Media release

Gold Fields releases independent workplace culture report

Wednesday, 30 August 2023

Commits to addressing workplace bullying, sexual harassment and racism

Johannesburg, 30 August 2023: Gold Fields Limited (Gold Fields) (JSE, NYSE: GFI) has today released the findings of an Independent Review into Workplace Culture undertaken by Elizabeth Broderick & Co (EB&Co).

The Review gave our people (employees and contractors) from around the globe operations the opportunity to share their workplace experiences, and to get their input into building safe, inclusive and respectful work environments. In total 1,310 people participated in face-to-face listening sessions, focus groups, and/or made written submissions to the EB&Co team, and 2,855 people across the world responded to an online survey.

The Review forms an integral part of Gold Fields' transformational culture journey, which started in early 2022, and follows on from the launch of our purpose, vision and values. This culture journey has Respectful Workplace as one of its four priority themes, and is supported by Gold Fields' expanded focus on psychological safety as a critical element of ensuring the overall safety and wellbeing of all our people.

The emphasis on building safe and respectful workplaces is also a key component of Gold Fields' ESG objective of creating a diverse and inclusive workforce that reflects the demographics of the countries and societies in which it operates.

In the Review, EB&Co offer recommendations on how to better build a safer, more inclusive and respectful work environment free of bullying, gender inequality (including sexual harassment), racism and other unacceptable forms of behaviour.

"Bullying, sexual harassment, racism and any forms of inequality and exclusion have no place at Gold Fields. I want to apologise to the people in our business who have been exposed to these behaviours. The purpose of this independent Review was to help us to understand and address these unacceptable behaviours decisively, and create a workplace that everybody feels part of, is attractive to talent, and where everyone can reach their full potential," says Gold Fields' Interim CEO Martin Preece.

"Around 45% of our employees responded to our request to share their experiences. We have listened to and heard their voices. We know that many of our people have not previously felt able to come forward with their experiences, resulting in instances of unacceptable behaviour going unreported and unaddressed.

"We must create workplaces where all our people feel safe and supported to speak up and voice their experiences and concerns, without fear of adverse consequences, and with the confidence that they will be listened to; and where anyone observing or experiencing such behaviours should feel that they can and should speak up in support of their colleagues.

"Our people and all other stakeholders have my commitment, and that of our Board and leadership, that we will work to eliminate inappropriate and harmful behaviour at Gold Fields. It has no place in our workplaces, or anywhere else in our industry or society.

"The Board and executive have also made an unequivocal commitment to vigorously pursue the recommendations set out in the EB&Co Review as a priority," Preece says.

Says Gold Fields Chairperson Yunus Suleman: "The board is distressed at the EB&Co Review findings and the negative impact of these unacceptable behaviours on so many Gold Fields employees and contractors. We will be monitoring the efforts of Exco and other levels of leadership to eliminate these behaviours at Gold Fields workplaces. We appreciate the work already being done to achieve this goal, and expect that the further work will have the desired effect".

Findings of the Report

There were some strengths on which we can build according to the review, , particularly that many employees shared that they could "feel a directional change on culture". Many who responded to the survey spoke of their pride in working for Gold Fields, and said they enjoyed the fulfilling work and team co-operation. Many acknowledged and valued the emphasis that Gold Fields places on the physical safety of employees.

However, the Review also revealed a number of deeply concerning findings. Overall, half of the participants in the survey reported having experienced bullying, sexual discrimination or racism in the past five years. More specifically, respondents indicated that:

Although only a small number of contractors participated in the Review, it is clear from the feedback provided that greater efforts are required to fully integrate our workforce. Many contractors reported experiencing exclusion, and a number of Gold Fields' employees raised concerns about poor behaviour by contractors. (This does not include contractors in the Americas region where contractors have legal independence and were therefore not surveyed).

Limited confidence in Gold Fields' reporting systems by those who have experienced harmful behaviours remains a key issue, with employees unclear how to make a complaint, concerned about the potential for negative consequences, or unconvinced that action will be taken against the perpetrator.

