“To internal and external training programs, we allocated €1 million last year. However, the training budget will be slightly lower in 2010”, said Popovici.

In order to provide training courses across the board, the company works with 10 external training providers, to which is added the training courses carried by the HR department of the company and tech suppliers, in the event of an implementation of a new business line with specific requirements.

With a turnover of €550 million in 2008, the training budget for 2009 was generous, given the recessionary times. Popovici said 2009 has been a very difficult year when Coca-Cola HBC continued its policy of improving workforce efficiency, by shutting down its bottling plant in Iasi.

In August 2009, the soft-drink maker transferred the production capacity of its Iasi-based plant to Moldova, as the lion’s share of the output was for the country. The storage facility in Iasi was turned into a distribution point within the existent network, while sales, financial, marketing and human resources operations are carried in Iasi.

The production activity from Floreni was transferred to Poiana Negri facility, the company owning currently only three bottling units in Romania – Timisoara, Poiana Negri and Ploiesti.

During the two-year restructuring process, nearly 200 workers lost their jobs. The 75 workers at the bottling plant in Iasi were offered jobs in the company, and to the 32 workers at the storage facility the possibility of choosing new jobs for the same pay at the operator of the distribution center.

Due to the programs for the consolidation of employer brand image, and economic crisis, staff fluctuation rates narrowed to 10% in 2009 from 13% a year earlier.