Integrity plays a central role at Daimler and shapes how we perceive ourselves. We seek to maintain the trust of our stakeholders in the future as well. This is why it is important that we act responsibly and ethically. Our employees should feel responsible not only for our success but also for the economic, environmental, and social impact of our business activities. We encourage our employees to consistently stand up for our values and to speak openly.
Ethical behavior is the foundation
For Daimler, integrity means doing the right thing and living by our values. More specifically, this means that we comply with internal and external regulations, act in accordance with our corporate values, and listen to our inner ethical compass. Our Integrity Code defines guidelines for our everyday business conduct and helps us make the right decisions.
We have extensively incorporated integrity-related issues into the processes at our company – as part of non-financial remuneration components, in human resources processes, and within the framework of target group-specific training measures and preventive consulting measures.
Our five corporate principles: the foundation of all our actions
For me personally, acting with integrity means I can look at myself in the mirror every morning. In other words, I know that I always need to act in line with my principles. Of course I need to consider whether these principles are adequate in real-life situations. It basically comes down to doing the right thing at the right moment and in the right context.
Renate Hornung-Draus Member of the Daimler Advisory Board for Integrity and Corporate Responsibility,
Managing Director of the Confederation of German Employers’ Associations (BDA),
Head of the European Union and International Social Policy department
Our modular goal-oriented integrity training program is designed to prepare all Daimler employees for difficult situations related to integrity, compliance, and legal requirements. We continually refine our range of training courses and optimize our training processes. All employees, including managers, participate in a web-based integrity training program at regular intervals. In order to offer participants optimal support, the training program also contains a management module that is compulsory for all management staff.
New version of our Integrity Code
The Integrity Code defines a legal and ethical framework that is binding for all employees at Daimler AG and Group companies. In October 2019 we published a new version of the Integrity Code that takes current strategic issues into account. Like its predecessor, this new version offers employees guidance for dealing with various business situations – for example when selecting business partners or engaging with political interest groups and in the field of environmental protection.
Integrity survey for employees
The “Big Picture Integrity” – our worldwide employee survey on compliance and integrity – is an important element for strengthening and further developing our culture of integrity. The survey results reveal areas of action and help us formulate appropriate measures for addressing the associated issues. The results are also used to help define the non-financial goals relating to “Integrity” and “Diversity” for the management remuneration system.
Value-based recruiting and promotion process
Next Generation Integrity – this is the name of a company-wide international team of Daimler employees who worked on the further development of our integrity strategy in 2018. They not only formulated an appropriate definition of integrity and established new corporate principles but also developed additional concrete measures for promoting a culture of integrity throughout the Group.
In the 2019 financial year, the Board of Management decided on the basis of the team’s work to develop additional measures in order to ensure that all employees and managers share our values and put them into practice, especially when hiring and promoting staff. This too serves to promote a culture of integrity at the company.
Current developments make it more imperative than ever that we ensure ethical behavior throughout the Group – and continually monitor our progress in this regard. We are therefore working systematically to adapt and refine our understanding of the concept of integrity in line with current and possible future circumstances.
Using our updated Integrity Code as a basis, we are currently revising the mandatory basic module of our web-based training program for integrity, compliance, and legal issues. We also plan to make our employees more aware of our Integrity Code in 2020 and specifically train more employees – e.g. in the production departments.
Questions related to integrity and compliance are also an important part of our Group-wide employee survey. The next survey is scheduled to be conducted in the fall of 2020.Integrity in practice – strengthening trust