We work together to make a workplace where people feel they belong and can reach their full potential.
At Alliant Energy, we deliver the energy solutions and exceptional service that our customers and communities count on – safely, efficiently and responsibly.
Live safety. Everyone. Always. Our first priority is that nobody gets hurt.
Do the right thing. We keep our promises and conduct our business openly and honestly.
Care for others. Together we create a workplace where people feel like they belong and can use their unique backgrounds, talents and perspectives to their fullest potential.
Make things better. We partner with our customers and communities to solve problems, create opportunities and help make life better.
Act for tomorrow. We use resources wisely, care for the environment and continuously improve ourselves and our company.
Think beyond. Be bold. We create and embrace change, innovate beyond current practices and use our curiosity to find new solutions.
Energizing our company culture
In 2018, we kicked off a companywide effort to create a culture of speed, fresh thinking and stronger teams among our employees. A key part of this effort was having every employee – more than 3,500 – complete G.O.T. (Grow-Optimize-Transform) Energy workshops. The sessions were conducted by employee volunteers from across the company who were certified in the content. We are continuing our culture-shaping initiative in 2019 with monthly Culture Conversations that include fliers, articles and presentation materials on different topics. By strengthening our culture, our employees can all work together differently to benefit customers.
Employee and public safety
Safety is a core value and integral to our culture at Alliant Energy – to live safety, everyone, always. We are proud of our strong safety culture, which stems from our executive and local safety leadership teams. Working together, these teams establish the company’s safety vision, strategy and priorities as well as ensure education and recognition of employee actions that improve our safety culture. This leadership provides strong support for sustained growth of both employee and public safety programs and initiatives at Alliant Energy. Results are reported quarterly to the Operations Committee of the Board of Directors, which provides oversight of the company’s safety programs.
Our company is focused on the proactive management of our safety performance. We are doing this by holding regular safety conversations with our workers in addition to conducting safety observations of their behaviors. This will move our safety culture toward measuring the presence of safety versus the absence of injuries. Our strategy implements this through the increased use of leading indicators – such as “good catches” and “near misses” – to help us recognize, remedy and reduce our safety risks before a problem occurs.
Public safety is equally important as we interact with our customers to provide energy to their homes and businesses. In addition to awareness campaigns, we offer natural gas and electric public safety presentations at no cost to the communities we serve. Other tools include our free online resources and training programs and guidance to assist local emergency responders.
Alliant Energy partners with small businesses and those held by minorities, women, service-disabled veterans and LGBTQ owners so that our suppliers reflect the diversity of our communities. We work with numerous certifying agencies to qualify our diverse suppliers.
Since 2013, our company has partnered with ISNetworld to improve safety performance of contractors performing physical work, such as repairing equipment and building new facilities. This comprehensive process examines key leading and lagging safety performance indicators. In addition, some contractors have on-site safety evaluations conducted in the field. Over 99% of our contractors are achieving a passing grade.
In 2018, our company joined the Electric Utility Industry Sustainable Supply Chain Alliance. The Alliance is an organization of utilities and suppliers working together to advance sustainability best practices in utility supply chain activities and supplier networks. A key component in our participation includes using a supplier survey tool designed to educate on best practices and benchmark on sustainability progress. It also provides a supply chain sustainability maturity assessment to help support future performance improvements. We are using these results to improve our procurement and bidding processes.
Looking ahead, our company is also implementing a new electronic document processing system to replace manual invoice and purchase order processes. By going digital, this change will streamline the way we do things, cut paper and postage costs for us and our suppliers, and reduce manual data entry.
Development and engagement
Our employees are encouraged to take advantage of available opportunities that foster their continued growth. The Development Coach is an online tool to help employees locate resources to develop a broad array of soft skills and leadership competencies. We offer resources such as 31 on-site classroom courses, online and webinar-based training programs, assessments and a library of books related to job skills and leadership development. We have a Talent Development Team that collaborates with leaders to provide customized learning opportunities for their teams. Employees are also eligible for tuition reimbursement of up to 70%, which can be used to further their education.
