Lowe’s enhances companywide improvement efforts and expands reporting to align with GRI
MOORESVILLE, N.C. – Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW) today announced the release of its 2014 Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Report, providing an expanded and enhanced review of Lowe’s sustainability objectives and the company’s progress during the past year. The 2014 CSR report can be viewed on Lowe’s website.
The report outlines the company’s shared approach to meeting the needs of its customers, employees, communities and the environment while addressing key topics that are important to its business, stakeholders and society.
“At Lowe’s, we’re driven by a single purpose – to help people love where they live,” Robert A. Niblock says in the report’s CEO Message. “This is a constant commitment that we approach together with the help of more than 265,000 employees. We’re proud of our progress in 2014 and will continue to work hard to improve as we carry out our shared responsibility every day in our workplace and communities.”
The report details improvements Lowe’s achieved in important focus areas, including the health, safety and engagement of employees, the company’s progress against its 2020 sustainability goals and its collaboration with suppliers to maintain the highest ethical standards and improve the products it sells. For the first time, Lowe’s referred to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 guidelines to compile the report and included an index of standard disclosures to enhance transparency and offer easy access to key data.
Lowe’s highlights from 2014 include:
- Lowe’s and the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation gave $28 million to community organizations, and more than 41,000 Lowe’s Heroes employee volunteers donated their time and expertise to improve communities.
- Lowe’s continued to reduce employee incidents across its operations. The average Lost Time Incident Rateat Lowe’s stores and distribution centers per 200,000 hours was 2.07, a 21 percent improvement since Lowe’s 2012 baseline year and a new company record.
- For the first time in Lowe’s annual Employee Opinion Survey, its U.S. stores, distribution centers and customer support centers all reached the company’s benchmark engagement goal of 65 percent, indicating a highly engaged workforce. CareerBliss recognized Lowe’s as one of the 10 happiest retailers to work for in 2014.
- The company launched new fleets of natural-gas powered trucks at five regional distribution centers, reaching its goal of serving at least 20 percent of its stores with natural gas trucks by the end of 2014. Lowe’s also became the only retail shipping partner ever to receive six EPA SmartWay® awards for superior environmental performance in supply chain operations.
- Lowe’s sold enough Energy Star® products in 2014 to save customers approximately $2.4 billion in utility costs over the lifetime of the products and eliminate greenhouse gases equivalent to the emissions from nearly 2.9 million cars.
Lowe’s commitments for 2015 include:
- Building on the success of its cardiac surgery and hip and knee replacement programs, Lowe’s launched a no-cost spine surgery benefit for employees this year in collaboration with three U.S. facilities designated as Centers of Excellence because of their high quality of care and patient satisfaction. The initiative is open to all Lowe’s employees enrolled in the company’s self-funded health plans and includes full reimbursement of associated travel for the patient and a companion.
- Lowe’s is committed to regularly reviewing the products and information it offers customers. Following studies that say many factors, including neonicotinoid pesticides, could potentially damage the health of pollinators, Lowe’s has committed to take several steps to support pollinator health. Lowe’s will phase out the sale of products that contain neonic pesticides within 48 months as suitable alternatives become commercially available. Lowe’s will include greater organic and non-neonic product selections, work with growers to eliminate the use of neonic pesticides on bee-attractive plants it sells and educate customers and employees through in-store and online resources.
- Lowe’s introduced a program in 2014 to develop its pipeline of women leaders, pairing vice presidents with women store managers to develop and expand Lowe’s leadership team. This year, the company will leverage the program with a new group of store managers and launch a new mentoring program to pair women and minority store managers with market directors whose expertise will support leadership development.
To learn more about these activities, visit Lowes.com/SocialResponsibility. Feedback is welcome at SocialResponsibility@Lowes.com.
Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE: LOW) is a FORTUNE® 100 home improvement company serving approximately 16 million customers a week in the United States, Canada and Mexico through its stores and online at Lowes.com, Lowes.ca and Lowes.com.mx. With fiscal year 2014 sales of $56.2 billion, Lowe’s has 1,840 home improvement and hardware stores and more than 265,000 employees. Founded in 1946 and based in Mooresville, N.C., Lowe’s supports the communities it serves through programs that focus on K-12 public education and community improvement projects. For more information, visit Lowes.com.