Ornella Barra presenting to delegates at the Walgreens Boots Alliance Global Executive Women’s Conference

Delivering our commitment to equal opportunities for everyone across our employment practices, policies and procedures

In fiscal 2016 Walgreens continued to build on its reputation for integrating people with disabilities throughout our U.S. workplaces, welcoming diverse suppliers, recruiting military veterans, tapping into business resource groups representing diverse communities among employees, and partnering with community and professional groups representing people of color.

In 2012, Walgreens launched the nationwide Retail Employees with Disabilities Initiative (REDI), which continued to grow in fiscal 2016. As of 31 August 2016 the program has enrolled more than 1,200 externs, identified by publicly funded community providers, each of whom completes up to six weeks of in-store training on cash register operation, customer service, stocking and loading.

More than 65 percent of REDI externs have completed the training and received a minimum evaluation score of 3.0, allowing them to apply for employment with a “recommended for hire” flag. Walgreens is casting a wider net for talent by working to include more people with disabilities at the corporate level through partnerships with U.S. Leaders Business Network, Tapability Acquisition Portal (TAP) and GettingHired.

Walgreens distribution centers are built for access with touch screens, adjustable work stations and iconography. As of 31 August 2016, more than 900 employees at Walgreens 18 distribution centers, 17 in the USA and one in Puerto Rico, are self-identified as individuals with disabilities, which is more than 10 percent of total employees in those workplaces.

Recruiting veterans

Walgreens expanded strategic recruiting relationships with external organizations in fiscal 2016 to encourage more military veterans and individuals with disabilities to consider careers at Walgreens. Partners for this initiative include Hirepurpose, which shares job opportunities with transitioning veterans at military bases and career events, full-service disability recruitment solution GettingHired, and RecruitMilitary, which hosts the nation’s largest single-source veteran database. Additionally, Walgreens Veteran Network members engaged with newly hired employees through networking and peer mentoring.

Walgreens has long-standing partnerships with the League of Latin American Citizens (LULAC), the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) and the Hispanic Alliance for Career Advancement (HACE). In November 2015, Walgreens co-sponsored LULAC’s Latinos Living Healthy: Feria de Salud in Brownsville, Texas, an event that encourages healthy eating habits and regular exercise. Additionally, Walgreens has sponsored the Health/Tu Salud Pavilion at NCLR’s annual conference for the past five years.

Business resource groups

The Company strives to promote the diverse experiences and voices of its employees through engagement with employee-driven business resource groups (BRGs). A number of important initiatives grew out of this engagement in fiscal 2016. One example was the two-day Walgreens Boots Alliance Global Executive Women’s Conference in July 2016. More than 250 female directors and vice presidents from across the Company gathered for the event in Wheeling, Illinois, near our support office, to discuss topics related to the benefits of women in leadership. The event, hosted by the Diversity & Inclusion department and the Women of Walgreens (WOW) BRG, underscored the importance of hiring and retaining women and other diverse talent, both in the support office and in stores.

Our global cross divisional function, Global Brands, established a Diversity and Inclusion team in December 2015, focused on engaging senior team members and driving awareness and education about diversity and inclusion.  The function’s leadership team participated in a coaching session on inclusive leadership and unconscious bias, and this workshop was rolled out to extended leadership teams.

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