The case for CSR/ Sustainability Reporting Done Responsibly


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Home / case studies / Case study: How Landis+Gyr promotes business integrity

Case study: How Landis+Gyr promotes business integrity

Landis+Gyr is a leading global provider of integrated energy management solutions for the utility sector. Landis+Gyr conducts business in many countries in which business practices may vary greatly and, given the industry in which it operates, many of Landis+Gyr’s customers are government owned or highly regulated. Accordingly, Landis+Gyr’s employees, agents, contractors, and other intermediaries are expected to conduct business with the utmost integrity.  Tweet This!

This case study is based on the 2019-20 Sustainability Report by Landis+Gyr published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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The binding compass for everything that is done at Landis+Gyr is its new Code of Business Ethics and Conduct, which has been revised and updated to cover all relevant aspects of Landis+Gyr’s business operations from compliance with laws and regulations, conflicts of interest, and anti-competition to Landis+Gyr’s responsibility to the natural environment and to its employees. In order to promote business integrity Landis+Gyr took action to:

  • implement a Code of Business Ethics and Conduct
  • apply a third-party due diligence process
  • provide ethics training
  • encourage employees to raise concerns

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2019-20 Sustainability Report Landis+Gyr identified a range of material issues, such as data security and privacy, energy efficiency and climate protection, fair labour processes, occupational health and safety, community engagement. Among these, promoting business integrity stands out as a key material issue for Landis+Gyr.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards                        

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups Landis+Gyr engages with:

Stakeholder Group
Customers
Regulators
Suppliers
Energy Consumers, Consumer Associations and NGOs
Local Communities
Employees
Shareholders/Investors

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics Landis+Gyr conducted a series of qualitative interviews with representatives of its stakeholders.

What actions were taken by Landis+Gyr to promote business integrity?

In its 2019-20 Sustainability Report Landis+Gyr reports that it took the following actions for promoting business integrity:

  • Implementing a Code of Business Ethics and Conduct
  • Landis+Gyr’s stringent integrity standards are showcased in its Code of Business Ethics and Conduct. The Code prohibits corruption, violations of fair competition, and human rights infringements. Prospective employees receive, along with the offer of employment, a copy of the Code of Business Ethics and Conduct, which includes information about internal anti-corruption policies and procedures. The acceptance of the norms outlined in the Code of Business Ethics and Conduct and its supporting policies is a condition of employment. All Landis+Gyr policies, including the Code of Business Ethics and Conduct and Anti-Corruption Policy, are also routinely communicated to Landis+Gyr’s intermediaries during onboarding and to Landis+Gyr’s customers during the tender phase. With regards to suppliers, the same is communicated to them through the Landis+Gyr Supplier Code of Conduct, which was updated recently. Suppliers need to confirm adherence.
  • Applying a third-party due diligence process
  • Landis+Gyr implements a third-party due diligence process, which requires a mandatory due diligence check prior to the appointment of a third-party intermediary. This check is conducted by or with the assistance of an independent third party and scans potential third party intermediaries against blacklists, sanctions lists, adverse media, and other databases that may reveal a lack of business integrity. Landis+Gyr’s third-party due diligence process is regularly re-evaluated and updated, to make sure third parties are properly screened and vetted before business engagements are initiated.
  • Providing ethics training
  • All Landis+Gyr white-collar employees are trained on the content of the Code of Business Ethics and Conduct on a yearly basis. Additionally, Landis+Gyr offers specialised training sessions on the most relevant compliance risks. Training sessions focused on anti-corruption and competition law are completed on a yearly basis by employees who deal directly with customers, agents, distributors, vendors, and competitors, as well as anyone who is a direct manager. At the end of FY 2019/20, 4,107 or 71.2% of Landis+Gyr’s employees completed the e-learning session for the Landis+Gyr Code of Business Ethics and Conduct. The remaining 1,360 employees were either an exception to the launch population (i.e., blue-collar workers) or joined Landis+Gyr after 30 November 2020. For this latter group, it was required that the same e-learning session be completed within 7 days of joining Landis+Gyr. Moreover, 1,427 employees (24.74%) attended a face-to-face Code of Business Ethics and Conduct training session during the reporting period, which focused on a variety of compliance risks that Landis+Gyr is exposed to due to its internal and external operations, including anti-corruption. The target population for this training were employees at various global locations who deal directly with customers, agents, distributors, vendors, and competitors, as well as anyone who had a management role. Lastly, 1,161 employees (20.13%) also completed a Preventing Bribery and Corruption e-learning session. The target population for this training were, likewise, employees who deal directly with customers, agents, distributors, vendors and competitors, and anyone who had a management role.
  • Encouraging employees to raise concerns
  • Landis+Gyr has created appropriate channels for reporting suspected or known violations of the Code of Business Ethics and Conduct, other internal policies, or the law. For this purpose, Landis+Gyr provides a confidential 24-hour hotline for making such reports, as well as a web portal where employees can file a complaint. Concerns can also be reported through different channels in the organisation, such as via e-mail to a manager, HR Business Partner, or Compliance Officer. To this end, a case management system has been rolled out to record and monitor complaints and their resolution.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standard addressed in this case is: Disclosure 205-2 Communication and training about anti-corruption policies and procedures

Disclosure 205-2 Communication and training about anti-corruption policies and procedures corresponds to:

 

80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

Research by well-recognised institutions is clearly proving that responsible companies can look to the future with optimism.



FBRH GRI Standards Certified, IEMA & CIM recognised Sustainability Course | Venue: London LSE

By registering for the next 2-day FBRH GRI Standards Certified, IEMA & CIM recognised course you will be taking the first step in gaining the many benefits of sustainability reporting.

Most importantly, you will gain the knowledge to use the GRI Standards, project manage your own first-class sustainability report and:

  • Identify your most important impacts on the Environment, Economy and Society
  • Begin taking solid, focused, all-round sustainability action ASAP

 

References:

1) This case study is based on published information by Landis+Gyr, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:

http://database.globalreporting.org/

2) https://www.globalreporting.org/standards/gri-standards-download-center/

Note to Landis+Gyr: With each case study we send out an email requesting a comment on this case study. If you have not received such an email please contact us.