Our People


We believe that people are the basis of our success. As such, we promote a culture of high performance that develops talent, promotes teamwork, and is committed to the development of innovative solutions.


In 2013, our Jamalco operations continued its efforts to encourage two-way communication between leadership and the workforce. Initiatives included quarterly leadership dialogues, where the executive team updated the workforce on the status of the business. Various teams and committees continued to develop plans and strategies to improve engagement and capacity building. The refinery manager and human resources manager also facilitated roundtable discussions throughout the year.


Our Brazilian operations built upon its past efforts to increase the engagement of women in a traditionally male-dominated industry in 2013. Leadership, human resources, and the Alcoa Women’s Network collaborated on numerous initiatives, including:

An operator woman in Brazil

Women are making gains in the Alcoa workforce in Brazil, including operational positions.

  • Equal opportunity recruitment: Selected and presented an equal number of female and male applicants;
  • Female-friendly workplaces: Remodeled lactation and women’s locker rooms and offered personal protective equipment that is designed specifically for women;
  • Extended maternity leave: Allowed mothers to extend the existing 120 days of paid maternity leave by another 60 days;
  • Menina-Mulher Program: Sponsored an essay competition for high school girls in underprivileged communities to reflect about their professional future. Winners were invited to a day of lectures at an Alcoa location, and the writers of the three best essays received prizes.
  • Diversity week: Conducted lectures and customized experiential training at each location.
  • Sintonia Program: Recognized outstanding engineering students with scholarships for language training, as well as internships at Alcoa.


The Great Place to Work® Institute acknowledged these efforts by recognizing Alcoa as the Best Company for Women to Work for and One of the Best Companies to Work for in Brazil in 2013.


Our people efforts in Suriname have focused on engagement, capacity building, and employee input on strategy and day-to-day operations. We also have established a strong employee recognition program and a support structure to help employees maintain their well-being and work/life balance. In 2013, employee teams from Suralco were among the region’s most active during the Global Corporate Challenge, a global 100-day physical activity challenge designed to help participants improve their health and fitness.


A key indicator of our people success is the annual Alcoa Global Voices Survey, which measures the engagement of our employees. In 2013, all of the measured survey dimensions improved for the Latin American and Caribbean region. The dimensions with the largest improvement were employee engagement (80%) and trust in top leadership/vision (79%), both of which increased eight percentage points from prior year. The biggest gap between supervisory and non-supervisory respondents was the item “I am satisfied with the career advancement opportunities at Alcoa,” where 73% of supervisors responded favorably versus 64% for non-supervisory respondents. The dimension with the biggest decline from 2012—six percentage points—was “Customer problems are dealt with quickly,” which came in at 85%.