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SCIENCE, RETAIL & MANUFACTURing


426  A sunnier outlook

458  Levi Strauss & Co.

430  Agrium Inc.

462  LifeScan Scotland Ltd

434  AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals

464  Loblaw Companies Limited

436 Celgene

468  Molex Incorporated

440 Coloplast

472  Novartis Oncology

444  Domtar

476  Novelis Inc.

448  Forest Laboratories, Inc.

480  NSK Europe Ltd

452  International Paper

484  Smith & Nephew

454  John Deere

488 Vertex


a sunnier outlook Recent data suggests that the storm clouds have lifted for the retail and manufacturing sectors – a forecast that spells a brighter future for young talent

The UK’s unusually hot summer in 2013 coincided with an equally

would increase the number of their employees over

welcome development for the country’s manufacturing sector.

the following six months, which is very encouraging

Commenting on a report presented by the Manufacturing Advisory

when you consider that positive key indicators do

Service (MAS) in late August, the organisation’s Area Director for

not always necessarily translate into a greater number

London and the South East, David Caddle, observed that: ‘There is

of available jobs.

a warmer glow surrounding the English economy at present, and

   ‘This statistic is very important, in my opinion,’ said

a continuing upturn in manufacturing is playing its part.’

David. ‘If we are going to take full advantage of existing

Renewed optimism Indeed, after a difficult 2012, the industry began to pick up in the spring of 2013, according to a survey conducted by the Chartered

and future opportunities, then our SMEs will need to ensure they have the workforce and skills in place to meet demand.’

Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) and financial information

An international trend

services company Markit. And with orders and output growing

It’s not just in the UK where things are looking up.

faster than at any point since 1994, the sector is, after a period of

At around the same time as the CIPS and MAS revealed

stagnation, once again an attractive proposition for young talent.

their findings, similar surveys conducted elsewhere

   ‘Encouraging PMI [Purchasing Managers’ Index] statistics,

revealed that manufacturing output had increased in

which are economic indicators derived from monthly surveys

many parts of the world. In Spain and Italy, for instance,

of private sector companies, combined with a surge in output

the sector grew for the first time since 2011, while

and good news from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and

China recorded growth for the first time in a year.

Traders car figures, have created a sense of renewed optimism,’

   The upturn across the eurozone also gave the UK

David explained.

a boost. ‘The UK’s factories are booming again,’ said

   This is underlined by the fact that exactly half of the almost

Rob Dobson, Senior Economist at survey compilers Markit.

700 small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that MAS surveyed

‘Orders and output are growing at the fastest rates

between April and June 2013 for its quarterly MAS Barometer

for almost 20 years, as rising demand from domestic

expected to invest in more machinery and premises in the coming

customers is being accompanied by a return to growth

months. ‘This overwhelming response should not be underestimated,’

of our largest trading partner, the eurozone.’

David said. ‘Manufacturers are a cautious bunch by their very nature,

   He added: ‘Manufacturing is clearly making a

and they will only spend if they can see long-term confidence in

strong positive contribution to the economy, providing

the marketplace.’

welcome evidence that the long-awaited rebalancing

   These expansion plans are bound to have a positive impact on

of the economy towards manufacturing and exports

the career prospects of anyone choosing to work in manufacturing.

is at last starting to take place now that our export

In fact, 43 per cent of respondents in the MAS survey said they

markets are recovering.’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

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CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘with output growing, the sector is once again an attractive proposition for young talent’

Reasons to be cheerful And the positive news was not limited to the manufacturing industry. The retail sector also had plenty of reasons to be cheerful, with Britain’s high streets generally performing well. According to the British Retail Consortium (BRC), sales rose by 3.6 per cent in August 2013 compared with the previous year’s figures – significant considering that August 2012 was the time of the London Olympics, when retail sales were buoyed by a higher-than-usual number of tourists across the UK.    The durability of the industry in Britain has been helped by the fact that, throughout the recent economic downturn, it ‘continued to deliver quality products at reasonable prices’, according to Helen Dickinson, Director General of the BRC.    A major factor in this success has been the use of technology that makes it easier for customers to purchase goods, thereby prompting them to spend more readily. Speaking at the BRC Retail Symposium in London in June 2013, Helen added: ‘British retail is embracing the game-changing digital revolution faster than anywhere else in the world.’    For jobseekers, this progressive mindset means that there are great job opportunities in retail, as well as in the manufacturing sector. It’s an upturn that offers positive prospects for many graduates – not only those with marketing, merchandising or business qualifications, but also those who may not have initially considered a career in the sector, such as computing and IT picture for the industry, where – after a period of good news for the economy – the forecast is looking far less stormy.

428 / 429

graduates. This broad appeal, in turn, contributes to a rosier


The past ten years have seen Agrium, one of Canada’s major suppliers of agricultural crop inputs and services, nurture success for the company and its employees alike www.agrium.com

Agrium Inc.’s mission statement – ‘providing ingredients for growth’

   And it seems that Chuck’s colleagues share his passion for

– is not simply a literal reference to its core business of providing

the company’s grander purpose, with employee surveys showing

the crop inputs and services needed to feed a growing world.

high levels of employee engagement. Chuck says people across the

Agrium’s mission has been carefully considered to take in the

company are driven by a desire to ‘do the right thing’ for Agrium,

company’s many facets, including the growth of the organisation,

and feel a sense of ownership of its decisions, actions and results.

the development of its employees and the continued strength

   He adds that there is a ‘no excuses culture’ and that everyone

and success of its various clients’ businesses.

is expected to ‘get the job done’. But in getting the job done, the

   The company has certainly made good on its stated ambitions

organisation also takes care to act with integrity in how it treats

regarding its own performance. A successfully executed and clearly

people and how business plans are executed. ‘That’s what makes

thought-out strategy saw Agrium increase both profits and sales by

us quite special,’ says Chuck.

more than 500 per cent from 2003 to 2012. In 2012 alone, Agrium earned a historically high revenue and profit of $16.7 billion and

Community impact

$1.5 billion respectively, ranking it among Canada’s top 25 companies.

Agrium is equally proud of its ability to make a positive impact both

This made it a rewarding decade for its shareholders, customers

within the agricultural sector and the community at large. The breadth

and employees alike, with the future looking just as promising.

and size of the organisation means it is well placed to understand

Strong corporate culture

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

cultivating value

evolving trends and challenges in agriculture and, thanks to its global nature, sees itself as ideally situated – indeed obligated – to contribute significantly to society.

Magro explains: ‘The company is about much more than just making

   To this end, Agrium has established a Corporate Social

money.’ Driven by its principles and its people, Agrium is as proud

Responsibility Committee to monitor its performance and set targets

of its corporate culture as it is of its financial strength. Based in Alberta,

and priorities in this area. It also donates money to a number of

Canada, Agrium is a major wholesale producer and retail supplier of

flagship social responsibility programmes. These include a partnership

agricultural products and services in North America, South America,

with Millennium Promise, which has a holistic approach to eradicating

Europe and Australia. As such, it serves an important function in

extreme poverty and hunger in sub-Saharan Africa, and Caring for

supporting the global food chain.

Our Watersheds, an education programme that teaches students

   ‘One thing that really drew me to the company is that there’s this

about preserving and improving their local waterways.

higher mission of feeding the world that employees can rally around,’

   Agrium also places great emphasis on environmental health,

Chuck says. ‘Yes, we’re here to make money for shareholders, but

safety and sustainability. This led it to establish another dedicated

I personally came to the company because I really wanted to be part

corporate committee to monitor its progress and improvements

of an organisation that contributes to something more important –

in promoting a ‘culture of safety’, with the ultimate goal of ‘zero

helping to feed the world.’

injuries’. As Chuck explains: ‘The safety of our employees, contractors

430 / 431

But as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Chuck


‘Agrium has always maintained that its highly regarded culture, together with the people it attracts, are at the heart of its success’

and the public is not just a precondition to our social

of programmes for employee development, together

licence to operate, it is a moral imperative.’

with rigorous performance-management processes and

Worldwide presence

competitive compensation and incentives. These all help the company to attract and retain talent, and enable

Agrium has grown significantly over the past decade,

all employees to pursue their personal goals and reach

mainly through a process of acquisitions and mergers.

their full potential. Agrium has a strong record for hiring

The organisation now has a presence in 20 countries

internally – in 2012, 78 per cent of leadership positions

on six continents and has expanded from around 4,000

filled were taken by internal candidates.

employees to more than 14,000. ‘With 4,000 employees

   As the company looks to the future, Chuck says it

we could transfer the principles and values through

remains constantly aware of the purpose that lies at its

social osmosis,’ says Chuck (pictured opposite, top right,

heart and drives its employees every day – the need to

with Mike Wilson, President and CEO, right). But with

address the ‘unrelenting global need for reliable food

the workforce now multiplied several times over and

supplies’. He explains that the world’s ever-increasing

incorporating people in different countries with different

demand for food puts continued pressure on global

languages and cultures, the company has had to move

grain supplies, with agricultural productivity struggling

towards a more formalised culture with a greater

to keep up. Agrium sees itself as playing a crucial role

emphasis on training and leadership programmes.

in feeding the world through its products and services,

   Its attention to establishing strong corporate values

and Chuck says the company aims to continue to grow

and implementing them at every level has earned Agrium

to meet that need by not only becoming bigger, but

a number of awards and accolades. ‘We don’t do it for

also better. And as it does, Agrium will ensure that it

the awards, but it shows that we have a good recipe

stays true to its values and principles.

for success,’ says Chuck, adding that being named one

   ‘Most companies will talk about competitive

of Canada’s 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures was

advantages. But the integrity of your corporate culture

particularly meaningful.

is the most important aspect of an organisation’s

Employee development The growth of the company has also opened up a wealth

competitive advantage,’ he says.    Agrium has always maintained that its highly regarded culture, together with the people it attracts,

of opportunities for employees, both domestic and

are at the heart of its success, and that these will

international. Agrium has built on these with a variety

remain its focus as it moves forward.


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

432 / 433


brighter futures With its commitment to the research and development of new medicines, AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals is a first-choice employer for forward-thinking graduates www.astrazenecacareers.com


AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals is a global pharmaceutical company

of that,’ says David Westbury, Operations & IS Global Graduate

that is tackling some of the world’s greatest healthcare challenges.

Programme Manager. ‘We’ve had fantastic, talented individuals

With sales in 2012 alone totalling more than $28 billion, millions

who have joined our business via this programme and have gone

of patients worldwide use medicines that have been researched,

on to establish very successful careers with us.’

formulated and produced by the company.    The firm discovers, develops, manufactures and markets

Diversity champion

prescription medicines, focusing on the therapeutic fields of cancer,

With operations in more than 100 countries, diversity is a key factor

cardiovascular/metabolic disease, and respiratory, inflammatory

in everything the company does. The variety of cultures, backgrounds,

and autoimmune disease. AstraZeneca is also active in the areas

skills and experience of this global workforce makes for a strong and

of infection and neuroscience. The company invests $4 billion a

energised business, which benefits its employees, stakeholders and

year into the next generation of medicines through a research and

customers alike. Thanks to its commitment to diversity, AstraZeneca

development department made up of more than 15,000 professionals

has received numerous accolades. These include Opportunity Now’s

spread across eight countries and three continents.

