Rheinmetall employees identify with a distinctive corporate culture that focuses on trust, professional performance, initiative, self-responsibility, shared values and mutual understanding, and work together in partnership across functional, divisional and national boundaries.

Internationality and diversity

The international nature of our business activities means that people from many different countries are employed in our company. With locations on six continents, supply relationships in 144 countries, 12,624 employees abroad (50.6%) and 73 nationalities represented at Rheinmetall in Germany, internationality and diversity have long been part of everyday life in the Rheinmetall Group and are key factors in why we remain successful together in our global business activities despite all dissimilarities. At the end of fiscal 2018, 821 employees at our German companies were foreign nationals (previous year: 769). The management teams are made up of German and foreign managers. Multinational teams work on major projects. In addition, 63 German employees were posted to Group locations outside Germany (previous year: 75) in 2018. We view our employees’ diversity as a strategic factor for success. It is what makes us attractive to applicants. There is great potential for further growth by the Rheinmetall Group in this diversity and the opportunity to attract and retain the best talents.

The activities of the Diversity sector first created by Rheinmetall Automotive in 2017, the responsibilities of which were extended to the Defence division in 2018, are planned to be gradually and systematically expanded in the Rheinmetall Group’s companies in the next few years. One of the things that our training concepts and planned personnel development measures aim at is the appropriate participation of women in management.

By signing the principles of social responsibility in October 2018, the parties stress the importance of human and cultural diversity for working together, an inclusive and respectful corporate culture and tolerance in dealing with each other. The global framework agreement contains regulations governing compliance with international human rights, fair working conditions and the rights of employee representatives. The contents of the agreement were negotiated with the European Works Council. Representatives of IG Metall and the international trade union confederation IndustriALL Global Union were provided support through accompanying consultancy and coordination processes.

Women in managerial positions

The Defence and Automotive sectors have traditionally been dominated by men, who predominantly tend to choose technical or scientific subjects for study and professional training. The automotive and defence industries are generally favored by men. For these reasons, the percentage of women occupying management positions in our technology group is lower than in other industries.

The Rheinmetall Group understands the employment of women, in management positions in particular, as self-evident, but also as an important and material part of its diversity and sees this as an opportunity for development. Women in executive management and other management roles are to be encouraged more in the future. When filling vacant positions, internal candidates are to be chosen primarily if possible. Experience shows that these people work longer and more successfully for the Rheinmetall Group on average and consequently turnover in management positions and the temporary disruption associated therewith can be avoided. Suitable women are, therefore, to be prepared increasingly for management responsibilities via the internal support and development programs for junior staff in the medium and long term.

At the same time, the internal management development programs will set the respective line managers ambitious targets for the participation of suitable women in these programs. However, notwithstanding this, vacant positions must continue to be filled by the most qualified candidate, professionally and personally speaking, regardless of gender. It is also in the company’s interest to ensure continuity in terms of staffing in key positions in the most senior management.


There were 7.6 million severely disabled people living in Germany at the end of 2015. They therefore represent 9.3% of the total population. Inclusion in the labor market is making progress thanks to the large number of initiatives and measures adopted in recent years. Today, around 1.2 million employees with severe disabilities work in German companies, more than ever before.

We consciously encourage autonomous and equal participation and create the conditions needed for this. As long ago as 2002, we formulated key principles and inclusion targets with the Group representative body for severely disabled employees in a framework integration agreement to this end. An action plan for employing people with disabilities was developed for the German companies of Rheinmetall AG with the representative body for severely disabled employees, which sets out the intention to enter into an agreement with the Group representative body for severely disabled employees of the Group Works Council containing specific targets for the employment of severely disabled people. The Cologne Integration Office conducted a training course for HR managers and representatives of severely disabled employees in order to communicate the legal basis and provide information on funding opportunities.

People with disabilities or employees with health problems are integrated into the working life at Rheinmetall, where they are able to bring their talent and skills to the table and prove what they can do. Once again, the focus here is on developing existing strengths and potential. An important prerequisite for this is workstations individually adapted to the type and degree of disability, which allow the employees concerned to achieve work of the same quality as that of colleagues without disabilities. In the year under review, the German-based Rheinmetall Group companies employed 555 severely disabled people (previous year: 457), who are represented by the Group representative body for severely disabled employees.