At Novus, we are committed to a values-based culture in which sustainability priorities are clearly communicated and innovation is rewarded. Additionally, work at Novus is structured with clear accountabilities, enabling every employee to work towards clear expectations with needed resources. We invest in a nurturing working environment and health, wellness and personal development are priorities. We are committed to attracting and retaining a diverse workforce. We value individuals from all backgrounds based on all dimensions of diversity.
A Clear, Replicable Organization Design
The Novus Management System (NMS) has been a
consistent management framework at Novus for the
past twenty years, linking people and their contribution
to business goals. It is based on "requisite" principles,
which are management principles developed through
research conducted in 15 countries over a period of
many years. Dr. Elliott Jaques, the originator of Requisite
Organization, defined requisite as "required by the
natural order of things."
In the Requisite Organization, managers make decisions
on the basis of research-proven principles that enable
employees to work effectively toward a common goal
based on common values, standards and procedures.
For more about the way Novus applies the Requisite
Organization principles, please visit the website of the
Global Organization Design Society (http://globalro.org) in which the Novus leadership shares their views
on how such principles are effective in shaping a
robust organizational framework at Novus and inspiring
employees to deliver their best performance.
This system sparked interest from Novus business
partners and in 2011, during the three-day events to
celebrate Novus's 20th Anniversary, a full day workshop, attended by 36 customers representing 19 countries,
was conducted by Novus. Novus managers explained
how 20 years of consistently managing the business
using the same Human Capital Management program
has delivered consistent business benefits, using projects
from Australia and South Africa to illustrate the process.
As a result of the workshop, several Novus customers
have been interested in Requisite Organizations and
Novus is providing support. Novus is happy to support its
customers in developing sustainable organizations.
"Novus looks at skills, knowledge and behavior and what
people value. It's a multi-level approach. The different
levels of management review performance at midyear
and again at year end. Opportunities to enhance
personal development are discussed. Training hours
are recorded using our online system and are audited.
100% of Novus employees had some form of training in
the Novus Management System in 2011."
Chief of Staff
For more about the Requisite Organization principles in
general, please see: www.requisite.org.
Developing the Novus Workforce
Novus continued to grow its workforce in 2011, reaching
a total of 829 employees worldwide, an increase of
16% over 2010's workforce of 716 and 2.5 times more
than the Novus workforce in 2007. Growth has been
most significant in Asia Pacific, in line with Novus's
development strategy in emerging economies in China,
India and neighboring countries, as well as in EAME with
strong expansion in Africa and a new Research Facility
in Spain. In 2011, all but two employees were employed
on a full-time basis. The following table shows Novus's
total employees in all offices, manufacturing, sales and
research locations during the past five years.
Almost all Novus employees are hired on a permanent
contract basis, while a small number of employees are
employed on a renewable or interim project contract
basis. In 2011, 91% (772 employees) were hired on
permanent contracts, which means they were hired for
an indeterminate period, to enable management flexibility
and manpower control. The remaining Novus employees
in 2011 (9%) were employed on the basis of fixed-term or
renewable contracts, which cover a specific time period.
NB. Total employee numbers are comparable to Novus data from
prior years and do not include 28 U.S. based employees of ESM
Technologies, a partially owned subsidiary of Novus Nutrition
Brands, LLC. ESM employee numbers will be combined in Novus's
Towards a Growing, Stable Workforce
In 2011, employee turnover at Novus increased to 18.6%
(from 13.97% in 2010). This remains the consequence
of rapid business expansion and changing roles within
the Novus global organization. The highest rate of
turnover was in the U.S. (23%), primarily due to planned
restructuring of manpower in order to prepare for the
expansion of Novus in strategic economies and the move
of part of the U.S. Novus research facility to Spain. Efforts
are in place to consolidate the organization and ensure
increased workforce stability in coming years, although
continued growth will remain a feature of the Novus
organization for the foreseeable future and continued
turnover will be expected.
