Download tools: the standard sge21 for ethical management and social

yes no Was this document useful for you?
   Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the workof artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Document related concepts

Community development wikipedia , lookup

Collections management system wikipedia , lookup

Environmental resource management wikipedia , lookup

The implementation of Quality Management, Environmental Management and Occupational
Health and Safety Systems has created a new culture among organisations which has
stimulated new management models that pursue, each one from a different perspective,
excellence in management, and which can be measured using minimum standards.
Within this culture, tools have been developed to evidence conformity to common rules
and regulations which have been adopted at the international level. Certification by a third
party is one of best recommendations.
In order for this process to inspire confidence, it is imperative that it is performed by
professionals and entities that are recognised as technically competent. This requires the
application of an Accreditation system that recognises such capacities.
This has lead to the creation of new professions, new activities and new jobs.
On the other hand, Quality, a concept which is eminently abstract, can be measured indirectly
using previously defined indicators.
The model named SGE (Sistema de Gestión Ética y Socialmente Responsable, System of Ethical
& Social Responsible Management) consists of a series of documents comprising standards,
guides, codes and procedures. The aim of the System is to achieve that an abstract concept
such as the idea of an ethical management is indirectly measured. If some measure of the
level of compliance with the minimum requirements of an ethical management can be
obtained, then it would be possible to assess, evaluate and audit the social responsibility, or
ethical commitment of an organisation. Conformity with a document (say, a standard) can
be asserted with relative certitude through the use of indicators, attributes or auditable
procedures included in the document. In the SGE of FORETICA, those indicators have been
established along the conventional ethical values commonly accepted among business and
organisations. Both indicators and values are conveniently defined in the terminology
document known as SGE01.
The process followed for the elaboration and use of the model was conceived to have four stages:
1. Definition of indicators. In a system of ethical management indicators are called “values.”
2. Agreement as for the evaluation by third party.
3. Systematisation.That means the incorporation of indicators into the ordered documents
forming the SGE.
4. Introducing the System in organizations. Once the system is implemented in an organisation,
it can be monitored certified or evaluated (either internally or by a third party) and
finally reviewed and evolved, going back to stages one and two.
The SGE comprises standards, codes, guides and procedures.The Standards of the SGE are
formally close to technical standards. However, their content relates to the specific ethical
commitments that the system establishes as minimum requirement for a certain aspect of
management.The term “standard” is used because (i) they are documents established through
agreement or consensus among representatives of the organisations and persons that may
be willing to adopt them; (ii) they provide rules, directions, patterns or descriptions as to
how to realise determinate activities in the context of an ethical management; and (iii) they
are generally applicable.
FORETICA has assured that the standards are elaborated by persons professionally related
to the aspect of management the document deals with. FORETICA co-ordinates the works
of the elaboration of the documents forming the system.The set of documents thus elaborated
is intended to help setting up a system of ethical management in any organisation that
recognizes the activity of FORETICA.
Codes, guides and procedures are all created the same way as standards. Codes are personal or organisational commitments to observe certain behaviour. They can be applied to a
sector of activities, or to a particular organisation. Guides complement the standards and
facilitate interpretation. Procedures are explanations about how to realise an action, according
to standards, codes and guides.
A crucial characteristic of the model, as well as of each of the documents forming it, is that
it does not mean to be definitive, but permanently open to revision and adaptation.
Requirements and interpretations may change with the circumstances, the evolution of
knowledge, and the progress in our concept of social and organisational relationships. The
system is conceived as an instrument for the promotion of an ethical management in
organisations through the respect for ethical values and principles. It is subordinated to its
end. It does not claim any priority of its own.
Ethical & Social Responsible Management is valuable for itself, as part of what morality
demands in the world of organisations. But it is also in the interest of organisations.A policy
favouring the ethical management of the organisation influences the perception of all
stakeholders. The constant and consistent fidelity to an ethical management builds up a
reputation, which constitutes a considerable intangible asset for any organisation.
