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The OKD company has saved hundreds of millions thanks to the proposals for improvement submitted by its employees who were rewarded for them by receiving bonuses, trips or even a car

The OKD company has saved hundreds of millions thanks to the proposals for improvement submitted by its employees who were rewarded for them by receiving bonuses, trips or even a car

Ostrava (2 January 2012) – Otakar Duda, an electrical expert from The Darkov Mine became the lucky winner of Škoda Fabia car, the first prize of the OKD company incentive programme called Continuous Improvement. The names of approximately 600 employees who had submitted a proposal for improvement in 2011, for instance in the area of coal mining or occupational safety, were placed in the drawing drum. Thanks to the suggestion of its employees, the company will achieve savings in the amount of almost CZK 300 million.


The mining companies are well aware that the initiative of employees shall be encouraged and rewarded. That is why the OKD management announced an incentive programme for the employees of OKD and supplying companies, the aim of which was to encourage them to submit
proposals for improvements. “We introduced the programme two years ago. Through its clearly set rules, system of evaluation and rewards it was conducive to a better quality of submitted ideas.The effort to increase the productivity, to make the work easier and primarily to enhance the safety thanks to ideas coming from the employees themselves has become a routine part of our work,“ said Leo Bayer, the Chief Operating Officer of OKD.


Everybody, who in 2011 submitted a meaningful proposal of how to make the work more effective, how to improve the work environment in mines, how to make the work in mines easier and particularly how to increase the safety at workplace, had a chance to be drawn in the drawing and to receive a car which was the main special prize, or a voucher for a trip or electronics. Moreover, the author of every received proposal was automatically granted CZK 1 000, while the amount of additional reward depended on the anticipated benefits and the calculated savings of the operating costs.

In 2011, the employees of OKD and supplying companies submitted 602 meaningful proposals for improvements. So far 432 projects have been implemented, additional 148 projects are under implementation and 22 proposals were entered into the database for future use. The employees have so far been paid out the incentive bonuses for successful proposals in the amount of CZK 1.52 million. The total savings, as calculated by the OKD company, achieved thanks to the employees' proposals reached CZK 126.2 million, on the account of which more bonuses shall be paid to the relevant employees in the upcoming weeks and the total amount of paid bonuses will thus be even higher. In addition, the implementation team set up at individual mines submitted optimisation projects that shall result in savings of more than 158 million. The total savings for OKD company thanks to the Continuous Improvement programme will thus reach roughly CZK 300 million.

The winning proposal by Otakar Duda consists in the renovation of a float switch which is used to control the pumping of waste water. The lucky winner proposed how to repair the float which as a consequence of broken wires in the power cord becomes non-functional during the operation.


“The Programme has clearly proven its worth. We definitely want to continue with this programme in the next year and to build on experience gained during the two years of its existence. Apart from increasing the employees' co-responsibility and the sense of belonging to the company, it has brought special bonuses to our employees, enhanced occupational safety in mines, better working environment and more effective work in the OKD company. We are most pleased that we have been able to persuade the employees that there is a point in thinking about one's own work and seeking ways for its improvement and simplification and that it certainly is worth the while,“  added Bayer. .

Vladislav Sobol, OKD, a.s. spokesman

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