Through our Every Heartbeat Matters (EHM) initiative, our partners—including Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Pyxera Global, and the incredible medical team at Fort Apache Native American Indian Reservation—to launch the first-ever EHM Pro Bono Corps in Whiteriver, Arizona. As a part of this initiative, a dedicated group of Edwards employees is giving Edwards’ time and their talents in communication, clinical knowledge, economics and research to analyze opportunities for the Reservation to provide a cardiac echo screening program to all the residents of the community. In June 2022, the team returned to the Reservation to continue their charitable work that began in 2021. We are excited to continue to identify potential opportunities to bring Edwards’ knowledge and expertise to our EHM partners and increase impact for the humanitarian patients they serve.
Volunteerism & giving
- GRI 413-1: Operations with local community engagement, impact assessments, and development programs
Edwards Lifesciences’ work to encourage employee charitable activity and giving supports our culture and aspiration of passionate engagement that strengthens our communities.
Dedicating time, talent and resources to communities where Edwards’ employees live and work and supporting community health and well-being. Our charitable activities and giving efforts focus on impacting underserved structural heart and critically ill patients through our Every Heartbeat Matters initiative which increases access to healthcare via humanitarian care, as well as strengthens the communities where we live and work.
Our commitment to charitable giving and participation in philanthropic causes is one of the defining elements of Edwards Lifesciences’ culture. We believe our work can inspire hope and contribute to better lives for our patients, employees and communities. Many of our employees feel personally connected to our philanthropy and identify this commitment as a key reason why they are proud to work at Edwards.
Philanthropy at Edwards Lifesciences
At Edwards, we champion important health-related and community causes to improve the lives of underserved patients and strengthen communities. Through our Global Corporate Giving, Edwards Lifesciences Foundation supports advancements in knowledge and improvements in quality of life. We leverage our expertise in structural heart disease and critical care monitoring to elevate the impact of our philanthropic efforts. Some examples of initiatives include grants from the Edwards Lifesciences Foundation, passionate employee charitable activity, donation of our medical innovations, corporate donations and employee gift matching from our Foundation. We also sponsor several employee matching gift programs including dollar-for-dollar match programs, an additional match for employees serving in leadership positions with non-profits, and an additional match for our United Way Giving Campaign. The purpose and goals of our philanthropy include:
- Improve the lives of underserved patients by increasing access to healthcare and our donated technologies
- Execute our Every Heartbeat Matters philanthropic initiative with a target to improve the lives of 2.5 million additional underserved structural heart and critical care patients by the end of 2025
- Inspire passionate employee engagement in charitable activity
- Strengthen the communities where our employees live and work
- Live by the principles of Edwards Lifesciences’ Credo
Edward continues to make serving our local communities a top priority of our giving efforts. At our offices around the world, we open our facilities to host programs, fundraisers and meetings for local non-profit organizations, such as United Way and American Heart Association. We also provide externships for members of local organizations such as Girls Inc. and Achievement Institute of Scientific Studies and regularly bring students onto our campuses to tour and learn about what it means to work in medical technology and understand the paths our employees took to get where they are today.
Our foundation and philanthropy work to navigate international granting dynamics, laws and regulations, and maintain compliance with reporting requirements related to healthcare professionals.
Employee charitable activity and giving
Our employees embody Edwards’ focus on improving lives and our communities. The authentic commitment to giving and charitable activity spans from leadership across all employee populations, cultivating a strong, employee-led culture of helping others.
Edwards’ commitment to this culture is shown by providing the infrastructure for employees to feel supported and encouraged to participate in charitable activities. We provide monthly opportunities for participation in charitable activities during their workday and encourage employees to give a few hours of Edwards time a few times a year.
Our more than 25 global Strengthen Our Community committees are cross-functional groups of passionate employees dedicated to living Edwards’ Credo of “creating a community unified in its mission to improve the quality of life around the world.” These committees organize our global volunteerism efforts, connecting Edwards’ volunteers with organizations that are addressing community needs, often funded by the Edwards Foundation. Each committee is empowered to give their time and talents according to both local community needs and the interest of employees in their region. Notably, Edwards provides platforms, tools and resources for our employees to find a way to give back that is meaningful and relevant to them.
Edwards’ culture of giving also comes to life through our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), organizations that lead communities of employees from similar backgrounds or interest areas. Please find more information about our ERGs in our Human Capital Management section of this report.
The governance map below outlines the Foundation’s governance structure.
Please click on any of the seven categories to review our governance structures and practices.
Our Audit and Compensation and Governance Committees, and the Board of Directors as a whole, are responsible for developing Edwards’ corporate governance strategy.
Our Corporate Secretary stewards our corporate governance efforts and represents the Board of Directors during engagement calls with shareholders. A representative from the Board of Directors, the Presiding Director, sometimes participates in calls with the shareholders and closely collaborates with the Corporate Secretary in advance of and during the calls. Shareholder feedback informs corporate governance evaluation. The Board of Directors reviews the shareholder feedback reports and incorporates feedback into their considerations when reviewing governance strategy.
