Changing Culture by Creating New Workspaces

An inspiring success story from Valero Energy, a 2018 Prix Distinction award winner in the category “Work Environment – Small and medium-sized enterprises.”

Following a reorganization in 2013, the number of employees at Valero Energy's Montreal office decreased from 450 to 85, resulting in a relocation of offices. It was a major reorganization. Employee morale had hit an all-time low, and stress levels were high. A new company culture was needed, as well as a unifying project and an environment that would breathe new life into the work atmosphere and employee motivation. A health and wellness initiative was the solution.

With support from Valero Energy's senior management, a budget was allocated for health and wellness. In collaboration with experts in the field, the human resources department implemented a business plan, formed a committee, and created a health and wellness portal. Employees were invited to complete a survey, which helped the company plan the program and the types of activities to be included.

The employees were involved in designing the layout of the new offices, choosing the decor, and setting up the workstations. A lounge (cafeteria and gathering space for employees) with a mountain view was also set up. Free coffee, tea, infusions, and apples were provided. A small library with a selection of books changed monthly is available. In addition, the company has a freezer for healthy frozen meals that are delivered every week. It's also a space that's designed to bring people together during lunchtime events.

The company also created a gym with a complete training equipment. A variety of group classes are also offered so that everyone can find an activity that suits them. Giving employees access to a gym means that they don't have to turn to outside resources to benefit from a fitness space. Three shower rooms round out the facilities. Interactive tools are also available to employees to calculate their risk of cardiovascular disease or track their state of health, for example. They can also consult health professionals including a nurse, a nutritionist, or a health and wellness consultant.

Valero Energy’s health and wellness interventions have mobilized its employees and created a sense of camaraderie and belonging. It gives employees who may not otherwise have the opportunity a chance to get to know each other and to see each other outside of a work context.

Énergie Valero inc.

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