Global Award in 2013 in recognition of the company’s Asia for Global

Career opportunities

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘we take great pride in developing leaders of the future, and our global graduate programmes are a critical part of that’

talent development programme, which was designed to attract and retain female talent across the region.    AstraZeneca also featured among the Top 50 Companies

graduate programmes are targeted at talented individuals with

for Executive Women in 2013 – a list produced by the National

postgraduate qualifications. Career opportunities at the company are

Association for Female Executives that ranks companies on female

vast and varied, but mainly focus on the areas of research, finance,

representation at all levels. Further evidence of the firm’s commitment

sales, marketing, legal and customer service. All roles within the

to development and diversity is its 18-month LEAP programme.

organisation give graduates hands-on experience of the pharmaceutical

Delivered in the organisation’s US set-up, this provides intensive

industry in an environment that lets them develop their management

coaching, career-development and educational opportunities to

and technical skills. As an employer, AstraZeneca recognises that every

an even gender split of talented, mid-level employees.

individual has their own ambitions and abilities, so career opportunities

   AstraZeneca was ranked fifth in Forbes magazine’s list of

are tailor-made to suit the experiences and interests of each recruit.

Happiest Companies for Young Professionals in 2012. Key attributes

   A key aspect of the company’s graduate programme is leadership

highlighted by those graduates surveyed included working for

development. The cultivation of core leadership skills plays an integral

a company that values its employees’ ideas and being provided

part in graduates’ professional progress and is encouraged through a

with excellent growth and leadership opportunities. In fact, just

combination of training and mentoring activities, with each participant

as the company invests heavily in the development of its innovative

allocated a personal mentor from day one of the programme.

medicines, so too does it recognise the importance of nurturing

   ‘At AstraZeneca, we take great pride in developing our leaders

and supporting those who research, produce and deliver its

of the future, and our global graduate programmes are a critical part

life-changing products.

434 / 435

AstraZeneca employs more than 50,000 people globally and its


putting patients first Celgene is a forward-thinking biopharmaceutical company where employees can make a real difference in expanding the boundaries of medicine www.celgene.com


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

Over the past 50 years, medical innovation has been the source

products are enabling healthcare providers to turn deadly

of much economic growth and has created millions of jobs around

cancers into long-term, manageable diseases.

the world – both directly and indirectly. At the same time, life

   Prior to 2000, for example, patients suffering from multiple

expectancy has dramatically increased for patients suffering from a

myeloma – a type of cancer that affects plasma cells in the blood

number of diseases. As a multinational biopharmaceutical company,

– had a life expectancy of around two to three years following

Celgene is a key contributor to continued medical innovation with

diagnosis. In the fight against this form of cancer, Celgene has

operations in more than 50 countries and some 5,000 employees

bought three breakthrough products to market – Revlimid®,

worldwide. The company has manufacturing facilities in both the

Thalomid® and most recently Pomalyst® – and the life expectancy

EU and the USA, and its products are sold in over 70 countries.

for multiple myeloma patients is now around ten years.

   Celgene’s specialised research and development focuses on innovations in haematology, oncology and immunology, and the

Improved survival rates

company’s products are changing the lives of patients suffering

With the launch of Abraxane®, Celgene achieved yet another

from life-threatening diseases. ‘Celgene is able to attract some of

oncology breakthrough in the treatment of lung and breast cancers.

the top minds in science because of our forward-thinking approach

More recently, studies on Abraxane have demonstrated much greater

to discovery and development,’ says Bob Hugin, Chairman and

survival benefits for patients with pancreatic cancer when compared

CEO of Celgene and Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Research

with standard therapies in use today. This was an area of research

and Manufacturers of America. ‘We have nearly halved the time

that had not seen an improvement in overall survival rates in 40 years,

it takes to move a potential therapeutic drug from discovery to

however, Celgene was able to demonstrate just such an improvement

clinical trials, and we are constantly looking at ways to ensure

and the company now has a priority review with the US Food and

that we are advancing science and medicine to benefit patients

Drug Administration (FDA) for advanced pancreatic cancer.

who have limited treatment options.’

   Building on its expertise in haematology and oncology, Celgene

Medical innovation

is extending its research and development programme to include inflammation and immunology. The company has discovered and developed Apremilast – a treatment for immune-mediated diseases

health through bold scientific pursuits, while maintaining a

such as psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis – which has been submitted

promise to always put patients first. Over the past five years,

for approval by the FDA and will soon be submitted to the European

the business has devoted around 30 per cent of its revenues

Medicines Agency (EMA). It is expected to reach the market in 2014.

to research and development – twice the industry average –

   One of the principles that defines Celgene as an organisation

and it has demonstrated a willingness to take calculated risks in

is its commitment to putting patients first. The company’s patient-

pursuit of new medical innovations. As a result, many of Celgene’s

assistance programme has provided access to medicines for more

436 / 437

The company’s goal is simple: to change the course of human


than 20,000 patients, and a further 50,000 patients

   As a medical company, Celgene recruits a large number

have accessed Celgene’s innovative therapies through

of its employees from the science world, particularly medical

clinical trials around the world. For its employees,

practitioners, haematologists, oncologists and immunologists.

Celgene conducts quarterly ‘town hall’ meetings on a

Celgene has a broad clinical research capability – about a

company-wide basis in which patients talk about their

third of its employees are researchers – in comparison to that

experiences, allowing employees to see and feel the

of its big pharma competitors, and the company employs

connection between their work and the lives of patients.

a significant number at dedicated facilities in California,

Patient narratives are shared regularly on the firm’s

New Jersey and Massachusetts, as well as in Seville in Spain.

intranet, ourCelgene, and the company’s annual report also features real patients and their stories. The majority

Huge advances

of Celgene’s employees participate in patient advocacy

‘Celgene encourages employees to feel empowered to

by volunteering, fundraising or through generous

stretch themselves and push the envelope, so that our

personal contributions.

patients can benefit from huge advances, not just baby

Tireless commitment

steps,’ says Bob. ‘The company was built on a tradition of dedication and commitment to novel science, and our

When Revlimid received FDA approval for the treatment

colleagues demonstrate those traits every day in their efforts

of myelodysplastic syndromes with 5q deletion in 2005,

to produce innovative therapies to treat incurable diseases.’

the innovative therapy was refused approval by the

   ‘I have plenty of experience in the biopharmaceutical

EMA. For Celgene’s employees – who want successful

sector, and the feeling I get at Celgene is unique,’ says Rich

therapies to reach patients as quickly as possible – this

Bagger, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs and

was a significant blow. Over the following seven years,

Strategic Market Access, who has been with the company

they worked tirelessly to achieve approval, and in 2013

for 18 months. ‘People feel truly empowered to make a

the EMA finally provided the positive ruling that Celgene

difference here. Creativity and innovation are encouraged

had been striving for. ‘Many employees felt that we

in every aspect of our work and it provides an energised

might never get this therapy to the patients who need

and fulfilling work environment for me and my colleagues.’

it, but over the seven years they refused to give up,’ says

   From clinical researchers, regulatory affairs and quality

Director of Internal Communications Mary Ann Ondish.

control, to the more commercial aspects of the business,

‘They were so proud and thrilled when approval was

Celgene has a range of options that appeal to graduates

granted, and I felt that I had made a really good choice

who want to develop a high-impact career that makes

in coming to this company.’

a real difference to patients’ lives.


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘The company’s goal is simple: to change the course of human health through bold scientific pursuits’

438 / 439


Worthwhile work With its innovative approach to consumers’ needs, award-winning medical technology company Coloplast offers highly rewarding job opportunities www.coloplast.com

In 1954, Danish nurse Elise Sørensen was concerned by dramatic

undergone procedures were essentially unable to leave their homes.

changes to her sister Thora’s lifestyle after an ostomy operation, that

This idea of looking for solutions – being curious and applying it

is, surgery to create an opening – or stoma – in an organ from the

to the way that we work – is really the core of who we are.’

outside of the body. Fearing that her stoma would leak in public, Thora no longer dared to go out. Determined to help her sister out

Programmes for leaders

of her isolation, Elise devised a disposable ostomy bag that would

The flattened hierarchy at Coloplast reflects the Scandinavian

fit tightly to the skin via an adhesive ring. It was an idea that led to

environment in which the company was born and is something that

the establishment of Coloplast as a medical device manufacturer,

employees really value. For several years, sharpening Coloplast’s

and it changed the lives of thousands of people like Thora.

leadership capabilities has been at the top of the business’s agenda.

Enhanced solutions

Unlike many organisations that outsource this kind of training to third-party providers, Coloplast developed their programme Leading

Pursuing an ambitious growth agenda, Coloplast continues to

to Win in collaboration with specialised consultants. Having built up

develop and market products and services that make life easier

their own competences, Coloplast’s human resources professionals

for people with very private and personal medical conditions.

have developed and rolled out programmes for leaders around the

Employing more than 8,000 people in over 30 subsidiaries, and

globe. To date, most managers (nearly 900) have benefitted from this

with products available in more than 100 countries, it is one of the

modular programme, with new modules being developed each year.

world’s leading medical device companies. Coloplast designs and

   The programme centres on four highly pragmatic principles that

creates products to assist patients with ostomy, continence, urology,

were identified by Coloplast’s top-level management as being integral

wound and skincare needs.

to the huge financial turnaround the business achieved in 2008–12:

   In 2013, the company was again recognised as one of the Global

for managers to set high ambitions and challenge their teams; to give

100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World – the world’s most

open and honest feedback and to create a feedback culture; to be

credible ranking of corporate sustainability – at the World Economic

visible and lead decisively, no matter where in the world their direct

Forum, Davos. It was also one of only three medical device companies

reports are located; and to ensure that all projects are focused on

to be recognised by Ethisphere in 2013 as one of the World’s Most

driving the business forward. The leadership programme is aimed

Ethical Companies.

at all managers who have people-management responsibilities, and

   Coloplast’s employment proposition is built around curiosity –

the return on this investment can be seen in the positive feedback

the idea that curiosity leads to understanding and that understanding

from the company's latest engagement survey.

leads to better solutions for end users and consumers. Head of Global

   At Coloplast’s Danish headquarters in Humlebæk, 40 km north

Organisational Development, People and Communications Alison

of Copenhagen, the business offers master’s students the opportunity

Egeberg explains: ‘The people who work at Coloplast are motivated

to develop and write their thesis with full access to a real-world

and energised by the fact that we make a real difference to people’s

business problem. Students from across a wide range of disciplines –

lives. Until we created the world’s first ostomy bag, people who had

including business, MBAs and IT – gain valuable experience working


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

440 / 441


with a leading player in medical technology, while

and received the prestigious Red Dot Award

Coloplast benefits from new strategies, ideas and

for the design of its SpeediCath® Compact

perspectives as well as the opportunity to identify

Set catheter. Additionally, Coloplast has

talent and potential future leaders.

developed the Coloplast Care programme to

   ‘While it’s a difficult programme to get into,’

assist customers during the period when they

Alison says, ‘there is a strong possibility of future

adjust to their products. ‘If you are in hospital

employment arising from it.’ Students benefit from

and you have had an ostomy performed,

full access to internal data, an internal sponsor

you might be given an hour with a nurse

committed to development of their thesis, office

who tells you how to use your bag and then

space at Coloplast and the opportunity to present

sends you home,’ Alison says. ‘We’ve now

to a challenger board.

set up a care programme for patients

Top ranking

after they leave hospital whereby one of our employees calls them and walks them

Ranked as the world’s best medical technology

through the entire process – how to use the

company in a global survey of patient groups

product properly and how to deal with any

in both 2012 and 2013, Coloplast was found

issues that might arise.’

to be number one on every indicator.

