DSM Integrated Annual Report 2020

People at a glance


Frequency Index of Recordable Injuries

compared to 0.28
in 2019


Employee Engagement Index

compared to 74%
in 2019


Female executives

compared to 20%
in 2019


female:male ratio


Inclusion Index

compared to 72%
in 2019


of our employees were offered immunity-optimizing supplements

1 All data presented in People are subject to the non-financial reporting policy.


A year shaped by COVID-19, transformation and a new People & Organization strategy

In 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded, taking care of our people was more important than ever. Many of our efforts to support the mental and physical health and well-being of our employees, as well as our continued commitment to inclusion and diversity, human rights and employee engagement, are detailed later in the first part of this section. We continued to deliver on our People and Organization (P&O) strategy, and, in adapting ourselves to a significantly changed context, shaped a new P&O strategy for the coming period.

Focusing on our people through the pandemic

This extraordinary year required us to focus more than ever on our people, ensuring their safety, health and well-being, as well as engaging everyone within the context of the new normal we were faced with.

Inclusion was key to make sure everyone felt listened to and cared for, no matter what challenges they were faced with. New company leadership required and created an opportunity to shape the way the Co-CEOs would engage with people and lead. The combination of all these factors was expressed through a new Culture Compass, providing direction on who we are and what we stand for at DSM.

Delivering on our P&O strategy

While the pandemic brought a stronger focus on pillars such as Culture and Inclusion & Diversity, we continued our journey on all the other pillars of the P&O strategy as well. Changes to our organization including integrating three recent acquisitions and one announced divestment brought new challenges from a people perspective. Our businesses continued their customer and operating model journeys through programs such as Fit for Growth and Agility to Grow. We stepped up further in our ambitions for Inclusion & Diversity and focused on employee development through the launch of new tools and programs across the company. As committed to in 2019, we also continued our investment in Human rights, with significant steps taken in fair remuneration and living wage.

Preparing our future P&O strategy

The extraordinary circumstances of 2020 — new leadership at the top; a pandemic disrupting our views about work, workplace and workforce; and a continued company transformation — called for a new P&O strategy, which was shaped in the second half of 2020 and launched toward the end of the year. The new strategy is both a continuation and an evolution of our current strategy, with a focus on ‘Creating a Flotilla Organization’, ‘Empowering Our Employees’, ‘Creating a Contemporary Workplace’, and ‘Resetting the Context for Leadership’ — all anchored in our DSM Culture Compass. The first steps for this new strategy started at the end of 2020, with the launch of the Culture Compass, the pilot of a new technology for career development, and the launch of a concept of Hybrid Workplace for our ‘Next Normal’ way of working.

Aligning our People approach with the Materiality Matrix

Our approach to People aligns with a number of material topics:

1 All data presented in People are subject to the non-financial reporting policy.

Living wage
The remuneration received for a standard working time by an employee in a particular place sufficient to afford a decent standard of living for the employee and his/her family. Elements of a decent standard of living include food, water, housing, education, health care, transport, clothing, and other essential needs, including provision for unexpected events.