Valtra has been announced the winner of the national “Best Smoke-Free Workplace 2014” competition in Finland. The award was presented to Valtra by the competition’s judge Olli Rehn, European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs and the Euro, at the “Finland Smoke-Free by 2040” seminar in Helsinki.
Valtra was awarded on the basis of the close dialogue between management and staff in the “Smoke-Free Valtra” project, as well as to Valtra’s commitment and long-term efforts. The “Smoke-Free Valtra” project is part of a broader action plan to promote health and reduce sick leaves. To support the preparation and implementation of the project, a non-affiliated project manager was hired with the support of the Varma Mutual Pension Insurance Company. Valtra has been a smoke-free workplace since 1 June 2013, before which employees, visitors, customers and job applicants were informed on a broad basis. Giving up smoking was made voluntary for employees, and support and treatment have been available from Valtra’s occupational health services. The project involved a lot of dialogue and inviting feedback from employees; following some initial opposition, Valtra has since become established as a smoke-free workplace a declining trend in sick leaves.
The national “Best Smoke-Free Workplace 2014” competition is part of the “Finland Smoke-Free by 2040” campaign. The competition encourages workplaces to eradicate smoking and to promote a tobacco-free environment. Valtra is the fourth winner of the annual “Best Smoke-Free Workplace 2014” competition and the first from the private sector, the previous winners being the City of Lappeenranta, the University of Eastern Finland and the City of Helsinki. A smoke-free workplace demonstrates the employer’s appreciation for its employees and desire to maintain and promote health, wellbeing and coping at work. Both employees and employers can enjoy the financial and health benefits. Upon presenting the award to Valtra, Commissioner Rehn emphasised how a smoke-free workplace can improve a company’s competitiveness thanks to enhanced occupational wellbeing, a better physical and emotional work atmosphere and an improved image for the company.