   Today, Coloplast is one of the best-

   ‘One of the things that Coloplast has

performing medical device companies in

achieved over time is a significant change to

the world and continues to invest in and

the way our products look and feel,’ Alison says.

grow its capabilities. Attractive to graduates

‘In the past, if you were using a catheter, for

who have a passion for marketing, finance,

example, it was a large, plastic container that

IT and engineering, the business is also

looked visibly like a medical device. Today, it’s

experiencing rapid growth in its sales

closer to the size of a lipstick and if it fell out

and consumer-excellence teams.

of your bag, no one would know what it was.’

   ‘The fact that Coloplast embraces a

   The commitment to creating products

lot of different cultures means that people

that ease life for users was rewarded in 2013

are receptive and curious about different

when Coloplast came in at number 12 on Forbes'

approaches to working,’ Alison says.

list of the World's Most Innovative Companies

‘That makes for a really nice environment.’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘the fact that coloplast embraces different cultures means that people are receptive and curious abOut different approaches to working’

442 / 443


Leading the paper trail Domtar is looking to change the paper and pulp industry through the development of innovative new technologies and products www.domtar.com


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘Domtar is a classic example of a company that has learned

   Alongside its expansion into personal care, Domtar is also

to evolve over the years,’ says Pascal Bossé, Vice-President of

pursuing a number of breakout technologies – the ‘small bets’

Corporate Communications and Investor Relations at the company.

on innovation, as described by Pascal – investigating and exploiting

Originally founded in Britain in the 1840s, Domtar relocated to

the properties of wood fibre, while building on its core competencies

Canada at the turn of the 20th century. Since then, the company

in wood fibre procurement and processing facilities.

has been involved in a variety of fields, including manufacturing railway parts and producing construction materials for the housing

Wood fibre components

industry, before eventually turning its attention to pulp and paper

Domtar has built the world’s first demonstration plant for

manufacturing. Today, it’s the largest manufacturer of uncoated

nanocellulose crystalline, the component of wood fibre that gives

wood-free paper in North America, and the third largest – in terms

the tree its inherent and fundamental strength. ‘Nanocellulose

of manufacturing capacity – in the world.

crystalline has fantastic iridescent properties,’ Pascal says. ‘But most

Innovative technologies

importantly, it’s ten times stronger than steel. If you were to add just a small amount to an existing manufactured material, all of a sudden your product is stronger, and this could bring significant

reached $5.5 billion. However, rapid changes in technology and the

benefits to a wide range of applications.’

increasing dominance of screen-based information sharing have

   Similarly, Domtar is investigating the commercial uses of lignin,

meant that demand for uncoated paper (the regular sheets of A3 and

another component of wood fibre. ‘It’s the natural glue that binds

A4 that many homes and businesses use in their printers and copiers)

wood fibre together,’ explains Pascal. ‘It’s also the combustible

is in decline. Domtar’s challenge, particularly under the leadership of

element in wood, but Domtar’s purpose is to see if there are

new CEO John Williams, has been to reposition the company for the

applications out there that will give it new uses.’

future. ‘The strategic plan,’ Pascal says, ‘is directed towards breaking

   In partnership with Battelle, Domtar is also investigating a

out from traditional pulp and paper investments and placing a series

third technology known as fast pyrolysis. Similar to the production

of small bets in innovative technologies around the use of wood fibre

of ethanol from sugar or beets, fast pyrolysis is about trying to

– which is the heart of our business.’

make liquid fuel out of wood fibre.

   In 2011, Domtar announced its acquisition of Attends North

   Today, Domtar is the largest producer and consumer of

America, which has since become a key component of its newly

FSC-certified pulp and paper in North America. ‘We’ve realised

developed personal care business, marking a first step into a market

that taking on the mantle of being a sustainable paper company

that is growing at 6 per cent per year. As a manufacturer of adult

has served our business and our shareholders well, but what’s

incontinence products, Attends requires large quantities of ‘fluff

next?’ says David Struhs, Domtar’s Vice President for Sustainability.

pulp’ – a type of pulp that is made from wood fibre at one of

‘We need to make sure that it’s not just about the fibre, but that

Domtar’s North Carolina facilities. In 2012, Domtar also acquired

we’re also concerned about water resources, air quality, and the

Attends Europe, bringing the two businesses back under the same

impacts that we have on the different communities in which

umbrella, and giving it a platform for growth on a global basis.

we operate.’

444 / 445

Pulp and paper is big business. In 2011, Domtar’s consolidated sales


‘employees like to be part of a company that has a sense of commitment to the community’

Repurposing waste

   It’s an approach that is designed to

Domtar has paid particular attention to

embrace the complexity of sustainability,

waste. ‘We want to look at residue as an

recognising that sometimes choices and

opportunity,’ says David. Historic coal mining

trade-offs are necessary. ‘It’s also about

in the Pennsylvania countryside had resulted

bringing it back to shareholder value,’ David

in the acidification of soil, making it difficult

says. ‘It may be indirect – there may not be

to reclaim that land and create a healthy,

a direct increase in the dividend for example

functioning ecosystem. Recognising that

– but it’s securing our place as the preferred

some of the waste from the pulp making

supplier to the very best customers. It’s also

process is high in organic content and very

helpful in recruiting and retaining the best

alkaline, Domtar used these by-products

young talent.’

to buffer the acidic soil in that part of the

   These commitments to technological

country. This has resulted in the renewal of

innovation and sustainability have also a

natural forest, as well as the re-establishment

meaningful impact on Domtar’s workforce.

of the elk herds that historically populated

‘It’s interesting to see how employees rally

the area. ‘It’s a simple story, but a powerful

around these issues,’ David says, ‘In particular,

one,’ David says. ‘Because if you stop

many of our younger employees like to be

thinking about materials as waste, you can

part of a company that has this sense of

start thinking about where they belong next.’

commitment to the community in which

Performance indicators

it operates.’    From a careers perspective, Domtar

Rather than creating enterprise-wide

offers abundant opportunities for individuals

sustainability objectives, the company has

who connect with the values embedded

taken the view that each of its industrial sites

in the company’s business practices and

should function as its own industrial ecology.

culture. Pascal – who joined Domtar

‘Rather than just adopt the company’s general

ten years ago as an analyst in investor

key performance indicators, we’ve asked our

relations – says the company ‘has given

facilities to adapt them to their own air, water,

me an opportunity to grow that I don’t

fibre, energy and community priorities,’ David

believe I would have gained at another

says. ‘It takes more effort, but we believe that

organisation. It’s been a remarkable

the results will be more meaningful.’

progression for me.’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

446 / 447


collective success The collaborative approach at US pharmaceutical company Forest Laboratories, Inc. results in longterm rewards for both the company and its employees www.frx.com

Some international organisations can seem almost military in

  Forest employees experience this on a daily basis, as they

their march towards market domination. Forest Laboratories, Inc.,

are encouraged to interact and make decisions together. ‘It’s time-

however, bucks this trend. The high-achieving pharmaceutical

and labour-intensive,’ says Sally, ‘but with collaboration comes

company prides itself on a culture of collaboration, which, say

communication and respect. You can’t have one without the others.’

its employees, is the key to organisational success as well as

  This approach makes Forest an enjoyable place of work, as

staff happiness.

highlighted by the firm’s recent, company-wide engagement survey,

   It’s an approach that is informed by the company’s

which placed the company in the top tier among North American

roots. Founded in the 1950s, Forest initially produced sweets,

companies for staff satisfaction and motivation. Employees also

vitamins and other over-the-counter products. That changed

expressed their ongoing confidence in Forest’s business strategy and

in 1977, when Howard Solomon, a Yale-educated lawyer,

leadership team. ‘They are highly engaged and think Forest is a great

became CEO. He brought with him a clear vision to reinvent

place to work,’ says Sally. ‘There is significant pride here. Furthermore,

the company as a pharmaceutical business by building long-

Forest is recognised for its efforts to promote equal opportunity and

standing global partnerships to identify, develop and market

encourage diversity of backgrounds, talents and perspectives.’

life-improving medications.

  For talented graduates and postgraduates, a range of salaried

   With its headquarters in New York City, Forest today employs

entry routes are available at the company. The two-year management

just over 6,000 employees. US-based, the company has a Canadian

rotation programme, for instance, is a graduate scheme that provides

subsidiary as well as business set-ups in Europe and an operational

experience in a variety of different functions and roles, and offers

footprint in Latin America. It’s a growing business, and an exciting

broad experience as a platform from which to specialise. The St. John’s

one to be a part of.

University/Forest Research Institute Fellowship, meanwhile, offers

Culture of collaboration

postgraduate opportunities in either regulatory affairs or clinical development. Then there’s the MBA summer internship programme,

This is down to Forest’s company culture, which is based on respect,

which provides three-month placements, enabling students to gain

loyalty, hard work, integrity and trust. ‘We pride ourselves on our

diverse experience.

collaborative environment,’ says Frank Murdolo, Vice President, Investor Relations. ‘We’re very flexible – and that’s not often the case

Continuous learning

with pharmaceutical companies.’ Sally Paull, Corporate Vice President,

Brian Fong first joined Forest through the MBA summer programme

Human Resources, agrees: ‘If you’re looking for an organisation with

in 2009. ‘I was exposed to many different aspects of marketing,

whom you can form a genuine partnership with mutual respect and

including working on promotional materials, conventions and

trust, that’s Forest.’

marketing communications’. After completing his MBA, he was hired


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

448 / 449


by Forest full-time. ‘I have been able to further enhance my skill

Positive impact

sets, working with external and internal partners and developing

Kerri Kaplan joined Forest as an Institute Fellow in Regulatory

strong relationships,’ he says. After three promotions in just four

Affairs in 2010. She now works as a senior manager for Forest

years, Brian is today a Senior Product Manager in the New York City

Research Institute, Inc., a subsidiary of Forest Laboratories,

Marketing Department. ‘I continue to learn every day,’ he adds.

