Most of us spend a significant portion of our lives working. In fact, approximately 9.4 million Canadians work at least 40 hours per week. With so much time devoted to work, it’s important to find a company and a job that you love. And as employers, it’s crucial (we would even go so far as to say that it’s our responsibility) to listen, to understand and to respond to needs of our employees.

Now more than ever, employees are looking for meaning and a sense of purpose in their work.  They want to work for a company that is responsible and gives back to the community.  They want to work for a company that is willing to give them opportunities to grow and develop professionally.

These are among the many reasons that Pino Florio, Director of Regulatory Affairs and Market Access Excellence in our Pharmaceuticals Division returned to Canada after spending three years abroad. Pino joined Roche Canada in 2011 and following two years in new product development, he was given an opportunity to move to our head office in Basel, Switzerland. He recently moved back to Canada to lead a new team focused on supporting best practices in our regulatory, market access, government relations and policy teams, ultimately helping patients get faster access to our medicines.  

For many employees, including Pino, it’s important to make a difference in your job and contribute in a meaningful way. “I’ve stayed with Roche because I feel valued and I know that what I do matters,” he says. “It’s rewarding to know that you’re helping people. Patients are at the centre of everything we do, we follow the science, and focus on areas of high unmet medical need.”

Our focus at Roche is to develop medicines and diagnostics that make a meaningful impact and ultimately transform healthcare. At some point everyone is touched by illness, and our work is both purposeful and deeply personal.  In a recent global employee opinion survey, 90% of our Canadian employees said they are proud to work here, and 81% feel a sense of accomplishment from their work. What makes us especially proud is that 96% of our people believe that we are a socially and environmentally responsible company.

Beyond meaning, opportunities for growth and development have helped Pino expand his horizons by broadening his knowledge, enhancing his skills and abilities, and giving him the space to challenge himself and to grow personally. His experience abroad also helped him reflect on his views of Canada, as well as the values he holds close, which were influential in his decision to return home.

“I think what’s so special about Canada is that we have an open and diverse culture. People here are always open to what you have to say and everyone has a voice and an opinion,” says Pino. “On my first day at our head office in Basel, I joined employees from around the world in an orientation session. They focused on diversity and how different perspectives were a good thing. It reminded me so much of Roche Canada because we have a diverse employee base that is representative of the population and we celebrate how these differing perspectives make us better.”

This sentiment is mirrored by our employees, 86% of whom feel that we - as a multi-national company - value diversity, and 84% say that we have an open work environment that accepts individual differences. Unique perspectives are critical for innovation, and we believe that a more diverse and inclusive workplace means better ideas and better performance. Diversity must be fostered and people need to be empowered in order to have a positive impact on our business.

A culture of inclusion means that leaders, managers and individuals are accountable for treating each other with respect and care, and people are recognized for the positive contributions they make. These traits are ingrained in our culture, and they help build our sense of community. At the end of the day, most of the things that make a company a great place to work are the same as those that make us happy as human beings: purpose, trust, fairness, recognition, and good relationships.

August 15, 2017

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