With this conviction, FORETICA displays its activity as a forum for the advancement of the
ethical commitment of managers and organisations. The SGE is but the visible product of
this activity.
The Standard SGE 21
For a system of management to be considered ethical, it must be consistently in accordance
with certain principles. One of the core values of an ethical management is integrity, and
that means the standards must be assumed to pervade the management of every activity of
the organisation. This is why the system has distinguished up to eight separated areas of
management and developed specific principles and procedures for each of them.The expertise
of the collaborating organizations has been used so that every management area was treated
realistically and competently, trying to put together the promotion of high ethical and social
values, the necessities of organisations and the state-of-the-art technical solutions for management systems. Particularly important has been the preservation and improvement of
the standards of quality as they are commonly applied to specific areas of management, such
as environmental accountability, client/consumer orientation, product design, etc.
The eight management areas included in the standard are the following: High Executive
Level (Governance); Clients; Suppliers; Employees; Social Environment; Stockholders;
Competitors; and the Administration. Each of these areas represents a network of reciprocal
relationships and interchanges. The way of managing these relationships shows the social
commitment of the organisation. The presence of concrete and specific values in each of
these areas will configure an ethical management system. The hypothesis underlying the
SGE21 Standard is that those specific values can be captured in objective agreed-upon
procedures, systems and rules, which provide, in turn, a way to audit the voluntary
commitment with such values.
To be brief, we will just mention the dominant values in each management area:
- High Executive Level: Loyalty to proprietors, truthful communications to stakeholders,
respect toward subordinates, commitment with the organization’s goals and characteristic
means, ethical leadership, compliance with professional codes (if applicable) and with any
other code or standard voluntarily adopted (integrity).
- Management of relationships with clients: sincerity and clarity in information (honest
advertising), quality service, and responsibility in case of damage (care for the client).
- Management of relationships with suppliers: cooperation for mutual benefit (implies constant
communication), promotion of ethical management in subsidiaries, contractors and suppliers,
demand high standards of quality and efficiency, clarity and openness in the policies of
selection of suppliers/contractors.
- Management of employees: equal respect and justice in offering opportunities, education/
training, promotion and remuneration; recognition of outstanding achievements and
encouragement; open communication at all levels; commitment to safety and to as pleasant
as possible workplace, and special care in case of special necessities.
- Management of the interchanges with the social environment: social and environmental
responsibility, caution principle in case the organisation realizes risky activities, dialogue
and participations of stakeholders, special care for the near environs or for specially affected
- Management of the relationships with stockholders: truthful and complete information,
loyalty, and faithful compliance with legal and conventional rules.
- Management of the relationships with competitors: legality and respect (includes fair play
and acceptation of the outcomes of unobstructed competence according to the law).
- Management of the relationships with public administration: collaboration in the attainment
of communal goals (through respect for the law and statutes), independency (organisations
should not be instruments of the political power, neither should they try to make the
political power an instrument for their ends), commitment with a strict policy regulating
relationships with public servants.
All these values are incorporated in concrete mechanisms that specify how to do and to
register certain activities necessarily involved in each management area.The specified activities
and registers are reduced to a minimum, so that the freedom of the organisation is preserved.
Besides, all this must be understood in the context of organisation-created statements of
values and/or organisational codes of conduct. However, a minimum of harmonised
procedures and registers are necessary if the public commitment with social and ethical
values has to be taken seriously.
SGE21 tries to set up a strict agreed system of common guiding principles that can be (i)
publicly known, (ii) reciprocally required when voluntarily adhered to, and (iii) compliance
with them objectively certified. We think that making adherence to a standard a matter of
public and auditable commitment is the only way to avoid the common charge that business
ethics belong to a huge make-up strategy.
Organisations may have different goals, methods and credos, but those organisations sharing a
real concern for stakeholders and society do not (and will not) refuse to agree to standards
that are well below the line of behaviour they are generally observing.A standard will only mean
a minor effort toward harmonisation. An effort that will pay, for it will not only permit to make
publicly clear the stance of each organization, but also will serve better the (moral) interests of
those organisations, through the example their leading role is giving to other organisations.