Inc. ‘I graduated with a BA in psychology and then worked as

‘The management team here is very accessible and open to new ideas.’

a research coordinator for a psychiatrist who was conducting

  Forest is looking for bright, motivated people. ‘But if they

clinical trials on behalf of several pharmaceutical companies,’

aren’t good team players, they’re not going to succeed or be

she says. ‘I was thrilled to be involved in research that had the

happy here,’ says Sally. ‘In my experience, Forest values individuals

potential to have an impact on so many, but it was apparent

with a strong work ethic who can communicate ideas in a clear

to me early on that I could have an even greater impact

and organised manner,’ adds Brian. ‘I try to balance strategic

working directly for a pharmaceutical company.

thinking with tactical execution in order to bring value to every

   ‘With that in mind, I decided to enroll for a doctorate in

project I work on.’

pharmacy. I was then selected for the two-year postdoctoral

   For its part, the company provides its employees with plenty

St. John’s University/Forest Research Institute Fellowship,’

of tangible advantages. All benefit from a variety of learning and

she adds. ‘That gave me the opportunity to lead several

development programmes, which enable ongoing professional

important projects.

progress. The organisation also usually experiences a promotion

   ‘Forest has the key qualities I seek in an employer –

rate of at least five per cent each year across all levels. And there

a hardworking and dedicated staff working in a collaborative

are opportunities for international and US domestic travel, as well

and interdisciplinary fashion at the cutting edge of the

as Forest’s free wellbeing initiative.

industry. From the day I was hired at Forest, I hit the ground

  ‘I wholeheartedly believe that Forest’s success is down to our

running – and have yet to stop. I am now the lead regulatory

culture,’ says Sally. ‘People who work here have to be exceptionally

strategist on a product development team, investigating the

good at their job, and we reward commitment and effort.’ This clear

safety and efficacy of a fixed-dose combination of two blood

and positive approach gives Forest, as a mid-sized company, a lot

pressure medications,’ says Kerri. ‘In a sense, though, things

to smile about. ‘The number of drugs we have in development,

have recently come full circle as I’m working with Doctor

the number of drug submissions and approvals, and the number of

of Pharmacy students and a postdoctoral fellow. I hope

commercialised products we’ve launched in recent years rivals many

to provide them with the same sense of excitement and

of our larger competitors,’ says Sally. ‘That’s down to teamwork.’

satisfaction I have found in my career.’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘Forest values individuals with a strong work ethic who can communicate ideas in a clear and organised manner’

450 / 451


The complete career pack age With locations in more than 24 countries, global paper and packaging company International Paper offers its employees an exemplary people-development process www.internationalpaper.com

When International Paper’s Human Resources Department gives a

results in a new environment. Many of these roles also offer great

talk to potential employees, a good portion of time is spent outlining

opportunities for global geographic mobility.’

the company’s people-development process. This is because people

   Leaders at all levels within the organisation have clearly defined

development and career planning are integral to the working

objectives, which are regularly reviewed through one-to-one meetings

experience at the global paper and packaging company. As Shiela

between an employee and their manager. A more extensive, 360-degree

Vinczeller, Vice President, Talent Management Human Resources

review process is also available to those who want more detailed

explains: ‘We like to say we recruit people for a career, not just a job.’

feedback from their manager, peers, customers and direct reports.

   International Paper is a global leader in packaging, paper and

   Every employee creates their own career development plan and

pulp, with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America,

is encouraged to take control of their own development. In addition

Europe, Russia, Asia and North Africa. With its headquarters in

to direct feedback, the company provides training and mentoring to

Memphis, Tennessee, the company employs almost 70,000 people

enable employees to fulfil their potential and deliver business results.

worldwide and has locations in more than 24 countries, serving

‘Our training philosophy breaks down to about 70 per cent on the job,

customers and economies around the globe.

20 per cent delivered through mentoring and coaching, and 10 per cent

Future leaders

through formal training,’ says Shiela. While training is provided in many forms throughout the company, International Paper’s Leadership

Part of the people-development process at International Paper

Institute offers unique programmes and information on skills and

is run through its Leadership Institute – a system of assessment

behaviours to help employees build their leadership competences.

and training designed to unearth the company’s future leaders. This leadership model is based on what the company calls the ‘three

Inclusive environment

Cs’ – character, capability and catalyst. ‘By “character” we mean

The company also has a firm focus on diversity and inclusion, which is

integrity, values and ethics – the kinds of behaviour we want our

run through its Chairman’s Diversity Council. Twelve senior executives

employees to emulate,’ says Shiela. ‘When we say “capability”, we

meet several times a year to set and evolve the strategy, listen to

mean subject-matter expertise and the intellectual horsepower you

feedback and review progress. The company recognises that diversity

bring to the role; and “catalyst” refers to the ability to manage and

matters because productive teams have individuals with different

lead change. Change is the only constant in today’s world, and leaders

viewpoints and backgrounds, all working towards a common vision.

who can meet that challenge are critical to business success.’

Inclusion fosters an environment of full participation and the open

   International Paper employees are assessed on their ability to

exchange of ideas, free of cultural barriers.

get results, as well as on the designated competences of their role.

   For the tenth time in the past 11 years, International Paper was

Team members who exhibit the required skills are often the first ones

awarded the top spot in the Forest and Paper Products Industry section

promoted. ‘If we see clear potential in someone as a future leader,

of Fortune magazine’s World’s Most Admired Companies list in 2013.

we give them the exposure to different roles,’ says Shiela. ‘We aim

‘I am really proud of our industry,’ says Shiela, ‘knowing that this

to move our key talent into assignments that provide dramatic

recognition is a direct reflection of our development philosophy,

learning experiences and offer the employee the ability to deliver

focus on leadership and the strength of our people.’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘We aim to move our key talent into assignments that provide dramatic learning experiences’

452 / 453


work that bears fruit One of the oldest American industrial companies, John Deere’s innovative spirit and global footprint create great opportunities for employees www.johndeere.com


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

Throughout its 176-year history, Deere & Company has been

strategy and talent development at John Deere. ‘We prepare our

instrumental in making food production easier. More commonly

employees to help customers get the most out of their land and

known by the name of its founder, John Deere, the American company

water resources. For instance, we developed an entire business

is the world’s largest manufacturer of agricultural equipment and

unit focused on precision irrigation to help those in agriculture use

has also diversified to become a leading producer of equipment

the world’s fresh water supply more wisely.’

for construction, forestry and turf care. As such, it enables farmers,

   Indeed, agriculture faces an enormous challenge, as Laurie

contractors and other customers whose work is linked to the land

explains: ‘There is little additional arable land left to be developed

to be more productive, while focusing on sustainability of resources.

around the world, so agricultural productivity will have to increase in

In doing so, the company offers its employees the opportunity to

order to feed an ever-growing global population. This increase will

have a positive influence on the world and develop their careers.

be achieved through improved farming techniques, seeds, machinery

   ‘We have a meaningful higher purpose because our products

and irrigation.’ The global challenge in terms of construction

help those who work the land to feed, clothe and shelter the world,’

equipment is just as great, says Laurie, with the need for significant

explains Laurie Simpson, Vice President and Chief Compliance Officer.

improvements in infrastructure escalating as more and more people

Laurie’s job focuses on ensuring that John Deere maintains its long-

move into urban areas.

held reputation for embracing integrity as a core value. ‘This sense of purpose has underpinned the company’s success since it was

Corporate citizenship

founded and continues to drive its growth,’ she adds.

In addition to helping the world meet these major challenges, John

Innovator

Deere is also committed to sustainability and citizenship. ‘We have the same standards and systems for safety, environment and quality in our overseas factories around the world as we have in the US,’ says Laurie.

Deere set up shop in Illinois. An innovator whose endeavours epitomise

The company is also developing farming practices in emerging markets

the American frontier spirit, Deere produced agricultural tools that

across the globe. In India, for example, John Deere works with small

were essential for life on the prairie. He made his mark by being the

shareholder farmers to help them overcome their problems and, at the

first to successfully make and market a self-scouring plow, using highly

same time, gain a greater appreciation of environmental challenges.

polished steel, which came to be known as ‘the plow that broke the

   The firm’s focus on corporate citizenship has helped establish its

plains’. It enabled pioneer farmers to continue plowing rather than

place as one of Fortune magazine’s World’s Most Admired Companies

having to stop every few feet to clean off the clay-like soil of the

and as a regular on the World’s Top 100 Most Ethical Companies list.

Midwest that would stick to the cast-iron blades of other designs.

And in 2013, it was named the eighth Most Reputable Company in

   The company has retained its pioneering attitude to this day.

the US in a study by Reputation Institute.

In 2012, John Deere was ranked among the Thomson Reuters

   John Deere’s commitment to those linked to the land is apparent

Top 100 Global Innovators and listed as one of InformationWeek’s

around the world, as evidenced by the significant growth the

top 500 technology innovators in the US.

company has experienced globally. ‘Whether John Deere employees

   ‘It’s not just about producing the next generation of products

are working to enhance a customer’s success in an emerging market,

or services,’ explains David Whan, who directs global human resources

such as India, or applying advanced technology in a country known

454 / 455

The company’s roots stretch back to 1837, when blacksmith John


‘our products help to feed, clothe and shelter the world – this sense of purpose has underpinned the company's success’

for agricultural production, such as Brazil, the challenge

of our customers around the world more intimately.

remains the same – to develop a deep customer

John Deere is recognised as a top company for leadership

understanding so that the appropriate technology

development because of its significant investments in

can be used,’ says David.

potential business leaders.’

High-tech solutions

Doing things right

‘There’s a perception that the industry is not exciting

For years, John Deere has also worked with universities

from a technology perspective’, says Laurie. ‘But the

worldwide to innovate through collaborative research

John Deere machines of today are very smart and use

and development programmes, and to attract top talent

embedded software, telematics and machine-to-machine

to the organisation. These relationships range ‘from

communication.’ John Deere WorkSight™ and FarmSight™

small awareness programmes to full-blown contractual

are excellent examples of such advancements in action.

partnerships’, says David. ‘The outcomes are access to

The two concepts integrate equipment intelligence by

great thinking and research, as well as to great talent.’

using GPS technology, wireless communication and other

   When John Deere started making plows, he tested

techniques to optimise the use and management of

and refined his initial design based on customer feedback.

machinery on construction and farm sites.

Today, the company still places great emphasis on the

   Although still headquartered in Illinois, John Deere

customer, expecting employees to know how John Deere

has developed a global footprint. As a result, the

products best serve their needs.

exchange of knowledge and experience across multiple

   ‘Our employees feel a deep connection with our

geographies has become critical to its growth, and the

customers,’ says Laurie. ‘Company leadership has a long-

company cultivates leadership talent around the world.

standing commitment to the firm’s core values of integrity,

   ‘We offer international assignments to our

commitment, quality and innovation. As a result, we’ve

employees, and identify and develop local talent in many

created a culture where people do the right things and

countries’, says Laurie. ‘People who aspire to become

expect others to do the same. This focus on how we

effective corporate leaders at a senior level need

do business has served us well for generations and we

international experience. Meanwhile, the development

believe it is as attractive for new employees today as

of local management helps us understand the needs

it has been for many years.’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

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CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

A true original Just as Levi Strauss changed the way we dress forever 140 years ago, so the company that bears his name is now leading the way on sustainable garment production www.levistrauss.com

rivets to secure points of stress on the seams.

the jean’s finishing process, using new

millions but they originated from a simple

They received a joint patent for the resulting

techniques that saved more than 95 million

idea 140 years ago and the efforts of one

product in 1873, and in 1890 the first blue

gallons of water in 2012 alone.

company: Levi Strauss & Co.

jeans line was born, known today as the

   That idea of incorporating rivets into

501® jean.

Sustainable innovation

men’s work trousers in 1873 led to the

   Since then, the business has continued

In a similar vein, the inspiration behind the

creation of the world’s first blue jeans.

to be a leader in clothing and has expanded

Levi’s Waste<Less line, which hit stores in

Its inventor, Levi Strauss & Co. (LS&Co.),

to incorporate trousers, tops, shorts, skirts,

early 2013, was to transform something

is now one of the world’s largest clothing

jackets, footwear and accessories for men,

old into something new; the collection was

brands. Operating in more than 110

women and children. In 1934, the company

literally made of rubbish, specifically recycled

countries with 17,000 employees, it

introduced its first women’s product, Lady

plastic bottles and food trays. Each pair of

is the only company able to claim the

Levi’s. And the company added a khaki

jeans includes content from eight 20 oz plastic

original and authentic jeans: Levi’s®.

category in 1986 with the creation of the

bottles. The first Levi’s Waste<Less collection

   Over the years, through changing times

Dockers® brand, comprising casual wear

used more than 3.5 million recycled bottles.

and fashions, the California company has

for the baby boomer generation.

