Employee attraction, retention and development

We recognise our people are fundamental to our going success. We are committed to building and maintaining a high performing culture that supports our people to reach their full potential. To read about our performance in this area see our Sustainability Report.


Our three-year Human Resources (HR) Strategy identifies the people priorities for Sydney Airport. It covers HR systems and processes, culture, leadership and talent development and diversity and inclusion.

Our values drive organisational culture, underpin how we interact with each other and our stakeholders, help us to deliver on our purpose and provide a framework for our we make decisions.

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Sydney Airport's Human Resources framework comprises:

  • Leave Policies, including but not limited to annual leave poicy, community service leave policy, domestic violence leave policy, parental leave policy, volunteering leave policy
  • Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy
  • Diversity Policy
  • Drug and Alcohol Policy
  • Employee Assistance Program Policy (EAP)
  • Employee Recognition Policy
  • Flexible Work Arrangement Policy
  • Health and Wellbeing Policy
  • Performance Improvement Policy
  • Resolution of Complaints Policy
  • Talent Referral Policy
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Organisational responsibility

The Nomination and Remuneration Committee of the Board assists and advises the Board on a number of people related matters. These include the remuneration framework, policies and practices for Sydney Airport directors and staff as well as the establishment and monitoring of strategies to promote workplace diversity.

The chairman of the Board is responsible for evaluating and monitoring the performance of the board and manages this process in accordance with the board charter. Evaluations are conducted annually, with independent third party evaluations taking place when required.

The General Manager, Human Resources is responsible for the implementation of the Human Resources strategy, supported by HR Business Partners.

The remuneration principles, policy and structure for Directors and Executives are explained in the Director’s Report section of our Annual Report. Our annual Corporate Governance Statement outlines the performance management system in place for our senior executives.

Attraction and retention

We are focused on ensuring we attract and retain the best talent. Sydney Airport’s Talent Referral Policy leverages the professional and personal networks of our existing workforce by encouraging the referral of suitably qualified people who will fit the Sydney Airport culture.

When such referrals are successful, employees who assist Sydney Airport’s recruitment activities will receive a referral payment.

Sydney Airport endeavours to provide flexible work arrangements to employees in order to assist our people to balance their work and personal needs depending on their individual circumstances. Our Flexible Work Arrangement Policy complements our Parental Leave Policy, Personal/Carer’s Leave Policy and Annual Leave Policy in providing employees with access to flexible work arrangements.

We encourage our people to apply for internal job opportunities as a way to further develop their skills and experience and continue their career at Sydney Airport. Vacant roles are advertised internally and experienced and qualified internal candidates are encouraged to apply.

We recognise an engaged workforce has a higher retention rate and is more productive. We conduct an annual employee engagement survey and periodic pulse checks, with the findings informing focus areas for updates to the HR Strategy.


Our people participate in twice yearly performance reviews to agree annual objectives and review performance.

Investing in employee development allows us to attract and retain talent with the skills and experience to support our business objectives. Learning and development at Sydney Airport includes a comprehensive range of opportunities for employees including online programs, skills-based training, on the job learning, and leadership and management modules.

Our learning model is based on the philosophy that 70% of learning occurs through on the job experience, 20% through coaching and mentoring, and 10% through classroom courses and reading.

We encourage employees to own their career and development with the support of their leader and the HR team. Our talent and development strategy is aimed at equipping our people with the skills, capabilities and behaviours needed to support the delivery of our business strategy. Our Individual Development Planning process supports employees to reach short and long term career goals and increase skills and knowledge in their current role.

We also provide employees with access to internal and external training programs. We have a number of mandatory and elective training sessions for our operational teams covering topics such as Wildlife Management for our Airfield teams as well as Conflict Management for our Aviation and Service teams and operational safety training for our Baggage Handling and Facilities Management employees.

Diversity and inclusion

Sydney Airport’s Diversity Policy sets out our commitment to strengthening the airport community through diversity and including, respect and valuing difference. We believe by increasing diversity, we increase our organisational strength. Our diversity and inclusion strategy guides our activities.

Our Diversity Council and Working Groups' has executive sponsorship and is made up of representatives from across the business. This Working Group drives the delivery of the diversity and inclusion strategy.

Our Reconciliation Action Plan outlines our commitment to facilitate and drive positive and tangible connections and exchanges with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and communities.

We report annually to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency, in accordance with the requirements of the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Act). You can find our latest report here.

Comments on the report can be made to us via hr@syd.com.au or to the Agency. Further information on the Agency’s guidelines on this process can be viewed on its website.

Employee Assistance Program

Our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provider Lifeworks provides confidential counselling and support. Access to the EAP is available to all staff and their families and offers confidential counselling and support for any personal or work related issues for up to six sessions a year.