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Our people

The quantitative information set out below regarding the Group’s employees worldwide covers all the entities that are fully consolidated in the Group's financial statements. However, some of the data come from the Group’s Worldwide Human Resources Survey (WHRS), which gathers approximately 100 indicators measuring important aspects of Total’s human resources policy. The WHRS is performed on a sample of employees from representative consolidated companies at the business segment and regional levels; when WHRS is mentioned in this document, reference is made to data related to this sample, representing 87.2% of the Group’s employees at 133 subsidiaries in 2017, which was relatively stable compared to 2016 (87.5%) and 2015 (91%).



Group employees

As of December 31, 2017, the Group had 98,277 employees belonging to 313 employing companies and subsidiaries located in 105 countries.

Find here the breakdown of employees by the following categories: gender, nationality, business segment, region and age bracket.

At year-end 2017, the countries with the most employees were France, Mexico, Poland, the United States, Belgium and China.

The drop in the number of employees between 2016 (102,108 employees) and 2017 (98 277 employees) was principally due to the sale of Atotech finalized in January 2017 and the reduction of the headcount of the SunPower activity. The increase in the number of employees between 2015 (96,019) and 2016 was principally due to the acquisitions of Saft Groupe and Lampiris.

Employees joining and leaving Total

Amid an economic downturn related to oil prices, the policy of limiting the hiring of employees under open-ended contracts that began in 2015 continued in 2016 and 2017. Nevertheless, hiring by the consolidated companies rose by 11% in comparison with 2016 (+1,201 employees). The geographical areas that hired the most employees were Latin America (43%), with a particularly sharp increase in Mexico, Europe, excluding France (19%), Asia (14.1%), followed distantly by France (9.5%).

Refining & Chemicals remained the largest recruiter, with 52.2% of Group hires, of which 49.8% by Hutchinson, in particular in Europe (Romania and Poland).

In 2017, the fully consolidated Group companies also hired 5,287 employees on fixed-term contracts, compared with 4,433 in 2016 by the consolidated companies. Almost 51% of employees hired on fixed-term contracts were in Europe, excluding France, and in particular by Hutchinson. Close to 409,491 job applications were received by the companies covered by the WHRS.

The increase in the number of departures from 2016 (11,058 departures)  to 2017 (13,111 departures) was mailnly due to a higher turnover in SunPower and Hutchinson.


The Group’s Human Resources policy applies to all companies in which Total S.A. holds the majority of voting rights. In terms of compensation, the aim of this policy is to ensure external competitiveness and internal fairness, reinforce the link to individual performance, increase employee share ownership and fulfill the Group’s CSR commitments.

A large majority of employees benefit from laws that guarantee a minimum wage, and, whenever this is not the case, the Group’s policy ensures that compensation is above the minimum wage observed locally. Regular benchmarking is used to assess compensation based on the external market and the entity’s competitive environment. Each entity’s positioning relative to its reference market is assessed by the Human Resources department of each business segment, which monitors evolutions in payroll, turnover and consistency with the market.

Fair treatment is ensured within the Group through the widespread implementation of a job level evaluation using a common method (the Hay method), which associates a salary range to each job level. Performance of the Group’s employees (attainment of set targets, skills assessment, overall evaluation of job performance) is evaluated during an annual individual review and formalized in accordance with principles common to the entire Group.

 The compensation structure of the Group’s employees is based on the following components, depending on the country:

  • a base salary, which each year, in addition to a general salary-raise campaign, is subject to a merit-based salary-raise campaign intended to compensate employees’ individual performance according to the targets set during the annual individual review, including at least one HSE (Health, Safety, Environment) target; and
  • individual variable compensation starting at a certain level of responsibility, which is intended to compensate individual performance (quantitative and qualitative attainment of previously set targets) and the employee’s contribution to collective performance evaluated among others according to HSE targets set for each business segment, which represent up to 10% of the variable portion. In 2017, 85% of the Group’s entities (WHRS scope) included HSE criteria in the variable compensation.

