Exxaro report selector 2019

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Exxaro Resources Limited
Integrated report 2019

Currently viewing: Performance of the business in 2019 / People


"We have the greatest people at Exxaro in whom we invest significantly to safeguard their health and safety, to provide opportunities for professional and personal growth, and to equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge for the future requirements of our business." — Vanisha Balgobind

In determining our material matters over the past year, we grouped matters of significance raised during engagements with our stakeholders in this regard under the theme our people.

  • Our people
  • Safety and health
  • Workforce culture, diversity and capability/innovation
  • Supporting job and business creation



  Social and relationship




Exxaro recorded another fatality-free year in 2019 – the fourth since inception in 2006. The relatively steady decrease in the lost-time injury frequency rate (LTIFR) over five years reflects the focus and commitment of all our people on zero harm. We have implemented a robust internal management standard at group level to manage stoppages and compliance instructions aligned with sections 54 and 55 of the Mine Health and Safety Act, 1996 (Act 29 of 1996) and sections 29, 30 and 31 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, 1993 (Act 85 of 1993). The standard intends to proactively manage safety compliance by stopping to correct compliance issues and reducing the number of stoppage instructions issued by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy.

Safety performance

Key performance indicators
Number of fatalities 0 0 1
LTIFR per 200 000 hours 0.12 0.12 0.12
OHIFR 0.24 0.33 0.33
Project delivery measure for local economic development projects per SLP (time variance % from plan)1 (11) (behind schedule) (12) (behind schedule) (15) (behind schedule)
Employment equity (%) in top, senior and middle management at every business unit1 54.7 53.5 57
Human resource development (% payroll excluding levies, including internal and external training)2 6.5 6.3 5.1
Skills provision (% of internal appointment of critical skills) 48 52 56
Skills retention (% turnover) 3.8 5.1 5

1 2014 Mining Charter
2 2019 Mining Charter

We have made steady progress over the past 13 years, proving that our target of zero harm is attainable.

The LTIFR was unchanged in 2019 at 0.12, and significantly below the peak of 0.42 in 2006. We recorded 26 LTIs against an aspiration of zero harm.

In 2019, seven section 54 directives were issued by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy at Grootegeluk, ECC and Matla for identified non-compliance. We believe the current internal management standard will ensure that we actively stop unsafe activities and, in time, prevent accidents at all our business units.


In 2019, of the 51 cases of occupational disease reported to the Compensation Commissioner for Occupational Diseases, 15 (demonstrably work-related) were accepted for compensation, bringing the occupational health incident frequency rate (OHIFR) to 0.24 (target: 0.31).

We introduced the OHIFR three years ago to drive awareness of health risks, focusing specifically on effective management of chronic lifestyle diseases.

Culture transformation

Our corporate culture is critical in determining our success today and in years to come. In line with our 2026 strategy, we have sought to evolve our culture through a change programme called connect2Next. The programme aligns all major change initiatives to ensure collaboration, congruence and effective communication throughout the organisation, and it explores opportunities for synergies in implementing the change programmes.

Highlights in the implementation of our connect2NEXT
culture transformation programme in 2019
Impact on strategic objectives


We refreshed timeless values and developed culture themes to create awareness and communicate desired behaviours group-wide.


Within its overarching values, the company has five cultural themes including responsibility, adaptability, openness and connectivity, diversity and ownership. The company therefore aims to foster a culture of being adaptable to the ever-changing world around us, encouraging its employees to be willing to learn and improve in everything they do. As change is inevitable, based on current social, economic, and technological realities, the company aims to be agile and to create new opportunities to move the group forward as a collective.

The company brought automation to some of the company's departments in the form of Digital C (colleague) bots, which streamline mundane and repetitive processes so that employees can put their time to better use exploring different areas of work or taking time to improve their skills. The company reported at the Mining Indaba 2019 that, in the short period that the Digital Cs were piloted, the company has seen a percentage increase in transactional volumes, reduction in processing errors, improved quality of data and shorter processing time.

Additionally, each of the business units have digitalised their mining value chain, referred to as Ops-Eye, which provides real-time data on stock levels, quality of coal, throughput and has improved decision-making time. The Ops-Eye intelligence is a value chain control room with a "bird's-eye view" of an entire and interconnected operation. It can anticipate any bottlenecks and inform local control rooms of any changes needed to avoid production loss. Ops-Eye has the ability to access integrated information and predict potential outcomes, which forms part of the company's Digital@Exxaro programme.

