Employees in a meeting at Halfar in Bielefeld


We support sustainable development. Therefore, we are concerned with making our entrepreneurial contribution to the common good. Social engagement is an important part of our company culture and has been our tradition here for many years. In our own company, we make it possible for all our employees to have an equal chance to an individual career and we distance ourselves from any form of discrimination. That's why we also support employees who are not proficient in German. Outside our company too, we promote the elimination of inequality and cultivate responsible conduct towards our stakeholders. We will explain precisely what that means on this page

Our social activities in community matters

Together towards a sustainable society: with this motto, we develop, integrate and support people in our company and in our neighbourhood. Education plays an important and central role for us. Well-founded education helps to eliminate inequalities and to improve personal situations. In our view, every human being has the right to a good education. In order to participate actively in the realisation of this social target, we - at HALFAR® - support selected education programmes.

Cooperation with schools

School cooperation with Realschule Heepen
We have been cultivating cooperation with schools in the region for many years and implement targeted projects in order to promote pupil education and to allow them insight into our company. One of these schools is the Heepen secondary school in the Bielefeld district of the same name. We regularly offer the students the opportunity to gain an insight into our company, be it in the form of a company outing with the class teacher, taster day or work experience. Furthermore, together with subject teachers, we compiled reading backpacks specially to promote the reading capability of students in the fifth form. The backpacks contain books on many different subjects and can be taken home by each student for one week at a time. At the end of this period, each pupil reports on what they have read. This strengthens memory, whilst opening up access to the reading of books and presenting contents in front of classmates.

Awarding scholarships

Westphalia College in Bielefeld is another school with which we maintain a cooperation. In Armin Halfar’s former school, extraordinary social engagement has always been promoted and honoured. For the first time this year, the school awarded a prize. Each student could compete with their personal projects and participate in the campaign. The idea: “Active engagement with each other form the building stone for a stable society and should, therefore, also be promoted and supported amongst young people.”

As a result, many exciting projects were submitted. This alone was a great success! The winner of the competition stood out amongst other participants because of her selfless, environment-oriented approach. For example, she offers tuition to other students free of charge. This commitment to others convinced the jury in the end to honour her with an award. And, as we at Halfar think it is important that solution-oriented, engaged action in our society is seen, clearly honoured and supported, Armin Halfar could not but help himself to also donate – apart from our other offers – this year’s prize: "A year-long scholarship at Westphalia College". We congratulate the winner once more from the very bottom of our hearts!
Cooperation with Westfalen-Kolleg Bielefeld

Cooperation with universities

Cooperation with regional universities
East Westphalia and, above all, Bielefeld have now grown into one of the most important university locations in Germany. This is mainly due to the outstanding infrastructure and the special economic networking in the region. In order to strengthen the location even further and to expand the entrepreneurial network even more, we cooperate with the region’s universities. In the course of this cooperation, we offer students the opportunity to consider certain subjects from an entrepreneurial perspective and to research them further. We make data available for individual projects and are happy to lend our know-how.

Regional cooperation

... is part of the strong economic location of OWL and actively contributes to its sustainable further development, network and strengthening. Therefore, regional cooperation and networks are very important to us. Thus, we are members of the ÖKOPROFIT®- club of the region-political area of Bielefeld. In this cooperation project between community, the local economy and further regional and supra-regional partners, practice-oriented environment management systems are elaborated, developed and implemented by businesses.
Moreover, we participate in the “Climate+Trade” ("Klima+Gewerbe") initiative founded by the economic development association Bielefeld (Wirtschaftsentwicklungsgesellschaft Bielefeld - WEGE). It aims to develop the industrial estate of the Ludwig-Erhard-Allee into a resource-saving and also climate-optimising trading area. Another initiative of WEGE mbH Bielefeld, which is actively partnered by Halfar, is the portal “This comes from Bielefeld” (“Das kommt aus Bielefeld”). This platform promotes the networking of businesses within the economic region of Bielefeld und supports a supra-regional recognition of the region’s strengths.
Halfar City Bielefeld

Transfer of knowledge

Knowledge transfer from expertise to bags
In the 30 years since the foundation, we have collected a most comprehensive array of expertise and may rightly call ourselves bag experts. We share this knowledge of many different areas and how to solve many problems with our suppliers and (trading) partners. That is why we can always support you with our know-how.

