Culture and values

Encouraging and empowering our people.

Our employees come from many cultures and backgrounds, and our business benefits from the breadth of ideas and experiences they bring. In fact, we treasure such diversity because we believe by harnessing the power of diversity, we are able to promote a work culture that is more inclusive, collaborative and innovative.

Having such a diversity of people who support each other’s success creates a unique mix. Our differences are balanced by a common view on our industry – we support personal choice and the freedom to choose – and that philosophy helps drive our business strategy.

Being free to discuss and debate means we develop our business in exciting ways and give individuals their voice. Empowering teams creates fresh ideas and different experiences, keeping us sharp, innovative and ahead of the game.

Our Guiding Principles provide certainty about what we stand for and act as a compass to guide our behaviour.

To know more about our Guiding Principles, click here

Employment Principles

Key to our culture is a set of fair minded Employment Principles which apply to all our operations. The Principles state that we will not discriminate in hiring, promotion or retirement decisions on the grounds of candidates’ or employees’ race, colour, gender, age, social class, religion, smoking habits, sexual orientation, politics or disability. Rather, we match the requirements of the job to the ability and potential of the individual.

Our companies are required to operate according to the Group Employment Principles, with flexibility to customise their management of employees and development issues in the ways that are most appropriate to their local business environments.

To know more about our Employment Principles, click here


Diversity helps us to understand our consumers, customers and stakeholders and to meet their needs. It also provides different ways of looking at challenges, encouraging creativity and innovation.

Operating in more than 200 markets, we have a very diverse workforce in terms of nationality. In 2016, we had 144 nationalities working in management globally. In BAT Malaysia, we have more than 10 different nationalities working in the different functions.

To maintain a diverse workforce we need to attract talented individuals from different backgrounds and make sure our culture supports them. Our Guiding Principles have always included a statement on how diversity gives us a competitive advantage, but we need to ensure our people fully embrace this value and promote it globally.

We have very diverse customers, suppliers and other stakeholders, and want a diverse workforce to meet their needs. We are committed to enhancing the diversity of our senior management teams, focused on gender and nationality, and so are supporting the career development of these focus groups.

Currently, 30% of our management workforce is female, and we are committed to continually enhance this representation. One of the ways that we are supporting women’s progression into senior roles is through a programme called Women in Leadership, which provides training, mentoring and other types of career support for high potential female employees. In line with the Company’s commitment to provide an inclusive working environment, one that is family-friendly and that promotes a healthy work-life balance, the Company has revamped its family benefits to include better maternity and paternity benefits and the introduction of unrecorded leave, care givers leave and enrichment leave.

Our employee’s voices matter

We track employee satisfaction through our Group-wide ‘Your Voice’ employee opinion survey.

Our most recent survey had a response rate of 100%.

We use feedback from our surveys to address areas of improvement, alongside our other initiatives to provide a workplace that will enable people to develop and contribute to the success and sustainability of the business.