Complementary collective variable compensation programs are implemented in some countries, such as France, via incentives and profit-sharing that also incorporates HSE criteria. According to the agreement signed for 2015-2017 applicable to the oil and petrochemicals1 (scope of more than 18,000 employees in 2017) sector in France, the amount available for employee incentive is determined based on financial parameters (the Group’s return on equity and the evolution of the net adjusted income compared to the other major oil companies2) and the attainment of safety targets (injury rate and accidental deaths). This agreement must be renegotiated before June 30, 2018 for the period 2018-2020.


The Group also offers pension and employee benefit programs (health and death) meeting the needs of the subsidiaries and the Group’s standards. These programs, which supplement those that may be provided for by local regulations, allow each employee to:

  • benefit, in case of illness, from coverage that is at least equal to the median amount for the national industrial market;
  • save or accumulate income substitution benefits for retirement;
  • arrange for the protection of family members in case of the employee’s death via insurance that provides for the payment of a benefit recommended to equal two years’ gross salary.

These programs are reviewed on a regular basis and adjusted when necessary.

Employee shareholding, one of the pillars of the Group’s Human Resources policy, is extended via three main mechanisms: the grant of performance shares, share capital increases reserved for employees, and employee savings. In this way, Total wishes to encourage employee shareholding, strengthen their sense of belonging to the Group and give them a stake in the Group’s performance by allowing them to benefit from their involvement.

Each year since 2005, Total has granted performance shares to many of its employees (approximately 10,000 each year since 2009). The definitive granting of these shares depends on the fulfillment of performance conditions assessed at the end of a vesting period extended to three years in 2013. The 2017 plan approved by the Board of Directors of Total S.A. in July 2017 granted a more than 20% higher volume of performance shares compared with 2015 and ensured a significant replenishment rate: 43% of plan beneficiaries had not received performance shares the previous year. Almost 10,570 employees were concerned by this plan, with more than 97% of non-senior executive employees.

Total also invites employees of companies more than 50% owned in terms of voting rights, and subscribing to the Shareholder Group Savings Plan (PEG-A) created in 1999 for this purpose, to subscribe each year to capital increases reserved for employees. Depending on the offerings chosen and the employees’ location, these operations are completed either through Company Savings Plans3 (FCPE) or by subscribing directly for shares or for American depositary receipts (ADRs) in the United States.

Pursuant to the authorization given by the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting of May 24, 2016, the Board of Directors of Total S.A. approved, at its meeting on July 26, 2017, the principle of a share capital increase reserved for employees to be completed in 2018. This operation will concern approximately 110 countries. As in 2017, two offerings are proposed: a traditional scheme with a 20% discount and a leveraged scheme in all countries where permitted by law. Employees will receive a matching contribution of five free shares for the first five shares subscribed. The shares subscribed will give holders current dividend rights. The subscription period will close at the start of April 2018.

More than 41,000 employees from 98 countries took part in the preceding operation finalized in 2017.

Employee savings are also developed via the Total Group Savings Plan (PEGT) and the Complementary Company Savings Plan (PEC), both open to employees of the Group’s French companies that have subscribed to the plans under the agreements signed in 2002 and 2004 and their amendments. These plans allow investments in a wide range of mutual funds, including the Total Actionnariat France fund that is invested in Total shares. A Collective Retirement Savings Plan (PERCO) is open to employees of the Group’s French companies covered by the 2004 Group agreement on provisions for retirement savings. Other saving plans and PERCO are open in some French companies covered by specific agreements. Employees can make discretionary contributions in the framework of this various plans, which the Group’s companies may supplement under certain conditions through a matching contribution. The Group’s companies made gross matching contributions that totaled €71.3 million in 2017.





The average work week is determined in accordance with applicable local law and limits set by International Labor Organization (ILO) conventions. It is less than 40 hours in most subsidiaries located in Europe, Japan and Qatar. It is 40 hours in most subsidiaries located in Asian, African and North American countries. It is above 40 hours, without exceeding 48 hours, in subsidiaries located in Latin America (mainly Argentina, Mexico, Brazil), a few countries in Asia (India, Cambodia, Philippines) and Africa (mainly South Africa, Equatorial Guinea and Morocco).

In addition, there are two specific employment regimes within the Group, the “shift"4 regime and the “rotational"5 regime. Most shift workers are employed in the Gas, Renewables & Power, Refining & Chemicals and Marketing & Services business segments, while the rotational regime concerns the Exploration & Production segment.