   These breakthrough collections, and

championed innovation, while staying true

   Today, LS&Co. continues to set the

other sustainable initiatives, came about from

to its founder Levi Strauss’s original vision.

pace of fashion by focusing on quality,

a scientific analysis of the product lifecycle

His values – empathy, originality, integrity

craftsmanship and style, as illustrated

of pairs of Levi’s jeans and Dockers pants in

and courage – have underpinned everything

by products such as the Levi’s Commuter

2007. The company found that two stages

from clothing design, manufacturing and

Series and the Dockers Alpha Khaki.

of the product lifecycle accounted for nearly

distribution through to the company’s

Using a blue jean’s best attributes of slim

all of its water use: cotton growing and

approach to its employees, consumers,

fit, lower rise and rugged construction, the

consumer care.

the environment and the communities

Dockers Alpha Khaki combines the ease of

   To build a more sustainable supply of

where it does business.

denim with the more polished design details

cotton, which nearly 95 per cent of LS&Co.’s

of classic khaki trousers. The Levi’s brand

products are made from, the company is

introduced its Commuter Series, performance

working with the Better Cotton Initiative,

The company’s story began when Levi Strauss

denim designed for the needs of the urban

a non-profit organisation that is striving to

came to San Francisco in 1853 and opened

commuter cyclist, in 2011.

improve the social and environmental impact

a wholesale dry-goods business. It was here,

   The company also leads in sustainable

of growing cotton. The aim is to reduce water

20 years later, that he teamed up with Jacob

innovation. The goal with the Levi’s

and pesticide use during its growing process

Davis, a tailor from Reno, Nevada, to invent

Water<Less collection, as its name suggests,

and to improve the lives of hundreds of

a stronger pair of trousers by using metal

is to reduce the amount of water used during

thousands of cotton farmers.

Birth of a classic

458 / 459

Jeans may now be a wardrobe staple for


’The company has championed innovation, while staying true to its founder Levi Strauss’s original vision’

Environmental sensibilities

foundation has given more than $270 million

LS&Co. recognised that consumer behaviour also greatly

to support more than 1,000 non-profit

influences its products’ environmental impact. As 58 per

organisations globally. It supports three key

cent of its overall carbon footprint is caused by washing

areas: HIV/AIDS, workers’ rights and asset

and caring for jeans, the company has made efforts to

building. Once a year, employees around

educate consumers using new care tags to encourage

the world step away from their desks to

them to wash less, wash with cold water and line dry.

roll up their sleeves and give back to their

   In addition to focusing on sustainable product

communities by volunteering. In 2013,

innovation, LS&Co. has also taken action over the years

employees participating in ‘Community

to ensure responsible and environmentally sensitive

Day’ made a difference with nearly 170

manufacturing across the supply chain. In 1991, the

projects in 46 countries.

company established a comprehensive supplier code that requires its partners to uphold the company’s

Promoting social change

commitment to labour, the environment and health

From integrating its factories in advance of

and safety.

federally mandated desegregation in the

   Then in 1995, it became one of the first companies

1960s to being one of the first companies

to develop a restricted substances list to restrict the

to pioneer HIV/AIDS support for employees

chemicals used in manufacturing processes. The same

30 years ago, LS&Co. has also used its

year it also set standards for strict waste-water quality

influence to promote social change.

guidelines for all contract laundries and finishing facilities

   Despite its size and evolution, LS&Co.

to meet.

still helps the orphanage Levi Strauss

   Back in 1854, Levi Strauss donated $5 to the

donated to all those years ago, now called

Orphan Asylum Society of the City of San Francisco,

the Edgewood Center for Children and

which began a lifelong tradition of philanthropy for

Families. It’s testament to the company’s

the company. Since this early donation, LS&Co. has

enduring commitment to do good, as well

been giving back to communities through employee

as smart, business, despite changing times

volunteering, corporate sponsorship and the Levi

and fashions – a legacy Levi would be

Strauss Foundation. Since its creation in 1952, the

proud of.


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

460 / 461


Care at its core LifeScan Scotland strives to improve lives through its work, approach and outreach projects, while offering a vibrant and varied working environment www.lifescan-scotland.co.uk


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

People start their careers with diverse aims, but most want to make a difference. LifeScan Scotland, a member of the Johnson & Johnson

‘with more than 250 operating companies, LifeScan offers opportunities on a grand scale’

family of companies, perfectly fits that requirement. As a leading medical company that designs and manufactures blood glucose

   Staff Engineer Jenny Mackenzie, agrees. ‘I’ve been given as

monitoring kits for people with diabetes, it offers both great career

many opportunities as I could wish for,‘ she says of her 15 years

prospects and the opportunity to help others. This is illustrated by

at the company. ‘That makes me want to stay here because I can

LifeScan‘s product range, the initiatives it pioneers throughout Scotland

always progress further given that, with more than 250 operating

and its holistic approach to staff development.

companies, LifeScan offers opportunities on a grand scale.‘

   ‘Our credo is about caring for staff and communities while being productive and innovative,‘ explains Scott Dickinson, Quality Lab

Community contribution

Services Manager. ‘It‘s at the heart of everything we do.‘

Employees are encouraged to play an active role in community

   LifeScan Scotland‘s apprenticeship and graduate trainee

programmes, too. For example, LifeScan Scotland offers mentoring

programmes are great examples of that. Apprentices usually join after

and careers advice to secondary schoolchildren and runs science and

completing their A levels or Scottish Highers, learning on the job and

engineering clubs. ‘Our engineers and graduate trainees work with

specialising in either engineering or life science. At the same time,

local kids to build go-karts, helicopters, wind farms – pretty complex

they study for a Higher National Certificate (HNC) at the local university.

things,‘ Scott explains. ‘It’s about getting them engaged and excited.

It‘s a four-year programme with a full salary, and LifeScan Scotland will

We help hundreds of kids a year, and I really enjoy being involved.

support apprentices to gain a degree after their HNC, if they want to.

The projects enable me to interact with my colleagues and with the

Graduate scheme

community in different ways.‘    Care is ingrained in every aspect of the company. At its core, LifeScan is about improving health and well-being. ‘That gives you a

benefit from a rotational programme, gaining experience in different

good feeling about your work and a sense of what we’re all striving

areas of the organisation – and possibly even at other companies

to achieve,‘ says Jenny. She describes an annual project where local

within the Johnson & Johnson family of companies. Again, these roles

diabetic children are invited into the factory. ‘We recently made a

are salaried, and graduates can gain chartership as they train, with

giant puzzle, and when the kids put it together it made an electric

the support of a LifeScan mentor. While there are no guarantees,

current, so they could see it switch on at the end. For these kids, it’s

since the apprenticeship and graduate scheme launched in 2006,

helpful to see the research we’re doing into treating their condition.‘

every individual has been offered a job at the end.

   This open-door approach says a lot about LifeScan, a company

   ‘We’re constantly looking at succession planning,‘ Scott explains.

dedicated to nurturing people and communities throughout their

‘This includes finding development opportunities for our staff and

lives. Summing up the nature of the business as well as the credo that

pointing them towards opportunities for their future. In fact, I am a case

guides it, Scott concludes: ‘We have to take care of people – that’s

in point because LifeScan recently supported me to study for an MSc.‘

what we do.‘

462 / 463

Those on the company‘s two-year graduate scheme, meanwhile,


Canada’s largest food retailer and one of its largest private-sector employers, Loblaw Companies Limited, is committed to helping Canadians live life well

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

Canadian food for thought

www.loblaw.ca

More than 14 million Canadians shop at one of Loblaw Companies

through its distinctive packaging, provides instantly recognisable

Limited’s 1,000 stores across Canada every week. That makes Loblaw

healthier food choices. And it introduced Guiding Stars®, a

Canada’s largest food retailer, and it is one of the country’s largest

programme that uses a simple nutrition rating system for all

private-sector employers with more than 134,000 full- and part-time

food products in the stores.

employees. It’s also one of Canada’s oldest retailers, having first set up

   Another key focus area is Loblaw’s ‘environmental footprint’.

for business back in 1919. Since then, Loblaw has grown to become

Here, the firm is collaborating with its stakeholders to develop waste-

a major provider of drugstore, general merchandise, clothing and

reduction programmes with a focus on recycling and packaging.

financial services through its grocery outlets. Yet, Loblaw’s ultimate

To address the issue of food waste, the firm has a perishable-food

mission is not just to be Canada’s best food, health and home retailer,

donation programme and regional programmes that send organic

but to deliver on its company purpose to help Canadians live life well.

waste to be used for biofuel. The company has also looked into

At the core of that purpose is Loblaw’s commitment to corporate

finding operational efficiencies to lower its carbon footprint, including

social responsibility (CSR).

replacing refrigeration systems and lighting options with more energy-

Force for change Loblaw's five principles of CSR are ‘respect the environment’, ‘source with integrity’, ‘make a positive difference in the community’, ‘reflect

efficient models. The introduction of a charge for plastic bags in 2007 has resulted in the use of more than five billion fewer plastic bags from Loblaw stores.

Responsible sourcing

principles, the company aims to use its scale and influence as a force

’Sourcing with integrity’ is another key component of Loblaw’s

for positive change on the issues that matter most to Canadians.

LRP that takes into account both local and global issues that affect

   In 2011, the firm took a deeper look at its CSR strategy in order to

Canadians. For this, Loblaw is working with industry, category

identify specific issues that would have a long-term impact on Loblaw’s

experts and vendors to deliver on its commitment to sustainable

contribution to a sustainable society. The company assessed issues in

seafood, local sourcing, reducing environmental impacts and

terms of their importance to Canadians, their relevance to the business,

improving animal welfare. For example, the firm works closely

the potential for Loblaw to take a leadership position on each issue and

with the World Wildlife Fund and the Marine Stewardship Council

the urgency of the issue. Four main themes emerged, which became

towards its goal of offering 100 per cent sustainable seafood in

the focus of Loblaw’s CSR ‘Long Range Plan’ (LRP).

all its stores.

   One theme is ‘health and wellness’, which is centred on

   In the area of ‘food standards and safety’, the firm uses its

empowering Canadians to make healthier food and lifestyle choices.

size and influence to try and raise the overall level of food safety

Loblaw hired dietitians in select stores across the country to answer

and quality standards throughout its supply chain. This includes

shoppers‘ nutritional questions and to run cooking classes. The firm

creating a unique training programme to help the company’s vendors

also relaunched its President’s Choice® Blue Menu® brand, which,

understand Loblaw’s food safety and quality expectations, and setting

464 / 465

the nation’s diversity’ and ‘be a great place to work’. Through these


‘Loblaw is proud to have been named as the only grocery retailer in Canada’s Top 100 Employers since 2010’

a target to achieve 100 per cent Global

only in terms of its employees, but also

Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) certification

with the products it sells. As a result of these

for all produce and growers.

efforts, Loblaw has been named as a top

Care for community

Canadian diversity employer. The company is also proud to have been named as the

Loblaw works hard to do the best for

only grocery retailer in Canada’s Top 100

its communities. It has its own charity,

Employers since 2010, an annual national

President’s Choice® Children’s Charity, for

competition to determine which employers

which it pays all the administration costs.

lead their industries in offering exceptional

The charity raises money through donations

workplaces for their employees.

from customers and employees as well as

   Loblaw believes that engaging its

annual events. Since 1989, it has granted

employees is critical to being a great place

more than C$86 million to children who are

to work. That’s why every week Galen G.

challenged by physical and developmental

Weston, Loblaw’s Executive Chairman,

disabilities and to nutrition programmes that

answers comments, questions and feedback

aim to fight childhood hunger. In addition to

from his employees through the firm’s ‘Ask

raising funds, store employees get involved

Galen’ email address. It’s part of Loblaw‘s

by making grant presentations to qualified

efforts to keep in touch with its employees

local families.

and, through them, its customers.