On a quarterly basis, the Corporate Secretary reviews current best practices, analyzes the impacts of governance changes on our business and advises the Board of Directors on considerations relating to governance and cybersecurity questions, challenges or feedback.
- The Edwards Board of Directors has two committees – the Compensation and Governance
Committee and the Audit Committee. Their charters can be found on
our website. They oversee
execution of our corporate governance and sustainability strategy throughout the year.
The Executive Leadership Team, Investor Relations, the office of the Corporate Secretary, and the office of the Chief Responsibility Officer collaborate to execute Edwards’ corporate governance strategy
Edwards’ Information Security team executes the company’s cybersecurity strategy and has the support needed to enact key initiatives in a timely and expedited manner using a risk-based approach. Edwards’ Chief Information Officer updates the Chief Financial Officer on a monthly basis, the Executive Leadership team and the CEO receive quarterly updates, and the Board of Directors receives periodic updates.
Edwards evaluates corporate governance personnel using compensation mechanisms such as awarding long-term incentives. To evaluate our Board of Directors, our Compensation Committee submits recommendations to our CEO who evaluates individuals based on their performance management objectives. Additionally, we view our stock performance as a way in which our strategy is being evaluated by shareholders.
Our Board and ELT are incentivized to promote best corporate governance practices through performance management objectives which influence compensation. Additionally, our Board conducts self- and peer-evaluations annually that are prepared for and tailored to each Board member by the General Counsel.
EEdwards communicates corporate governance efforts with stakeholders through the annual Proxy Statement and other securities filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Edwards educates employees on corporate governance information through the Titanium book.
Our SVP, Chief Responsibility Officer oversees the Corporate Sustainability function and Sustainability Council and communicates routinely with our Board, ELT members, employee events and sustainability speaking engagements outside the company. Additionally, the Sustainability Council publicly communicates corporate governance initiatives through our Sustainability Report
The Board is presented with the status of stakeholder engagement and feedback during the quarter in which the feedback was obtained. Shareholder outreach on corporate governance, executive compensation and sustainability occurs at least twice a year. The Board reviews feedback, evaluates best responses, discusses reasonable approaches and responds appropriately on behalf of the company. The 2022 Proxy Statement details how the Board has responded to stockholder feedback over the year and has changed our governance profile.
Stakeholders can communicate governance concerns by contacting investor relations or the office of the Corporate Secretary and raising concerns during one of the semi-annual outreach campaigns. Our CEO, CFO and SVP, Investor Relations, and members of our Executive Leadership Team, reach out to shareholders quarterly in addition to regular institutional stakeholder engagements. Our Investor Relations team and Corporate Secretary collaborate when feedback is received. During some of the engagement sessions, our Presiding Director participates after receiving training.
Health & Safety
- Members of the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) and Global EHS &
Facilities Engineering team (GEHS team) collaborate to develop
Edwards’ EHS strategy which is subject to approval by the CVP, Global Supply
Chain and the CEO.
The Sr. Director of Engineering, a member of the GEHS team, re-evaluates the strategy annually and produces an annual EHS report. This report is shared with the business unit leaders and the CVP, GSC who provides critical updates to the CEO. Our CEO shares updates on EHS performance with the Board of Directors annually and as needed if issues arise.
Every five years, members of the GEHS team update EHS strategies based on benchmarking, industry standards and leading sustainability frameworks. Edwards aligns our EHS strategy and disclosures to the Global Reporting Initiative, Dow Jones Sustainability Index survey, CDP (Climate), and the Task Force for Climate-Related Disclosures.
Reporting Structure, Roles and Responsibilities
The Global EHS Team reports as part of the Global EHS & Facilities Engineering function under our Corporate Vice President of Global Supply Chain (GSC). The Global EHS Team is tasked to drive standardization and continual improvement across the GSC. The Global EHS Team serves as an integral part of Edwards’ sustainability initiatives, with the VP of Engineering, Global EHS, serving as a core team member of the Corporate Sustainability Council. Each Edwards manufacturing plant is supported by its own local management and EHS team.
The Global EHS & Facilities Engineering function develops EHS policies and procedures appropriate for Edwards’ global operations. These include global policies on EHS risk management, reducing accidents and preventing pollution. The Sr. Director of Engineering, Global EHS & Facilities Engineering , a member of the Global EHS team, then develops plant strategies based on EHS performance, reviewed by the CVP, GSC and CEO. Each Operating Unit EHS function develops additional tailored policies and procedures appropriate to its activities and local regulations, needs and cultural attributes.
Executive Leadership and representatives from the GEHS team approve plant-level requirements. The Facility EHS teams and the plant managers are responsible for ensuring that the EHS policy is followed at each facility.
