Case Lamb Weston


Lamb Weston

Lamb Weston/Meijer was launched in 1994 as a joint venture of the American food producer Lamb Weston Inc. and Meijer Frozen Foods in the Netherlands. Lamb Weston / Meijer produces frozen potato products and dehydrated potato flakes in three factories in the Netherlands, one in the UK and one in Austria. Marketing takes place in a hundred countries worldwide.

Sustainable employability

Lamb Weston/Meijer believes that its people that make the difference and considers it important that employees can work healthy, safely and happily. The company is responsible to make this happen.

We offer our people opportunities for personal growth and recognize their contribution to the achievement of organizational goals.

We have driven and motivated employees who work in result-oriented and teams involved. Our target for 2020: to improve workplace safety, health and welfare of our employees, their development and job satisfaction. Creating a great place where people want to work.

However, this constitutes a shared responsibility. Because society, organization, work and laws are constantly changing, employees must also move with it. They cannot sit back, but will have to take responsibility to remain employable. This relates not only to being healthy and fit, but also to your ability to work and the balance between work and private life.

Let’s go preventive

For Lamb Weston/Meijer there is no acute need to pay attention to sustainable employability. The company has good profitability and can be proud of the absenteeism rate for years, well below the national average of comparable companies lies. Efforts in the field of sustainable employability are therefore mainly preventive. One of these efforts was the use of a preventive medical examination (PMO), conducted by Preventned.

The purpose of the PMO:

  • Pay attention to employability
  • Create awareness among employees about increasing their own responsibility
  • Collecting input to improve the employability policy.

Approach and communication around PMO

The PMO consisted of a questionnaire (the WorkAbilityMonitor®) and an individual follow-up study among employees with increased health risk.

All employees of Lamb Weston/Meijer and 50% of the parent company C. Meijer BV were invited per branch to participate in the PMO.

Much attention is paid to the preparations of the PMO. A consultative group is set up with representatives of all branches and the Works Council. The aim of this group was to contribute ideas and to help in the preparations and to act as ambassadors for the project by informing and motivating employees.

In addition, the PMO frequently communicated in written form (on the intranet and the staff magazine Insite), but mainly orally. Also during the research was a lot of communication. Via the intranet and internal signs everyone is kept informed of the response and managers and employees were encouraged to participate. There is also sent a reminder.

Results and Continuation

The response to the WAM was a total of 59% (the percentages ranged in an establishment of 54% to 91%). The organization is satisfied with this response rate.

The results of the study show that employment equity and its determinants is mostly average to favorable scored relative to the benchmark. There is room for improvement on establishment- and department level.

Once all results are processed in a report, there is held a roadshow. The employees (per site), the Works Council and the Executive Board are personally informed through a presentation about the results of the organization and their respective department. The departments and managers will be encouraged to take their own responsibility and to think about how they want to address the improvement points. The organization shall propose the necessary resources.

Embedding in policy

Sustainable employability is embedded in the company. One of the actions is to take the current range of interventions examined. Whether the research is conducted in 2 years again, depends on the employees and managers. The organization wants to encourage it, but will not impose this. Interest for this must come from the shop floor. “We do not organize the PMO to” to check off “, but because there is genuine interest and support for it.” The intention is also to roll the PMO survey of factories in England and Austria.


Duco is director of Preventned and as senior advisor he supports companies and institutions within the framework of working capital and primary process. He is responsible for the daily business.