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#05 Corporate integrity

Our business success depends crucially on the trust placed in us by our clients, business partners, shareholders and investors, as well as by our employees.

Commitment to responsible behaviour

Our Code of Conduct forms the basis for this.

It is an integral component of our onboarding documents for new hires in the Group. It sets out basic principles of behaviour and provides all employees – regardless of their function – with guidance on how to behave. By doing so, it enables them to conduct themselves and act with integrity and in an ethically and morally correct manner at all times in their dealings with clients, business partners, colleagues and the public.

We revised our Code of Conduct in 2018 and plan to anchor this throughout the Group in 2019 using a variety of long-term communication formats. The revision aimed to further raise awareness of our existing values profile and to put even greater focus on the principles of behaviour that are important to us, including with regard to respect for human rights. This is the only way in which we can further highlight the role we play in society and our corporate responsibility.

For us, taking responsibility for the impact that our business makes means thinking not only about economic goals when taking business decisions, but also about social and ecological aspects. In this way we can ensure we remain competitive and fit for the future, while also making a positive contribution to society and the environment. In addition, our Code of Conduct involves each and every member of staff in sustainability management, enabling them to put our sustainability principles into practice in their work by contributing to our 12 action areas.

Our Code of Conduct is largely based on internationally recognised charters and initiatives such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the conventions drawn up by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact.

What we are working on

  • Implementing a newsroom to provide an integrated media editorial service aimed at ensuring consistent Group-wide communication across the wide range of channels used
  • Developing and publishing Group-wide guidelines to raise employee awareness with respect to human rights
  • Rolling out the revised Code of Conduct across different communications channels
  • Establishing an anonymous electronic whistleblowing system, including a strict prohibition on taking reprisals against whistleblowers

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