People management

The purpose of Wärtsilä’s People Strategy, as an integral part of group strategy, is to support the company businesses and to ensure the successful implementation of their strategies. This is achieved by developing the company’s organisation and competencies to meet both the current and future business needs.

The key focus areas of the strategy continue to be the further development of leadership and a leadership culture, as well as an emphasis on high performance and operational excellence throughout the organisation. Strengthening accountability and ownership is encouraged by promoting employee engagement through a culture of open communication, integrity, and innovation. Similarly, the strategy ensures that the businesses have the required resources, and skilled and motivated people at their disposal. This involves the implementation of changes within the organisation, a continuous focus on competence development and performance excellence, with quality in the setting of targets, proper and regular feedback, the evaluation of overall performance, and recognition of outstanding performance.
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Wärtsilä Human Resources focuses on developing people management processes, tools, and ways of working that are consistent across national and organisational boundaries. In particular, an intensive effort has been made to further develop managerial skills in people management. Wärtsilä Human Resources invests in technologies and tools that enable quick access to online reports, employee information, and annual compensation planning for both local and multi-country teams.

Transforming company culture

Together with the digital transformation initiatives Wärtsilä promotes new ways of working and company culture. Wärtsilä's purpose is driving all our activities and the company’s values of “Energy, Excellence and Excitement” are strengthened by the diversity of its employees. Wärtsilä aims to capture opportunities and make things happen, to do things better than any of its competitors, and to foster openness, respect, and trust while creating excitement. A diverse workforce generates innovation, higher profits, has better complex problem-solving skills, and enables access to a larger talent pool.

Performance management

One of the essential elements of the Wärtsilä People Strategy is to embrace and develop a culture of high performance and performance excellence throughout the organisation. Coaching to achieve better performance through smart target setting together with continuous and real-time feedback is a vital element.

The well managed performance management process supports Wärtsilä in reaching its business targets by translating business strategies into team and individual objectives. Each Wärtsilä employee needs to know and understand Wärtsilä's business strategies and their goals. More importantly, everyone needs to know the main targets set for their own units, and the target areas related to their own work. More focus has been put on the quality and impact of the process by emphasising the importance of continuous feedback, expected behaviours, and opportunities for personal growth.

As a part of the performance management process, each employee receives performance feedback and an evaluation based on their overall job performance, as well as a personal development plan for the future. Overall performance evaluation is one of the considerations in compensation decisions, and is in line with the principle of performance-based rewarding. 

Learning and development

New learning solutions for line managers have been developed to support them in their people management and leadership roles. These include the annual executive development programme (LLP) and other global leadership development programmes for senior managers. 

Wärtsilä’s HR organisation has developed the Operational Excellence Academy learning framework and an Operational Excellence learning portal with supporting materials for all those staff members in the organisation involved in leading operational excellence. The aim of the OE Academy is not only to learn, but to establish operational excellence as an integrated part of the company culture and way of working, and to ensure continuous efficiency improvement.

Learning on the job, self-learning, mentoring, coaching, job rotation, and assignments designed to encourage competence development and the transfer of competence and skills from experienced to younger employees, are integral parts of the development of learning and competence within the company. Employees are given formal classroom training at all organisational levels; from induction training for new employees, to training courses for the company's top executives.


At Wärtsilä, equal opportunities and opportunities for personal growth are core principles. The company supports its employees in self-improvement and in finding their own path within the company. Recruiting and retaining the best talent enables Wärtsilä to be the valued business partner of its customers, and the employer of choice for current and future employees.

© 2019 Wärtsilä