The Review offers a comprehensive list of recommendations for Gold Fields. These include the need for:

Comment from EB&Co

EB&Co Principal Elizabeth Broderick says: "This Review is an important step to fully understanding the extent to which Gold Fields' culture is safe, supportive and inclusive, and what the company can do now to improve and transform this culture. Commissioning an independent external Review demonstrates courage and a desire to learn, especially when it is coupled with a strong commitment to transparency.

"There was strong participation in the Review across the board, signalling that people at Gold Fields are engaged in the process of change. Based on the voices and lived experiences of people at Gold Fields, the findings provide a solid foundation on which the company can build to ensure that everyone feels safe, respected, included and heard."

In 2017, Ms Broderick, was appointed by the United Nations in Geneva as a Special Rapporteur and Independent Expert of the UN Working Group. She was also Australia's Sex Discrimination Commissioner from 2007 to 2015 and is a member of the UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women and Girls.

Gold Fields leadership commitment

Preece says: "We have been very appreciative of the honest and courageous responses we have received from our people across Gold Fields. We will work with them and our leaders to build on the good in our culture, and eliminate those aspects that are harmful to our people, and detract from who we are and what we aspire to be as a company. We also acknowledge the support and insight of Elizabeth Broderick and her team.

"Harmful behaviours cannot and will not be tolerated in our workplaces. These findings show not only the prevalence of these behaviours, but the toll they take on the health and wellbeing of our people. We want our people to feel a strong sense of belonging, and to arrive at work fully engaged, motivated and able to reach their full potential.

"Our corporate offices, regions, functions and operations have already begun taking action on the Report's recommendations, including implementing training and awareness programmes, reviewing and updating our policies and supporting processes; promoting access to our independent hotline (with allied access to psychological support services); and a comprehensive review of workplace and accommodation village security facilities.

"The release of the Review to all employees this week, and the engagements that will follow, are an important part of our cultural transformation journey. We will build on the positive aspects noted in the Review."

"We will closely monitor our performance and, as recommended, will commission another independent review within three years to help us assess the progress made," Preece says.

The Report of the Expert Independent Review into Workplace Culture at Gold Fields and other related material is available at

Media Enquiries

Please contact the following Gold Fields spokespeople for questions on this report.

Gold Fields Group and Gold Fields South Africa:
Sven Lunsche
Tel: +27 (11) 562-9763 Mobile: +27 (83) 260-9279

Gold Fields Australia
Claire Walker
Mobile: +61 (447) 391 261

Gold Fields Ghana
Emma Morrison
Tel: +233 (0) 302 770189 Mobile: +233 (0) 241 391466

Gold Fields Chile
Alejandra Salas
Mobile: +56 (96) 1491-977

Gold Fields Peru
Domingo Drago
Tel: +51 (1) 706-0400 Mobile: +51 (98) 925-9180

Notes to editors

About Gold Fields

Gold Fields is a globally diversified gold producer with nine operating mines in Australia, South Africa, Ghana (including the Asanko JV) and Peru and two projects in Canada and Chile. We have total attributable annual gold-equivalent production of 2.40Moz, proved and probable gold Mineral Reserves of 46.1Moz, measured and indicated gold Mineral Resources of 31.1Moz (excluding Mineral Reserves) and inferred Gold Mineral Resources of 11.2Moz (excluding Mineral Reserves). Our shares are listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) and our American depositary shares trade on the New York Exchange (NYSE).

Sponsor: J.P. Morgan Equities South Africa (Pty) Ltd


Forward-looking statements


This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "safe harbour" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements other than statements of historical fact included in this announcement may be forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements may be identified by the use of words such as "aim", "anticipate", "will", "would", "expect", "may", "could", "believe", "target", "estimate", "project" and words of similar meaning.

These forward-looking statements, including among others, those relating to Gold Fields' future business prospects, financial positions, production and operational guidance, climate and ESG-related statements, targets and metrics, are necessary estimates reflecting the best judgement of the senior management of Gold Fields and involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty because they relate to future events and circumstances and should be considered in light of various important factors, including those set forth in Gold Fields' Integrated Annual Report 2022 filed with the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and annual report on Form 20-F filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on 30 March 2023 (SEC File no. 001-31318). Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such statements. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Gold Fields undertakes no obligation to update publicly or release any revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this announcement or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. These forward-looking statements have not been reviewed or reported on by the Company's external auditors.

Back to previous page