Our approach to sustainability
Our approach and governance
Sustainability is integrated into Roche’s corporate vision, values, operating standards and guidelines. This approach means no single department is responsible for managing sustainability. Instead, all employees are encouraged to integrate sustainable practices into their work.
The Corporate Sustainability Committee (CSC) is responsible for developing the Group’s sustainability strategy and guidelines, and reports on related activities and progress. It is also responsible for assessing social, environmental and ethical (SEE) risks which are incorporated into the Group Risk Report. The committee’s mission, structure, procedures and relationships to other parts of the organisation are described in the Corporate Sustainability Committee Charter.
The CSC submits regular reports on its activities to the Corporate Executive Committee and the Board of Directors’ Corporate Governance and Sustainability Committee. The Corporate Governance and Sustainability Committee assists the Board of Directors in matters relating to corporate governance, compliance and in promoting sustainable management of the Company’s activities.
The CSC is a network of representatives from across the organisation contributing cross-divisional, cross-functional expertise in the following groups:
- Core Team: representatives from each Corporate Function as well as senior managers delegated by the Heads of the Business Divisions. Responsibilities include strategic review of key issues and challenges, analyse and endorse Roche’s sustainability policies, as well as ensure support for sustainability related activities within each member’s area.
- Working Group: specialists from areas relevant to Roche’s sustainability activities who provide advice and assistance for specific projects. Membership is by invitation from the CSC chairman, the CSC Core Team, or delegation from Group Management. The Working Group helps ensure a close link and increased awareness of sustainability issues through initiatives and effective communication. Among its other activities, the group is also responsible for identifying deficiencies in sustainability and proposing steps address these weaknesses.
- Expert Groups: ad-hoc groups appointed by the Core Team who explore topics of current or future importance to the Roche Group, Working Group or committee the Chairman of the Corporate Sustainability Committee.
The committees also help to ensure that Roche runs its business in compliance with all applicable national and international laws. It actively engages with key groups to ensure that the views and expectations of all stakeholders are incorporated in our approach to managing sustainability.
As one of the world’s largest healthcare companies, Roche takes its obligation to meet the highest standards of business ethics and integrity very seriously. Meeting those standards is the responsibility of every employee.
Our standards of business integrity are set forth in our Code of Conduct, which include the Corporate Principles.
To further promote and support a shared understanding, Roche has implemented a number of policies, directives, position statements and guidelines that apply across the Group. Employees at all Roche sites have access to all external and internal documents either electronically (e.g. on the Roche intranet) or as hard copies.
Detailed guidance has been issued for example:
- The Behaviour in Business Directive on Integrity seeks to prevent the infringement of business integrity by addressing topics such as bribery, improper advantages, facilitation payments, gifts, entertainment, dealing with business parties and conflicts of interest.
- The Behaviour in Competition – A Guide to Competition Law helps raise awareness of how antitrust and competition laws apply to business conduct and decision-making.
- The Roche Group Insider Directive - intends to ensure professional behaviour and reinforce Roche’s reputation as a trustworthy company and reliable partner. An insider declaration must be signed by employees who have access to sensitive data or who are authorised to undertake major financial transactions.
We make every effort to inform and train all employees, and business critical contractors on the basic business standards, including providing interactive learning solutions.
The pharmaceutical industry is governed by strict regulations and guidelines for the sale and marketing of products. Our Code of Conduct addresses responsible marketing practices, setting out standards for adhering to regulatory compliance and for interacting and engaging with healthcare professionals. Roche’s interactions with healthcare professionals are aimed at exchanging scientific information intended to optimise the use of Roche’s products and services. All these interactions are based on standards of integrity and fair remuneration for services. We are committed to benchmarking our achievements against best practice; this includes transparent reporting.
Our goal is to enable healthcare professionals to make decisions independently, based on all relevant data available, in order to deliver the greatest medical benefit to patients. To help us maintain good marketing practices, we expect all Roche employees to:
- comply with applicable laws, regulations, industry codes and Roche standards
- defend Roche’s products and interests against unfair competitive practices
- seek help and advice in case of doubt
- speak up in the event of compliance concerns
We specially train staff who interact with healthcare professionals and healthcare organisations and maintain rigorous standards of risk management.
In addition, Roche uses a Marketing and Sales Compliance questionnaire to help local line managers assess compliance and awareness of responsible marketing practices. Equally, all general managers must annually sign an “assurance declaration on compliance”, acknowledging compliance with these practices.