The core ideas of the SGE system proposed by FORETICA could be summarised in the
- The System for the Ethical & Social Responsible Management (SGE) draws upon the
European system of quality (standards, certification bodies, accreditation, assessors…).
- The SGE is analytic. It divides management into eight areas and specifies values dominant in
each area. In addition, values are not stated as such, but incorporated in concrete procedures.
- The SGE is designed to be auditable either internally or externally.
- The design of the standard has been based on expertise in the area of quality auditing and
on dialogue and collaboration with organisations from different sectors of activities
(industrial, consultant, NGOs, etc.). The standard represents a consensus among
organisations and persons.
- The adherence to the standard is voluntary, and does not mean to represent the only
expression of ethical commitment, but an expression of harmonised minimum requirements
to publicly show the organisational will to embrace and promote ethical values in economic
and social life.
- The most general principles of the system, underlying the concrete principles of each
management area, are the respect for the autonomy and dignity of persons, the social and
environmental responsibility, and fairness, plus the respect for the commercial, technical
and professional principles of best practice in each functional area.
Implementation and Audit of the Ethical Management
System of FORETICA
The model of evaluation of FORETICA offers the possibility to demonstrate the implementation
of an Ethical Management System in an organisation by a third part audit, in the case of
certification purposes, or by a first or second part audit for self-declaration purposes.
The implementation is accomplished following the requirements established by the standard
SGE 21, divided in the 8 management areas described above.
The compliance with the requests of each area demands the existence of a system of
formal documents and over 40 registers in order to demonstrate, in an objective way, the
updated implementation of the system.
Examples of the main documents required by the system are the following:
- The Ethical Management Policy: the managers must point out the core values of the
organisation, promoting those in which their decisions will be based.
- Code of Conduct of Organisations.
- Protocol for relations with shareholders.
FORETICA has also developed a harmonised process for the evaluation of an Ethical Management System. The reason for calling this process “harmonised” lies in the consensus
achieved by the accredited certification bodies, members of FORETICA, that have joined
this new concept of evaluation. This system of evaluation is based on the application of
common procedures for the ethical audits and the acceptance of the rules developed by
FORETICA, again in agreement with the accredited certification bodies.
In addition, consultants have to apply the same procedures among the organisations that
demand their advice, with the objective of being able to prove a correct implementation of
the system in the subsequent audits.
The auditing bodies that take part in the process need to prove their technical capacity in
this type of audits. Therefore, only firms members of FORETICA, that have signed a
commitment of respect, and accredited by the standard EN 45012 to certificate quality
systems, can carry out ethical audits.
Figure1 illustrates the harmonised process for the concession of the trademark and the
ethical management certificate/ report.
The process is divided in four sub processes, from the reception of applications by FORETICA,
to the evaluation of the system with the conclusions included in a final report, or the
certification and concession of the trademark of Ethical Management.
The process starts when FORETICA receives the application from an organisation that
wishes to evaluate the implementation of its Ethical Management System.
FORETICA will make sure that all the documentation attached to the application fulfils its
It may occur that the existing standard SGE 21 cannot be enough to evaluate a particular
case due to the diverse and subtle requests of ethical management. In this case, as in ISO
9000, FORETICA can complement the standard with a normative document that includes
the ethical value not taken into account in the standard.
In the second sub process FORETICA establishes an Evaluation Plan and forms the audit
team in consensus with the organisation. Once the Plan is accepted, the auditing body
appointed by FORETICA can evaluate the system by checking the over 400 audit points
identified, and report to FORETICA whether the ethical management system is implemented
correctly or not in the organisation.
Finally, based on the information produced by the auditing body, FORETICA will decide
about the concession of the certificate to the organisation and the right to use the trademark
of ethical management for the next three years.