   Across Canada, Loblaw employees

   When the company talks about CSR,

are actively involved in their communities

it’s not just words – it is part of Loblaw‘s

and can even earn a company grant for

fabric and a point of pride for its Executive

their chosen non-profit organisation when

Chairman. ‘Loblaw and my family take our

a minimum volunteer-time commitment is

role in corporate social responsibility very

met. Loblaw stores also have community

seriously,‘ says Galen. ‘Our approach to

investment funds, which they use to support

CSR helps form the roots of our company

local events and causes.

and is the basis of what we call “The Way

Award-winning workplace

We Do Business”. And the way we do business is all about the products, services

Canada is a very multicultural country,

and experiences that we hope deliver on

and Loblaw strives to reflect that, not

our company’s purpose: Live Life Well.‘


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

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The Right Connections Molex Incorporated's innovative interconnection solutions enable the technology that makes the modern world possible www.molex.com


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

Without even realising it, most people have used a connector made

products it offers. With its focus on technological innovation,

by Molex Incorporated. The company was started in 1938, when

engineers represent about an eighth of Molex’s workforce.

its American founder, Frederick August Krehbiel, invented a plastic

But product design is just one role that requires engineering

moulding material he called Molex. He used it to make goods such

expertise – engineers at the company also work on ways to

as toys and flowerpots. But in 1945, his son John H. Krehbiel, Sr

improve manufacturing processes that include moulding,

discovered that the material had electrical insulating properties,

stamping, plating and final assembly.

so he designed the company’s first connector, a moulded terminal

   ‘Innovation is the key to our success,’ Martin explains.

block with metal stamping, for a home appliance.

‘We reinvest our profits back into the business – into new products,

   Having celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2013, Molex remains

processes, plants and equipment – so we can continue to grow.’

true to its history by constantly innovating throughout its global network of design centres, sales offices and manufacturing plants.

Commitment to social responsibility

Serving the automotive, telecoms, electronics, medical and military

The company’s specialised processes require a complex and highly

industries among others, there are about 35,000 people working for

integrated supply chain that spans the globe in all of its political

the company who design and manufacture connectors that are used

and social complexity. Molex strives to operate its business in a way

in everything from computers and television sets to automobiles,

that is consistent with the highest standard of social responsibility.

smartphones, cellular base stations, heart monitors and factory

This includes everything from managing manufacturing operations

automation systems. From a small family business, Molex has grown

and supporting employees to making strategic business decisions.

to become one of the leaders in the global connector industry, with

   ‘Acting with Integrity’ and ‘Treating People with Respect’ are

sales of $3.6 billion in its fiscal year ended 30 June, 2013.

two of Molex’s core values and fundamental to how the company

A world of electronics

does business everywhere it operates. Molex business activities are governed by its Global Compliance and Ethics Program and its Corporate Social Responsibility Program. Some key global policies

devices use connectors, Molex sells into an ever-growing market.

that are part of these programmes include its Code of Business

‘We manufacture billions of connectors every year, which provide the

Conduct and Ethics, the Labor & Employment Policy, the Supplier

critical interface in electronics applications that are used by people all

Code of Conduct and Ecocare, which covers environmental, health

over the world,’ says Martin Slark, Vice Chairman and CEO of Molex.

and safety management.

‘I am very proud that Molex provides the components that are helping

   Molex is a member of the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition

change the way people everywhere live, work and play.’

(EICC), a group that is working to improve energy efficiency and raise

   Molex employs some of the world’s best and brightest thought

social, ethical and environmental standards. Molex is committed to

leaders and engineers, and invests heavily in research and development.

progressively align its global operations with the provisions of the

The company is constantly exploring new methods, processes and

EICC Code of Conduct and to support and encourage its first-tier

technologies to improve its business and the more than 100,000

suppliers to do the same.

468 / 469

Electronics are part of everyone’s life, and since virtually all electronic


Giving Back Matters

Diversity at Molex means inspiring innovation

Whether it is time, money or other resources,

and fuelling a high-performance culture.

Molex and its staff have a long tradition of

It is about much more than the differences in

giving back. The company supports charitable

ethnicity or age. It is about bringing different

and civic activities around the world and

ideas, opinions and perspectives together in

encourages employees to take part in ‘giving

an inclusive environment where everyone’s

back’ initiatives. From China and Vietnam

input is welcome and valued.

to the Netherlands and Mexico, Molex

   The company’s Business Resource Groups

employees help their communities by taking

provide an example of diversity and inclusion

part in fundraising and service projects for

in action. With groups such as the Women’s

a wide variety of charitable and civic causes.

Business Council, Molex Young Professionals

   Molex became a publicly traded company

and Molex Black Professionals, employees

in 1972, and its shares are traded on the London

bring unique experiences to both the products

and NASDAQ stock exchanges. But despite its

and the way the business works.

complete transformation from a small family

   To develop future talent, the company

concern to a global supplier of components to

supports STEM (Science, Technology,

manufacturers everywhere, Molex has remained

Engineering and Mathematics) programmes

true to its core ideals of innovation and quality

in elementary and secondary education.

underwritten by high ethical standards.

Molex regularly sends representatives to

   The firm has really come of age in the

STEM coalition summits, where industry,

super-connected world of the 21st century.

government and education representatives

Operating in more than 30 countries, with

meet to discuss STEM opportunities. And in

41 manufacturing locations, Molex has also

2012, Molex partnered with the University

proven that a company can expand and be

of East London to create a learning centre

successful globally without compromising its

for students who are developing their own

business ethics. Sure of its heritage, Molex

business ideas.

is flying headlong into the future.

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Encouraging innovation

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘Molex has remained true to its core ideals of innovation and quality underwritten by high ethical standards’


pharma pioneers Novartis Oncology, a global business unit of healthcare giant Novartis AG, is responsible for many of the drugs that are turning the tide in the fight against cancer www.novartisoncology.com

Thirteen years ago, a Swiss-based healthcare company set up a small business unit based in the USA with a few hundred employees. Phenomenal growth followed and the company now has more than 7,000 staff in over 55 countries and an annual revenue of more than $11 billion. Today, Novartis Oncology is at the forefront of the battle against cancer, providing targeted therapies for diseases such as Ph+ chronic myeloid leukaemia and advanced breast cancer. These therapies act by interfering with the specific pathway used by the cancer, rather than broadly destroying healthy cells as more traditional therapies such as chemotherapy do.

Innovative environment The process begins in the quicksilver minds of the scientists who mastermind the early-stage synthesis of a compound. It’s a fast-paced and innovative environment. Novartis Oncology currently has one of the broadest and most comprehensive pipelines in the industry, with compounds in all phases of development, from pre-clinical research through to full clinical development, when studies are conducted in large numbers of patients. Novartis has scores of employees around the globe who are dedicated to advancing drug programmes through the multiple phases of research and development. If a drug is successful and receives regulatory approval, the company’s commercial teams can then begin to make it available to patients.    The firm’s success depends on the quality of the people drawn to work in this highly energising environment. Cancer is one of the great unbeaten diseases and Novartis has consistently been at the forefront of scientific discovery in the field of oncology.    ‘If you are a clinician or scientist and want to work in oncology, Novartis Oncology is a great place to be,’ says Global


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

Head of Staffing Matthew Perry. ‘As part of a much larger organisation, we have the resources that a large company can provide, along with the flexibility and speed of a smaller business.’

Changing lives For Alessandro Riva, Global Head, Oncology Development and Medical Affairs, Novartis Oncology provides the opportunity to help cancer patients on a broader scale. After graduating, he began his medical career caring for patients at the University Hospital in Milan.    ‘While it was deeply gratifying to help them, I still wanted to do more,’ he explains. ‘So I took the advice of a mentor who suggested I could have even greater impact by joining a pharmaceutical company and developing compounds that could improve and extend the lives of thousands of patients around the world. That decision changed my life.’    Since then, Alessandro has played an instrumental role in the development of groundbreaking drugs for cancers have become standard treatments in clinical practice.

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and related diseases – medicines that


â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;If you are a clinician or scientist and want to work in oncology, Novartis Oncology is a great place to beâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

   This kind of success can be tracked back right through

Kenya through a variety of social ventures

Novartis Oncology’s drug pipeline to the beginning of operations.

– innovative business models that build

In 2000, the business unit’s products included a few therapies

local sustainable capabilities for healthcare

for the treatment of breast cancer, acromegaly and carcinoid

around the world. For its commitment to

syndrome. Then, in a decade, the business unit launched eight

such endeavours, Novartis has received a

new practice-changing medicines, addressing unmet medical

steady stream of awards and recognition

needs for patients worldwide.

from brands such as Fortune magazine

   The New Jersey-based unit seeks to transform outcomes for

and Dow Jones.

people living with cancer and related diseases by sharing insights and working together with the oncology community. In practice, this

Targeted approach

means engaging with clinicians to conduct high-quality clinical trials,

Novartis Oncology has emerged as a

and with patient groups to better understand their needs. On the

global leader in oncology by consistently

academic side, Novartis collaborates with pan-European organisations

discovering, developing and making

to gain data about incidence and treatment. For example, in the

broadly available novel therapies that

European Treatment Outcome Study, Novartis worked alongside

help to transform outcomes for people

European LeukemiaNet, which represents 133 academic institutions,

living with cancer and targeted diseases.

to better understand chronic myeloid leukaemia and how it is treated,

So far, around five million patients have

and therefore optimise treatment across Europe.

been touched by the company’s treatments

Assistance programmes

in some way. There is no doubt that treatment for cancer will continue to transform over the next decade and that

is far from a normal commodity. By 2012, more than $2 billion

Novartis Oncology will be at the forefront

worth of products were provided for over 100 million patients

of those changes. While there may not be

in need through Novartis assistance programmes. The company

an all-out cure for cancer, companies such

is committed to helping address some of the world’s biggest health

as Novartis Oncology have already been

challenges. For example, Novartis has provided free treatment

able to make tremendous progress.

to leprosy patients worldwide, leading to the cure of around five

   ‘We continue to make great strides,’

million of them, and has sent more than 500 million anti-malarial

says Matthew. ‘Our aim is to help cancer

treatments to over 60 countries.

patients with effective treatments that are

   Novartis also aims to improve access to healthcare in

safe and well-tolerated, so they can live

remote rural areas in countries such as India, Vietnam and

longer, more productive lives.’

474 / 475

Across the Novartis group, there is acute awareness that health


Can do attitude Novelis, the world’s largest producer of aluminium rolled products, is committed to developing talent to help drive innovation and sustainability in aluminium applications www.novelis.com

Novelis Inc. is not just the world‘s largest producer of aluminium rolled products, it‘s also the world‘s largest recycler of aluminium – to the tune of 40 billion cans a year. Perhaps the most remarkable property of aluminium – one of the most widely used metals in manufacturing – is that it doesn’t degrade in the recycling process, so it can be recycled infinitely. ‘The best example of this is the beverage can industry,’ says Novelis’s Director of Corporate Communications, Charles Belbin. ‘On average, an aluminium can goes from the store shelf, through consumption, collection, recycling and new can manufacturing back to the shelf in just 60 days.’ It’s a process that keeps on going, and it’s a core part of Novelis’s global operations.