Exxaro won the top prize at the 19th annual SA National Business Awards in the innovation category for its digitalisation and innovation journey in 2019, which is an integral part of the company's organisational strategy. The Digital@Exxaro programme was launched to promote the digitalisation and innovation journey, and has shown that using digital, the company operates its mining assets on the lowest quartile through improved productivity, reduced costs and improved safety performance.

Workplace We adopted new ways of working, including a move to the conneXXion in July and empowered employees with change-enablement sessions  
Digital@Exxaro Digital technology solutions were introduced to enable efficient collaboration  
Smart workforce To bring our people up to speed with digital technologies, design thinking and analytics, we introduced smart workforce training programmes  
Partnering via ecosystems We collaborated in partnerships with external stakeholders to improve socio-economic conditions for communities in Mpumalanga and Limpopo: houses, crèches, community halls, small businesses and youth development programmes were established including YDx to bridge the youth unemployment gap  
Organisational excellence For the benefit of all stakeholders, we maintained continuous improvement using efficiency enhancements such as the LEAN5 methodology, Agile1 and the Startup Way2  
1. Changing and creating processes to become more responsive to developments in technology and also as a result of innovation.
2. The Startup Way by Eric Ries is a management system based on five principles:
  1. Continuous innovation that repeatedly finds new breakthroughs
  2. The startup as an atomic unit of work
  3. Entrepreneurship as the missing function in the organisation
  4. Unleashing entrepreneurship as a kind of second founding
  5. Continuous transformation that rewrites the company’s DNA

Employment equity

Since Exxaro's inception 13 years ago, developing skills levels across the business has been the cornerstone of successfully implementing our employment equity plans. We have achieved our targets at the middle and junior management levels. However, our challenge is with senior management and people with disabilities. New targets were published in September 2018 with a five-year compliance time frame.

Our women-in-mining focus is a key enabler for women to enter careers in our industry. Women currently comprise 22% of the workforce, and we focus on attracting women through our talent pipelines. Women now constitute 43% of young professionals in training, 33% of our full-time bursars in engineering and mining at universities, and black women represent 35% of the learner pipeline across the group.

Talent management

Exxaro's employees, 99% sourced from our host communities in South Africa, are given numerous opportunities to remain competent and relevant in their jobs. High-potential individuals are also sought within the same communities for our trainee pipeline, and they are placed in relevant skills development programmes or awarded bursaries, internships and learnerships. We thus empower local community members to compete for positions in the company. Training is provided mostly in engineering and mining disciplines at the Grovos training centre in Lephalale and at the Colliery Training College in eMalahleni, Mpumalanga. In 2019, Exxaro had 964 young people in trainee feeder schemes.

Exxaro strives to exceed prescribed training targets year-on-year hence a significant portion of payroll is spent on youth and employee development. In 2019, Exxaro spent R298 million or 6.52% of payroll (target: 5%) on development training (2018: R260 million or 6.3%) including:

  • R103 million on job-related operational and technical training at business units, including operator training and mobile equipment licences (162 043 training interventions were completed using our e-learning platform)
  • R78 million on bursaries, professionals in training, internships, learnerships and skills programmes to secure our talent pipeline (viewed from the perspective of outcomes, we examine key areas across the skills value chain to ensure the right skills are available at the right time) with over half of talent pipeline spend on artisan and miner learnership development
  • R14 million on developing targeted employees through management programmes, leadership roles, postgraduate studies and support functions

Economic empowerment

An employee ownership plan scheme was developed for qualifying employees in 2019 and implemented in 2020. The scheme is evergreen and beneficiaries will benefit from dividend payments only for the duration of employment.

In terms of the interim cash scheme, equivalent in value to a dividend payment, a qualifying employee in service on all two payment dates received a total of R9 264 in 2019 (2018: R10 925).

The base calculation used to determine the dividend payment is equal to 500 units (one unit representing one share) or less (depending on the employee's length of service).

An evergreen community ownership scheme is also in the process of development. The scheme envisages partnership with government for sustainable local development of communities from the dividend.

Our enterprise and supplier development programme continued to support local community businesses in 2019.

Around R170 million was disbursed to 30 beneficiaries in 2019.


The company was recognised for innovative engagement with customers in the service design category of the 2019 Loeries for the MyNexxt: future-ready workforce video, which received a silver award (the greatest achievement in the category in 2019). The award acknowledges creativity and innovation across the region. Exxaro, in partnership with multinational professional services company, Accenture, and WinWin developed MyNexxt to support, upskill and prepare Exxaro's 15 000+ employees for a digital future. Accenture was Exxaro's partner in completing the service design, and WinWin was a key player in developing the solution that brought the design to life.