As an employer, we believe that people are crucial to the success of our company. We won’t achieve our vision of leading performance in the markets in which we operate unless employees believe AkzoNobel is a great place to work, are engaged and feel valued. We must therefore offer decent working conditions, including fair working hours, reasonable salaries and appropriate bathroom and restaurant facilities.
Our strong internal Health, Safety, Environment and Safety (HSE&S) processes cover many aspects of working conditions. In 2017, we expanded our HSE&S Audit processes to include review of the sanitary conditions at our locations, using the WASH pledge audit questionnaire as a base. The results of 2017 assessments showed an average satisfactory score of 1.8 out of a possible score of two – meaning that 90% of the sites scored satisfactory. This assessment is now integrated into our processes and will be monitored and acted upon accordingly.
We expect our business partners to provide decent working conditions for their employees. In our role as business partner, we are screening and monitoring our business partners through formal processes, of which working conditions are an integral part.
In our role as employer, we realize that the risk of bad working conditions for our people requires more due diligence. Our human rights risk assessment has identified two areas for further due diligence, namely decent working hours, and the status of fair wages in our company. In 2018, the due diligence actions will be focused on studies on internal working hours and fair wages. Based on external available information, an initial focus will be high-risk countries and regions that have the greatest gaps assessed against international standards. In-depth due diligence will then be conducted in our operations in those high-risk countries and regions.