Every year an audit will review the system and the certificate can be withdrawn if a significant
non-compliance is found. At the third year a renewal audit will be carried out in the organisation.
The 2000 edition has been revised as a result of two circumstances. Firstly, the appearance
of various documents at international level as indicated in the references.
Secondly, the implementation of the system proposed by FORETICA both in small businesses
as well as larger ones, which endorses the goodness and the viability of the System.
Therefore, the Ethical Management System should be considered as part of the Organisation’s
Management System and an extension of the Quality Management System.
The Ethical Management System that Forética proposes, with respect to its computer system
and the general methodology to be followed, developed from the basic principles of the Accounts
Auditing Act 19/88 2 July and R.D. 1636/90 28 December 1990 which authorised the Regulation,
and the Industry Act 21/92 and the R.D. 2200/95, which authorised the Regulations for the
Infrastructure for Quality and Industrial Security and complementary regulations.
The SGE21 Model
The model presented here by FORÉTICA is based on the application, of a general nature, of
the technical standards produced and implemented according to the Quality and
Environmental standards and incorporating therefore, the final audit which leads to the
granting of the trademark of conformity. This facilitates the integration of these systems by
the Organization.
This allows scholars of Ethics, from the point of view of a discipline and Science that form
part of knowledge, not only to continue contributing to the formation and superseding of
ethically standards by means of the channels already established, but also that the culture of
Ethical Management in relation to the Organization and to the Society, can provide new
professional opportunities for a better understanding within the field, which will contribute
greatly to its diffusion.
Each Management Area contains some paragraphs in italics which outlines the aims of the
standard in each case and continues to describe each auditable ethical value as well as the
measures that confirm its implementation.
Aims, Scope of Application and Reference Document
These Standards, as a guiding document, aim to develop the criteria required for the evaluation
of the implementation of an Ethical Management System in an Organisation by a third party,
as proposed by the Forum for the evaluation of Ethical Management, FORÉTICA.
For the Management of an Organisation, the implementation of Ethical Management inspires
greater confidence in itself and its entity with regard to honesty, loyalty, good faith,
transparency and organisational culture, together with a desire to spread into the social
environment the culture of Ethical Management, and then gradually to society in general.
The Management of an Organisation on gaining a certification in accordance with these
standards, supposes voluntary commitment to Social Accountability in order to apply the
ethical values which it incorporates and to maintain and demonstrate this commitment.
The ethical management, proposed by FORÉTICA, tries to complement the legislative
(compulsory) with the ethical (voluntary) for a better understanding and collaboration in
human relations that originate as a result of the activities of the Organisation.The values of
Ethical management do not conflict with legal aspects.
In order to implement an Ethical Management System, the Organisation must first meet all
the current legal requirements and by means of the social commitment that it has made, to
humanise the legal demands, providing an added value in its relations.
These standards establish a framework for the implementation, evaluation and auditing of
SGE, and are complemented by the appropriate Procedures and Guides, according to the
Forética, SGE 1000 series.
These standards refer to Management Areas and the Ethical Values or indicators that allow
the establishment of an Ethical Management System and social responsibility of an
Organization in general, auditing the implementation of all of the Organization or limiting it
to specific work centres or areas.
It applies both to the implementation of the values in the Organization as well as to their
auditing, and aims to obtain certification by a third party or to the preparation of a report
by a first or a second party in order to achieve continuous improvement.
Besides the Foretica Glossary Sge 01 Terminology, the following documents are most relevant
to the application of the SGE21:
- United Nations Global Compact;
- ILO Tripartite Declaration on Multinational Companies and Social Policy;
- OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises;
- Communication from the Commission Concerning Corporate Social Responsibility: a
Business Contribution to Sustainable Development. 2002;
- Social Accountability 8000;
- ISO 9000: 2000 and related standards.
Management Areas and their Elements
Top Management
Top Management is responsible for the maximum optimisation of the available sources of
the Organisation, with the view of obtaining the highest possible benefits (in the broadest
sense of the word).
