Pedro Hita

Human Resources Director
Viajes El Corte Inglés

Decent work and economic growth

At a time of economic crisis, there are those who may think that devoting efforts to activities relating to sustainability is a waste of time or resources. Nothing could be further from the truth, as sustainability means much more than reforesting or philanthropy. It means reasserting a firm commitment to the society we are part of and, above all, to a way of creating lasting value.

In a company such as Viajes El Corte Inglés, which has been operating in Spain for more than 45 years, we understand sustainability to have a threefold dimension: economics, society and the environment. Decidedly, in the first place no strategy can be considered if we are not capable of ensuring the economic viability of the company and the creation of long-lasting value. This is an unavoidable requirement that any action must be built upon.

At Viajes El Corte Inglés, we have programmes that focus on quality training through our own employee training plans.

Along the same lines, Viajes El Corte Inglés is firmly committed to corporate citizenship, with an emphasis on young talent with dual professional training. This is an innovative model that combines the theoretical content being taught in educational establishments with practical training at our company.

The goals being pursued are, among others, to achieve greater employability for young people through the “learning by doing” theory, and to increase their prospects of joining their profession after obtaining their academic qualifications. Once the foregoing principle has been accepted, it is very important to raise the point of close links between the company and society and, as far as possible, to contribute towards improving quality of life and preventing possible inequalities.

In our company, it has always been very clear to us: we firmly support training. A country’s levels of development are directly related to the quality of its education as is demonstrated in multiple reports from international bodies that are experts on the subject. At Viajes El Corte Inglés, we have had programmes that focus on quality training through our own employee training plans for years.

Last year, in 2015, more than 150,000 hours of training were delivered through 752 courses, with a ratio of 4.6 courses per employee. Additionally, and with a clear desire to adapt to the changes that have been occurring in our sector, in recent years resources have also been invested in postgraduate training, in order to provide a bridge between university studies and the gateway to the world of work. Proof of this is found in our Official Master’s Degree in New Technologies Applied to Travel Agencies, given in collaboration with Universidad Antonio de Nebrija and Centro de Estudios Ramón Areces, the second edition of which was inaugurated recently.

From the perspective of economic productivity, Viajes El Corte Inglés is currently in the process of undergoing significant technological change, with a strong emphasis on innovation in order to become a leading omnichannel travel services company in the Spanish-speaking market.

We understand this innovation process to be a series of activities that lead to the successful introduction into the market of new and improved products, processes, services, or new management and organization models. This way of understanding the business from the perspective of constant change comprises creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, leadership and the ability to anticipate the challenges and shifts in the sector.

Our philosophy has always been to work to ensure jobs are maintained and quality jobs with traditionally good relationships with workers’ representatives even at the most difficult times. In recent years, in addition, there has been a gradual increase in the integration of people with disabilities either by hiring them directly or through alternative measures, by opting to choose suppliers from Special Employment Centres.

Finally, one of the main strategic keys to our company, a pioneer in the El Corte Inglés corporate group, is our resolute commitment to internationalization. The result of this path, which began to be followed more than 15 years ago, has led us at the present time to have a workforce consisting of more than 700 employees, jobs created in the 12 countries where we currently operate and thus contributing to the growth and development of economies beyond our borders.

SDG talks
Viajes El Corte Inglés – Europamundo Vacaciones

Good practices
Viajes El Corte Inglés