This has created long-term, stable and reliable business relationships resulting in us supporting each other on other sustainability issues, such as professional waste management in Romania.

The Happiness Tour - Glückstour

In this cycling tour, chimney sweeps collect money for children suffering from cancer and motivate many, even famous cyclists, to participate. Find more information about the Glückstour here.
A bike tour to raise money for children with cancer

Type identification campaign

DKMS typing campaign at Halfar
This year, we once again carried out a DKMS type identification campaign, in which many of our colleagues participated. The registration makes you a potential donor and you are contacted if you considered for stem cell donation. The German bone marrow donor database (Deutsche Knochenmarkspenderdatei – DKMS) has set itself the ambitious goal to conquer blood cancer. Registration has already helped many patients worldwide. All those who also want to become donors can be registered with the DKMS.


The collaboration with the integrative screen printer prosigno, who have been located in the Bielefeld company premises since 2013, continues to be a full success. At prosigno, people with limitations due to health have a chance to pursue employment with social security contribution and are fully integrated in the working day. Here, people with or without incapacities work successfully hand in hand, and the routes to Halfar are also short and barrier-free. Due to the short routes between HALFAR® and prosigno, mutual exchange is always possible and results in improving know-how on products and the various finishing technologies. Moreover, due to the joint usage of premises, transport runs and the CO2 emissions associated with them are avoided. 

The strong networking and a joint canteen also result in natural togetherness of people with or without handicaps, thus removing prejudice. The integration project is a subsidiary of Werkhaus GmbH, which is a branch of Life Aid. To date, we have been working with Werkhaus for 17 years and support it in its endeavour to enable people with disabilities to lead the most independent lives possible.
Collaboration with integrative screen printing company prosigno


PSI Sustainability Awards - Social commitment
Social engagement is a part of our company culture and is firmly anchored in our daily activities. We are happy that our initiatives are also recognised outside our company. In September 2018 we once again won the PSI Sustainability Award in the "Social Excellence" category. The jury explained its decision with the following words: 

"Only few businesses manage in the course of their company history to merge practised family friendliness, inclusion and integration in their company-DNA. Halfar has once again this year documented social excellence as a constant and always transparent task, by achieving this in the most sustainable way."
This shows us that we are on the right path with our understanding of social responsibility and its implementation. We continue to pursue this, and set ourselves new goals. In this, we want to further engage ourselves regionally, develop networking with strong partners even more and promote a sustainable society and industry. This means specifically: we want to expand cooperation with universities further and follow targeted sustainable projects by supporting them. Moreover, we will continue to engage in social and selected projects in the future by donating bags, time or money.


HALFAR® is a family business to its core. Togetherness plays a great role on all levels and, thanks to its work time models and flexibility, HALFAR® has enjoyed the title "Outstandingly family friendly" since 2016. The basis of our collaboration is to understand the colleague as holistic individual, who accepts his work as a motivating task, can accomplish it and has the individual freedom to act appropriately according to his/her task. In order to achieve this, we educate, train and engage employees in the implementation of projects relevant to the company. We also develop and support models of colleague networking, promote and invest in modern communication technologies, and cultivate an open-door culture.

New Work – the future is now

New Work Area at Halfar System GmbH
As a solution-oriented team made up of all-rounders and specialists, we hold the entire know-how involving our products here at our headquarters in Bielefeld. With increasing growth, expanding premises and a rising number of employees as well as a very much changing, dynamic environment, ever-innovative trends, and not least due to digitalisation, we are also confronted by many questions.