Removing Conflicts of Interest
Edwards Global EHS and Manufacturing Plant EHS are maintained as separate entities accountable to different functions under Edwards Global Supply Chain. This separation ensures transparency and objectivity when evaluating and reporting the regulatory compliance of manufacturing operations, where the majority of Edwards EHS compliance risk and sustainability opportunities exist. While Global EHS reports through Global Supply Chain, the EHS policies and standards developed under Global EHS apply to all of Edwards employees and operations, such as policies on maintaining compliance, preventing injuries and reducing pollution. Edwards locations also develop site specific EHS policies and procedures appropriate to local regulations or cultural attributes, which are consistent with and meet the overall requirements of our Global EHS standards.
Our CEO is evaluated annually for his role in achieving our strategic long-term Aspirations; EHS is as an integral part of Edwards’ Aspiration to excel as a Trusted Partner with our stakeholders and community. The bonuses of the Sr. Director of Engineering, Global EHS & Facilities Engineering, Sr. Director of Global EHS and the VP of Corporate Services are based upon policy execution. Edwards includes EHS criteria in performance reviews for relevant employees and incentivizes performance using recognition, rewards and compensation.
Through our “Ask Mike” Channel, the Corporate Services team receives employee and vendor EHS feedback and questions for our CEO. GEHS team leadership and Corporate Services draft answers to these inquiries that the CEO reviews before publishing all questions and answers on Edwards’ internal website.
Any employee may report a grievance related to EHS practices anonymously through Edwards’ Speak-Up program and Integrity Hotline. All grievances made through the Global Integrity Program are reported through Edwards’ Chief Responsibility Officer (CRO). External persons may submit EHS-related concerns through Edwards’ Global Integrity Program. If Edwards receives feedback, the CRO reviews it and directs it to GEHS leadership who investigate, document findings, and return it to the CRO who then determines whether further action is needed.
Edwards uses several methods to engage and communicate EHS information and progress with stakeholders: public reporting, our “Ask Mike” channel, grievance mechanisms and employee training.
Edwards communicates its EHS progress via our annual Sustainability Report and EHS report. Additionally, our Environmental Health & Safety policy and performance commitments are included in Edwards’ Titanium Book of Global Business Practice Standards.
Please see our EHS report for details on our EHS-specific employee training. Every plant conducts employee and contractor orientation that contains EHS information and safety training for their position.
Setting Our Strategy
Our CEO and Chief Responsibility Officer (CRO) collaborate to set Edwards’ Ethics & Compliance and Corruption & Bribery strategy. Our CEO sets the tone while the CRO drives the strategy. They both oversee fostering a strong ethical culture and advancing a best-in-class compliance program. The Board of Directors approves and oversees the program.
Our CRO oversees our Global and Regional Ethics and Compliance Teams, is a member of our Senior Leadership Team and has primary responsibility for Ethics & Compliance and Corruption & Bribery. Our CRO reports to the CEO and the Audit Committee of our Board of Directors.
The Corporate Compliance Committee (CCC), chaired by the CRO, is comprised of executive team members, including business unit leads and functional heads, who are responsible for supporting the CRO in oversight and implementation of an effective compliance program. The Regional Compliance Committees (RCC) include regional senior leaders and are chaired by a regional compliance officer.
The Global Ethics and Compliance team proposes corporate compliance goals which are discussed with and approved by the Executive Leadership Team (ELT). Progress on goals are discussed by the CRO with the ELT and Audit Committee of the Board, and by regional compliance officers (RCOs), who support the compliance committees and ethics teams, with the RCC.
Performance and Monitoring
Our Global Business Practice Standards, known as the “Titanium Book,” are publicly available on our website. Any changes to the Titanium Book must be approved by the CCC, ELT and the Board. The CRO and the Ethics and Compliance Teams perform compliance risk assessments which drive future strategies
To continually improve our Ethics & Compliance and anti-Corruption & Bribery program, the CRO and regional compliance officers work closely with global and regional medical device industry associations and legal consultants to stay abreast of, engage with and incorporate any new developments such as industry codes of conduct, working guidelines or best practices. The Ethics and Compliance Teams monitor publicly available information about the Ethics & Compliance and anti-Corruption & Bribery performance of our peers and the CRO reports to the CCC, ELT and the Audit Committee of the Board.
Our Ethics and Compliance Teams measure our performance through many channels. One channel is the assessment of Edwards’ culture through our all professional employee annual compliance survey which measures trust, fear of retaliation and willingness to speak up. Our Ethics and Compliance Teams communicate with regional and corporate leadership and the CRO if any issues surface.
Implementing Our Strategy
Our Chief Responsibility Officer (CRO) oversees daily implementation and reports monthly to our Executive Leadership Team (ELT) and quarterly to the Audit Committee of our Board of Directors. Our Corporate Compliance Committee (CCC) provides support and guidance to the CRO. The Committee meets quarterly to discuss progress
In addition, our regional compliance officers chair Regional Compliance Committees (RCCs) that oversee compliance at a local level.
The Global Ethics and Compliance Teams monitor compliance policies and procedures and drive changes through system upgrades, training and education.
