Healthcare company Baxter International's sustainability legacy dates back to 1977 with the establishment of a formal environmental program and policy. In 1999, Baxter issued its first public sustainability report to share information about its sustainability programs, priorities, goals and performance. Communication strives to be transparent and focuses on reporting progress and challenges annually; educating and inspiring employees about sustainability at the company and how to communicate about it broadly; and informing outside stakeholders of the company’s initiatives and progress primarily through news releases and targeted outreach. Each quarter CEO Bob Parkinson discusses sustainability in all-employee webcasts.
Baxter has been involved with and received recognition from many sustainability-related organizations, including being named an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Performance Track Corporate Leader, Best Places to Work recognition and local environmental awards. The company has been included in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for 14 years and has been recognized by Corporate Knights as one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World since the list’s inception; it has also been recognized by Corporate Responsibility magazine as one of the 100 Best Corporate Citizens for 11 years.
But perhaps the best evidence of its CSR success comes from Baxter employees: in the most recent employee survey, 77% of respondents indicated that the company's sustainability programs were important to them. —Steve Goldstein