A purpose-driven win-win culture

summary 2020

Completed our fit-for-future organisational structure
79% of leadership positions filled internally
Key changes made to business leadership at Exco and MD levels
Introduced a digital on-boarding framework
Voted number 1 employer of choice in the manufacturing sector by graduates for the first time
Invested R97 million in skills development

Our workforce and people strategy

To enable us to win in the market through unleashing the power of our people, we continue building a diverse talent base, developing leadership capability, and creating a great place to work, supported by our commitment to execution excellence. Through our people strategy, our goal is to ignite a culture of consumer obsession, agility, and a growth mindset that will accelerate innovation and winning performance.

Building a diverse talent base

We continued our focus this year on building commercial and supply chain capability across the organisation. This was supported by targeted talent strategies, where we prioritised building pipelines for scarce and critical skill roles specifically in bakeries and manufacturing by leveraging key partnership with selected service providers.

As part of our ongoing journey to improve the employee experience and create a great place to work, we undertook various campaigns – both internally through our communication portals and externally via social media – to communicate our employee value proposition and employer brand. These included the Youth Month Campaign, Women's Month Campaign, Rising Star Awards and Rising Star Female Forum. These employer branding campaigns were well received, reflected by the 140% increase in followership on Tiger Brands' LinkedIn profile, from 100 000 in September 2019 to 239 000 in September 2020

In looking to attract talent for our Africa operations, we have commenced the roll out of our Africa talent plan and appointed new talent in some of our African operations. We have developed a customised Africa management trainee programme, and sourced management trainees for Mozambique, Zambia and Nigeria.

We maintained a strong focus throughout the year on promoting employee diversity, with African, Coloured and Indian male and females making up 95% of internal appointments through internal promotions and external hires this year. Through our gender equity strategy, we are working to improve the representation, engagement and development of women in core functions and at leadership levels. The gender equity strategy includes a specific focus on three core areas: our RISE women in leadership development programme that focuses on developing women through action learning business projects, the Tiger Women's Network that focuses on enabling women to overcome the barriers that women traditionally encounter in the workplace, and function-specific development programmes that equip women with core technical skills, strengthen leadership capability and improve the overall talent pipeline of female talent. Through these programmes we aim to increase overall female representation at all levels, especially in management, to 34,8% by 2023. We also aim to increase women participation in leadership development, career growth and progression initiatives to 50% by 2023.

We have recently developed and commenced the implementation of a generational diversity management strategy, where our goal is to ensure coexistence of multiple generations, foster a sense of belonging and connectedness among generations, and improve the employee experience of each generational group at Tiger. Next year we will be launching our young professionals networking forum (NexGen Tiger), as a platform to enable inclusive networking, development and engagement among young professionals across the business. Through this forum we aim to amplify the voices of the young professionals at Tiger Brands, and bring to bear a different perspective that will help deliver winning performance.

79% leadership positions filled internally
4 827 employees trained through the Tiger Brands Academy
R97 million invested in skills development
146 new employees successfully on-boarded, with 28 through our new digital platform
763 learnerships, apprenticeships and workplace experience students active on accredited skills development interventions such as learnerships, apprenticeships, skills programmes, workplace experience and internships which includes new enrolments as well as roll-over from the previous year.

To enable us to win in the market and unleash the power of our people, we are building a diverse talent base, developing leadership capability, and creating a great place to work, supported by our commitment to execution excellence. Through our people strategy, our goal is to ignite a culture of consumer obsession, agility, and a growth mindset that drives innovation and winning performance.

