Trading is an important player on the market and the Board of Directors has a considerable standing and authority, their opinions are much valued by the trade circles.
Moreover, various representatives of the company frequently appear in the media as experts on stainless steel market (press and Internet articles).
Nova Trading is also an active member of the Stowarzyszenie Stal Nierdzewna.
The regular cooperation with this body consists in providing reports on sales volume and stock on hand as well as presenting the stance of the company with regard to various issues and problems.
Customers are interviewed about their opinions on the quality of the products on offer, products availability, professionalism of services, complaints handling procedure, etc. The interviewees were asked to assess the above issues on a scale from 1 (unsatisfactory) to 6 (excellent). The average result was 5.2. The survey outcomes are presented to the Board of Directors, the management, and a group of employees so as to eliminate the shortcomings indicated by the customers.
Complaint handling procedure
As required by the procedures implemented in the company, Nova Trading keeps a register of complaints filed by its customers. The register includes the whole paperwork connected with a given case and the final decision. The Company aims at establishing and eliminating the causes of faults and defects which give rise to complaints. Periodical analyses and monitoring of corrective measures are also undertaken.
Traineeship and apprenticeship at the Company – supporting the idea of entrepreneurship
The Company is open to co-operation with schools and universities in the area of traineeship and apprenticeship running a Days of Entrepreneurship programme and offering traineeship and training periods for students. See ‘Traineeship and training periods at Nova Trading’ section above.
Sponsoring and charity work
According to the sponsoring policy in place, Nova Trading supports only sport and cultural events taking place within the region of Torun.
What’s more, Nova Trading supports local foundations and school and church organisations in their efforts to implement various projects such as integration trips for handicapped children or Children’s Day festivities, most often by donating gifts in kind.
Ecology and the Company’s mission
The environmentally friendly aspect of the increasingly widespread use of stainless steel in industry and everyday applications has been given particular prominence by Nova Trading in its newly adopted “Policy – Company’s Mission” (the document is available online).
Whenever possible (during trainings for employees / customers, etc.) we emphasise that one of the advantages of the products we provide is their environmentally friendly character – stainless steel is certified for use in production of facilities having contact with food and water and is a completely environment- and human-friendly material.
Using stainless steel, we avoid the necessity of applying paints and other anticorrosive coatings which are environmentally harmful.
Stainless steel finds application in various environmental facilities and systems such as sewage-treatment plants, filter and catalytic converter production processes, etc.
Long life of stainless steel products saves energy by reducing and limiting production processes; such is the case with stainless steel exhaust silencers, which can be used without maintenance throughout the vehicle’s life, while silencers made of other materials need to be replaced on a number of occasions during the same time.
Stainless steel can be recycled easily (scrap material is remelted). The processing of stainless steel scrap is economically viable, technically verified and actually implemented. Each stainless steel item includes approximately 60% of recycled material.
The Company promotes its services in cutting of non-standard stainless steel and aluminium sheets pointing out to customers the advantage of absence of scarp material and a lower price for the form fitting perfectly further down the production process.
Care for the environment
Feeling responsible for the natural environment and its limited resources, Nova Trading has implemented an environmental management system. Nova Trading is among the few companies operating in our industry which hold an ISO 14001:2004 certificate. All the processes taking place within the company are controlled with regard to their impact on the surroundings. Our requirements limiting the negative influence on the natural environment are stricter than legal regulations.
Nova Trading employs an Environmental Protection Specialist whose responsibility is to supervise all processes within the Company with regard to their impact on the environment, to keep records of waste disposal management, to cooperate with recycling companies, etc.
At each stage of production activities, the Nova Trading Service Centre controls and reduces the impact on the environment through the following measures:
- use of state-of-the-art solutions in production lines which are to prevent environmental pollution (e.g. air filtration system in sheet and coil grinding machines, coolant filtration system in pipe and section grinding/polishing lines, etc.),
- segregation, recycling and management of production waste (cooperation with Nicrometal company),
- own waste-water treatment plant for rain and melting water from the area of the Service Centre,
- use of state-of-the-art gas boilers of low environmental impact in the heating system of the Centre facilities.
As concerns office work in the company, Nova Trading employees limit printing, among others, by using an electronic system for transfer of information and documents. What’s more, used batteries are collected in a special container located in a generally available place within the office building. Finally, defective electronic equipment, fluorescent lamps, and used toners are handed over to recycling companies for processing.
Nova Trading seeks to be perceived as an environmentally friendly company.