In our efforts to re-deploy our workforce when needed, we look to help coordinate employee interests, skills and abilities with internal opportunities. Supporting activities include résumé development and interview assistance, access to apprenticeship modules and job shadowing, and career days to explore other jobs in the company.
Every two years, we conduct an employee survey to determine satisfaction and engagement in the organization. Since the last survey in 2018, we continue to gather feedback to respond, such as enhancing the ways in which we share our strategy and the direction of the company with our employees. We are also providing more development tools to drive engaging conversations between managers and employees.
Employee Resource Groups
Alliant Energy’s Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) offer forums to network, support and share issues important to employees. They also serve as focus groups, providing feedback to the Diversity Office. Being a part of an ERG offers an opportunity to learn, attend development and social events, and network with fellow employees.
Our employees are encouraged to start new resource groups. We currently have the following ERGs:
- Equality Alliance
- Evolving Professionals Connection
- Multicultural Network
- Sustainability Squad
- Veterans’ Alliance
- Women’s Network
The workforce skill sets required in the energy industry are changing at a faster pace than ever. We leverage partnerships to recruit interns and apprentices to successfully fill our future employee needs.
During the summer of 2018, our College Internship Program employed 76 interns (37% female and 12% diverse) and hired over 30% as full-time employees post-graduation. We make sure our interns take on challenging and meaningful projects that will benefit them and our company. They also have a busy schedule of activities, including a kickoff event, facility tours, developmental workshops, networking opportunities, volunteer events and executive lunches.
Our Apprenticeship Program is a key component to replenish and grow our skilled technical workforce. The paid training is a combination of on-the-job and classroom study tailored to our safety standards, operational practices and facility equipment. Completing the program achieves journeyperson status and fulfills up to 60 credits toward an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. Through 2018, our company had over 200 apprentices.
Maintaining strong labor relations is integral to our company’s success. As of the end of 2018, 55% of Alliant Energy employees were covered under collective bargaining agreements. All of our Wisconsin energy company bargaining unit employees are members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 965 (Madison). The majority of our Iowa energy company bargaining unit employees are members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 204 (Cedar Rapids) with Locals 949 and 1439 comprising the rest.
Safety a key union and company focus
We continue to work together to support a culture where safety is our first priority in our quest for an injury-free workplace. Our union partnerships have moved the needle on our safety goals to ensure all workers are engaged and aligned on delivering safe and reliable energy.
“With our commitment to working together on safety, we are better prepared to work on issues that will need to be addressed in the changing utility industry.”
-Tony Bartels, Business Manager and Financial Secretary for IBEW Local 965
Energy Impact Partners
In 2017, we joined Energy Impact Partners (EIP). EIP brings together leading innovators with energy companies to create a cleaner, more secure and resilient future. This unique partnership is funded through our non-utility affiliate, Alliant Energy Finance, LLC. Leveraging the resources from EIP supports our company’s strategy to provide sustainable solutions for our customers, such as providing digital tools to help them better understand and manage their real-time energy use and maximize the benefits of smart home technologies. It also supports our deployment of data analytics to manage energy flow as the grid evolves with increasing adoption.
New digital manufacturing lab
The new Iowa State University (ISU) Digital Manufacturing Lab will provide Iowa manufacturers a place to experiment in a risk-free setting to help them identify the right technology at the right time. A $100,000 grant from Alliant Energy is funding efforts conducted by ISU’s Center for Industrial Research and Service (CIRAS). CIRAS opened the new lab in summer 2019 in the ISU Research Park. Our grant is the largest private gift to CIRAS in the center’s 55-year history. A sizeable contribution from the Iowa Economic Development Authority will help with purchasing equipment and covering remodeling expenses. We will use the space to provide advice and counsel to businesses while also collaborating with ISU faculty and students on research opportunities and internships.