People and society
Adapting to the new normalWhen the COVID-19 pandemic started to have an impact on countries where we operate, we reacted quickly. Our main priority was, and still is, to protect our employees’ health while continuing to work as normally as possible. We established a COVID-19 coordination group to coordinate our actions. In addition to our own measures, employees were instructed to follow local guidelines. We introduced remote work mode for those employees who can do so. Remote work taught us new ways of working and speeded up our digital leap. During 2020, we deployed several new digital tools and realised that we can continue working efficiently even in these exceptional circumstances. Work continued in our manufacturing facilities, but extra attention was paid to safe working procedures and hygiene.
Never compromise on safetyWe are striving towards zero accidents by 2025. To support the progress towards this, we have comprehensive safety guidelines in place and our employees are encouraged to provide near miss reports so that we can learn and develop our processes. In 2020, we made safety even more visible to all employees with “Never compromise on safety” materials including video, posters and training. Our safety efforts continue to reach our target of reducing the lost-time injury frequency (LTIF) yearly by 30%. In 2021, our LTIF was 4.8 (2020: 7.5) and there were no fatal injuries (2020: 0).
UPONOR SAFETY GUIDELINES
Valuable insight from our employee engagement surveyWe want to be an employer and a workplace where employees thrive, feel comfortable and develop their expertise. In October 2021, we conducted a company-wide employee engagement survey. The response rate for the survey was 84%, which was a very satisfying figure and an increase from the previous survey. We are happy that our eNPS (Employee Net Promoter Score) was well above the manufacturing industry benchmark and especially satisfied that employees took time to provide written feedback. The responses give us valuable insight on how to develop Uponor as a workplace going forward.
Equal and diverse expertsWe are committed to equal opportunities and strive to provide an environment where every employee and customer feels respected and valued, regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinions, national or social origin or other status. We respect human rights and follow the guidelines of the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights. All Uponorians are obligated to work in an ethical manner according to our Code of Conduct. To keep the Code of Conduct fresh in mind, Uponorians complete Code of Conduct e-learning bi-annually. In 2021, 93% of white collars had completed the training.
Developing as a professional is an important part of a good employee experience. Training gives employees new insights that benefit not only the employee, but also the company. We offer a wide range of employee and management training for Uponorians. In 2021, COVID-19 affected some of the scheduled training sessions, as classroom training was not deemed to be a safe option. We investigated alternative options for classroom trainings, when possible, in order to continue the development of Uponorians even during these exceptional times.
Ethical standards for suppliersWe expect our suppliers to meet our ethical, social, environmental and quality standards. In 2021, we conducted a sustainability questionnaire for the fifth consecutive year for our suppliers in North America. The questionnaire is conducted to encourage suppliers to embrace sustainability improvements. The questionnaire covered approximately 98% of our spend in North America. The 2021 results showed that nearly 40% of those surveyed increased their overall score.
An active, responsible actor
We work in industry and trade organisations to influence national and regional policymakers on issues related especially to water, plastics and sustainable built environment. Such organisations include TEPPFA (The European Plastic Pipes and Fittings Association), REHVA (Federation of European Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Associations), National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and World Green Building Council, to name a few. Through these organisations, we aim to impact policymakers such as the European Commission in developing and implementing policies and programmes that reduce the energy consumption of buildings and decarbonise the heating sector.
Our Code of Conduct states that we do not participate in politics and do not support political parties or groups financially or otherwise. We prohibit all bribery and refrain from taking part in any money laundering and have several internal policies and guidelines to support the prevention of corruption. No incidents involving corruption or bribery were detected in our daily management processes and internal audit investigations or reported through our whistle-blower channel in 2021.
WhistleB – reporting channelUponor has a whistleblowing service that anyone can use in their own name or anonymously. The reporting channel is a confidential way to report any suspected abuses and/ or misconducts and unethical behaviour related to Uponor’s activities or its stakeholders’ activities. It can be used by Uponor’s employees or stakeholders that Uponor conducts business with.
The whistleblowing service is provided by an external partner WhistleB to secure anonymity. The communication channel is encrypted and password-protected. All messages will be processed in confidence.
WhistleB reporting channel