Germany – The OEM and IG Metall agreed a deal which covers 115,000 workers at the plants in Wolfsburg, Brunswick, Hanover, Salzgitter, Emden and Kassel, as well as Volkswagen Financial Services. Effective June 1, 2015, VW will pay an increase of 3.4% on basic wages and contribute to the company pension scheme.

In addition to the financial improvements, VW has committed to offering 1,400 apprenticeships at its plants each year, including training opportunities for individuals on dual study programmes. This part of the agreement will apply between 2015 and 2017. VW will contribute to dual study costs.

A ‘Gute Arbeit’ (‘Good Work’) plan is also being developed, in light of the increasing digitisation of both plants and offices. The two parties will begin discussions on the following topics: staying healthy at work; improving work/life balance; innovative training and qualifications; retirement provision; modern work organisation and flexibility.

“Volkswagen and IG Metall took into account the difficult situation in many markets and tough competition in the automotive sector,” said the chief negotiator for VW, Martin Rosik, head of HR at Volkswagen Passenger Car. “The pay agreement will bring employees a perceptible increase in income and is also based on the economic performance capabilities of the industry.”

Horst Neumann, board member of VW Aktiengesellschaft with responsibility for HR, described the agreement as “a compromise that is just about acceptable”.