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Building Trust in the Workplace

We build trust and succeed together. Respect for each other in the workplace, combined with our commitment to following our values, this Code, and company policies, is a powerful foundation for achieving our collective goals.

We build trust by...

We Build Trust with a Respectful Work Environment

Show respect for all

At Alcon, we treat others with fairness, respect, and dignity, we encourage diversity, we welcome a wide range of ideas and perspectives, and we foster an inclusive culture. We value one another’s contributions as well as the strengths that come from our differences.

Alcon expects you to be respectful, act professionally, and demonstrate courtesy, consideration, and sensitivity to the dignity and values of others when interacting with colleagues, guests, business partners, customers, government representatives, and other Alcon business contacts. This is true regardless of where the interactions occur (for example, at Alcon facilities, customer or vendor offices, business trip destinations, or work-related social events). 

We expect our work environment to be safe, respectful, and free of improper conduct. Simply put, we expect and insist that our associates are both respected and respectful.

No improper conduct

We expect our work environment to be free of improper conduct; physical or verbal harassment or mistreatment in any form is unacceptable. Similarly, Alcon will not tolerate any harassing or other improper conduct directed at its associates by others with whom the company does business. 

Fair treatment

We are committed to treating associates and job applicants fairly. It is our policy that skills, qualifications, and other job-related and business criteria are the basis for all employment-related decisions (including hiring, promotion, termination, compensation and benefits, and access to training, development, and transfer). We are an equal opportunity employer. We provide a workplace that is free from discrimination related to age, race, color, ancestry, ethnicity, nationality, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender or gender identity, characteristics, or expression, genetic information, disability (mental or physical), marital or domestic partnership status, political belief, creed, religion, covered veteran or military status, and any other status or characteristic protected by law. 

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Group of working in hard hats taking part in team building activity.

Integrity In Action

    Making rude jokes or comments to or about someone in the workplace is not acceptable. What may seem acceptable, amusing, or a common stereotype to one person may be unwelcome, abusive, or offensive to another.  

    You may choose to speak respectfully to your co-worker about this inappropriate behavior in a non-confrontational manner. A positive approach may be to say, “I know you would not offend someone intentionally, but your jokes may offend others.” If you are too uncomfortable to have the discussion with your co-worker, speak to your manager, or report the matter consistent with our speak up process. You may also use the speak up process to raise a concern if you feel the matter has not been addressed appropriately.

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    We Build Trust with a Safe Work Environment

    We are committed to providing a healthy and physically safe work environment for our associates and visitors. 

    Health and Safety

    We continually assess the health and safety impact and risks associated with our business activities. Our health and safety policies and procedures are designed to help people work safely and prevent injuries. Regardless of your role or work area, we expect you to:

    • Know and follow the health and safety requirements that apply to your job
    • Conduct yourself in a manner that promotes and protects your own health and safety, and that of your co-workers and guests, whether you are conducting business in the workplace, at an Alcon facility, in the marketplace, or on the roadways, and
    • Speak up promptly about any accident or personal injury and any situation or condition that poses a potential safety threat (for example, a request to do a task you consider unsafe, or suspicion that any equipment, tool, and/or vehicle is not operating appropriately and may be unsafe).

    We maintain a drug-free workplace at all locations. You are expected to comply at all times with company policies regarding use or possession of drugs or alcohol.


    We take proactive precautions at our facilities to minimize security risks to associates and visitors. Violence and threats of violence are not acceptable in the workplace. 

    You must not possess or use firearms or other weapons while conducting Alcon business and while on Alcon-owned or leased property, unless specifically authorized under applicable local law and local company policy. This prohibition applies even if you are licensed to carry a firearm. 

    You are expected to report promptly to the company any security concerns, including actual or threats of violence in the workplace.

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    Integrity In Action

      We Build Trust by Managing Conflicts of Interest Appropriately

      You must conduct Alcon business dealings ethically, fairly, and in the best interest of Alcon. A conflict of interest exists whenever your personal interests or relationships conflict, or may appear to conflict, with Alcon’s business interests. You must not engage in activities that present conflicts of interest.

      When you encounter a situation that presents a possible conflict of interest, you must either avoid or decline the opportunity, or follow the Alcon conflict of interest disclosure process. After you disclose the situation to the company, your manager will advise you of the appropriate action. In some cases, the action may be permitted, with conditions. 