Recruiting for Agriculture
As Novus's business expands, Novus continues to recruit
additional employees with a passion for agriculture.
However, around the world, careers in agriculture have
been declining due to the migration of populations to
the cities and a greater availability of technological roles.
Perceptions of agriculture tend to be less attractive to
young people. Therefore, in addition to recruiting for
specific positions, Novus makes a focused effort to raise
awareness of the exciting challenges that agricultural
careers offer and opens up routes to roles in the
agribusiness in many and varied ways, placing emphasis
on our contribution to global sustainability and the
meaningful work we enjoy.
Attracting Youth to Agriculture
In the summer of 2011, the Novus Sales Division in
the U.S. developed an internship specifically focused
on youth development for agricultural awareness and
careers. The intern, Jill Griffin, was a rising sophomore
from Purdue University. Jill's objective for the summer
was to reach out to youth to encourage them to consider
careers in agriculture. Her focus audience was 4-H Youth
Development Programs and Future Farmers of America
(FFA) clubs, primarily in Indiana.
Jill developed an attractive brochure aimed at middleschool
age children, explaining the options and rewards
of a career in agriculture. The brochure was well received
and issued on request to career fairs around the country.
She also managed a display booth for Novus at the
National FFA Convention in October 2011 which attracted
over 51,000 participants. As a result of this internship,
a comprehensive list of youth educators and extension
specialists in Indiana was developed to assist future
outreach, and several events were scheduled at which
Novus would have an opportunity to reach out to youth.
The program will continue and expand in 2012.
Missouri Colleges Fund — Science in Action Day
In April 2011, Novus held its third annual Science in
Action Day. This event provided an opportunity for
college students from across the state of Missouri to
gain valuable insight into different science-based careers.
The students were recipients of science scholarships
through the Missouri Colleges Fund scholarship program.
Through the Missouri Colleges Fund, Novus funds
scholarships for students at 16 universities across
the state of Missouri each year. The 2011 scholars
toured Novus headquarters and participated in panel
discussions with science professionals representing a
wide range of careers showcasing science applications.
It is Novus policy to hire locally, relying on individuals with local experience and deep understanding of both
agricultural practices and local culture and customs to
enable responsiveness tailored to customers in each
market with its unique characteristics. During 2011, all
but one of Novus's senior managers in all regions were
nationals of their country of work (local hires). This is an
increase over 2010, when 84% of managers were locally
hired. We believe this gives Novus a strong advantage
in local markets while contributing to the economic
development of the regions. Senior managers are defined
as CEO direct reports, divisional and functional leaders
employed on a full-time basis.
Developing the Talent Pipeline
for Veterinary Students
Novus is currently working towards implementing a
Veterinary Student Preceptorship with the University of
Missouri. Veterinary students will have the opportunity to
rotate through the R&D and business divisions at Novus
and will gain exposure to nutrition and supplementation
for all species of animals. This new partnership with the
University of Missouri springs from our larger program to
support the talent pipeline for sustainable best practices
Supporting the John Brown Scholars Program
The John Brown Scholars Program was initiated
in 1983 by John E. Brown, a prominent St. Louis
agribusinessman. The program allows 16 qualified
upperclassmen in the College of Agriculture, Food and
Natural Resources (CAFNR) to spend a week in January
visiting with St. Louis agribusiness firms. In January
2011, Novus was proud to host four John Brown
Scholars. For more information about the John Brown
Scholars Program, please see: http://cafnr.missouri.edu/
Upholding Employee Rights
in the Workplace
Novus observes International Labor Conventions which
demand freedom of association and prohibit forced or
child labor and discrimination. All Novus plants conform
to these requirements.
No Novus employees are required or forced to work
for Novus or any of its subsidiaries. To the extent any
employee desires to leave the employ of Novus, she
or he is free to do so subject to the terms of her or his
employment agreement and any other applicable legal
or statutory requirements. The Novus Management
System identifies several channels for employees to raise
questions or concerns about their employment, including
through managers, Human Resources, or through the
Novus Integrity System Hotline.
