Sanofi first pharmaceutical company to receive national award recognising employee health and wellbeing commitments

The spotlight is on health more than ever – both physical health in light of the pandemic and mental and social health from the subsequent impact of lockdown and isolation. Through 2020, with even importance placed on wellbeing through the pandemic and with increased home working, Sanofi continued to maintain its commitment to the health and wellbeing of employees.

Sanofi’s ongoing work in this area has been recognised by becoming the first pharmaceutical company to be given a Workplace Wellbeing Charter National Award.

Our commitment to our people

The Workplace Wellbeing Charter is a nationally recognised accreditation, overseen by Health@Work, that measures how organisations ensure the health and wellbeing of their employees. The accreditation, awarded to Sanofi at the end of 2020, recognises dedication to employee health and wellbeing, which has been a longstanding core company principle.

Sanofi was assessed against the charter’s pillars: absence management, health and safety, mental health provision, smoking, physical activity standards, healthy eating, and alcohol. Because of the national lockdown the assessment was conducted digitally and included a mix of self-assessment and evidence reviews, team meetings, in-depth interviews, and staff surveys.

“We are delighted by this accreditation and believe it reflects our ongoing efforts to support the health and wellbeing of our employees, as well as the wider community through our work in the area of prevention. This award belongs to all the Sanofi colleagues who have promoted and supported good health and wellbeing at work,” commented Gordon Tillett, HR Director, Sanofi UK and Ireland. “The accreditation provides us with a framework and tangible goals we can continue to work on, especially as we strive to support colleagues through these challenging times. Employee wellbeing will continue to be fundamental to our success as an organisation and we plan to continue to enhance our work in this area through this pandemic and beyond.”

The Health@Work Post Assessment Report highlighted how Sanofi proactively championed health and wellbeing processes and interventions within the workforce, particularly within the physical activity and healthy eating pillars. Initiatives such as the ‘Take Care BWel!’ programme, which was established five years ago, is just one example of how Sanofi has implemented employee wellbeing across teams and disciplines.

Philip Cottrell, Director of Security, Sanofi UK and Ireland
 “In 2019 I started having some health issues which required some long-term lifestyle adjustments. In the near 20 years I had worked Sanofi I had never considered asking for help but, given the change in my situation, a co-worker recommended I speak to our HR representative. Sanofi thankfully had the right structure and policies in place to support the adaptions I needed to make to my working practices and were flexible to allow me to continue working in a way which not only avoided worsening my condition, but allowed it to improve. Sanofi, while being a large organisation, understands that every employee plays and important role and is a valued cog in a bigger machine; if one employee is ailing then the whole machine doesn’t work. Sanofi appreciates each member of its community for the functioning of its team. I am grateful that I sought out Sanofi’s health support and wellbeing offering, as it has been hugely beneficial to help alleviate the pressure on myself and allow me to continue to be part of the team, to work safely and preserve my physical and mental health.”

Our New Year resolutions

The assessment also outlined the areas where Sanofi can improve, such as conducting proactive stress risk assessments on individual job roles and conducting more research on absence trends across the organisation. To address these areas, Sanofi seeks to move from a model of ‘add-on interventions’ to the integration of wellbeing into the design of all working practices, at all levels of the organisation from individuals, to managers, teams, and leadership.

Striving to go even further

The journey to create a positive health environment for those working in the pharmaceutical industry continues and Sanofi is looking forward to collaborating internally and with industry peers on health and wellbeing initiatives, to achieve its shared goal of improving all aspects of health – mental, physical, and social. Sanofi’s people are its greatest asset and in these extraordinary times, the resilience and passion of colleagues has shone through. Sanofi will continue to embed a culture with employee wellbeing at the heart through the expected transition into new and unchartered territory post-COVID working life.

To find out more about the Workplace Wellbeing Charter Accreditation click here: https://www.wellbeingcharter.org.uk