b'S T R AT E G I C R E P O R TSection 172 Decisions / interactions b) The interest ofThe Directors understand the importance of the Groups employees to the long-term success of the businessthe companysand are proud that the Group is certified to a Gold standard by Investors in People. employees. The health and safety of the Groups employees (and other stakeholders) remains its main priority and the Directors review the performance in this area at each scheduled meeting. The Boards commitment to creating a sustainable Zero Harm working environment has resulted in an industry-leading performance for three consecutive years. The Group regularly communicates to its employees through presentations, internal group-wide emails and newsletters. In 2019, communication channels have been enhanced as new social media channels and blogs on our intranet give our employees the opportunity to interact with members of the Board and other key management personnel. The Groups annual roadshow, which is open to all employees, is the forum by which the Chief Executive informs and updates staff on the Groups performance, plans and future outlook and provides employees with an opportunity to ask questions, or to seek clarification, on the Groups purpose, goals and direction. A biannual employee survey is undertaken to allow colleagues to provide honest feedback about their experience working at Wates. Alongside regular calls, twice a year, the Groups senior leadership team convene to share knowledge, disseminate good practice and to discuss strategic priorities. In 2019, we invested c.1.5m in learning and development and delivered 8,072 staff training and e-learning days. Our award winning Were Safer TogetherLead and Drive the Change! Safety programmes were delivered to 430 of our leaders in 2019 and supported the continuing improvement in our safety performance. Workplace health and mental wellbeing continue to be priorities and in 2019 the Group was awarded Bronze in MINDs Wellness Index Awards. By the end of 2019, we have established a Mental Health First Aider network of 273 trained employees and 30 Regional Mental Health First Aider Champions. The Early Careers pipeline remains an important feature of our resourcing strategy, with 139 colleagues on a structured training programme. We have retained 84% of the trainees who have joined us over the last five years. In 2019, the Board approved a new executive incentive arrangement that more aligns with the shareholders requirement for long-term value generation and sustainability. We are embarking on a second phase which aims to ensure that the principles of the executive remuneration review are applied to the wideremployee population. c) The need to fosterThe Board regularly reviews how the Group maintains positive relationships with all of its stakeholders,the companysincluding suppliers, customers and others. business relationshipsOur shareholders and other Board members are key industry and business contributors. Sir James Wates with suppliers,CBE holds a number of key positions in the sector including: Chairman of the CBI Construction Council; customers Chairman of the BRE Trust; Past Chairman of CITB and Past President of CIOB. He also, on behalf of the and others.Business Secretary, chaired an industry group on corporate governance for large privately-owned companies (which the Group has adopted this year). Timothy Wates is also Chairman of the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership.The Directors monitor how the Group engages with its customers by performing regular customer engagement surveys which determine the Net Promoter Score (NPS) of the Group. This process is run by an external company to ensure the results are independent. The results of these surveys are reviewed by the Board on a monthly basis and the findings are used to improve customer engagement. The Directors understand the importance of the Groups supply chain in delivering the long-term plans of the Group. One of the ways we can ensure effective relationships with our supply chain is to pay them on time. The Group has signed up to the Prompt Payment Code and one of the key metrics within this is ensuring that at least 95% of invoices are paid within 60 days. At the end of 2019, Wates Construction Limited (the Groups main trading subsidiary) had improved its performance to 96% (2018: 90%). The Groups principal risks and uncertainties set out risks that can impact the long-term success of the Group and how these risks interact with our stakeholders. The Directors actively seek information on the interaction with stakeholders to ensure that they have sufficient information to reach appropriate conclusions about the risks faced by the Group and how these are reflected within the long-term plans.60 ANNUAL REVIEW 2019'