Gender diversity profile

Our EE profile

    Workforce profile as at 30 September 2020 (South Africa)
    Male   Female   Foreign nationals    
Occupational levels   Band African Coloured Indian White   African Coloured Indian White   Male Female   Total
Top management   FL-FU 1 0 2 3   2 0 0 0   1 1   10
Senior management   EL-EU 12 2 10 27   8 3 17 12   3 0   94
Professionally qualified and experienced specialists and mid-management   DL-DU 74 28 50 118   75 17 43 51   7 1   464
Skilled technical and academically qualified workers, junior management, supervisors, foremen and superintendants   CL-CU 509 147 109 187   279 75 60 102   12 1   1 481
Semi-skilled and discretionary decision making   BL-BU 2 334 175 137 27   677 130 75 78   5 0   3 638
Unskilled and defined decision making   AL-AU 3 352 183 38 8   1 355 149 53 1   8 4   5 151
Total permanent                               10 838
Employees with disabilities     9 0 1 0   2 0 0 0   0 0   12

Our talent focus next year will be on further enhancing our marketing, sales and commercial skills and deepening our supply chain capabilities, by executing targeted talent strategies. We will also maintain our focus on executing fit-for-purpose learning and skills development, and further embed just-in-time digital learning across Tiger.

Developing core capabilities through the Tiger Brands Academy

Our learning and skills development framework has been designed to create a culture of life-long learning, focused on driving fit-for-purpose core capability development, leadership development, digital learning, professional skills development, compliance training and employee bursaries. This is delivered through the Tiger Brands Academy, and various sub-academies aligned to the disciplines of supply chain, IT, customer, marketing, R&D, bakeries, finance, IT and human resources.

This year, we invested R97,3 million on training and skills development, with more than 90% of our total training spend invested in developing black employees. This investment equated to a skills development spend of 3% of our total payroll spend; this is below our 2020 target of 4,2% due mainly to the impact that Covid-19 had on our ability to host training. As part of our ongoing commitment to provide access to just-in-time learning, we have started to embed our digital learning strategy. Implementation of digital learning programmes has been fast-tracked due to the impact of Covid-19, with multiple programmes such as onboarding and leadership development, revised to be delivered virtually.

We spent R6,1 million this year on bursaries for 148 students. This compares to R7 million for 164 students in 2019. A total of 427 students have graduated since 2007, 42 graduated in 2019.

Developing leadership capabilities

To ensure that we develop inspirational leaders who are talent magnets, agile and drive a culture of innovation and winning performance, this year we rolled out two leadership development programmes across the organisation: LIFT and Game Changer. The LIFT programme is targeted at employees who have recently been appointed into a leadership role, or those being considered for such a transition.

The Game Changer leadership development programme was implemented as part of our culture transformation journey to develop leaders with the intention and skills to actively create inspiring winning opportunities in daily interactions with colleagues on all levels.

In line with our promise to continuously develop our leaders and ensure that they receive developmental feedback from multiple stakeholders, we launched the MultiRater feedback tool during the performance year-end review period. This gave leaders an opportunity to receive feedback regarding their behaviour as aligned to Tiger values, winning behaviours and leadership competences. We also recently launched mentorship circles for emerging leaders looking to learn and benefit from more experienced leaders.

Our leadership competencies


  • Inspires winning performance
  • Nurtures and grows talent
  • Shapes strategy
  • Achieves results through others
  • Market focused
  • Customer obsessed
  • Builds partnerships
  • Builds teams

Our leadership development programmes

Intervention Target audience
LIFT leadership programme Lead operators
EDGE leadership programme Frontline leaders
GAME CHANGER leadership programme All leaders
SOAR leadership programme Leaders of leaders
REIMAGINE Tiger leadership development programme Enterprise leaders

Creating a great place to work

A key focus of our people strategy is to instil an agile performance-based culture that delivers on our identified winning behaviours of consumer obsession, teamwork, empowered accountability and focused execution. We began our culture transformation journey in October 2018 with the alignment of our teams on our aspirational culture, and a refresh of our values and winning behaviours.

We have continued to make progress this year in embedding our winning culture. Our employee value proposition (EVP) has been firmly defined and forms the basis of our actions to improve the employee experience and to enhance our ability to attract, develop and retain talent. An important development this year was the launch of our THRIVE employee wellbeing programme, which covers employee health management, psychosocial wellbeing and broader risk management activities. This was a key enabler in our response to the Covid-19 pandemic and through our comprehensive multi-pronged approach we were able to support both our employees and their families.