We require all employees, distributors and Board members to receive training on the Titanium Book. In addition, employees and distributors are required to certify to their commitment to complying with the Titanium book on an annual basis. Please see the Management Approach section of Ethics & Compliance for more detail.
Our CEO and CRO share a specific performance management objective (PMO) to “foster a strong ethical culture and advance a best-in-class compliance program”; this directly impacts their bonus compensation.
Edwards’ Aspirations include “Excelling as a Trusted Partner and Global Leader Through the Quality of Our Work”. Edwards expects all employees to practice our core competencies and this is codified as a criterion in our performance reviews. Our Ethics and Compliance Teams work with Human Resources to establish integrity-related performance criteria. Any violations or misconduct are communicated to both the offending employee and their manager for review and may be considered during the employees’ performance evaluation.
Communicating Our Progress
We communicate progress to all our stakeholders in our annual Sustainability Report.
The Regional Ethics and Compliance Teams educate our employees through in-person training, online training on our learning management system, compliance newsletters, email communications, meetings and calls.
In conjunction with Titanium Book certification, we survey professional employees annually on topics such as fear of retaliation and whether they have reported misconduct. In addition, the Ethics and Compliance Teams gather internal feedback through our Integrity Helpline, investigations, monitoring findings and risk assessments, the RCC and general employee communications.
The Ethics and Compliance Teams conduct a direct, personal follow up with all deviant survey responses and periodically follow up with all misconduct reporters until investigations conclude. They provide global and regional risk assessment results to the RCC and CCC and collaborate to develop risk-mediating action.
To track program effectiveness, the Ethics and Compliance Teams, in collaboration with ELT, develop metrics and compliance goals each year. Regional compliance officers gather data to measure these metrics and goals and send it to the Global Ethics and Compliance Team who aggregate and share findings with the RCCs and other leadership teams. The CRO also presents findings annually to the CCC, ELT and Audit Committee of the Board.
As a medical technology company, Edwards must comply with strict regulations regarding the design, development, manufacturing and distribution of our products and services. We must comply with regulations set by regulatory bodies all around the world, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Competent Authorities in the European Union and various international organizations.
With guidance from the Board of Directors, the CEO and the Senior Vice President of Quality (SVP of Quality) set Edwards’ Product Quality and Safety strategy, policies and targets. The SVP of Quality is responsible for evaluating company performance and aligning our strategy to relevant product safety regulations. Our SVP of Quality assesses product quality and safety data through a company-wide dashboard and provides quarterly updates to the Board of Directors and executive leadership.
The Vice Presidents of Quality for the Business Units and Regions (VPs of Quality) and VP of Quality Strategy and Execution report directly to the SVP of Quality and support the strategy development process. The quality team develops a centralized corporate quality strategy focused on quality control measures and global regulatory compliance. The VPs of Quality in the business units are responsible for product-level specifications to ensure compliance with applicable regulations.
Our SVP of Quality (CVP) is responsible for the development, implementation and maintenance of our Quality System.
The SVP conducts quarterly reviews with the CEO, the Executive Leadership Team and Board of Directors to inform them of significant quality issues. The reviews address opportunities to improve Edwards’ Quality System, policy and objectives. These ongoing assessments empower Edwards’ Vice Presidents of Quality, Business Units and Regions to implement changes and mandate corrective action. The Edwards Management Representatives, who report to the VPs of Quality for the Business Units and Regions, help communicate and disseminate the strategy to employees throughout the company.
Our Senior Vice President of Quality, our Vice President of Quality Strategy and Execution, and other Vice Presidents of Quality collaborate to establish a product quality performance dashboard comprised of 6-7 specific components. All Quality and Global Supply Chain personnel are evaluated based on the dashboard’s performance and achievement of the dashboard goals. All employees who report to the Vice Presidents of Quality are responsible for and evaluated by 6-7 specific criteria aligned to the dashboard.
Corrective Action Process
If a product fails to meet safety or regulatory requirements, a cross-functional team performs an in-depth assessment to determine whether a Field Corrective Action is needed. In the case of a product issue, the Field Corrective Action Team will reclaim the distributed product or contact the affected customer. This team includes the Senior VP of Quality, Regulatory and Clinical; Vice President of Product Safety (a former cardiothoracic surgeon); head of Quality Compliance; and the Quality Management Representative of the relevant business unit.
Employee Product Quality and Safety Training
Edwards requires every employee, regardless of department, to complete detailed quality training programs during our onboarding process. Beyond the fundamentals, training content and employee performance expectations are defined specifically for each role. Edwards also requires employees to undergo mandatory training on or to review pertinent procedural updates.
The Product Quality Teams, collaborates with our Research & Development departments and manufacturing team to monitor post-market product performance and manage a feedback loop to continually make product improvements. Additionally, physicians provide feedback on how we can develop our products to best meet their needs.
