People and Culture

Engineers in PPE working at Drax Power Station

Our people – employees and contractors – are a key asset of the business and we are focused on creating a diverse and inclusive working environment, where you can be yourself and your contribution matters. 

Our Values

At Drax, our values are shaped by our culture, fundamental to which is acting with integrity and what we call “doing the right thing”. These values are set by our Board, delivered by our people and permeate through all areas and levels of the organisation.

  1. We care about what matters 
  2. We are a can-do kind of place 
  3. We see things differently
  4. We listen carefully
  5. We do what we say we’ll do

Our People

* Limited external assurance by LRQA (qualified opinion) using the assurance standard ISAE 3000 for 20210 data as indicated. For assurance statement and basis of reporting see 

Additional people data is available in our ESG Data Supplement 

ESG Data Supplement 2021 

Our People Strategy

We work to maintain consistently high standards in our employment practices and all colleagues benefit from policies to support them in the workplace. Our three-year People Strategy focuses on five key areas. 

  1. Attracting, retaining and developing diverse talent pools, which reflect the demographics of the areas we operate in, to ensure diverse thinking in our innovations
  2. Encourage an inclusive environment where innovation, flexibility and collaboration flourish and where people have the opportunity to reflect, adapt and to challenge the norm
  3. Focus on Future Workforce Planning and organisational design to enable us to grow our business internationally and adapt to business changes swiftly and seamlessly
  4. Create a high-performance and inclusive culture where our people are equitably incentivised, rewarded and recognised for their contribution
  5. Create effective and efficient frameworks, policies, and working practices that ensure simplicity, autonomy and ownership of people matters across the business

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

We are committed to a supportive, diverse and inclusive working environment, where you can be yourself and your contribution matters. We aim to support everyone and to design ways of working that are inclusive and flexible, enabling equitable opportunities for all. 

Our Diversity and Inclusion Steering Group meets monthly to consider and recommend plans to improve diversity and inclusion across Drax. The Steering Group is chaired and sponsored by the Director of Corporate Affairs and supported by the Chief People Officer, both of whom are members of the Executive Committee. 

In 2021 we focused on the delivery of our three pillar DEI plan to support our ambitions: 

  1. Collating colleague diversity data in the UK. With 78% of our UK workforce responding to date, this insight supports us in taking meaningful action based on real time data and has helped inform the development of our DEI strategy from 2022 onwards.
  2. Educating and inspiring our colleagues on diversity and inclusion. Through our Inclusive Leadership Programme, a series of colleagues’ personal diversity stories on the intranet and live panels to recognise events such as International Women’s day and Pride.
  3. Making careers at Drax more attractive to talented people from all backgrounds and ensuring a fair and equitable recruitment process. This has resulted in increasing leadership hires in the UK – 42% were female – and growing our overall UK female headcount from 34% to 36% in 2021.

Colleague representation and engagement

At Drax, 14% of our workforce is covered by collective bargaining and we have employee representative consultation and information arrangements in place for employees with individual employment contracts. 

We communicate with our workforce through channels including our intranet, our quarterly magazine, newsletters, town hall meetings and our weekly online Q&A portal with the CEO.  

Each business unit has a MyVoice Forum made up of colleague representatives and supported by senior leadership sponsors. The Forums enable exchange of information and views between colleagues, the Executive Committee and the Board on key issues, such as strategic decisions affecting ways of working and the work environment. Forum Chairs meet quarterly with the Chair and CEO to discuss colleague sentiment and feedback on key topics. 

Our annual engagement survey is a key part of our listening and engagement strategy. In 2021 it was completed by 70% of colleagues and our engagement score was 79%. These were slight declines compared to 2020, during which organisations saw increased engagement scores (on average +2%), due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Whilst our engagement score is 1% below the Energy and Utilities sector benchmark, it exceeds the benchmark for companies going through significant organisational transformation, by 6%. 

Development and training

We invest in the development of our colleagues to help them make the most of their talents, meet their career aspirations and enhance business performance. Our Performance, Potential and Succession processes enable managers to identify colleagues’ development needs and those with the skills and capabilities for succession into critical roles. 

We launched our high-potential programme, Future Creators, in 2019. It is designed to support the development, retention and growth of our future leadership pipeline. 42 colleagues have completed the programme. We have retained 91% of participants and 71% have either moved up a career level or moved into broader roles since completing the programme. 

Our Management Excellence programme is designed to support our line managers with key people skills. Since 2020 over 230 managers have participated in the programme. 

In 2021 we launched our Inclusive Leadership Programme. Over 200 leaders, including the Executive Committee, have completed the programme, which gives senior leaders the tools and knowledge to role-model inclusive leadership across Drax. It is part of our strategy to educate and inspire colleagues, supporting our journey to make Drax an even more inclusive place to work.