In order to achieve this, it is necessary to create and maintain an optimum working
environment in which all members of the Organisation can identify themselves with the
mission, vision and values and that they are involved in the achieving of the strategic goals of
the Organisation.
The behaviour of the top management should be orientated towards motivating everyone
within the Organisation, so that everyone is involved in gaining excellence Management.
They should define, implement, revise and update an Ethical Management policy for the
Organisation that is available to all members of the Organisation.
The Director of the Organisation, or the chief executive, should sign and make public the
document, which describes the Social Responsibility that the Organisation voluntarily assumes,
in defence of the Ethical Values of its activities.
It may refer to these values in general terms or highlight those values that are considered
fundamental to the success of the organisation.
The Ethical Management Policy supposes a declaration of principles which should be based
on general management and is in accordance at least with these standards and the
implementation can be verifiably audited.
The organisation is committed to openly displaying in all areas the mission, vision and values
of Ethical Management and Social Responsibility and to adopt them.
A Code of Ethics or a Code of Conduct for the Organisation should be established.
Distribution of which may be limited to those affected.
It is recommended to organise it in accordance with the management areas of the standards,
to ensure its acceptance, suggestions for improvement and it distribution to those involved.
The directives of the Ethical Code of Conduct binds the relations of Management and the
organisation. Inclusion of relations with personnel is optional.
Accepting each directive may lead to the acceptance of the commitment in terms of a
contract. Failure to comply can lead to legal prosecution.
This Code regulates aspects such as confidentiality, incompatibility, relations with members
of the Organisation, clients, suppliers and others.
Management should nominate a Working Group or an Ethics Committee, (members of the
Organisation can freely accept or refuse such a nomination) which oversees the compliance
with the stipulations of these Standards. This Committee will establish its own regulations
which will have to be approved by management.
This Committee, which is run on a voluntary basis by the members of the Organisation, will
be responsible for examining and providing the Management with possible resolutions to
complaints or conflicts that arise as a result of gaps in the Organisation’s Code of Ethics or
in the application of these Standards.
The Committee is also responsible for the interpretation of the established Code.
One member of the Committee should be nominated at spokesperson that reports the
activities of the Committee to Management, and who assumes responsibility for the
implementation and keeping of records, including the minutes of the Committee.This person
should also act as interlocutor with the auditors, who carry out the evaluation of the
system implemented, and management.
The records and other documents relating to SGE comprise a unit of evidence that deals
with non-conformities, corrective action, etc., according to the steps established in the
section of Quality audits. This includes continuous improvements of relations in the 8
Management Areas.
Members should be appointed by management who should establish the procedure for the
nomination of candidates and proposals, and all areas of management should be represented.
The Committee can incorporate external experts as members.
Management should establish a system for the flow of information and of its records, so
that all possible activities that may be deemed as unethical, according to the values indicated
in the standards and the code of conduct of the organisation, can be brought to the Ethics
Top Management should transmit to the Organisation and its social environment, the
importance of its Ethical Commitment, fulfilling the requirements with the aim to inspire
confidence in its management.
Internal audits and plans for improvements to the system should be carried out annually.
Relations with Clients
Satisfying the client’s needs, desires and expectations at an acceptable price should be the
primary objective of the Organisation.
When a client accepts a price, s/he trusts that the characteristics of the product or service
are those that the supplier has offered at the time the contract was agreed.
Confidence in the supplier is directly related to clients’ satisfaction.
Therefore two corollaries can be made:
a. The client should be supplied according to agreements regarding quality, time, price and
he should be guaranteed a entirely ethical activity.
b. The client in turn should correspond by paying the agreed price, in the form and within the time
limit agreed.