Edwards communicates our progress and engages our stakeholders through our Sustainability Report and our website. Additionally, we report to all major regulatory bodies around the world, including the National Competent Authorities. Complete information on recalls is available through the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) publicly available database for medical device recalls.
The Edwards Lifesciences Foundation (ELF) is structurally independent from Edwards Lifesciences’ business and plays a key role in Edwards Lifesciences’ philanthropic giving strategy. The strategic importance of giving back to the community through the Foundation’s work is set by the Foundation’s Chairman of the Board and Edwards’ CEO.
The Foundation’s Board of Directors sets the philanthropic strategy. The Board includes eight senior leaders at Edwards:
- Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
- Corporate Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
- Sr. Vice President of Medical Affairs of Transcatheter Heart Valves
- Corporate Vice President of Surgical
- Corporate Vice President of Human Resources
- Corporate Vice President of Critical Care
- Sr. Vice President and Associate General Counsel
- Sr. Vice President of Global Health Economic and Reimbursement, Transcatheter Heart Valves
The Foundation Board reviews the strategic plan annually to ensure that our philanthropic contributions leverage maximum global impact. The Executive Director of ELF develops the Foundation’s strategy with the Global Corporate Giving Team, with counsel and ultimate approval from the Foundation Board. The Foundation’s Officers and members of the Administrative Steering Committee (ASC), composed of 21 Edwards employees from around the world, also help set the global philanthropy strategy.
The Board also annually evaluates the Foundation’s cash grant giving goals and the impact of cash grants for the Foundation’s signature philanthropic initiative, Every Heartbeat Matters (EHM). EHM comprises ~70 percent of the Foundation’s annual cash grant budget. Every Q1, the Foundation Executive Director and the Global Corporate Giving team evaluate the prior year, gathering feedback from the Foundation Board of Directors, all ASC members, and non-profit partners, and make necessary changes to the applications and grant cycle process to improve operations for the following year.
To solicit feedback, we evaluate our EHM performance and ensure we are on target to achieve our goals, the Executive Director of the Foundation and the Global Corporate Giving team receives robust impact reporting from our partner non-profit organizations at the end of every year.
The Executive Director of the Foundation is responsible for leading the implementation of the philanthropic strategy. The Executive Director oversees both the Global Corporate Giving team, which is accountable for target achievement, and the Administrative Steering Committee (ASC), which help execute the philanthropic strategy by partnering with and supporting charitable organizations across the world.
The ASC and the Strengthen Our Community Committees, composed of employees from different teams and regions across the globe, work with the Global Corporate Giving team to encourage employees to engage with our global non-profit partners. All employees are responsible for maintaining our culture of charitable activity and giving. With support and leadership from Strengthen Our Communities committees, and the Global Corporate Giving team, employees engage in charitable activities with community organizations, donate cash and/or skills to a charity and encourage organizations to apply to the annual grant cycle of the ELF.
At select annual regional employee events, the Chairman, Foundation, Executive Director and the Global Corporate Giving team recognize outstanding Edwards employee volunteers. They are granted a ‘gift for giving’ — offering the opportunity to donate $1,000 from the Foundation to the charity of their choice.
Transparency is key to our Foundation — we disclose extensive philanthropy data on our website. The Foundation communicates our progress through our annual Sustainability Reports as well as our Philanthropy Reports. Both are posted on our website and the Philanthropy Report is placed in lobbies and gathering locations throughout Edwards’ buildings. We also provide the Annual Report to Shareholders and Philanthropy Report to each Foundation partner and new Edwards U.S. employees during orientation. All new employee orientations include information on the Foundation, the Strengthen Our Community volunteer programs and how to get involved.
The Global Corporate Giving team, the Administrative Steering Committee and the Board of Directors of the Foundation communicate Edwards’ philanthropic strategy and commitment with employees through regular All Employee Meetings, external conferences and community events, and at annual recognition events for the Foundation’s non-profit partners.
Additionally, the Edwards Chairman of the Board and CEO presents Foundation information during the annual shareholder meeting.
Feedback and Engagement Mechanisms
The Global Corporate Giving team uses internal communication platforms, social media platforms and external-facing public websites to both gather feedback from the public and employees and share information with the community. The Global Corporate Giving team responds to email, phone or online inquiries received by the Edward Lifesciences Foundation. The Executive Director and Global Corporate Giving team share compiled feedback and other important information with the Board during quarterly meetings.
The Global Corporate Giving team also participates in industry surveys to share data and help our peers conduct benchmarking.
At Edwards, human capital management encompasses the topics of employee attraction, recruitment, engagement, development, retention and diversity and inclusion.
Edwards’ leadership understands that our greatest assets are our employees and the unique knowledge and skills they bring to our work. Attracting, developing and retaining talent is fundamental to the success of Edwards. Edwards’s practice is to employ, develop and retain employees on the basis of merit, qualifications, potential and competence, without regard to an employee’s gender, race or any other protected characteristic. The Board of Directors, CEO and Executive Leadership Team help determine the company’s fair and equitable pay policy.
