March 17, 2014

Generation Network: How is demographic change influencing our working conditions?

Demographic change is making it necessary to recognize and exploit the potential of all generations even better. Furthermore, scientific studies confirm that “teams with a mixed range of ages” are more successful.

With roughly 50,000 employees in Germany, Deutsche Bank has a wide range of knowledge and expertise at its disposal – with different generations contributing their different strengths and experience. Demographic trends in Germany are changing the working world and also making an impact on the work environment. And that affects everyone: no matter whether male or female and irrespective of ethnic / cultural origin and phase of life. Demographic change is making it necessary to exploit the potential of all generations even better. Furthermore, scientific studies confirm that “teams with a mixed range of ages” are more successful.

That is the reason why our employees founded the “Generation Network” at Deutsche Bank at the beginning of 2007. It is a network of employees which is open to all age groups and which works towards dialog spanning the generations. In addition, the Generation Network aims to heighten awareness of the thematic issue in the management agenda of the bank and further promote understanding for one another and co-operation between the generations.

In the meantime, the network has almost 1,000 members all over Germany. As the so-called “business sponsor”, Stefan Bender, Head of Global Transaction Banking Europe, Middle East & Africa and Chairman of the Diversity Council Germany, supports the activities of the staff network. The Chairman of the Generation Network works in a volunteer capacity: he arranges lectures and discussion forums and organizes the annual Generation Tandem Program. The latter connects new employees and experienced colleagues in line with the motto of “finding out what others have already found out” and offers participants an opportunity to get to know valuable new viewpoints of other generations

How demographic change alters the working world

The Generation Network hosted a symposium for the first time in February 2014 in order to promote an exchange with other companies as well. Representatives from Bosch, SAP and Evonik presented their concepts and ideas for solutions in line with the central question of “How is demographic change influencing our working conditions?”. They conducted discussions with the roughly 100 participants about the extent to which demographic change is altering the working world and examined the question of how older employees can be integrated more firmly with respect to vocational training and continued training options, for example. Daniel Hoster from the Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management division talked about how demographic trends are influencing investment behaviour. His theory is that there will be a sustained shift in demand primarily due to the two drivers with long-term effect: globalization and demographics.

In his concluding address for the symposium, Stephan Leithner, Member of the Management Board of Deutsche Bank, emphasized that safeguarding prosperity and sustainable private retirement provisions will be one of the greatest challenges in light of declining populations of working age and simultaneously increasing numbers of older people. But he said that human resources management also has to react to demographic changes. “For example, we will invest more in continued training for older employees, and we will find ways to preserve the know-how of those colleagues,” said Leithner in conclusion.
Das Generationen-Netzwerk der Deutschen Bank will die Zusammenarbeit zwischen den Generationen fördern.

“We will invest more in continued training for older employees, and we will find ways to preserve the know-how of those colleagues.”

Stephan Leithner Member of the executive management board

Employee initiatives

Already in 2007

employees founded the “Generation Network” at Deutsche Bank. This network is open to all age groups and it works towards dialog spanning the generations.

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