In order to facilitate this, the Organisation should be honest from the onset, loyal and
transparent in its relations with the client throughout the whole process. The following
conditions should be provided for a product or service:
a. Clear and unmistakable identification.
b. Description of the main identifying characteristics.
c. Price, terms of payment and delivery.
d. Guarantees and/or requirements contracts or estimates/invoices should be clearly
e. A documentation system for making and processing claims that the client may consider
making, including responses to such claims.
f. If a defective product is discovered after being delivered, the client should be informed
and measures taken to repair or exchange the faulty product.
g. A record should be kept of the claims made which should include the reason for the
claim and the steps taken.
Regarding the commercial area, a policy for providing gifts, courtesies and awards should be
Relations with Suppliers
Suppliers are a key element for any Organisation and, for this reason, demands can be made
of them but they should also be respected. This involves the good will of both parties,
meeting contractual agreements and revising such agreements with the aim to continuous
improvements in relations.
If the supplier had established an Ethical Management System, a base for confidence will
already exist and generally this would be sufficient to establish relations and maintain a
contract accordingly.
If no such system is implemented, it will be necessary to establish a more stringent contract
that specifies the required supply conditions.
Where possible, the supplier who imports material to be supplied or to be processed,
should always be requested to provide a declaration that identifies the product and states
that it was produced in the country of origin in accordance with the legal requirements of
said country, especially those requirements regarding child labour, equal opportunities, forced
labour, and those relating to job security and respect for the environment.
In the absence of an applicable legal regimen, the importing Organisation or the contractors
of a service should certify that the process of obtaining the products/service has not violated
any of the articles of the Declaration of Human Rights in the country of origin.
The Organisation, as a client, should request that its usual suppliers, in the case where its
Ethical Management is not certified by FORÉTICA, meet the requirements indicated in
Management Area.
The Organisation should avoid unnecessary litigation, proposing and accepting findings and
arbitration by third parties, etc., and should establish a record of the activities in this field.
The Organisation should keep a register of the exchanges of information and especially those
concerning the improvement of the quality of the suppliers regarding rejections and faulty
or defective products/services received.
Relations with Members of the Organisation
Human Resources Management is one of the most delicate aspects of the Organisation.
It is from the people where the quality of consciousness arises in the individual form and
therefore where we find the base for collective Ethical management, which adopts the
individual consciousness.
Each person should be confident of his/her ethical behaviour and of that of his/her colleagues
within the Organisation.
The human resources are also the most important means by which those closer to the
Organisation are kept informed regarding the Ethical Management that is being developed.
Even without proposing it, it transmits to suppliers, clients and its relations in general, both
internal and external, the confidence that arises of knowing that they belong to an
Organisation with ethical practices and that this is part of their work.
The Organisation should at all times endeavour to treat all its members with dignity, respect,
honesty, openness, transparency, sensitivity, aiming for equal opportunities and the conciliation
of working and family life, thereby achieving maximum compatibility of the objectives of the
Organisation and those of the personal and professional development of each individual.
Among the commitments that an Organisation has towards its personnel, is the acceptance
and fulfilment of Labour, Social and Health and Safety legislation in the workplace, including
Occupational Health. As well as the respect of the fundamental principles of organisations/
individual relations, which are the freedom to form trade unions, democratic election of
representatives and equal opportunities.
The Organisation should establish measures and means to favour dialogue and dissemination
of information so that its members who may wish to settle their internal conflicts and
complaints regarding the Organisation address to the Ethics Committee.
In the case of physical or emotional harassment, the person should first inform his/her
immediate supervisor, before coming before the Ethics Committee, except in the case where
the immediate supervisor is involved.
In case an employee feels to be discriminated in terms of training opportunities or professional
advancement, s/he can appeal to the Ethics Committee specifying the reasons considered
to be the reason of the discrimination, such as sex, race, religious beliefs, politic opinion,
physical disabilities. S/he can previously inform the immediate superior.
The Organisation should establish an impartial system of training and professional
development for all its members.
