We’re making a positive impact on people and the planet

From Poland to Portugal, our boardroom to our loading bays, our culture and values flow seamlessly throughout our business and play a big part in everything we do.

Our purpose is to redefine packaging for a changing world. As leaders in our industry, we are setting the pace in the transition towards a circular economy. However, we recognise that our success is not only due to our global reach and ambition, but also to each and every member of our team. That's why we prioritise building and nurturing a collaborative and innovative culture throughout our organisation, so that our people feel like they are part of something special. We want everyone to understand that they have the power to make a difference to our planet's future.

Our values set us apart

We have a clear set of values that are owned and lived by all our employees. These values guide how we make decisions and shape company policies and practices. They influence our behaviour, our organisational culture and our relationships with customers, suppliers and each other.

Our values
Our values

We give everyone a voice

We have around 30,000 talented people working across three Continents and we’re growing every day. We take pride in fostering an inclusive culture where everyone is respected and valued. We ensure that all individuals have equal opportunities to thrive and that their voices are heard. Our policies on equal opportunities are firm, and we have a zero-tolerance policy towards discrimination of any kind.

Our Equal Opportunities and Anti-Discrimination policy and training are available in multiple languages to ensure all job applicants, employees and contingent workers receive equal treatment.

Our aim is simple: to make all our people the very best at what they do, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, social class, physical or mental ability, religious or ethical values system, national origin or political beliefs. 

Thanks to our open-minded approach, we’ve created a number of working groups that represent different minorities in our workforce so we can be held accountable and keep doing better. 


Listening to our people

Listening to our people and understanding their experiences is a key part of our engagement strategy. That's why we regularly conduct pulse surveys to understand employee experiences and listen to their feedback. It's no surprise that over 80% of our people choose to participate in these surveys. 

The surveys ensure our managers and senior leader receive immediate report of their team's feedback This report allows them to identify what their team members think quickly. This conversation continues through focus groups and listening sessions, where people can discuss their feedback and agree on what action to take. We also crowdsource suggestions for improvement through online idea boards. These approaches ensure that the actions taken are timely and meaningful. 

We have seen significant improvements in how our people feel about working for the company. For example, people now think they receive better recognition when performing well, as evidenced by a 9%-point increase in the recognition metric. Our focus on the Smithies Awards programme has contributed to this improvement, as it celebrates the fantastic achievements of our people. Additionally, there have been further increases in the areas of inclusion (+5) and safety (+4). 

The health and wellbeing of our people is a priority

We want our colleagues to always feel and perform at their best. So we are proud to support the physical and mental wellbeing of all employees through our commitment to Health & Safety as well as providing nutritional advice, healthy food options in canteens, opportunities for health checks and exercise groups. 

We’ve also introduced Mental Health First Aid training for all our employees, so everyone knows how to look out for colleagues who may be struggling (and feel confident enough to guide them towards appropriate support). 

We are committed to creating a workplace where everyone feels supported to do their best work, while also having time to enjoy their personal lives. This has become even more important post the Covid-19 pandemic that opened up new ways of working and is why we have expanded job sharing and hybrid working opportunities across various areas of our business. 

And the winner is…

At DS Smith we employ the best people and we look after them well, with competitive remuneration packages and training to support their careers. 

The Smithies winners for the Best Community Project category in 2022
The Smithies winners for the Best Community Project category in 2022

At a local level, we recognise the achievements of individuals with monthly awards and every year we celebrate the very best of DS Smith people in ‘The Smithies’; our group-wide recognition programme that uncovers the ‘hidden gems’ in our business and celebrates everyone who excels at what they do.