  • How can we maintain and further develop our strengths and innovative energy?
  • How can we shape our collaboration in such a way as to produce excellent results for our customers and us?
  • How should our collaboration be shaped so that experienced players and talents amongst us are happy and their development is promoted?
Innovative, free and independent, these are the core values of a new work concept, which calls itself "New Work". Here, totally new structures are created at a digital and spatial level, which alter work in the office. Initial studies show that this modern form of working offers many benefits: plenty of space for networking, faster implementation of joint projects and even greater employee motivation. Moreover, his new way of working also has a positive effect in staff well-being. And so, 70 % feel healthier than at the previous workstation and 90 % even feel more confident in a new work atmosphere.
Here at Halfar, we see a chance to answer our questions with this approach. It is about opening walls in the building and in heads in a positive way and connecting people with each other. For us, open doors, flat hierarchies, flexible working hours and a good infrastructure form the basis of sustainable collaboration. However, we do not just want to leave it at that. That is why we completed the new development of a co-working workspace here at Halfar at the beginning of the year. The new rooms are open and modern. This offers lots space for creative work and allows colleagues a quick exchange on joint projects, for example at the large table with colourful chairs or in the bright meeting rooms. These are equipped with the latest technology and some with height adjustable chairs. But also outside the meeting rooms, height adjustable tables and ergonomically designed chairs ensure comfort whilst working, ease the back and invite an active exchange of ideas.
New work concepts for innovative and free work
Sustainable working
In order to facilitate concentration when at work, a particular focus was placed on noise reduction. Flooring, ceilings and walls were designed appropriately. Work elements such as pin boards were included in the project. These should encourage the collation of ideas, but also have a sound-absorbing effect, as they are covered with a soft textile, which simply ‘swallows’ surrounding noise to a great extent. Staff can also retire to lounges and to small, comfortably furnished rooms. An open kitchen with lounge furniture invites staff to talk and encourages open communication.

As a result, we find that freedom, independence and identification with the task in hand lead to a constructive work atmosphere. The share of employee contribution with regards to the most diverse issues has significantly increased once again. From the fruit basket and product ideas to environmental issues: colleagues use the opportunities to participate actively in the development of the company. The departmental and expertise-overlapping interchange already in existence between colleagues has intensified despite the bigger building, and thus avoids the danger of "silo thinking". The attractive design and spatial openness of the open space character clearly strengthens these effects. First considerations regarding the further development and design of the existing building are already underway. You can look forward to the expansion!

Creating something great together

Apart from the big subjects of collaboration, there is an active feeling of community here. Together we are moving something beyond our daily bag business, as well as our company. Communal action, such as the planting of our green roof, sport events such as the Beach Cup or climbing together feed our team spirit and weld us together.
Community activities such as planting our green roof, sporting events such as the Beach Cup or group climbing at Halfar

Mobility offers

"JobBike" – The work-bike concept

The option to lease an e-bike through salary conversion is well established now. Overall, more and more employees use the bicycle to travel to work. Cycling is not just sustainable and looks after the purse – it also pays health-wise to forego taking the car. The fact that cycling is very popular here is reflected in the participation in the “City Cycling” event. Pedals are pushed for 21 days in the federal campaign for a better climate. HALFAR® started with its own team for the first time, and the first group of participants together managed to cycle 5,140 km.
The company bike concept for employees

By bus and train

Halfar supports employees in using public transport
Bielefeld has a far-reaching, well-developed train and bus network. Our site can be reached quickly and easily from every corner of the town. The nearest stop is directly in front of the door. This is also the reason why many employees use the regional public transport network. As a company we support our staff and offer the option of buying a key customer subscription for the regional transport services via HALFAR®.

An alternative option for getting to work is the carpool, which is the result of the apprentice project "Energy-Scouts". On top of that, we are trying to improve our mobility offer with and for our workforce and to make it more sustainable.

Health promotion

For us, the health of our employees is generally an important issue. To ensure the best conditions, certain measures are tested and implemented. An important part here is the design of the workstations. We design each workstation so that all employees can work under the best conditions and without risk to their health. Therefore, HALFAR® has invested in highly modern, electronically adjustable stationary desks that alleviate back strain and improve posture. The chairs for these workstations, too, are ergonomic and support the back.
In the area where workstations principally require standing positions, soft PV mats were fitted to the floor to relieve the strain on the body and to make working easier by softening the footstep, also looking after feet and the back. It is a concern of the company health management to reduce the number of smokers in our company. This currently stands at around 15 % and, although being relatively low, could be reduced further.
And naturally, the use of mobile phones and its effect on concentration and emotional health also concerns us. However, in principle, we always rely on the personal motivation of our staff in this matter. Therefore it is one of our aims to offer further impulse presentations by experts on health issues as part of our joint breakfast.
Health promotion through green surroundings

