People

Benefits

Benefits

EmployeepicnicOur goal is to be a company where people aspire to work and never want to leave. To that end, we offer fair compensation and a benefits program that attracts and retains top talent. Full-time employees are eligible for disability coverage, life insurance, health care and retirement programs.

Topics in this section include:

Compensation

The goal of our pay programs is to attract, retain, motivate and reward highly qualified employees. We aim to maintain internal equity, while remaining competitive with external labor markets and ensuring consistent and non-biased pay programs.

Under our merit-based process, managers assign individual performance ratings to employees in conjunction with our formal performance-management process. This involves annual written performance appraisals, requiring multiple levels of approval. An employee’s individual performance and relative position to the market determines his or her merit increase.

For our salaried employees, who are part of the parent-company organization, we conducted an independent third party analysis to statistically review pay differences by gender, minority and age to ensure nondiscriminatory pay practices. The results of this analysis showed no pay inequities. We plan to expand this type of analysis throughout our organization.

To learn more about executive compensation, visit our Performance section.

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Health Care Program

Hormel Foods is proud of the health care benefits we provide full-time employees. Affordable and comprehensive, our health care program offers medical, dental, vision and prescription drug coverage.

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Wellness Our Way Program

Hormel Foods recognizes employees perform best when they are healthy and that optimal employee performance is necessary for the company to be a leader in its field. We aim to cultivate and maintain a culture of health that is focused on encouraging and empowering employees to make healthy lifestyle choices through awareness, prevention and positive behavior change. We reward our employees for maintaining a healthy lifestyle through a wellness-incentive program. At our corporate offices, we offer free workout facilities. Activities to promote employee wellness, such as health fairs, healthy dining options and group walks are offered at all of our locations.

This initiative started in 1990, but we decided to relaunch the program as Wellness Our Way in 2009. Today the program is a results-oriented program, focused on helping employees live a healthier lifestyle.

  • Wellness Our Way Live Healthy Hormel Foods (January 14 – April 23, 2010)
    A 100-day wellness challenge that encouraged participants to create a lifestyle of healthy habits, physical activity and improved nutrition and weight loss in a team-based structure.

  • Step to It!  (July 1 – July 31, 2010)
    The company’s mini-walking challenge that measured the collective number of steps walked during four weeks.

  • San Jose Walking Challenge (May 9 – September 4, 2010)
    One employee initiative was designed to promote 30 or more minutes of daily, moderate-intensity walking/exercise as recommended by the U.S. Surgeon General. The fun, team-based walking challenge called the San Jose Walking Challenge encouraged employees to walk/exercise the distances it would take to travel from Austin, MN., to San Jose, Costa Rica the equivalent of 3,335 miles. When teams would reach milestones along the way, they would receive information and “visit” various Hormel Foods International customer locations throughout Central America.

    The challenge was well received by employees and included more than 876 participants on 103 teams. At the end of the event, participants logged more than 283,722 miles and were eligible for prizes.

  • Health 4 the Holiday Challenge (December 1 – 31, 2010)
    Employees were encouraged to participate in challenges each day (physical activity, healthy eating, weight control and stress management) and keep track of their participation on a challenge calendar. They submitted the calendar at the end of the month, took quizzes about healthy lifestyle topics and logged their weight at the beginning and end of the challenge to encourage “maintaining not gaining” during the holidays, with the goal of being within two pounds of their pre-holiday weight on December 31st.

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Resource Service

Employees and their family members are offered access to a free, confidential counseling service. Employees can contact the service for information related to work, home and life issues related to grief and loss, childcare and eldercare referrals, midlife transitions, staying fit after age 50, budgeting, “empty nest” syndrome and retirement planning. The service provides information in many ways – online, via the telephone, through printed materials (tip sheets, booklets, kits) and through digital materials (CDs and videos).

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Profit Sharing

Hormel Foods established our profit sharing plan in 1938 as a method to return a portion of the company’s profit back to employees, either as a payment in cash or as a contribution to the Joint Earning Profit Trust Plan. In fiscal year 2010, we announced the largest annual profit sharing in company history to be distributed to eligible employees – more than $16.3 million.

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Flexibility

The company offers flexible work arrangements, which includes flex-time schedules, alternative work schedules, partial work arrangement, telecommuting and a summer-hours program.

Additionally, Hormel Foods offers a phase-back option for employees following birth of a child, adoption or placement of a child in foster care. This option allows employees to spread out their 12 weeks leave allotted through the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) over a maximum of 24 weeks.

The Hormel Foods flex force program provides flexible employment opportunities for retirees who elect to return to the workplace. These employees can perform a variety of responsibilities in the role they held prior to retirement on a part-time or intermittent basis. This could include vacation coverage, temporary or weekend coverage, mentoring or training new staff, project work or filling various short-term employment needs.

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Retirement Savings Plans

Hormel Foods employees are eligible for a retirement plan that includes company contributions. In fiscal year 2010, the company contributed $26.6 million to its defined contribution benefit plans and maintained these items on a fully funded basis.

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Educational Assistance

Our educational assistance program reimburses eligible employees for undergraduate, graduate and preparatory course fees, books and lab fees.

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Adoption Assistance

To assist employees at Hormel Foods who are building a family, the company offers adoption benefits that include financial reimbursement, leave of absence and resource and referral services for up to three adoptions per household during the employee’s tenure with the company.

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  • Letter from the CEO

    Jeffrey M. Ettinger

    Read a message about the progress made in 2010.

  • Living Our Principles

    ProgressiveProcessing

    In July 2010, our newest production facility was awarded the prestigious LEED Gold certification. Read more.