The people - the bank’s greatest asset

Behind the fine accounting figures lie favourable economic conditions and solid banking. But, the bank’s definitively greatest asset is and will continue to be the skills and competence of its staff.

In an ever more digitalised society, the bank stands firm by its strategy to be at the forefront in the development of new digital solutions AND at the same time to maintain a network of skilled and service-minded advisers. People never go out of fashion.

Changes in customer behaviour and technological progress also influenced the work done on organisation development and management in 2016. Reorganisation, employee development and recruitment of new competence to build the bank of the future had high priority. There was also a strong focus on developing a new vision and new values to build a culture that makes the bank a good place to work and a good place to be a customer.

Vision and values

The process surrounding the new vision and new values has been one of great involvement and strong commitment. Employees and managers at all levels of the organisation have played their part and provided input. Here is the result:

Vision: Together we make things happen

Values: Wholehearted, responsible, likeable and capable

The vision is intended to convey meaning, direction and energy to us working at the bank. The values are intended to build our identity, to help us be clear and distinct and to form the basis for a culture in which the staff thrive and work each day to create results for the good of our customers and the bank.

Recruitment and employee attractiveness

SpareBank 1 SMN is among the region’s most attractive employers and is met with great interest when job vacancies are to be filled. In 2016 many new, high-quality staff were recruited who, together with the organisation as a whole, will play an important part in adapting and developing the bank in step with the considerable changes we are facing.

We have a targeted focus on colleges and universities with a view to building relations with talented students. We attract many applicants and note a keen interest both in our mentor programme for business and economics students and in our summer project.


Changing customer behaviour and technological opportunities call for adjustments to the organisation. Digitalisation and automation of customer and production processes lessen the need for people in parts of the business. Targeted reorganisation processes have been carried through in some parts of the organisation, and 53 severance packages were granted upon application in 2016.

Employee development

Our managers and staff are our most important resource and the most important factor in marking ourselves out from our competitors. That is why the bank attaches such importance to developing competence and skills. Internal training activities are arranged on a substantial scale, and many of our talented managers and staff are offered opportunities for professional and personal development on  external courses and at educational institutions.

The bank works continuously to identify competence needs in the short and long term to assure our ability to offer our customers advisory and other services of the highest quality. 2016 saw an extra focus on security culture. A competence and awareness-building programme, Passopp, was carried out using nano-learning. The central theme was information security related to digital platforms and tools. The programme continues in 2017 with a new theme.

New pension scheme

As from 1 January 2017 all employees are members of a defined contribution pension scheme. Although the bank closed its defined benefit scheme in 2008, about half of employees were still on that scheme at the start of 2016. After a long and thoroughgoing process with the employees’ representatives it was decided to transfer all employees to the defined contribution scheme. The bank also decided to increase the defined contribution rates from 7 per cent from 0 to 7.1 G* and to 15 per cent in the interval 7.1 to 12 G*.

Health, environment and safety

The bank has a close focus on measures designed to promote a good work environment, and substantial resources are devoted to encouraging good health through physical activity and keeping fit. The programme “Better Shape” stimulates individuals and departments to keep fit by holding competitions and awarding prizes, by subsidising fitness centre membership and by organising fitness activities at work.

Employees log their workouts in a digital fitness diary, and the share of employees who tracked their workouts in 2016 was 81 per cent. Sickness absence in 2016 was 3.9 per cent, with sickness absence reported by the employees and by a doctor accounting for 0.6 per cent and 3.3 per cent respectively.

Gender equality

SpareBank 1 SMN is concerned that women and men should have equal opportunities in terms of personal development, salary and career. At the pay settlement in 2016 correctives were applied to ensure that pay level imbalances between women and men were evened out. The gender distribution at the bank in 2016 was on a stable trend with 51.8 per cent women and 48.2 per cent men. The proportion of female managers was 41.2 per cent – a marked increase from 36 per cent the previous year. The group management team consists of six persons, of which one is a woman.

*G =SMN arbeider for å forhindre diskriminering. Aktivitetene omfatter blant annet rekruttering, lønns- og arbeidsvilkår, forfremmelse, utviklingsmuligheter og beskyttelse mot trakassering. SpareBank 1 SMN har som målsetting at de ansatte skal reflektere befolkningsstrukturen i regionen. the basic amount available under the Norway’s national insurance scheme.

SpareBank 1 SMN works to prevent discrimination. This activity covers recruitment, pay and employment conditions, promotion, development opportunities and protection against harassment. SpareBank 1 SMN’s aim is that its staff should reflect the region’s population structure.



The group’s business activities are dependent on the confidence of its customers, the public authorities and the wider society. Staff at SpareBank 1 SMN must be recognised for their high ethical standards. To this end each of us, in any context where we are identified with SpareBank 1 SMN, must display a conduct that is perceived to be confidence inspiring, honest and trustworthy and in compliance with the norms, rules and statutes by which the society is governed.

SpareBank 1 SMN’s intention is to provide factual, correct information in an honest, trustworthy and open manner about the bank’s business and services.

SpareBank 1 SMN has set up the following formalised, repeating review of the bank’s ethical guidelines for the group’s employees; this, in sum, constitutes the formal framework tool for the practical conduct of all staff of the bank:

  • The ethical guidelines are a part of the staff handbook, and thus a part of the employment contract.

  • The ethical guidelines are reviewed, with pertinent examples presented for discussion by all new staff.

  • All new staff members undergo a compulsory module at the bank’s educational facility featuring ethics as a theme.

  • All authorised and approved advisers receive an annual competence update that includes an ethics session.

© SpareBank 1 SMN