      The following are examples of actual or potential conflicts of interest that require company evaluation. Click on each box to learn more:

      Outside Business interests

      Accepting or soliciting anything of any material value for personal benefit

      Any close personal relationship

      Use of Alcon assets (both physical and intangible) for inappropriate purposes

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      Integrity In Action

        Yes, you must seek company review of this situation through the Conflicts of Interest process. Sometimes, serving on the Board of another company presents conflicts. If the company approves the role, there may be certain conditions associated with the approval.

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        We Build Trust by Managing Information and Resources Properly

        Click each topic below to learn about managing information and resources properly:

          Alcon provides you with the resources you need to do your job, including company information, information technology systems, funds, and physical assets. You must use company resources appropriately for Alcon business purposes, and obtain appropriate company authorization for expenditures or other transactions where required. 

          You are expected to report promptly to the company any theft of or damage to company assets.

          If you are involved in contracting for Alcon, you must follow applicable company processes and verify contract provisions accurately reflect the nature, value, and content of the proposed transactions and relationships. 

          Our business success depends in part on the appropriate protection and use of confidential information. Confidential information is information that is not currently known or generally available to the public. It may be information owned by or relating to Alcon, or other organizations or individuals. 

          Examples of Alcon confidential information include (but are not limited to): research information, product design details, manufacturing methods, non-public financial results, business plans and strategies, potential licensing and acquisition agreements, and legal memoranda and advice. From time to time, Alcon is also entrusted with confidential information that belongs to third parties.

          To safeguard confidential information: 

          • Never disclose confidential information to anyone not authorized to receive it, whether inside or outside of Alcon
          • Use sound, professional judgment to determine whether information is confidential; consult a supervisor or company lawyer if there is any doubt about whether information is confidential in nature 
          • Mark and handle Alcon confidential information appropriately given its categorization
          • Protect confidential information against risks of theft, loss, misuse, and unauthorized modification or disclosure
          • When creating or modifying information, verify the accuracy of any resulting company records
          • Do not discuss confidential information in places where the conversation may be overheard and do not display it in areas that could allow inappropriate access (for example, in public areas at Alcon facilities, airports, airplanes, restaurants, lobbies, elevators, and restrooms), and
          • Report promptly any information security incidents to Alcon information technology security associates.

          You must also respect the intellectual property rights and confidential information of third parties by:

          • Not obtaining confidential information of third parties by improper means (including from individuals under an obligation of confidentiality, such as consultants, vendors, or current or former employees of the third party), and
          • Not using materials of external parties in a manner inconsistent with the rules governing intellectual property rights, including copyrights.  

          Consult a member of the legal department if you have a business need to disclose confidential information. A confidentiality agreement may be required, with a signature from the third party and approval from a member of the legal department. 

          Special company approval processes also apply to disclosures that will be made:

          • Involving private personal information
          • In a forum accessible by the public, such as in scientific publications, financial disclosures, presentations at conferences, press releases, and social media, or 
          • To government authorities. 

          Consult with a member of the legal department if you have questions about the proper process.

          You are expected to use only approved company communication platforms when exchanging substantive electronic communications related to Alcon associates, customers, and the conduct of Alcon business. You should not use unapproved communications platforms, including but not limited to ephemeral platforms where the communications delete automatically, to conduct substantive electronic communications. 

          Communications related to Alcon associates, customers, and the conduct of Alcon business made over any social media platform (e.g., Facebook or LinkedIn) or received through an unapproved communications platform must comply with applicable company policies. Our policies govern who may communicate, what is communicated, what approvals are required, and what must be retained.

          Inventions you make using Alcon information and assets are Alcon’s property. You must submit details about inventions and ideas you make on behalf of Alcon to the legal department for study and review and cooperate fully in protecting these company assets. The company decides whether to obtain patents or maintain them as trade secrets.

          Another way we build trust is by properly using and protecting personal information entrusted to us by patients, consumers, healthcare professionals, other customers and business partners, and associates. Individuals who provide us with their personal information depend on Alcon to protect their data and privacy; we must honor their trust. 

          If information could identify an individual, either independently or when used in combination with other information within Alcon’s control, you must collect, use, store, handle, and disclose it only with appropriate notice or consent (where consent is legally required) and in accordance with the company’s detailed privacy and data protection policies (global and local). Direct any questions to your manager or to Alcon Legal. 

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