Edwards’ talent strategy begins at the top of our organization: our CEO has measurable and reportable Performance Management Objectives (PMOs) around talent, increasing diversity and building an inclusive culture. The Board updates the CEO’s PMOs annually and the CEO is accountable to the Board of Directors for making progress toward the goals. Every year, the Edwards Executive Leadership Team (ELT) establishes key operating drivers (KODs) that steer the company toward short, medium and long-term goals. The ELT then works together to identify strategic talent related imperatives that are critical in driving KOD success. Each strategic talent imperative is owned by an ELT member and an HR leader.
Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging
In 2020, Edwards created a new role of Senior Director, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DIB) responsible for the vision, leadership, and strategic planning of initiatives that promote belonging, equality, diversity, and inclusion as essential elements of our culture and Credo. This leader will develop and oversee programs to advance our commitment to belonging, cultural humility, and anti-racism; build and strengthen structures, policies, and practices to provide an environment where every member of our community, including patients, feels welcomed, valued, supported, and accepted. The Senior Director of DIB reports to the VP Talent Management & Learning.
ELT Leaders set and oversee the DIB strategy and support for our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). Each ERG has an ELT sponsor and is led by Edwards employees. The strategy and governance structure for DIB includes an Executive Steering Committee and an Edwards Diversity Council. The Corporate Vice President of Human Resources and the Vice President of Quality and Regulatory lead the Executive Steering Committee, which also includes other ELT ERG Sponsors. The Director of Talent Management leads the Edwards Diversity Council, which includes the employees that manage the ERGs. The Executive Steering Committee nominates and approves the employee leaders of the ERGs. We aspire to continue to expand our ERG network which currently include the Network of Women, MultiCultural, Friends of Veterans Network, Generations, Rainbow Alliance and enAble.
Edwards demonstrates our commitment to employees by ensuring equitable and fair pay practices and by providing a work environment that recognizes each individual as an important member of a culturally diverse, global Edwards team. We aspire to be an employer of choice and do so through our culture, educational opportunities, competitive pay, benefits and other efforts.
Based on the KODs, cascaded from the company and CEO PMOs, the ELT and respective HR owners develop and execute initiatives for each strategic talent imperative. Initiative owners determine project direction, including resources involved, goals setting and milestones for success. The HR PMO office manages all strategic talent initiatives and goals to ensure alignment with business objectives and annual progress. The Corporate Vice President of Human Resources reviews strategic talent imperatives every quarter. The HR PMO office tracks the strategic talent imperatives as well as talent-related projects and global initiatives that incorporate two or more cross-functional teams.
The HR PMO office reviews all projects using the same criteria. A resource dashboard collects and relays information and updates on each of the key projects so that the HR Advisory Board and project teams can stay in close communication regarding direction and progress. The HR Leadership Team (HRLT) and additional members make up the Advisory Board and they measure success of completed projects against the initial timeline and deliverables. The Advisory Board reviews the status of all critical talent-related projects every two to three weeks depending on the activity. The Advisory Board also reviews a sampling of projects each meeting.
Edwards supports several professional development practices and programs for employees, including:
- The Edwards Talent Development Review (TDR) process assesses the strategic talent needs of the organization, measures current talent capabilities and provides support to employees in reaching their professional goals. People managers conduct TDRs for their direct reports to connect with employees, identify professional growth priorities and understand the best way to support the needs of their function and the team members.
- The CEO and Chief Human Resources Officer conduct a TDR with each ELT member on their respective organization annually. Information from the TDR informs managers on discussions with their employees on areas such as strengths/development needs, stakeholder feedback, succession and potential career paths.
- Edwards embraces the value of mentoring, and we continually work to expand formal and informal mentoring opportunities. This includes traditional mentoring, as well as additional approaches such as speed, circles, and flash mentoring.
To attract and recruit top talent, Edwards provides competitive compensation and benefits packages. With the support and involvement of our Board, the ELT and external consultants, we regularly review our pay practices and compensation structure for potential pay disparities across gender and race. Through this process, we can identify statistically significant pay disparities and determine a course of action on how they can be addressed.
Our Global Career Framework (GCF) provides role alignment, career pathways and ensures equitable pay. Through the GCF, all Edwards employees are slotted by job function and level into career bands based on duties and responsibilities. We follow the GCF to ensure internal equity and to align with external benchmarks to remain competitive in both individual contributor and leadership tracks. We annually benchmark global job grades and salary structures against similar positions in the market.
We assign every business group with a Human Resources Business Leader (HRBL). Employees can reach out to their corresponding HRBP for support and insight into the resources we offer and opportunities available.
- To communicate our Talent strategy and engage employees, Edwards uses several different methods.