Novus's operations do not pose significant risks for child
labor and most plants do not have large numbers of
employees. Most of the roles in each location require skill
and experience and are not appropriate for children. All
applicants for employment go through a well-developed
system for interviewing and hiring, so that Novus can
ensure that each candidate is eligible for employment in
accordance with all applicable laws, including those laws
that prohibit child labor.
All Novus plants are visited periodically and, in many
cases, audited by Novus's qualified personnel or by
agencies certifying the facilities meet certain industry
standards. During the course of these visits over the
past two years, all Novus plants were assessed for
risks of child and forced labor and found to bear no
significant risk which would warrant additional action on
the part of Novus.
Novus respects the right of employees to collective
bargaining and complies with all relevant legislation in this
respect in all countries in which Novus does business. In
practice, few employees elect to become affiliated with
employee representation organizations, demonstrating
trust in Novus's open and direct work culture based
on ethical and equitable business practices. In 2010,
94 Novus employees were represented in collective
bargaining agreements, which is 13.13% of Novus's
global workforce. This number increased in 2011,
to 226 employees (29.7% of the global workforce)
due to acquisitions, which included two production
facilities in Mexico and Spain, where employees were
covered by collective bargaining agreements. Novus
respects the rights of these employees to maintain their
Novus is committed to a diverse and inclusive work
environment, respecting the rights of all employees,
including those maintaining indigenous rights. Novus is
an equal opportunity employer, committed to the hiring,
advancement and fair treatment of individuals without
regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age,
national origin, ethnicity, disability or veteran status, or
any other protected status designated by federal, state
or local law in all countries in which Novus does business.
Ensuring Employee Health and
Novus places continuous attention to strict safety
practices in the workplace. During 2011, we were
able to confirm a modest improvement in our safety
performance, which overall compared very favorably
to industry averages. In 2011, there were four cases of
minor work-related injuries (the same as in 2010) which
resulted in a total of 25 days lost time (24 in 2010),
representing Injury Rate of 0.48 cases per 100 employees
(0.56 in 2010), and a Lost Day Rate of 3.02 days per 100
employees (calculated using standard employee hourly
rates of 40 hours, 50 weeks), an improvement over 2010
which recorded 3.35 days. There were no fatalities in
any of Novus's operations in 2011 and no instances of
specific occupational diseases relating to work in Novus
facilities. However, in addition to the Novus employee lost
time injuries mentioned above, there was, regrettably, one
contractor injury in Spain resulting from a burn which led
to an additional 34 days lost work time.
2011 Novus Employee Accidents
and Lost Time by Region
All injury data is calculated using OSHA guidelines for
Novus direct employees and lost days include the first
full day away from work due to injury.
Improving Safety Frameworks
During 2011, several advances to improve Novus safety
frameworks in all parts of the company's operations were
progressed. These include:
- Improvements in safety awareness and
communications through a new Environment, Health,
Safety and Security intranet page available for all
employees globally, as well as production of site safety
brochures for visitors to several Novus sites. Employee
letters of notification were developed in Spanish for
employees at the new Novus plant in Cordoba, Mexico
to communicate their individual exposure concentration
to hazardous materials and ensure appropriate
precautions are in line with safety procedures.
- Development of new and updated policies and
procedures, such as a new Incident Investigation
procedure, and procedures relating to "Emergency
Action/Fire Protection," "Fire Protection," "Hot Work,"
"Electrical Safety," and "Machine Guarding." A new
biosafety manual was also developed.
- Adoption of new activities such as participation in
the Red Cross Ready Rating Program, a nationwide
program in the U.S. designed to help business
organizations prepare for an emergency. At the same
time, the program aids the Red Cross in identifying
available resources in the event of an emergency.
- Improvements to work facilities and safety
arrangements such as updated primary and secondary
emergency exits and improvement in fall protection at
certain Novus plants.