The Organisation should keep a record of:
a. Absenteeism, by collecting data such as its frequency and related reasons.
b. Dismissals, as well as collecting similar data to a), it must also include if the dismissal had
been previously agreed or if it is appealable, the gender of the employee and, in case of
female, if she was pregnant.
c. In case of harassment, information such as gender, persons involved and other details
concerning the case should be recorded.
d. Transfers and leaves should be recorded, indicating the reasons. If an employee refuses to
be interviewed regarding the reasons for his/her voluntary leave, this should be recorded.
e. Positions that involve risk in the Organisation should be recorded, which are defined and
that the persons involved are aware of the risks. It should highlight the cases where a
women is pregnant.
These records should include an adopted resolution or the appropriate report.
For any legally binding aspect, the employee will use the established legal means.
However, the Committee is obliged to respond to the employee informing him/her of the
means available to meet his/her demands, following the current legal situation, in the case
where the employee because of lack of knowledge or other reasons, cited to the Ethics
Committee any legal aspect.
The Ethics Committee can always act as an arbitrator, if requested voluntarily by the interested
parties, it may produce the relevant report which must be kept as a record.
The Organisation, should keep its employees informed on the organisational structure chart
of the company, specifying the hierarchical and functional levels inside the company.
Each employee should enter the Organisation with the appropriate qualifications for his/
her assigned position. Nevertheless, the Organisation should provide training in order to
keep employees up to date and to facilitate promotions.
Social and Environmental Relations
The Management of an Organisation is appreciated in its social environment.
As well as the members of a said Organisation, it is extremely important that the company
inspires confidence in its Social Environment and demonstrates its social commitment.
The Social Environment experiences the impacts of the activity of an Organisation fundamentally
through advertising, its environmental behaviour and its solidarity actions.
It is difficult to focus on ethics when dealing with an area as delicate and complex as advertising.
Therefore the requirements of these Standards are limited to those of existing legislation.
The social environment takes account of the respect the Organisation has for the
environment. Recycling, minimising waste, use of renewable energy are some of the methods
that are highly appreciated.
Finally, solidarity action by the Organisation is a means of helping the more disadvantaged
social areas.
In relation to advertising, the Organisation should demonstrate that it abides by a Code of
Ethics, be that of its own code or one of a recognised Association. It must outline the
departments affected and include and procedures to be followed in the case where the
code is being broken. Each of these possibilities must be approved by Management.
The Organisation should establish an inventory of the activities and resources related to
the environment which are motivated solely for their environmental impact such as use of
water, energy, natural environment (forests, river banks, terrain, etc.) emissions, waste etc.
The Organisation should keep abreast of the necessary licenses whether it depends on the public
services (municipals, community, etc.), or if it is regulated by other legislative bodies or concessions,
through which the Organisation can directly manage the resources provided by the Administration.
If the Organisation deals with its waste materials or part of it using another authorised
company, a contract should be established with this company that outlines, at least, the
service provided the intervals and the penalties for non-compliance.
On the other hand, if there are no existing public or private services that facilitate this
service, the Organisation should elaborate its own plans, specifying the means and processes
used and the provisions implemented to minimise the impact of such waste in the future.
The Organisation should establish a plan for the prevention of risk to the environment.
The Organisation should establish a plan for saving, optimising and recovery of resources in
its plants and work centres.
The Organisation should, whenever possible, establish a plan for the improvement of its
environment and measures to gradually reduce the impact produced.
The Organisation should make the information of its plans for the respect and improvement
of the environment and the achievement in the area available.
If the Organisation has incorporated a recognised management system, if it has received
ISO 14001 for example, or if it complies with the EMAS system, and is registered, then the
Organisation should document this circumstance and will therefore be exempt from
demonstrating the former environmental requirement.
In the case where the Organisation does some solidarity work or provides Social Assistance,
an annual report should be produced to outline this. This report should include the results
gained and their social or economic importance.
Relations with Shareholders
The shareholders are the proprietors of the Company and their rights are regulated in the
company deeds and other documents such as the granting of powers, etc.
The shareholders deserve to be well informed in real time, by the means established, of the
financial situation of the company as well as any plans for improvement, expansion, etc.