Depending on local law, there are several programs that aim to favor a better balance between work and private life and equal career opportunities. In France, teleworking was introduced in 2012.

The sickness absenteeism rate is one of the indicators monitored in the WHRS.

Dialogue with employees



Among the numerous stakeholders with which Total maintains regular dialogue, the Group’s employees and their representatives have a privileged position and role, particularly in constructive discussions with management. In countries where employee representation is not required by law (for example in Myanmar and Brunei), the Group companies strive to set up such representation. There are therefore employee representatives in the majority of Group companies, most of whom are elected. The subjects covered by dialogue with employees vary from company to company, but some are shared throughout, such as health and safety, work time, compensation, training and equal opportunity.

Within the Group, organizational changes are made in consultation with the employee representatives. Consequently, several thousand employees were consulted about the project to relocate the registered office to new premises at La Défense (France), following the presentation of models and 3D simulations of the planned projects.

Furthermore, at the end of 2017, there were 256 active agreements signed with employee representatives, of which 160 in France6.

In December 2017, Total joined the worldwide Global Deal initiative, a multi-stakeholder partnership that aims to incite governments, companies, unions and other organizations to make concrete commitments to favoring dialogue with employees. Social dialogue includes all types of negotiations, consultations or exchanges of information between the representatives of governments, employers and workers on questions pertaining to economic and social policy that are of a common interest. The Global Deal promotes the idea that effective social dialogue can contribute to decent work and quality jobs and, as a consequence, to more equality and inclusive growth from which workers, companies and societies benefit.

In 2015, Total signed a global agreement with the worldwide trade union federation, IndustriALL Global Union, which represents 50 million employees in 140 countries. Under this agreement, the Group made a commitment to maintain minimum Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) standards and guarantees worldwide for subsidiaries in which it has more than a 50% stake (occupational health and safety, human rights in the workplace, enhancement of the dialogue with employees, life insurance, professional equality, social responsibility and assistance with organizational changes). The Group also ensures that the principles of the agreement on health, safety and human rights are disclosed to and promoted among its service providers and suppliers. The implementation of this agreement is monitored annually with representatives who are members of trade unions affiliated with the IndustriALL Global Union and appointed by this federation. An initial follow-up meeting was therefore held in July 2017 to assess the implementation of the agreement and identify certain areas of improvement and actions to be taken.

A European Committee (single representative body for the employees at the Group level) has been set up in order to inform employees and hold discussions on the Group’s strategy, its social, economic and financial situation, as well as questions of sustainable development, environmental and societal responsibility, and safety on a European scale. It examines any significant proposed organizational change concerning at least two companies in two European countries, to express its opinion, in addition to the procedures initiated before the national representative bodies. A new agreement was reached in July 2017 that contains some innovative measures allowing for better dialogue with the members of the European Committee (field safety visits and learning expeditions to discuss the Group’s strategy directly on site).

In addition, every other year, Total carries out an internal survey (Total Survey) among its employees to gather their views and expectations with regard to their work situation and perception of the Company, locally and as a Group. The results of the survey conducted in 2017 among 70,000 employees in 124 countries demonstrated that employees have a commitment rate of 78% and that 85% of them are proud to work for Total.




The Group's actions in the field of training address five major issues:

  • sharing Total’s corporate values, particularly with respect to HSE, ethics, leadership, innovation and digital technology;
  • supporting the development of existing activities and creating new ones in order to achieve the Group’s ambitions over the next 20 years;
  • increasing key skills in all business areas to maintain a high level of operating performance;
  • promoting employees’ integration and career development through Group induction and training on management and personal development; and
  • supporting the policy of diversity and mobility within the Group through language and intercultural training.

The Group’s training efforts remain significant in 2017, with 77% of employees having taken at least one training course during the year. Within the WHRS scope, 243,019 days of training were offered on-site, compared to 274,858 days in 2016, for a total training budget starting to be stabilized of approximately €167 million, compared to €164 million in 2016 and €170 million in 2015.

The increase in e-learning programs within the Group that began in 2015 aims to improve the effectiveness of the courses and impact the largest number of people as quickly as possible.