- Employee training for Novus HQ employees over and
above basic mandatory safety training in safe working
such as office ergonomics, classroom and hands-on
fire extinguisher training to fight an actual fire.
In addition, seven internal voluntary EHS audits were
conducted in Novus's manufacturing and research
facilities around the world and other joint venture
locations. Since the international audit protocols are
based on the specific country and state in which a
facility operates, some opportunities for improvement
were identified where a location was not aware of the
local regulation. These were of minor importance and
corrective actions were taken.
Making Employee Wellness a Top Priority
The Rewards of Good Health
As a company whose core activities are rooted in health
and wellness, Novus makes it a priority to offer its
employees tools and programs to care for themselves
and their families and maintain good health and wellbeing.
We view this as one of the basic building blocks of
a sustainable business. Workplace health and well-being
issues cost the global economy trillions of dollars, much
of which is preventable, and productivity losses through
lack of attention to health and well-being are estimated at
five times greater than the cost of care to any business.
At Novus, we are committed to the well-being of our
employees as well as to a maintaining a sustainable and
Novus offers employees a range of health-related benefits
as a part of their standard employment package. These
include health insurance, dental insurance, free healthy
meals (U.S.), use of sports facilities, an Employee
Assistance Program (EAP) and the opportunity to
participate in a range of health-related activities for
employees and their families. Under the umbrella of
the award-winning Novus Wellness Program, "Live
Well," Novus maintains one of the most comprehensive
corporate health and wellness offerings available.
Live Well was established in the U.S. in 2008 and has
now reached transformational proportions. In 2011,
following renewal of the Novus U.S. Healthcare Insurance
Plan for employees, Novus was able to obtain a 6%
decrease in the plan cost for 2012 versus 2011, due to
low claim activity in 2011. This was a major achievement
and the first time in Novus's history that healthcare costs
did not increase in any given year. We believe this is a
direct outcome of the fact that employees are paying
more attention to preventive approaches to health.
Also in 2011, Novus was honored to be recognized by
the American Heart Association (AHA) as a Gold Fit-
Friendly Company for promoting a culture of physical,
nutritional and mental well-being. "Gold-level" recognition
is for companies that fulfill criteria such as offering
employees physical activity support, increasing healthy eating options at work, promoting a wellness culture, as
well as implementing at least six physical activities, two
nutrition activities and one culture activities as listed in the
AHA program. For more details about the AHA program,
please see: www.startwalkingnow.org.
Connecting Employees to Wellness
The Novus Live Well program is hosted by Well
Advantage, an external service that hosts employees'
personal opt-in health pages. External hosting
guarantees employee confidence in the privacy of their
personal information. Employee personal pages enable
recording of personal information such as weight,
biometric information, calorie tracking, tracking of
success and enables employees to signup online for
workshops, recipes, health information and more. All
Novus employees, including new hires from day one,
have access to the Novus online program and can
choose to join. Over 75% of Novus employees currently
use this service.
In addition to the external site, Novus maintains its own
intranet site called Live Well, which offers additional
information about Novus activities and opportunities
to get involved. Over 200 employees use this site on a
regular and frequent basis. For more information about
Well Advantage, please see: www.welladvantage.com.
Healthy Rewards Incentives
Novus employees can take advantage of Live Well
program incentives and gain financial rewards simply
by taking a proactive approach to their own health
and well-being. Employees use their personal Well
Advantage page to record healthy behavior such as
getting a check-up at the doctor, going to the dentist,
having a mammogram, participating in the Novus blood
drive, using the gym, drinking recommended amounts
of water and much more. Each activity earns points and
employees receive a gift cards worth up to $75 for points
earned. During 2011, 50 employees earned enough
points to receive a cash award and Novus paid out close
to $3,000 to these employees.
