Both at sea and onshore, the company’s primary focus is to ensure continuity on the personnel side. The company strives to establish an interesting and attractive workplace that attracts competent employees, where appraisals and employee surveys are key measures. We believe that we have succeeded in this context and that we have a stable and highly qualified workforce.
Of the company’s office staff, 36% are women and 64% are men. Women and men have equal opportunities to qualify for all types of jobs and positions, and they have equal opportunities for promotion. Working conditions are deemed to be good. Salaries reflect the individual’s qualifications, regardless of gender.
Solvang is an international company with employees from a number of countries and cultures in addition to Norway. This recruitment policy is important for the future development of the company. The company wants to attract competent employees, regardless of religion, gender, race or sexual orientation.
The company engages in research and development work to optimise the ships' operations and to reduce emissions.
The group has 39 onshore employees and around 700 sailing personnel. Working conditions on shore and on the ships are considered to be good. Sick leave on board the ships was 0.50%. The group had one incident that resulted in lost time in 2016, and have only had 5 incidents causing lost time over the last 9 years. The target is always zero accidents, and the very low injury frequency can be attributes to a conscious attention on this area across the entire group.
Sick leave among the onshore employees was 0.99% in 2016. There were no incidents resulting in personal injury at the office in 2016.
Board of Directors
The Board of Directors consists of two women and three men. There is a healthy and positive working relationship between the management and Board of Directors.
By offering a complete range of jobs, salaries and other benefits, Solvang aims to be an attractive employer for skilled individuals in all relevant disciplines.
All of Solvang’s employees, including the Managing Director, are employed at a fixed salary with no fixed bonus or option elements. Salaries are adjusted once a year. The Managing Director’s salary is evaluated correspondingly by the Board once a year. The company has had a pension scheme that covers around 66% of the employees’ salary with full entitlement based on 30 years of service and a retirement age of 67 for employees who started with the company before 31 December 2010. Persons who were employed after this date had been offered a defined contribution scheme. Both these pension schemes have been closed and settled as of 31.12.2016, and are replaced by a new hybrid scheme from 01.01.2017. In addition, the company has an ordinary insurance scheme covering disability, accidents and death.
The Board is remunerated by fixed directors’ fees that are determined annually by the General Meeting. Board members have no bonus or options agreements with the company.
The transport of LPG and petrochemical gases by sea entails little risk of emissions or leakage into the sea. Loading and unloading operations are conducted in closed systems, and strict quality and safety requirements reduce the risk of emissions to a minimum.
All transport at sea entails emissions to the air from the combustion of oil by the ships’ main and auxiliary engines. Our policy in this area is thus to reduce such emissions as much as practically possible. The group focuses primarily on reducing the consumption of bunkers and lubricants, and has through active measures been able to continue the positive trend achieved in recent years. The modern ships today use up to 40% less fuel compared to ships of same size 20 years ago.
Measurements are carried out regularly using a number of systems. Fuel consumption measured against the distance travelled is one of the most important key figures. Wherever possible, we optimise our speed, in other words the speed that gives the lowest emissions and consumption given the contractual obligations we have towards our customers. These systematic analyses have generated excellent results in only a short timeframe. Our modern fleet is also significantly more environmentally friendly than older ships.
In 2010, the company was certified and approved in accordance with the ISO 14001 environmental standards, and will continue in its work to comply with the standard in future.
The company has strict quality and safety requirements, both on board the ships and within the onshore organisation. This is reflected in very good statistics for Loss Time Incident (LTI) injuries, with one incidents in 2016 and only five incidents in the entire period from 2008-2016, with around 3.5 million working hours per year. This is further demonstrated in our good insurance statistics. In order to ensure that this positive development continues, the company invests significant resources in programmes for the continuous improvement of quality and safety on board and on land. We conduct regular and systematic inspections of our ships as part of this work. The same applies to several of our customers, which includes several major oil companies. There were a total of 314 inspections on our 21 ships in 2016. Of these inspections, 146 were conducted by Solvang, while our customers, port authorities and classification companies conducted a total of 168 inspections.
The company uses the “Best Management Practice” in waters as appropriate according to the situation.
Corporate Social Responsibility
The group's main contribution to society is to conduct long-term, sustainable and value-added business for our shareholders, employees, customers, suppliers and other relations. Our goal is to ensure that our business practices and investments are sustainable and contribute to long-term economic, environmental and social development. The group's material sustainability areas are within Environment, Finance, Human Resources and Community, including ethics and anti-corruption.
The group recognizes its environmental responsibility and strive to maintain a high standard in order to reduce the environmental impact of its operations. The company has focused on reducing fuel consumption, which is the main source of the shipping sector's emissions of CO2, NOx and SOx. Continuous measurements of all consumption are being done, as well as implementing measures and setting clear targets for improvement. The group also has two VLGCs which were the first in the world of its kind with full exhaust cleaning system, have done a complete retrofit of one of the ethylene carriers with the same exhaust gas cleaning equipment, and all the three newbuilds delivered in 2015 had full scale exhaust gas cleaning installed.
With regards to Finances, the company strives for good corporate governance with necessary internal controls, risk management, and solidity.
It is the company’s policy to integrate attention to human and labour rights in its existing business. In practice, a large part of human and labour rights are covered by the company's health and safety work. The company values its employees as its most important resource, and always aim to continuously provide and promote high quality of working conditions, both on land and on board ships.
The company believes that corruption hinders well-functioning business processes and suppresses economic development. The group focuses on transparency in its business practices, and compete in a fair and ethical manner. The Board of Solvang ASA has approved a Code of Conduct, a set of ethical guidelines that define the company's ethical standards. The group is furthermore a full member of MACN (Marine Anti-Corruption Network), a network of companies doing knowledge sharing and working actively to reduce corruption in the most exposed areas.