To provide context around talent goals and explain global strategy to HR employees, our Corporate Vice President of Human Resources holds a quarterly virtual meeting. For employees at the senior manager level and above, we hold an annual HR Summit at our headquarters in Irvine, California. At the HR Summit, the Global HR leadership team reviews strategy updates and key projects. Our Corporate Vice President of HR also hosts hours where she is available for questions and discussions through our internal chat function. During these chat hours, HR employees can ask questions regarding any topic. We also send out a worldwide Human Resources newsletter that covers different programs and updates at the company, such as diversity and inclusion efforts
All Edwards employees are invited to share their feedback through regular employee surveys, known as myVoice. These surveys measure employee engagement and sentiment across a variety of dimensions, including quality, empowerment, and charitable activities. Edwards distributes the survey in multiple languages. This feedback helps us sustain and protect what we do well and respond to opportunities as they arise. Leaders at all levels review survey results and collaborate with their teams in order to take action.
Additionally, Edwards hosts ERGs to support and engage our employees. ERGs focus on employee inclusion and awareness, as well as networking and outreach. Each group hosts learning opportunities and events to strengthen the Edwards community and underscore our commitment to diversity and inclusion.
Edwards also maintains internal webpages to communicate our human capital management strategy. Edwards’ intranet site contains employee resources and, specifically, a Diversity and Inclusion site that includes tools and resources for our employees. The site provides an ERG launch kit for new ERG leaders.
Employees also have the opportunity to submit questions to our CEO through our Ask Mike channel and Speak Up helpline.
Our Audit and Compensation and Governance Committees, and the Board of Directors as a whole, are responsible for developing Edwards’ corporate governance strategy.
Our Corporate Secretary stewards our corporate governance efforts and represents the Board of Directors during engagement calls with stockholders. A representative from the Board of Directors, the Presiding Director, sometimes participates in calls with the shareholders and closely collaborates with the Corporate Secretary in advance of and during the calls. Stockholder feedback informs corporate governance evaluation. The Board of Directors reviews the stockholder feedback reports and incorporates feedback into their considerations when reviewing governance strategy.
On a quarterly basis, the Corporate Secretary reviews current best practices, analyzes the impacts of governance changes on our business and advises the Board of Directors on considerations relating to governance and cybersecurity questions, challenges or feedback.
To execute our GSC and Quality strategies, we ensure alignment on goals and the availability of resources with input from the Global Supply Chain Leadership Team (GSCLT). During this process, the GSCLT identifies and secures the resources needed to reach the goals for that year and reviews progress. The members of the GSCLT align their PMOs with those of the CEO, to ensure support of the broader direction of the business.
The GSCLT assigns a project lead to be responsible for each GSC initiative and drive it across the business. Each initiative has a sponsor from the GSCLT who reviews updates and ensures that the right team is in place to reach the objective.
To execute the strategy at the local level, supervisors/managers at all Edwards plants hold daily production meetings to review performance metrics from the previous day and week. This practice ensures leaders in all plants understand the overarching strategy and that they are active in executing daily changes necessary to reach goals.
To align strategy across Edwards, the GSC team has one GSCLT member in each business unit. Additionally, PMO Leads sit on the GSCLT and is primarily responsible for strategy development and execution for the GSC.
The Edwards GSC team works closely with our Quality team in setting and checking progress against goals. We also have a team that works directly with company Research and Development teams to ensure manufacturability of products and the successful integration into our supply chain at launch.
Monitoring External Suppliers
We have policies to monitor external suppliers and processes for engaging our partners in the greater Edwards supply chain strategy. Sustainability strategies of our strategic suppliers are reviewed for alignment with our sustainability strategy during Quarterly Business Reviews and any gaps are addressed. Within the Strategic Sourcing Team, there is an Advanced Sourcing Team and a Category Leadership Team. All Research and Development teams have Advanced Sourcing Team representatives to ensure Edwards selects the right suppliers during the product innovation process. Experts and category leads who own relationships with our external suppliers comprise our Category Leadership Team.
Internal Communication Practices
To align all Edwards supply chain employees on the goals and direction of the group, we post visuals of the Aspirations and strategies at all manufacturing sites. Every plant has an individual scorecard that tracks progress toward site-specific goals. Plant leadership updates the scorecards regularly to update all employees regarding performance and conduct regular Town Hall reviews to share key information.
Edwards hosts an annual two-day summit with all of the GSC directors to discuss the updated strategies. Each function of the supply chain holds a series of town hall meetings throughout the year, during which leaders roll out new projects or provide updates on existing projects. Managers conduct ongoing reviews of individual employee PMOs to monitor progress and alignment with overarching goals. Every employee has an individualized PMO outlining their role in contributing to the company strategy.
External Communication PracticesWe rely on our suppliers to help us create industry-leading therapies for cardiovascular disease. Our Responsible Supply Chain Policy outlines our expectations for suppliers, which include fair labor practices, environmental responsibility, workplace health and safety, ethical practices, protection of human rights, socially responsible behavior and legal compliance. We integrate supplier input in the design and manufacturing of new products by including supply chain employees on most research and development product teams.