Blue-chip customers While the beverage can market is the biggest part of the company’s business, a significant amount of the aluminium it produces is also turned into automotive parts and high-end speciality products for applications in consumer electronics and architectural and building materials. Commensurate with its premium-grade products, Novelis’s customer base is a who’s who of blue-chip companies – from BMW and Mercedes-Benz to Coca-Cola, Samsung and LG. And the company’s marketleading success has been shown by its receipt of two prestigious awards in 2013 at the Platts Global Metals Awards: ‘Company of the Year’ and ‘CEO of the Year’.    ‘Perhaps the most exciting market for us is the automotive industry, which is undergoing a significant transformation driven by both consumer demand and government regulation,’ says Charles. ‘The focus is


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

now on greatly improved fuel economy and reduced emissions, which is leading to efforts by manufacturers around the world to reduce the weight of their vehicles. Aluminium is the ideal material for this because it is quite light but very strong.’ With Range Rover, for example, Novelis has helped create the world’s first SUV with a lightweight all-aluminium body.    Today, Novelis is the leading producer of aluminium sheet for automotive applications, supplying nearly all of the leading car manufacturers, and the business anticipates a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25 per cent in this segment over the next five years.

Global Research and Technology Centre In pursuit of new applications for aluminium, and cementing its reputation as an innovative leader in manufacturing, Novelis opened its new Global Research and Technology Centre in 2012, close to its headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia. ‘Even in an industry as established as the beverage can industry, Novelis is still developing exciting innovations,’ Charles says. ‘In 2013, we launched evercan™, a new product that has dramatically increased the amount of recycled content in new cans. Independently certified to contain 90 per cent recycled aluminium – the highest recycled content available – the evercan™ can body sheet is the latest step on the way to achieving the 100 per cent recycled content can.‘    While many companies see sustainability as an adjunct to the business’s core pursuits, it goes to and Chief Sustainability Officer John Gardner explains: ‘Aluminium is relatively energy-intensive to produce

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the very heart of Novelis’s business, as Vice President


‘Novelis is a global technology leader that offers exceptional pathways to a challenging and rewarding career’

in its primary production process, but it is highly, highly recyclable,

and precise specifications. Our manufacturing process

and you can make great energy and emissions savings by recycling.

requires a level of technical and engineering skill that is

Traditionally, our business has been around one third recycled input

very different from most manufacturers. We therefore

and two thirds primary content, but we’ve challenged ourselves to

need to have the right number of engineers available,

move to 80 per cent recycled content by 2020. At current growth rates,

both at graduate and experienced levels.’

that pretty much means quadrupling our recycling, which will halve our

   Now in its third year, Novelis’s engineering

environmental footprint, taking out 10 million tonnes of greenhouse

development programme takes around 100 graduates

gases by 2020.’

annually from around the world. Spanning two years, the

   This ambitious goal is driving changes in the way that Novelis

five-week learning curriculum is spread across the duration

structures and builds its business. Investments are being made around

of the programme and can take place in any of Novelis’s

the world to increase recycling capacity and to broaden the range and

global centres of operation, giving young engineers

types of used materials that can be recycled, including at Europe’s only

exposure to global operations from a very early stage.

dedicated can recycling plant in Warrington, Cheshire. ‘Whenever we

  ‘Over the two years, they spend time visiting

have surveyed our employees, sustainability has rated very high on

other parts of the company, executing their jobs and

people’s attractions to the company,’ John says. ‘As the innovation

participating in development and mentoring programmes,’

and sustainability leader in our industry, we’re trying to use our

Leslie says. ‘We really feel that this will grow our next

technology to do good for the long run.’

generation of engineering excellence.’

Talent development

Global exposure

Novelis’s commitment to talent acquisition, deployment and

Beyond graduate level, Novelis has a number of

development starts at the very top of the organisation. ‘Our CEO

programmes in place that are aimed at developing the

Philip Martens has publicly stated that he spends around half

leadership skills of high-potential employees, all of which

of his time on talent-related matters,’ says Senior Vice President

involve significant exposure to Novelis’s operations in

and Chief People Officer Leslie Joyce. ‘That’s both in identifying

emerging markets. ‘We believe that to truly understand

high potentials and creating assignments and development roles.

the business you need to immerse yourself in the cultures

We have a world-class leadership development architecture and a

where it operates,’ Leslie explains.

commitment to making sure that our current and aspiring leaders

   Much more than an add-on to its business model,

have access to training and development programmes that will

Novelis’s sustainability agenda – based on recycling

help them realise their aspirations.’

and the benefits of recycling – is core to the company’s

   Two areas in which Novelis is significantly expanding its

growth strategy. With more than 11,000 employees and

strategic capability are in engineering and global leadership.

operations at 25 facilities on four continents, Novelis

‘We are a highly technical, technology-based manufacturer,’

is a global technology leader that offers exceptional

Leslie says. ‘The products we make have very demanding

pathways to a challenging and rewarding career.


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

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A roll model NSK Europe’s rolling bearings are as vital to many of the products we rely on every day as its employee-friendly policies are to the company’s own smooth running www.nskeurope.com

NSK Europe Ltd has an impressive number

   Known worldwide for its exceptional

ensured that they understood the situation

of innovations to its credit. From offshore

product quality, and boasting preferred

and were happy to stay on.’

wind turbines and the world’s fastest bullet

supplier status from Toyota in 2011 and

   Since then, the company has continued

trains, to the engine bearings in the new

Bosch in 2011, 2012 and 2013, NSK Europe

to implement improvement programmes and

dream car LaFerrari, the company’s precisely

was also named Supplier of the Year by both

demand has returned steadily. Over the past

engineered components are essential to the

DMG and Kessler in 2012.

five years, NSK Europe has nearly doubled

smooth running of a host of mechanical

   One characteristic that distinguishes

its profits from local production, and 50 per

and technological equipment. Household

an employer of choice is its ability to treat

cent of the business’s permanent hires have

appliances, power tools, computers, electric

employees with respect and honesty –

been those who were previously made

motors, medical devices and office equipment

especially when times are tough. The events

redundant. To have bounced back from such

– many of the products people use every day

that followed the Lehman crash of 2008,

significant challenges is impressive; to have

rely on NSK parts for their reliable operation.

particularly at NSK’s Newark plant, illustrate

done so with such a consistently high level

   Specific NSK components are designed

both the company’s approach to business

of staff satisfaction is extraordinary.

to withstand heat, moisture and high-speed

and the role it plays in the wider community.

operating environments. NSK rolling bearings,

Like many in the UK’s manufacturing sector,

Dedicated workforce

linear technology components and steering

NSK was forced to reduce its workforce in

Over decades, NSK has built and supported a

systems can be found almost anywhere that

the aftermath of the economic downturn.

dedicated workforce in Newark and Peterlee.

things are in motion.

At Newark, nearly two-thirds of the plant’s

This is characterised by high levels of retention

workforce were made redundant between

and significant longevity of service: over

2008 and 2009. Ordinarily, such a large

70 per cent of employees have more than

Since producing its first bearings in 1916,

number of redundancies would give rise to

10 years’ service, and 12 per cent have more

the Japanese-owned business has grown to

numerous dismissal challenges, but only one

than 30 years’ service. The company’s 2010

more than 27,000 staff across 29 countries.

such action was initiated at Newark and

Attitudes Survey highlighted that staff are

Headquartered in Maidenhead, NSK’s European

Peterlee, which was later withdrawn after

proud to work for NSK for many reasons: the

subsidiary was one of the first Japanese-owned

a process of discussion and negotiation.

quality of product; the firm’s reputation as an

businesses to establish a manufacturing base

   ‘If you treat people well when they are

excellent company to do business with; and

in England’s North East, at Peterlee in County

made redundant and support them through

the supportive working environment. As Alan

Durham. The company’s site in Newark,

that process, it has a significant impact on

says: ‘We’re a company where the gap

Nottinghamshire was acquired when NSK

those who remain with the company,’ says

between management and frontline is made

bought RHP, the biggest British bearings

the firm’s Director of Human Resources

as small as possible.’

business and a significant employer in the

Alan Armstrong. ‘At NSK Europe, open and

   Like any multinational business, NSK has

Newark area for many decades.

honest communications with all employees

a strong programme of global CSR activities.

Global reach


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

480 / 481


‘the business’s success is attributable to its long-term perspective and commitment to quality’


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

But in Newark and Peterlee it’s the local

a training centre. This will be resourced by a dedicated

projects that make a big difference to staff,

learning and development team that will support

helping contribute to a strong sense of

trainees and apprentices. ‘We also have an ongoing

community. The Newark plant has an active

focus on succession planning,’ says Alan, ‘so we ensure

support programme that forges close

that employees with potential are positioned to take

relationships with neighbouring schools and

on bigger roles when others are ready for retirement.’

runs an engineering club for local students.

   One of the firm’s apprentices, Nicholas Ingleton, is

Staff at the Peterlee plant, meanwhile, are

currently participating in a scheme at the Newark site.

mentoring a team in the regional competition

‘The support I receive is very good,’ he says. ‘I can always

for secondary schools Future Business

get the information I need, as well as help with any

Magnates 2013. And following the death

questions or queries that I have. And I don’t only receive

of Peterlee staff member Pauline Wright’s

support from my mentors – I feel that I could approach

grandson, Jaiden, NSK helped Pauline’s

any team leader or engineer for assistance.’

daughter Shannon in her efforts to establish

   NSK Europe’s European technology centre is

a dance academy in his memory. The school

located in Düsseldorf, and it’s at this site that many

is now based on the Peterlee industrial estate.

of the business’s graduate-level engineers are trained

Staff development

at the parent company in Japan.

NSK’s recruitment process is primarily fed by

   ‘The NSK team spirit is great,’ says Design

apprenticeship schemes, traineeships and

Engineer Britta Pfuhl, who works at the Düsseldorf

internships. ‘The plant culture is to recruit

site. ‘Double checking results with colleagues and

people who have potential, and then source

supervisors in Japan takes some time, but it is a great

our future needs – for expansion and

opportunity for us to learn from each other and to

succession – through internal promotion,’

further improve our own design skills.’

says Alan. ‘This can be seen in our current

   NSK’s 3,300 European employees achieved a

management team, all of whom were

turnover of €983 million in 2012. As Alan explains:

promoted to their current positions from

‘The business’s success is attributable to its long-term

within the company.’ In addition, in December

perspective and commitment to quality.’ Indeed, it

2012, the government’s Regional Growth

would seem that, like the precision products it designs

Fund invested £3.5 million in the Peterlee

and manufactures, NSK Europe is a business in excellent

plant, part of which will be used to establish

working order.

and developed. They also undergo significant training

482 / 483


a Healthy workplace Medical technology innovator Smith & Nephew is seeking global recognition as a 'great place to work' and demonstrates integrity while offering opportunities for its employees www.smith-nephew.com


CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

Finding a great place of work can be a challenge. Many savvy

   Since joining Smith & Nephew in 2011, CEO Olivier Bohuon

graduates look to well-established and successful organisations.

has worked towards excellence in these areas by focusing on

Few are aware that they can gain valuable insights into life as

the organisation’s core values: ‘I perform, I innovate, I earn trust’.

an employee at these companies prior to taking the plunge.