It was accompanied by the launch in 2016 of a digital passport program to support the Group’s goals in this area. Nearly 26,000 people have already obtained the passport. The aim of this digital path is to educate employees of the Group about the digitalization of technologies in the world.

Approximately 28,747 people received remote training in 2017, compared to 42,142 in 2016 and 42,000 in 2015. This decrease was due to several mandatory remote learning campaigns having been launched in the past several years and it was not necessary to renew them in 2017.

In addition, Total restructured the organization of its support fonctions at the Group level by creating TGS (Total Global Services) on January 1, 2017 with a dedicated affiliate for learning, Total Learning Solutions, the mission of which is to ensure engineering training (on Business, Industry, Management and Transversal) and to put it in place. As a Shared Services Center, the volume managed would finally allow the deployment of high quality learning programs with a more competitive global cost.

To be noted: 2017 WHRS training scope is slightly inferior compared to previous years to explain some variations. In 2017, the results of 127 companies were introduced representing a total headcount of 81,001 employees, as against 135 companies representing total headcount of 86,515 employees in 2016.




Total is an international Group in terms of both its operations and its team members. The diversity of its employees and management is crucial to the Group’s competitiveness, innovative capacity and attractiveness.

For this reason, Total develops its employees’ skills and careers while prohibiting any discrimination related to origin, gender, sexual orientation or identity, disability, age or affiliation with a political, labor or religious organization. This policy is upheld by the Diversity Council, which is chaired by a member of the Group’s Executive Committee.

Each entity is responsible for creating a suitable work environment to fully benefit from skills and diverse approaches. This commitment is supported at the highest level to ensure that all employees, regardless of their gender or nationality, are offered the same career opportunities.



Equal treatment for men and women

Equal treatment for men and women is promoted in the Group through a global policy of gender diversity, ambitious goals set by General Management, a demanding HR process that takes the issue of gender into consideration, agreements in favor of a balance between work and private life (such as the agreement on teleworking in France) and awareness-raising and training actions.

Total’s commitment stretches from recruitment to the end of a career. It guarantees equal treatment for women and men in the process to identify high-potential employees and to appoint executive officers. In terms of compensation, specific measures have been in place since 2010 to prevent and correct unjustified salary gaps.

The Group’s target for 2020 is:

  • women represent 25% of senior executives (having represented approximately 5% in 2004 and 21.1% in 2017);
  • non-French nationals represent 40% of senior executives (having represented approximately 19% in 2004 and 28.9% in 2017); and
  • women represent more than 20% of Management Committee members (head office and subsidiaries) (having represented 21% in 2017).

In 2010, Total signed the “Women’s Empowerment Principles – Equality Means Business” set out in the United Nations Global Compact, and its commitment to equal opportunities and the treatment of women and men is regularly embodied in agreements, such as the global agreement signed in 2015 with IndustriALL, or the Global Deal to which Total has adhered more recently in 2017.

In 2016, Total, along with 20 other oil and gas companies, made a commitment at the World Economic Forum by signing “Closing the Gender Gap – a Call to Action”. This joint declaration is based on seven action principles: involvement of management; expectation and goal setting; program dedicated to the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM); clear responsibilities; recruitment, retention and promotion policy; inclusive corporate culture; and work environment and work-life balance.

The Group also promotes gender diversity in its professions. In France, Total has partnered with “Elles bougent” since 2011 and served as honorary Chairman in 2015. Some 130 female engineers regularly inform high-school girls about careers in science. An event entitled “Elles bougent pour l’énergie” was attended by more than 2,000 participants throughout France.

In line with the objective of promoting the development of women in the Group, in particular towards management positions, the TWICE network (Total Women’s Initiative for Communication and Exchange) aims to help women to further their careers. Created in 2006, it is currently in place in France and abroad (20 local networks) and has over 3,000 members. Since 2010, almost 550 women have benefited from the network’s mentoring program, in France and internationally, which helps them to better negotiate the key phases of their careers.

Total also participates in the “BoardWomen Partners” program, which aims to increase the proportion of women on boards of directors in large European companies. At the end of 2017, women accounted for 45.5%1 of Total S.A.’s Board members (above the 40% required by Article L. 225-18-1 of the French Commercial Code and applicable since 2017) compared to 54.5% at the end of 2016 and 36.4% at the end of 2015.