Preventive Health Management for Employees
In addition to standard health insurance coverage
for all employees, and in order to further incentivize
employees to engage in personal preventive health
management, the Novus Medical Coverage Plan includes
an annual wellness reimbursement for employees. The
reimbursement covers health-related activities of the
employees and their families such as joining a gym, or
the local YMCA, sports camps, voluntary vaccination
programs or other healthy activities. Many employees
utilize this reimbursement allocation. This program is
available to employees in the U.S. at this time as medical
health coverage and insurance programs differ from
country to country and responses to healthcare needs
outside the U.S. have been provided locally. During
2012-2013, Novus will examine the local needs in all
countries of operation and review the possibility of a
global program. For more information, please see: http://www.cdc.gov/workplacehealthpromotion/implementation/topics/tobacco-use.html
Novus Becomes a Smoke-Free Company
According to the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention, tobacco use affects productivity and
absenteeism, increases use of disability leave, and
increases overall health care costs among workers.
Tobacco use costs an estimated $96.8 billion per year in
lost productivity in the U.S. alone.
In order to further support Novus's Live Well program
and demonstrate a company-wide commitment to
health and well-being, as of April 2011, Novus adopted
a policy to become a global Tobacco-Free and Smoke-
Free company. This policy prohibits smoking or the use
of tobacco anywhere in Novus workplaces and premises
around the world, including all production factories,
warehouses, indoor facilities (private offices, meeting
rooms, cafeterias, lunchrooms, employee lounges) and
all outdoor areas. Similarly, smoking and the use of
tobacco products also is prohibited in company vehicles (including those provided to employees for personal use),
and in personal vehicles on Novus premises, such as in
parking lots and driveways. The policy applies to all forms
of smoking (cigarettes, cigars and pipes), as well as all
forms of smokeless tobacco.
In addition to smoking prevention, Novus also offers
employees the possibility to take part in the American
Lung Association's Freedom From Smoking® Online
program. This program takes a structured approach
to behavior change, offering a self-paced, seven-week
online program with 24-hour access to learning modules
and message boards. This program, costing $40 for an
individual annual subscription, is offered to all employees
at no charge.
The Novus Tobacco and Smoke-Free policy has
generally been welcomed by Novus employees, nonsmokers
and smokers alike. Several employees have
confirmed that this policy has helped them give up
smoking. For more information about this program,
please see: www.ffsonline.org.
"Keeping our healthcare costs as
low as possible makes a positive
contribution to the Novus bottom
line. Equally as important, we
know that this is the result of our
employees staying healthy, feeling
good and living well. This is a win-win
Senior Manager, HR Benefits,
Live Well Program Manager
Health-Related Activities for Novus Employees
- On-Site Flu Vaccinations
- Missouri Research Park Blood Drive
- 2011 Global Walking & Movement Challenge
- Run for the Farms
Live Well Newsletters
In order to maintain and provide relevant, topical
and useful information about health and well-being-
related activities and engage employees on
a regular basis, Novus issues a monthly Live Well
newsletter, edited by the Novus Live Well Human
Run for the Farms in St. Charles County.
"'Fat & Furious' was the largest team put together for
the Novus Global Walking and Movement challenge.
The members of the team were from various
departments including marketing, communications
and HR. Our team was full of competitive people who
kept each other challenged to go further than normal.
This was a great way to encourage employees to be
healthy with the support of their colleagues."
Pork Marketing Specialist
Investing in Employee Training and Development
As a knowledge-based company, Novus recognizes that its long-term sustainable success rests with its ability to attract,
develop and retain employees in a wide range of mission-critical roles. All employees are provided with supportive
feedback about their performance in development conversations with their managers twice each year, and learning and
development goals are articulated for each employee in line with their unique needs. Novus provides employees with a
wide range of options to receive formal training in specific professional areas or in management skills, engage in selflearning
using the extensive Novus Online Learning System or participate in lectures designed to broaden understanding
and knowledge of core issues related to Novus's business.
Novus offers a competitive range of family-friendly benefits for all employees. Rewards are performance-based, helping
to foster an increased sense of ownership among employees. Compensation and benefits around the world are tailored
to local norms and industry benchmarks, but generally include benefits that exceed local minimum levels required by law.
Typically, this will include competitive salary, merit bonuses, medical insurance and more. In some countries, Novus offers
an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which provides experienced counselors to assist employees in dealing with
personal or family issues which may be a cause of stress.
In addition, Novus employees are passionate about their work in support of the Novus mission and often work beyond
expectation and role boundaries, making an extraordinary contribution to delivering excellence at many levels. Novus
acknowledges and rewards these employees with both financial awards and significant internal or external recognition.
A Future Cadre of Leaders in Agriculture
Thirty-five Novus Interns in 2011:
Novus invested in broadening and improving the existing
Novus Intern Program, which had been operating at a
low-key level for some years, in order to create a vibrant,
structured program, which would both offer opportunities
to local students interested in agriculture-based careers
while supporting Novus's business objectives in a
more focused way. Novus established a new, two-fold
mission for the Novus Intern Program: (1) create an
ongoing pipeline of potential talent as part of our People
Strategy Management initiatives, and (2) deliver on our
commitment to Novus's mission and vision by expanding
knowledge and generating enrichment opportunities for
stakeholders and communities.
Typically, the Novus Intern Program is a ten-week
placement, although some positions may be extended.
Positions are offered to university graduates and in some
cases, Ph.D. level candidates also apply. In 2011, Novus
engaged a total of 35 undergrad and MBA graduate
interns (11 males, 24 females) in a range of roles
throughout the Novus business, including seven roles in
the field and others in Novus offices.
Novus compensates interns on a two-tier scale based
on their academic level ($10-12 per hour) and also offers
interns benefits that Novus employees enjoy, including
training, social and networking events, complimentary
lunches, access to the Novus fitness center, fitness
classes and more. Novus Interns participate in a midterm
review and a final review to assess the overall
experience and provide Novus with feedback on how
the program can be improved for future Interns. In an
anonymous-response survey conducted by Novus in
2011, 85% of respondents said they would recommend
the program to a friend.
Some interns go on to become Novus employees and
during the past three years, including 2011, 13 have
taken up full-time positions with Novus.
Employees Go Green
Novus maintains an active Green
Team of employees who are
support Novus's efforts to make a positive contribution
to the quality of our natural environment. During 2011
several Green Team activities took place.
A Green Experience for Novus Children:
April 2011, Novus employees were invited to bring
their children to the Novus campus to participate in an
experiential program with a green theme in the "Bring
Your Kids to Work Day." Novus children could take part in
various arts and crafts, learn how to recycle and compost
waste, learn about water quality, monitor birds and more.
Novus Loves Honey Bees:
In August 2011, the bee
keeping team harvested 70 pounds of honey from the
two hives on the Novus global headquarters grounds,
leaving 100 pounds of honey for the bees to survive
the winter. On a Saturday in August, the team attended
an event hosted by the EMBA to guide beekeepers
through the process of honey extraction and filtration.
The honey was bottled on site at Novus and distributed
to employees. The Novus team anticipates that the
2012 honey harvest could double in volume and may
deliver enough honey to generate sales or donation to a
local food bank. Rick Baseley, a member of the Novus
employee bee keeping team, noted that, "Homegrown
honey doesn't taste like any other." Rick also has a hive
Green Team Tests the Water:
Novus Green Team
members engaged in water testing as part of Novus's
biomonitoring program associated with the Novus
Sustainable SITES project. Novus participates in the
Lakes of Missouri Volunteer Program (LMVP) which uses
citizen scientists to monitor water quality throughout the
state. The goals of the LMVP are to determine the current
water quality based on productivity or trophic state of
Missouri's lakes, to monitor for changes in water quality
over time, and to educate the public about lake ecology
and water quality issues. Novus Green Team members
test water quality in the Novus retention pond as well as
in a control pond on the Missouri Research Park property.