‘That trust element is key,’ notes Ulrike. ‘Internally, that’s about being

Companies seeking recognition as employers of choice can

honest and straightforward in everything we do and say. It is about

choose to be evaluated by independent institutions throughout

inspiring employees by speaking with them, rather than simply to

the world – among them Great Place to Work and Hewitt/Aon.

them, and truly listening to their thoughts and concerns.’

These identify those organisations that provide the most supportive,

   ‘Olivier is very engaging and his message is clear and consistent,’

enjoyable and profitable work environments.

says Elga Lohler, Senior Vice President of Human Resources. ‘That means

   In 2013, Smith & Nephew, a global medical technology business,

wherever you are in the world, you receive the same message.’

is preparing submissions to be evaluated by these organisations as

Olivier kicks off each year with a global senior leaders conference,

a great place to work in no fewer than ten countries. It’s a lofty

outlining his plans. In addition, each quarter Olivier addresses every

ambition, but the company’s chances are good. Founded in Hull in

one of the company’s employees about the company’s performance

1856, Smith & Nephew is today a FTSE100 company with annual

and thanks them for the role they have played.

sales of more than $4.1 billion and consistently receives FTSE4Good

   He also regularly visits Smith & Nephew sites personally,

recognition. The firm employs around 11,000 people in more than

giving employees the chance for a one-to-one meeting. In addition,

90 countries, developing groundbreaking innovations, including

Elga notes: ‘We have group-wide newsletters where we share

joint-replacement systems, wound-care products, sports medicine

stories, we have quarterly meetings and use multimedia to reach

and treatments to help fix broken bones. A desire to improve the

our employees across the globe.’

lives of others underpins everything Smith & Nephew does, and this

   Smith & Nephew recognises that building a culture of high

is reflected in the practices and philosophies at all of the group’s

performance and community requires celebration and recognition

global locations. But above all, the company aspires to demonstrate

of milestones along the way. The annual CEO Awards are a case in

integrity and build a high-trust culture.

point. ‘They recognise our employees’ success stories, from creativity

Building trust

to problem-solving and innovation,’ Elga explains. Winners have included staff from manufacturing who came up with cost-saving ideas and scientists who developed new products. One 2012 winner

performance than its own employees, Smith & Nephew started its

was Rawand Sghayer, a Country Manager based in Libya, where

journey towards becoming a great place to work by conducting

there is dire need for healthcare support. Rawand put her life at risk,

an internal audit. More than 90 per cent of its global workforce

working day and night with surgeons to ensure that wound-care

participated. ‘We learnt that communication and collaboration are

products were distributed to patients and hospitals. ‘Winners travel

very important to our people,’ says Ulrike Kaeppler, Global Human

to London to celebrate with Olivier,’ says Elga. ‘It is about recognising

Resources executive. Another important area is integrity and

and celebrating excellence and true ambassadorship of our strategy

transparency in leadership.

and values.’

484 / 485

Aware that no individuals are better positioned to judge the company’s


Smith & Nephew takes its mantra of ‘improving people’s lives’

In addition, Smith & Nephew has a robust talent-development

seriously. This extends not only to patients and customers, but also

programme. Each year, the entire executive staff gathers to assess

to its employees and the communities where they live and work.

high performers and emerging talent and to ensure there are

The company’s ‘wellness’ programme is more than lip service –

development plans in place to help them reach their full potential.

it gives staff real benefits, including on-site gyms in some offices

What’s more, several times each year, the CEO brings together

and walking programmes in a number of US locations.

20-30 employees who are considered emerging talent to expose

   People in local communities recognise Smith & Nephew for its

them to the broader business. Here they take part in working sessions

contribution to major causes such as local hospitals, providing relief

to tackle the company’s most pressing challenges. It’s a development

when disasters strike and using its wide product range to give back

opportunity that delivers benefits both for the company and for the

to society. One example is the company’s support of Operation

individuals involved. Olivier is keen to push boundaries yet further,

Walk, a voluntary medical-services organisation that provides

encouraging all employees to ‘dare to win’. ‘That doesn’t mean

free surgical treatments for patients in developing countries for

being reckless or taking unnecessary risks,’ the CEO explains.

arthritis and other debilitating bone and joint conditions. It also

‘It means thinking differently about the work we do, replacing

educates in-country healthcare professionals on the most advanced

old ideas with new ones.’

treatments and surgical techniques for diseases of the hip and

   Recognising that this goal requires fresh thinking and a diverse

knee joints. Thanks to a grant provided by Smith & Nephew,

approach, Smith & Nephew is pursuing actions that value and

which funds the hip implants used in these surgeries, more than

develop employees regardless of their race, ethnicity or gender.

600 young, disadvantaged patients have received surgery through

‘Organisations talk a lot about diversity,’ notes Elga. ‘We are acting.’

Operation Walk, Smith & Nephew and dedicated medical teams.

Picking gender as a starting point, Smith & Nephew has recently

   With a clear strategy and a work environment that inspires

launched a Women’s Leadership Council to inspire young female

trust and rewards performance, Smith & Nephew’s goal is that all

future leaders. ‘We’ve also increased the number of women on our

its employees recommend the company as a ‘great place to work.’

board as well as in our executive team,’ Elga adds. The company is

‘I know the difference I can make,’ says Elga. ‘That’s a great motivator.

beating its own targets, too: Smith & Nephew wanted 40 per cent

There’s also great value in working for a successful company that’s

of its global management talent pool to be female by 2015, but the

always looking for new technologies and never stands still.’ It all

firm was already nearly there in 2013. As Ulrike says: ‘It’s important

means that it’s only a matter of time before the company reaches

to have female leaders in the workplace.’

its goal of gaining recognition as a great place to work.

486 / 487

Talent development

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘above all, the company aspires to demonstrate integrity and build a high-trust culture’


Global biotechnology company Vertex aims to discover, develop and commercialise innovative new medicines so people with serious diseases can lead better lives www.vrtx.com

It’s a rare business that manages to mix work with pleasure as

feat that requires a vast number of people and a tremendous amount

seamlessly as Vertex. But then, the employees of this biotech

of resources. The company‘s research focuses on serious illnesses

company don‘t see it as just a job – their work saves lives through

such as cystic fibrosis, infectious and autoimmune diseases, as

innovative science created at research bases around the world.

well as cancers and neurological disorders. And its UK research

Breaking the mould

base at Milton Park in Oxfordshire is key to these endeavours.    Here, scientists work in an integrated environment where

When Vertex was founded in 1989 by Dr Joshua Boger, it broke

chemists, biologists and other researchers tackle some of the

the mould in the pharmaceutical industry. Determined to bring

most ambitious projects in the industry. Since opening in 1998,

transformative medicines out of the lab and into the hands of

the staff has grown to about 150 people, many of whom pair

people with serious diseases, Dr Boger started out on his own with

with academic institutions in Oxford and further afield. Much of

no funding or staff – nothing but a vision of what a drug company

their research concerns the development of treatments for various

should be. Today, Vertex is a global organisation employing more

cancers and neuroinflammatory diseases. And the interdisciplinary

than 2,200 people. Many are based at its headquarters in Cambridge,

staff is encouraged to visualise the big picture.

Massachusetts, and others are at research and development sites

   ‘We try to be truly inclusive so that everybody in our drug

around the globe including in Oxfordshire, Iowa, Quebec and San

discovery teams, no matter what their discipline, has a stake in

Diego, and at commercial offices in Sydney, Paris, Munich, Madrid,

our success,‘ says Julian Golec, head of the UK site. ‘Our employees

Rickmansworth, Switzerland and Canada.

form part of a global information network that includes hundreds

   Dr Boger retired from the company in 2009 (though he continues

of leading researchers, academic centres and organisations that are

to serve on the board), yet the company‘s principles remain the same

engaged in open collaboration, sharing knowledge and research

as they were back in 1989. At the heart of it is an unwavering focus

to help speed up the discovery and development of treatments.‘

on people. For every 5,000 to 10,000 compounds that enter the

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

medical marvel

Rewarding challenge

approval. Vertex was founded on the belief that a new model of

Recent years have seen steep growth at Vertex. The success

pharmaceutical company was needed to bring treatments to the

of INCIVEK® (telaprevir), a treatment for hepatitis C that was

people who need them. So, by using computers to design potential

launched in May 2011 in the USA, was a groundbreaking moment

medicines from scratch rather than the laborious conventional method of adapting existing compounds, the company rewrote

for the company. That was followed by the global launch of another medicine – KALYDECO™ (ivacaftor), for cystic fibrosis – early the

the script of biotech companies.

following year, which was approved by the US Food and Drug

   The results speak for themselves. For instance, Vertex released

Administration in less than three months – one of the fastest green

two revolutionary medicines eight months apart – an astonishing

lights ever. KALYDECO is the first medicine Vertex commercialised

488 / 489

research and development pipeline, ultimately only one receives


globally and was approved in the European Union in July 2012,

Communication and candid discussion are actively

in Canada in November 2012 and in Australia in July 2013.

promoted at all levels. And as in the beginning, the

   Given this dynamic environment, it is not surprising

company has embraced technology to help it achieve

that careers at Vertex are full of challenges – but ones that

its goals. Since 2012, a company-wide web chat has

carry huge rewards. ‘It is both professionally rewarding and

taken place every month featuring the CEO, Jeffrey

personally fulfilling to be a part of our research programmes

Leiden, MD, PhD, and the executive team to discuss

and to work with people who are truly committed to Vertex’s

key business and take questions from employees.

vision and core values,’ explains Simon Bedson, General

Staff can log in to these chats from anywhere in the

Manager Europe.

world and submit questions anonymously. It’s one

   The company‘s focus on people does not stop with those

of the bold ways in which Vertex fosters open debate

in need of medicines. From the outset, Vertex aimed to build

and dialogue among employees.

a culture of innovation, focus and discipline driven by its

Opening doors

are encouraged to come together to share ideas and inspire

The immediate future looks full of challenges and

each other. Various events are designed to create a free flow

opportunities for Vertex. And, as ever, its staff is thrilled

of information and foster a vibrant and dynamic environment.

to face them. As a result of the ambitious research of

On the company’s annual ‘Science Day’, for instance,

its scientists, Vertex has a broad and diverse pipeline of

employees are invited to think creatively, give presentations

potential medicines in development, including potential

on innovative themes and topics close to their hearts, and

treatments for cystic fibrosis, hepatitis C, influenza and

discuss their latest research.

autoimmune diseases.

   A genuine love for science permeates the various Vertex

   The continuing expansion of the company means

research bases, which is evident, for instance, on its yearly Day

that its workforce in Europe is growing. This expanding

of Service. Initiated in honour of Dr Boger, it gives employees

community of researchers will continue to push at

the chance to apply their knowledge for the benefit of the local

closed doors and find solutions to impossible problems.

community, with researchers and scientists volunteering at non-

New people join Vertex not just because it is one of the

profit organisations or helping out at schools, food-banks, parks

most exciting pharmaceutical organisations operating

or homeless shelters.

today, but because they are passionate about the

   This sense of working together for the common good

company’s mission: to innovate, to redefine health

is something that runs throughout the whole organisation.

and transform lives with new medicines.

490 / 491

people. At the research bases around the world, employees

CHAPTER 7  |  science, retail & manufacturing

‘It is both professionally rewarding and personally fulfilling to be a part of our research programmes’

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