1 Excluding the director representing employees, in accordance with Article L. 225-27-1 of the French Commercial Code.

Internationalization of management

With employees representing over 150 nationalities, Total enjoys broad cultural diversity and believes that it is important to reflect this at all levels of its activities. In 2017, 90.3% of employees hired by the Group and 68.0% of managers hired were non-French nationals.

The Group has set a target of having local managers representing 50% to 75% of the subsidiaries’ Management Committee members by 2020 (having represented 54% in 2017 like in 2016).

Several measures have been put in place to internationalize management, including training courses to internationalize careers, increasing the number of foreign postings for employees of all nationalities (nearly 4,073 employees of 108 nationalities are posted in 112 countries as of June 30, 2017), and integration and personal development training organized by large regional hubs (for example, Houston, Johannesburg and Singapore).

Measures promoting the employment and integration of people with disabilities

For over 20 years, Total has expressly set out its disability policy in France through successive agreements signed with employee representatives to promote the employment of workers with disabilities. Three framework agreements signed for three years (2016-2018) with the French representative unions set out Total’s policy with regard to integrating people with disabilities into the work world. The average Group employment rate of people with disabilities in France (direct and indirect employment) was 5.16% in 20167 (compared to 4.99% in 2015 and 4.74% in 2014).

Total promotes the direct recruitment of disabled people and cooperation with the sector for disabled workers, while at the same time taking various types of action:

  • internally: integration, professional training, support and job retention, communication, awareness actions and sessions organized for managers and all the teams, Human Resources managers;
  • externally: information and advertising aimed at students, cooperation with recruitment agencies, attendance at specialized forums.

Measures promoting non-discrimination

Large-scale initiatives aimed at raising employees’ awareness of diversity are organized on a regular basis. After South Africa in 2016 and Berlin in 2015, in 2017, the Group Diversity Council, which is chaired by a member of the Group’s Executive Committee, met in the USA with almost 65 senior executives from the American subsidiaries in an “Understand-Engage-Act” seminar to encourage them to pursue their actions in the areas of diversity and inclusion. The theme of the 2017 World Diversity Day, which takes place every two years, was “Let’s Show Respect for Each Other”. Workshops were organized on the themes of feminization, the internationalization of management and religion in the workplace.

Total is involved in a number of initiatives to promote diversity, including the professional integration of young people in France, for example via the “La France s’engage” partnership with the French government.

In 2014, the Group also signed the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) Charter. Prepared by the “L’Autre Cercle” association, it establishes a framework for combating discrimination related to sexual orientation or identity in the workplace in France.

Total has written a practical guide to religion in the Group to offer concrete answers to employees’ questions about religion in the workplace and to promote tolerance of everyone’s beliefs, while respecting differences at the same time. The guide, which was posted on the Group’s intranet site in March 2017, offers the keys to understanding different beliefs, so that everyone can better comprehend them in their everyday activities.

*Excluding the director representing employees, in accordance with Article L. 225-27-1 of the French Commercial Code.

1i.e., the following companies in France: TOTAL S.A., Elf Exploration Production, Total Exploration Production France, CDF Énergie, Total Marketing Services, Total Marketing France, Total Additifs et Carburants Spéciaux, Total Lubrifiants, Total Fluides, Total Raffinage-Chimie, Total Petrochemicals France, Total Raffinage France and Total Global Information Technology Services, and since January 1, 2017, Total Global Financial Services, Total Global Procurement, Total Global Human Resources Services, Total Learning Solutions, Total Facilities Management Services and Total Consulting.

2ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, BP and Chevron.

3Total Actionnariat France, Total France Capital+, Total Actionnariat International Capitalisation, Total International Capital.

4For employees providing a continual activity with relays between teams to maintain production (two or three 8-hour shifts), for example in plants or refineries.

5For employees working at a location (town or worksite) far from their place of residence with alternating periods of work and rest.

6Some agreements cover several companies at once (for example, agreements in the Social and Economic Units -Unités Économiques et Sociales- or agreements in group of companies).

7The rate for 2017 is not available yet.