To engage employees and suppliers in our strategic plan we hold supplier summits with our key suppliers, distribute key elements of the GSC vision and strategies, run a supplier portal and provide a scorecard to update suppliers on their performance against our expectations. A Change Management Group within GSC develops and publishes a quarterly newsletter that goes out across the global supply chain in both English and Spanish. The Change Management Group reports up through the GSC Head of Human Resources/Change Management.
During 2021, our employees have continued to show up and give more. Amid unprecedented challenges for underserved patients and communities, the Edwards Foundation provided $21 million to charitable causes around the world, including:
- Approximately $8.5 million in donated Edwards technologies for urgent humanitarian patient support
- Launch of the Heart-to-Heart Employee Relief Fund, supporting employees during times of financial hardship or natural disaster
- Employees supporting the needs of our EHM partners via the first-ever EHM Pro Bono Corps, providing knowledge and expertise
- Foundation funding focusing on increasing healthcare access and equity
- Amplified employee giving through our Employee Matching Gift program
- Increased in-kind donations including food, refurbished computers and personal protective equipment
Employee charitable activity and giving
Edwards is energized by our work to support those in need, and we seek to embed this spirit throughout our culture by encouraging our employees to support others and give back.
In 2021, we had a 90 percent response rate on our engagement survey with over 13,000 employees responding. We found that Edwards employee engagement scores outpaced the global top performing companies benchmark and those in our industry. Coming in above this benchmark showcases our workforce’s high level of engagement.
Not only are our employees incredibly engaged, but they are also firm believers in giving back to the communities we serve. According to the same survey, 82 percent of our employees stated they participated in charitable activities over the prior 12 months, through volunteering Edwards’ or their personal time, or donating money or goods to non-profit organizations. This brings us closer to our company-wide aspiration to have 100 percent employee participation in engagement in charitable activities each year. Across the Senior Leadership Team, 100 percent stated they participated in charitable activities. Of those individuals who participated in a charitable activity, they reported having a higher level of patient focus, engagement, culture, belonging, empowerment, and innovation than individuals who did not participate in charitable activities. This is a testament to how integral philanthropy is to Edwards and our workforce.
Highlights of 2021 global employee community giving activities and in-kind donations:
- Our Edwards New Zealand team provided one classroom with books and equipment for the entire school year, providing 40 backpacks with books, pencils, glue and other essentials for the school year
- Members of our University programs in Orange County, Calif., worked with elementary aged students to complete a STEAM “supertower” project, supporting the next generation of STEAM leaders
- Employees from our office in Germany built a garden and benches at a facility that supports families with children who are suffering with mental health issues
- Our Irvine employees individually decorated and filled 144 holiday food boxes to be passed out to families at our adopted elementary school, Washington Elementary, with predominantly at-risk students
- Edwards employees in the Dominican Republic uplifted a local community center and library by completing wall repairs and painting the center so that local children could have a new space
- Employees from India cooked and served 76,000 nutritious meals to patients, staff and caregivers who were treating COVID-19 patients
The Edwards Lifesciences Foundation
In 2021, Edwards’ global giving totaled nearly $21 million with over $10 million in cash grants from our Foundation, and approximately $8.5 million in donations of technologies for humanitarian aid. Additionally, we align our Foundation giving with employee engagement through our foundation’s employee matching gift program, which matches donations to non-profit organizations up to $5,000 per employee each year. View list of partners and grants.
Every Heartbeat Matters
Our philanthropic initiative, Every Heartbeat Matters (EHM), focuses on improving the lives of underserved patients. Between 2014-2020, the EHM community impacted the global burden of heart valve disease by educating, screening and treating over 1.7 million underserved people, surpassing our initial goal of 1 million.
Based on the accumulated knowledge and experience over the previous six years on how to have the greatest impact on patients, Edwards is now focused on its next phase of EHM: we will improve the lives of 2.5 million additional underserved structural heart and critical care patients by the end of 2025. This target aligns with UN SDG 3: Good Health & Well-Being.
Together with more than 50 current charitable partners we have:
- Broadened the initiative’s focus from heart valve disease to all structural heart diseases and critical care support;
- Impacted each stage of the patient journey from detection to treatment, with an additional emphasis of recovery, and;
- Established an enhanced product donation program that provides EHM partners and others doing humanitarian care with access to donated Edwards products to provide humanitarian treatment for underserved patients outside the U.S. in partnership with MAP International; this includes donations of our most advanced surgical heart valves, heart valve repair rings, and critical care monitors and sensors.
Since launching this new phase of EHM in 2020, the charitable partners of this philanthropic community have impacted over 400,000 underserved patients. Despite the challenges faced by the COVID-19 pandemic in providing global humanitarian care for underserved patients, our charitable partners have preserved and innovated opportunities to improve patient lives. From virtual clinical education platforms to distance mentorship and support of clinicians from under-resourced institutions as they treat complex patient cases, to pushing forward with global travel as the opportunity becomes available, this charitable community remains committed to its patients.
For more on EHM, including stories of impact, please see our dedicated web page.