Rentokil Initial is a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index.

Corporate responsibility

At the heart of Rentokil Initial’s approach to corporate responsibility is a focus on doing what’s right for colleagues and customers, and the values which underpin the company. It emphasises local action, while ensuring compliance with group-wide policies in areas such as health and safety, conduct and environment. Over the last five years the company has consistently improved its sustainability performance, invested in colleague training and development, and maintained high standards of health and safety.

For the latest information on our responsible business activities: Download the 2016 Corporate Responsibility Report.

Health and safety

There is nothing more important in Rentokil Initial than ensuring that 'Everyone Goes Home Safe' at the end of their working day. Health and safety is our first priority and therefore is the first agenda item in meetings of senior management including the Executive Leadership Team and Board. In addition, the Board reviews the Health and Safety Policy annually. In 2016 the company’s Lost Time Accident rate fell by 19% (defined as work-related injury/illness resulting in employee absenteeism for one day/shift or more). Summary of 2016 Health & Safety activities.

A skilled and engaged workforce

Rentokil Initial is committed to workplace practices that are based on equal opportunities for all colleagues, irrespective of age, gender, race, colour, sexual orientation, disability or marital status. The Company’s policy is to recruit, appoint and promote on merit. As at the end of 2016 the Company employed 32,150 (2015: 29,792) colleagues. Across the Company's major markets, approximately 35% of employees were female.

Performance on skills development continued to be enhanced in 2016. Learning and development is delivered primarily through U+, the Company’s in-house university, as well as through on the job training. By the end of 2016, colleagues had completed 300,000 items of online training and development. These included programmes on our code of conduct, health and safety, legal compliance and leadership development, together with sales, technical and operational topics specific to our business.

Innovation and responsible product stewardship

Rentokil Initial invests in an active innovation programme to support the responsible delivery of its business lines. This includes full research and development of new products to enhance the quality and safety of the Company’s services, also minimising their environmental impact. Recently the company has launched PestConnect, HygieneConnect, Rapidpro, Lumnia and AutoGate – market leading innovations. Further details can be found in the 2016 Annual CR Report.

In hygiene the Company has introduced new products with anti-microbial coverings to reduce cross contamination; new designs which enable more efficient delivery and reduced fuel consumption; and products to reduce energy consumption in the industrial washing process. In the UK, the Hygiene business has introduced Modular Airfresh units which are more environmentally friendly, with 46% waste reduction and safer disposal (with 25% less chemicals).

Other initiatives which combine innovation with improved health, safety and environmental outcomes include: hygiene sensing to improve hand washing compliance; use of products approved under the EU’s Biocidal Products Directive such as Alphachlorolose for mice; energy-efficient fly control units; more secure bait box designs; soda blasting replacing chemicals for graffiti removal and wall cleaning. Safety sheets are provided for all its products, and the Company actively supports organisations, such as the Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU), to improve knowledge and understanding of safe pest control.

Environmentally responsible service delivery

Following the successful achievement of the Company’s emissions target (an emissions reduction of 10% by the end of 2016), the Board has set a new emissions target, representing a 20% reduction in emissions by the end of 2020, based on the Company’s index of emissions normalised against revenues at constant exchange rates.  

Rentokil Initial reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 10.7% in 2016. This continues a five-year trend of improvement, through the use of technology, operational efficiency initiatives and developing a culture of responsible behaviour. Since 2012 the Company has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 18.7%.

Our main emission sources are the vehicle fleet and European workwear plants. Since 2012, the plants have delivered improvements of 15.9% in energy efficiency and 20% in water consumption. With a large global vehicle fleet, vehicle emissions represented 70% of energy derived emissions in 2016. To improve vehicle efficiency, programmes including route optimisation, engine control unit mapping, vehicle eco-selection, driver telemetry and training have been introduced. 

Positive community action

Our colleagues enthusiastically support local and national charities, and the Company strives to build on this to enable multiple good causes to be supported. Rentokil Initial’s charitable cash donations amounted to £171,000 in 2016 (2015: £128,000). Our approach is to provide local community support and investment at a country or regional level; global community support with long-term support for specific charities; and support responses to national disasters in affected communities, where colleagues and their families live.

Rentokil Initial’s Better Futures programme has developed community projects in India, Malaysia, Indonesia and South Africa. The programme delivers basic health education focusing on the importance of good hygiene practices. Since its launch in 2013, over 12,500 people have participated in these education events supported by volunteer colleagues from local branches.

Malaria no More

Rentokil Initial has actively supported the charity Malaria No More for five years, and in 2016 passed the landmark of having raised over £100,000.  Colleagues have found many fun ways to continue fundraising efforts.  In 2016, 19 colleagues raised £11,000 by cycling from our UK Head Office to Paris. Other colleagues undertook bungee jumping at the Verzasca Dam in Switzerland, the London to Brighton bike ride and the Tough Mudder challenge.