UCB Australia

UCB Australia has been selected as an Employer of Choice in The Australian Business Awards 2021. The Australian Business Award for Employer of Choice [EOC] recognises organisations that develop workplaces that maximise the full potential of their workforce through established policies and practices which demonstrate effective employee recruitment, engagement and retention.

“The UCB Australian Leadership Team is delighted to receive the Employer of Choice Award 2021. UCBs ambition globally is to create value for patients with severe diseases in neurology and immunology. This means a commitment to people living with these diseases, their caregivers and their families to help them live their best lives. We are very proud to support an environment and culture which empowers an amazing group of people who work and thrive to meet this commitment to patients. This focus on people is core to our sustainability as a business as we endeavour to foster a working environment where people are happy, healthy, safe and able to thrive through a meaningful job.”

UCB Australia

UCB Australia, the Australian affiliate of global biopharmaceutical company UCB S.A, is based in Melbourne with 47 employees either office based or working in the field engaging healthcare professionals. UCB supports the lives of approximately 50,000 Australians with medicines for severe chronic inflammatory and neurological conditions.

The company Purpose – Creating Value for Patients – sets the culture and working environment whether delivering operational excellence via the commercial team and HR, through to roles delivering a positive impact for patients.

The key leadership competencies – leading others, resilience, authenticity, agility and adaptability – are vital during a pandemic when nothing is predictable. Employees assess leaders on these competencies to help them stay focused on creating patient value. The culture embraces feedback, direct communication and is low on hierarchy.

Extensive support was provided nationally during the Victorian lockdown in 2020 to help employees stay connected via an online wellbeing program, virtual yoga, fitness and meditation and comedy shows. Based on feedback from the 2020 program, new initiatives for 2021 include a September “Disconnection Day” an additional annual leave day where everyone is encouraged to switch off their work devices to focus on personal and family wellbeing. Other offerings during these recent lockdowns include AirPods to encourage time away from screens and gourmet food vouchers to encourage family time.

There’s an annual health allowance and wellbeing initiatives such as existing flexible working arrangements, Flu Vaccinations, Skin Checks and Spring Step Challenge. The step challenge includes a holistic platform designed to address both physical and mental wellbeing. UCB provides an additional leave day on Christmas Eve.

The U-Inspire rewards program is peer recognition of individual achievements to inspire, incentivise and reward desired ways of working that have contributed to creating patient value. The awards allow recognition and sense of connection when teams are working remotely.

These measures have helped UCB to continue to deliver value to patients and health stakeholders, support employee wellbeing and preserve the culture.
Comprehensive training for individual roles and an extensive online learning and development courses is complemented by education assistance for external courses applicable to individual development needs.

Recruitment, promotion and advancement is on merit and within the framework of the company’s equal opportunity policy and behaviour supporting the Patient Value strategy. At the start of the interviewing process candidates are asked what patient centricity means to them, which is a strong consideration along with their degrees or experience.

UCB offers both paid maternity and paternity leave for 3 months to support all employees during this special time and parental leave for still born babies. An employee assistance program is available for employees to use when they need confidential counselling support.

Employee engagement from the staff survey in May 2020 was an impressive 81%. Turnover was 8.9% in 2020 and around 50 per cent of its 47 employees have worked there five years or longer.

These outcomes reflect strong affinity with UCB’s Purpose of Patient Value, culture, career development opportunities, benefits and investment in health and wellbeing.

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