Running our business in an ethical way makes business sense
At Spectris, we believe that maintaining a strong and consistent corporate culture supports long-term performance and is particularly important in the context of the Group’s operating model and entrepreneurial nature.
Training, engagement and support
Our engagement strategy focusses on raising awareness among employees that running our business in an ethical way makes good business sense and providing relevant, practical training to help them with ethical decision-making.
Our ethics training and engagement strategy comprises:
- Values and risk-based training
- Interactive and engaging
- Delivery by senior and line managers
- Face-to-face wherever feasible
- On-line modules to reinforce awareness
Culture, ethics and leadership
At Spectris, we believe that maintaining a strong and consistent corporate culture supports long-term performance and is particularly important in the context of the Group’s operating model and entrepreneurial nature. The Board acknowledges its role in shaping, monitoring and overseeing culture, as well as ensuring alignment between our values, strategy and business model. Culture and ethics are a regular discussion focus for the Board, its Committees and the Executive team throughout the year.
Awareness of the importance of culture and ethics does not stop at the Board or Group-level management; it is present throughout the organisation and our senior and middle management play a fundamental role in setting the appropriate tone at an operational level. Managers are expected to demonstrate ethical leadership and this is reinforced in a number of ways, including our recruitment and on-boarding processes. As part of their induction, new leaders to the Group participate in an ethical leadership engagement session. The session provides a forum to connect the Group’s purpose and strategy to culture, discuss the business case for ethics and factors affecting decision-making, and to develop skills to cascade the message across their teams.
Absolute Integrity Award
One way in which we emphasise the importance of culture is through the Spectris Absolute Integrity Award, which was launched during 2016. This is a Group-wide initiative whereby employees are nominated for demonstrating true commitment to our absolute integrity value. The award is designed to emphasise the importance of absolute integrity in our business practice, communicate success stories and provide an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the positive ethical behaviour displayed across the Group.
Culture and acquisitions
Culture and ethics also comprise a key element of our acquisition strategy. Our values and emphasis on ethics create a positive point of difference during our acquisition cycle, whether through target identification, deal execution or integration processes. In looking at acquisition targets, we evaluate the alignment of cultural fit and values through our management discussions and due diligence processes. By adopting this approach, we seek to ensure that a new business is prepared to do business ethically and that we acquire businesses that are aligned with our values. This both makes business sense for Spectris but also makes Spectris a more desirable parent for acquisition targets. This alignment of culture and values is an important factor in maintaining the high level of management and employee retention that we achieve post acquisition.
When new businesses join the Group, we work in conjunction with the management team to introduce and embed our values and ensure that the ethics programme is rolled out as a priority.
A culture of openness and support
We actively encourage a culture of openness, engagement and communication, so employees feel they can discuss any issues that arise in the course of their work and raise any concerns with their managers. The importance of creating an open and transparent culture is reiterated in our periodic ethics refresher training. Our independent hotline (www.spectrishotline.com) gives our people, business partners and other third parties the ability to report concerns anonymously if they wish.
Anti-bribery and corruption
The scope of our Internal Audit function review includes ethics programme implementation. The audits involve testing implementation across a range of key indicators, including tone from the top, resourcing, conflicts of interest, gifts, hospitality and entertainment, government interaction, training and communications, third parties, charitable and political activities, raising concerns and ethics in human resources.