The managing director of each individual company within the ITAB Group is responsible for ensuring compliance with local regulations. If an issue relating to business ethics arises at company level, there is a system in place for how employees should report directly to the Group and for how such issues will be handled. No known cases of corruption have been discovered in the Group during the year. In countries such as Russia and Malaysia, the Group’s companies conduct special reviews and training in respect of anti-corruption.
ITAB’s tool for internal control is based on the COSO framework. This is a framework for evaluating a company’s internal controls over financial reporting. The framework streamlines the work with the internal controls. During the year, the internal audit programme has been revised, primarily on the basis of business risks. Extensive valuation work has been conducted and implemented within the Group during the year. This has initially taken place in the various companies’ management groups, before then being implemented in each company by the management group in question.
In order to achieve genuine impact in the Group, all the material has been translated into 13 languages in order for each and every employee to gain a deeper understanding of its purpose and the content. Alongside the extensive valuation work, a joint, Group-wide Code of Conduct was developed that everyone in the Group has to sign up to. This was also translated into 13 languages.
The Code of Conduct was initially developed in workshops by the Group management. The proposal was sent out on referral to all the CBOs within the Group’s companies to ensure that it is relevant for all the companies. This made the implementation process easier in 2017. The Code of Conduct focuses on aspects such as the importance of each and every employee, the fact that the Group offers a safe and healthy working environment and that it is working to reduce its environmental impact. It also points out that ITAB stands for straight, honest communication and that all employees have to respect commercial confidentiality.
During the year, around 30% of employees in the Group have signed up to it, and ITAB’s goal is for everyone within the Group to have signed up by the end of 2018. It also forms part of the employment contract.
The focus area Business ethics contributes mainly to Goal 16, which concentrates on peaceful and inclusive societies and incorporates the work on anti-corruption. Through its new Code of Conduct and its new code for suppliers, ITAB can contribute to strengthening the integrity in its value chain and contribute to a better social climate that is freer from corruption.
Chief Business Officer, ITAB in the UK
How often are you involved in sustainability-related issues?
“On a daily basis. We work extensively with sustainability issues and how they can contribute to our business. In order to attract and retain our customers, it is vital for us to have a clear strategy when it comes to sustainability.”
How is sustainability a part of ITAB’s offer?
“Previously when we spoke about ITAB’s all-inclusive offer, we tended to focus on product lifecycles that extended from the ‘cradle to the grave’. Nowadays we talk about our offer from a ‘cradle-to-cradle’ perspective. We now start our design processes with sustainability in mind.
In our production facilities, we are working to reduce waste and increase our efficiency. We then install our products and ensure that the sustainability perspective is also taken into consideration when the products are in use. Finally, we try to reuse our products if possible. If not, we recycle them where possible.”