How rest periods become sources of creative potential

Sustainable working
Everyone knows this problem in his or her everyday work. After a few hours, concentration just drops. When attention reduces and sugar levels go down, it is time for a break. How we can make this more meaningful and how we can support our staff in this drives us on. Probably the most popular method for many is the coffee. This has been on offer free of charge at Halfar since time immemorial. However, as this is not healthy in large quantities and too often, we have implemented alternative ideas that support our workforce throughout the day. Ideas, incidentally, which are also based on suggestions from our green board and the measures from staff participation.

Vitamins - power for our brain

Vitamins are an important constituent of healthy nutrition and lead to sustainable health and high levels of efficiency. Therefore, we have been buying - since end of March 2019 - fresh and above all seasonal fruit and vegetables from a regional organic farmer every week. Each department gets a basket filled with fruit and vegetables and all employees can help themselves to this. Here, we ensure that quantities are enough for several days, but are appropriate overall.
We value it when there is no wastage and deal responsibly with foodstuff just as we do for all other resources. Whether apples, bananas, peppers or any types of fruit and vegetable – they have one thing in common: they are a real vitamin boost and enjoy high popularity.

Healthy nutrition through regional organic food farm

Installation of water dispensers

Fresh drinking water for good concentration and avoiding plastic bottles
In addition to the fruit baskets, water dispensers were installed at four central locations in the company. These ensure a sufficient supply of fresh drinking water at all times, as insufficient consumption of water not only has a negative effect on concentration, but also brings other health risks. Therefore, our workforce has access to chilled, filtered water with or without CO2 or even hot water by pressing a button. The water dispensers don’t just have one great benefit for our employees, as they also reduce the use of plastic bottles. Where we still rely on water bottles, e.g. meetings with customers, we converted to returnable glass bottles.

Coffee, canteen & Co

All employees have access to a modern canteen. The centrally placed canteen is a cross-departmental meeting point for all co-workers and gives everyone an opportunity to prepare their meal in a variety of ways. This is why the canteen is furnished with a modern kitchen where all current kitchen appliances are available and can be used by the staff.

There is a joint breakfast in the canteen on each first Friday of the month for the whole of the workforce, when sandwiches of all kinds are served. Moreover, every employee can help themselves at any time to coffee and organic milk - free of charge - in the canteen and in the four tea kitchens. Employees who do not drink coffee have the option to make themselves tea. Our workforce also has the opportunity to utilise the outside areas of our building and the surrounding green spaces for strolling and talking and walking. We encourage active breaks and meetings. Many employees make use of these.
There is a joint breakfast in the canteen on each first Friday of the month for the whole of the workforce, when sandwiches of all kinds are served. Moreover, every employee can help themselves at any time to coffee and organic milk - free of charge - in the canteen and in the four tea kitchens. Employees who do not drink coffee have the option to make themselves tea. Our workforce also has the opportunity to utilise the outside areas of our building and the surrounding green spaces for strolling and talking and walking. We encourage active breaks and meetings. Many employees make use of these.

The modern canteen is available for employees

Internal education

Numerous individual training opportunities for employee development
Apart from the training in various professions, further education and promoting our staff plays a big role here in our company. We offer the workforce many opportunities to take up further education and to develop individual potential. Therefore, we regularly conduct internal training sessions on many relevant subjects and offer all employees a chance to participate in them. We also offer each co-worker the opportunity to form a picture of other departments within the company via job rotation, and to learn about their different activities. In addition, our employees have the option of participating in selected external further education and seminars depending on opportunity and task. Coaching offers are also part of our individual employee support.

Bagground day

To make entry to our company easier for trainees we introduced the “Bagground Day” in 2018. This taster day gives trainees the opportunity to get to know HALFAR® and all that goes with it. In this way, they already know a little bit about the company and the start to life at work is made a bit easier on their first working day. Parents and relatives of the trainees are very welcome to gain an impression of their child’s future workplace.

Company management for future trainees