Novartis supports the ‘living wage’ principle in the United Nation’s Universal Declaration on Human Rights: ‘Everyone who works has the right to just and favorable remuneration ensuring…an existence worthy of human dignity.’
Novartis seeks to pay fair wages meeting or exceeding the amount for basic living needs in line with its UN Global Compact commitment.
In 2000, Novartis was one of the first international companies to implement a commitment to pay a living wage to all of its employees. “Living Wage” is a Novartis initiative and commitment to associates, which usually is above minimum wage requirements. Living Wages are updated annually for Novartis by the non-governmental organization Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), adjusting for changes in inflation, food prices, and other market conditions. Living Wages focus on meeting basic living needs for associates and their families, where legal minimum wages tend to focus on poverty levels for individuals.
Each year, Novartis Group companies review salaries for all associates and adjust salaries that fall below the living wage level. In 2016, the living wage survey covered 771 countries with 50 or more associates. There were 405 associates below agreed living wages confirmed by these countries. Our local human resources (HR) adjusted or will adjust their wages accordingly (depending on the locally agreed adjustment period).
Originally 78 countries. Venezuela was excluded from the living wage survey due to the lack of official indicators and no accurate benchmarks available to measure basic work/humanitarian dimensions as a result of the continuing economic crisis in 2016.