The Organisation should keep, protect and increase the assets of the proprietors/investors,
generating and accounting profits and/or the maximisation of the investment value, while at
the same time meeting SGE requirements.
The investors should be adequately informed when the Organisation is being audited or
when there is any judicial proceeding which may have a significant outcome. Confidential
data of the Board of Directors must always be respected against the interests of third parties.
The Organisation should establish a Protocol that formalises its commitment to keeping its
investors informed, not only regarding the information usually generated by the organisation
itself but also the specific information prepared on request.This protocol should specify the
type and level of information, the means of requesting it and responding, as well as all the
circumstances that permit maintaining the investors informed, depending on the level of
representation required as established by the Statues or other formal document of the
Organisation, which shall be known by those investors with a sufficient level of representation.
Relations with the Competition
In the modern global world, with interdependent markets, the existence of competitors
favours the growth and transparency of the markets, the creation of new jobs, mobility of
persons, products, capital and services, which the economy from this global viewpoint, grows
creating and increasing trade opportunities. Therefore, the competition should be treated
with respect and should be collaborated with on matters of common interest.
The Organisation should respect the tangible or intangible property rights of its competitors.
It should accept and propose arbitration by third parties to resolve misunderstanding and
interpretations. The Organisation keep a record of the cases brought against it in this area
and indicates how each of these cases were dealt with.
The Organisation should promote dialogue and personal relations as means of mutual
understanding. It should participate in associations and forums of common interest to
meet with its competitors and exchange ideas and good practice.
The Organisation must not use illegal means of gaining information such as industrial espionage.
The General Management should provide a sworn declaration on its compliance with this,
taking into account that the Quality Management tools are usually considered valid.
The Organisation will not diffuse false or tendentious information against its competitors.
The Organisation will attend appointments, even those that are not obligatory, and lawsuits
that are brought against its interests, defending itself with all the legal arguments available
until the final sentence has been given.
Agreements that affect the legislation on Competition (monopolies, etc.) should not be
established. A record of the cases brought against the Organisation should be kept, as well
as the outcome of such cases.
Relations with the Competent Authorities
The Organisation is often dependent on the current existing powers:
- Local
- Autonomous
- Central
- Community (European Union Institutions)
On the other hand, the regulation that affects the Organisation in general can be summarised as:
- Basic Regulations on Setting up and Running Businesses.
- Industrial Regulations
- Food and Agricultural Regulations.
- Health Regulations.
- Environmental Regulations.
- Labour Regulations.
- Safety and Hygiene Regulations.
- Fiscal Regulations.
One of the values that Civil Servants and High ranking government officials most appreciate
in their dealings with administrators is their honesty and integrity when complying with its
legal obligations.This is based on transparency and vision. Clarity in ones relations does not
necessarily prevent discrepancies of interpretations and there are regular means to resolve
them. In every case, it is necessary to inspire the confidence of the Authorities.
In order to deal appropriately with each one of the areas related with Competent Agencies,
the Organisation should produce an Inventory of all the matters or formalities, the relevant
Agencies and the dates that they should be carried out. A second Inventory should be
produced outlining the legal requirements applicable to the Organisation.
These Inventories should be reviewed at defined intervals, signed by the Manager or employee
designated by Top Management.
The relevant Government officials should be informed on the existence of such Inventories
and that copies and reports are available on request.
Clear and concise information on the activities performed by the Organisation can be sent
to the Government Representatives, as long as it does not affect any proceedings that may
be in process but outlines the achievements or positive results of voluntary action or plans
that may be considered important for the improvement of the ethical image of the
Organisation. A corresponding record must kept.
Inviting officials to ceremonies, competitions, etc., should be on a strictly professional basis
with the objective of explaining the processes and policies of the Organisation’s Management.
A corresponding record should be established with the reasons the invitation was issued.
The fees paid for the invitation should only be those for the activity itself and not include
any gifts, courtesies, etc. These fees should be within those established by the Authorities.