Since starting on this culture change programme, we have conducted numerous Heart of the Tiger dialogues with staff to deepen the internalisation of our refreshed values and winning behaviours, learn from their experiences and perspectives, and evaluate our progress in instilling the winning culture. Informed by this feedback we are taking various actions to drive the necessary shift in behaviour.

Although we have established and embedded a clear reward and recognition strategy and have made some progress in making our reward strategy more competitive, we recognise the need to ignite business performance to improve our ability to retain key talent through our short-term and long-term incentive plans.

To this end, we implemented a special incentive to motivate and reward our frontline employees who continued to work during the lockdown. We have changed our long-term incentive instruments from share appreciation rights to performance and restricted shares.

72 Leader-led culture transformation engagements completed
174 Heart of the Tiger team dialogues undertaken, engaging 9 226 employees
Voted  number 1 graduate employer of choice in the manufacturing sector, and second in the FMCG sector in the South African Graduate Employers Association 2020 survey
Once again certified as Top Employer by Top Employer’s Institute

To deliver a further step change in driving a culture of innovation, consumer obsession and winning performance, we will be taking measures to enable a work environment that liberates people to focus on the consumer and our purpose. We will review our delegations of authority and our leadership meeting cadence to encourage more agile decision making and execution. We will rigorously prioritise annual deliverables enabling category teams to deliver on fewer more focused priorities, and we will be standardising transactional processes and enabling them through technology and digital platforms. To drive innovation, we will be implementing cross-functional teams to accelerate the speed of execution of “big bet” performance improvement and innovation projects. Regular employee experience surveys will enable us to evaluate our progress, identify opportunities for improvement and execute actions to further progress our winning culture.

Rewarding winning performance

Reward focus areas

During the year, we continued to implement initiatives in support of our remuneration strategy, which enables us to align with market practices, drive action against key performance indicators critical to the business, and to measure and reward performance against our strategy.

Some of our highlights include:

Employee relations

Tiger Brands complies with South African legislation on labour relations, basic conditions of employment, employment equity, skills development, among others. We also comply with International Labour Organisation conventions, and relevant regulations in operating areas in Africa. There were no instances of non-compliance with labour standards this year.

One of the company's strategic intents is to establish and maintain a meaningful collaborative relationship with our key stakeholders, including our representative trade unions. This year the company held its first top-to-top engagement facilitated by the CEO with key trade union leadership. This engagement was used to reflect on Tiger Brands' performance and to share the company's broad strategy and plans. The engagements were preceded by a collaborative approach with the trade unions on the company's response to Covid-19 within the company's operations across the country.

Early in the year, Tiger Brands initiated fit-for-future, a structure review programme to drive savings and optimise the business towards improved consumer focus, cost-efficiency, ownership, accountability, agility and speed of execution. The implementation of this initiative was initially deferred as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, but with the impact of the lockdown exacerbating the already challenging business environment, the need for this restructuring became ever more apparent, and the process was initiated in May 2020. A careful and structured workforce transition process was implemented to support our people during the restructuring process. This included upfront engagement with teams and individuals, the prioritising of redeployment opportunities for our people across the organisation through available vacancies, and mindful management of the people exiting their positions with the company. The process resulted in the optimisation of 493 positions and the retrenchment of 393 employees.

During the period under review we launched a sexual harassment campaign aimed at educating and raising awareness of both employees and managers.

Although the employee relations environment remains stable, a challenging operating environment and low inflation has resulted in challenged wage negotiations throughout our operations.

Covid-19 response: People

Our people agenda shifted fundamentally this year, to focus all our efforts and resources on managing the rapidly spreading Covid-19 pandemic and its devastating impact on our organisation, employees, their families, consumers and communities. We have delivered a number of interventions to ensure employee safety, productivity, and physical and mental wellbeing during the lockdown. In addition to the core elements outlined in Our Covid-19 response (see here), the key aspects of our people response included the following: