Dear Friends, Colleagues and Neighbors,
At Southwire, we work hard every day to discover, develop and distribute sustainable solutions that exceed the expectations of our stakeholders around the world. In doing so, our goal is simple: We want to go from good to great. We continue to build on our nearly seven decades of rich history by looking to the future—a future where needs will be met through high-end systems and solutions, and a future guided by the technologies, forces and trends shaping our industry.
In that spirit, I am proud to present our 2017 Sustainability Report. Like the reports we’ve launched in the past, this assessment covers all areas of sustainability at Southwire and covers our most significant impacts and opportunities. These findings detail our sustainability goals and strategies, which align with our five tenets—Growing Green, Living Well, Giving Back, Doing Right and Building Worth.
As you may recall, we launched a revitalized set of goals in 2017, accompanied by a new, beautifully designed logo and refreshed priorities for the next five years. Introduced in last year’s report, we are pleased to report our first year’s progress for these new goals.
For the 2017 report, we also conducted an updated materiality assessment to guide our focus on the sustainability topics most significant to our business and our stakeholders. The Materiality page details this process. You will see these topics expanded further as you review the report.
As you begin to review the 2017 report, I’d like to share a few key highlights from the year:
I’ve reiterated many times that there is nothing more important at Southwire—no order, no job, no efficiency—than the people who work here. We continue to find ways to remove variability from our processes, develop new ways to stay safer on the job, and this year, welcomed an additional facility to our list of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) Star sites. It has taken the commitment of each employee to reach the level of improvement we have seen, and it will continue to take all of us as we strive toward zero injuries at Southwire. Moving forward, this same theme will be tied to our quality metrics and efforts to put forth our very best when it comes to our products, solutions and services.
UN Global Compact
Supporting our commitment, we signed the UN Global Compact in July of 2017, becoming one of more than 12,000 signatories in 170 countries who are working to take actions that advance societal goals. To be a company that can sustain itself through many generations, it is important to align with these initiatives so that our communities around the world continue to prosper and thrive.
Key business wins for 2017 include the grand opening of the Thorn Customer Solutions Center, the acquisition of DCN Cables, growth in our customer relationships, record-setting production in many of our facilities and much more. Guided by our ONE Southwire approach, we’ve developed a clear, structured five-year strategic plan that will help lead us toward continued growth in the future.
Much consideration goes into the value of our culture and making Southwire a great place to work. We set forth many new initiatives over the past year, highlighted by the introduction of a formalized inclusivity program and the growth of our employee resource groups. We’ve also taken significant steps in the realm of performance management and learning, and we are continuing to grow in these areas as we move ahead.
And, as we think about our commitment to Giving Back, I continue to be amazed by the generosity of our people and our Project GIFT teams in the places we work, live and serve. In 2017, our 900+ Project GIFT volunteers participated in over 200 events, providing relief in the wake of five natural disasters, giving out more than 22,000 bags of school supplies and much more. We were also able to assist hundreds of employees through grants from the POWER Fund. Also in the spirit of community, we celebrated a decade of 12 for Life, the institution of our maintenance apprenticeship program and many other strides through our community partnerships and efforts to help develop the workforce of tomorrow.
As I’ve said before, it is our priority that Southwire remains generationally sustainable for the next 100 years and beyond. I am incredibly proud to lead this great organization, made up of now more than 7,500 talented people across the globe that are working together to ensure we remain an industry and community leader for years to come.