Corporate leadership anchored in responsibility
Corporate leadership anchored in responsibility
The unceasing advancement of excellence and efficiency in our corporate leadership and our services allows us to preserve and grow the trust anchored in us.
As a globally operating TIC company, we consider good corporate governance to mean transparent and responsible management. This definition is explained in greater detail in clear policies and regulations that apply throughout the company.
The Board of Management and Supervisory Board of TÜV SÜD AG take their guidance from the provisions of the German Corporate Governance Code (DCGK) for capital-market-oriented companies, thus laying the foundations for a common understanding of responsible, transparent and value-oriented corporate leadership at all levels of the company.
Compliance with all applicable laws and international rules and dealing fairly with our business partners and competitors are among our company’s most important principles. Our customers rely on the integrity of TÜV SÜD. To ensure the services they receive offer the maximum safety, security, and objectivity, TÜV SÜD takes a preventive approach to compliance and endeavors to achieve a corporate culture that proactively excludes potential breaches and risks from the outset by raising employee awareness, educating the workforce, and establishing appropriate processes.
TÜV SÜD’s compliance management system provides the organizational basis for compliance with valid law. It is based on the principles of the IDW AsS 980 assurance standard and is continually improved. Our compliance organization is headed by our Chief Compliance Officer (CCO), who reports directly to the Chairman of the Board of Management. The CCO acts autonomously without instructions from above. Compliance Officers are appointed for all our companies and regions worldwide. They coordinate compliance training and activities and ensure the compliance management system is up to date at all times. All TÜV SÜD employees undergo mandatory compliance e-learning courses at regular intervals.
In 2008 TÜV SÜD adopted a Code of Ethics under which all TÜV SÜD employees commit to lawful and responsible conduct and to fair and ethical treatment of all.
TÜV SÜD Trust Channel is an electronic whistleblower site for all TÜV SÜD employees, customers, suppliers, and other third parties to report any actual or suspected infringements of applicable law or our ethical standards. The channel enables whistleblowers to set up a protected electronic mailbox for anonymous and secure communication with the TÜV SÜD Corporate Compliance Team.
Consistent respect for human rights is also anchored in the relevant guidelines and policies, foremost among them the TÜV SÜD Code of Ethics, the TÜV SÜD Supplier Code of Conduct, and the respective policies for our Procurement and Human Resources corporate functions.
Quality management (QM) is a core constituent of TÜV SÜD’s Integrated Management System and is the mandatory prerequisite for all of our national, European, and international authorizations and qualifications that are essential for the company’s recognition as a testing, inspection, and certification (TIC) organization. It is based on regulations including the ISO/IEC 17000 family of international standards.
TÜV SÜD currently holds some 700 accreditations and further recognitions worldwide, which are regularly verified by supervisory bodies. These audits simultaneously provide evidence of our expertise in areas including product testing and certification, management system certification, laboratory testing, and inspection and monitoring of technical systems, assets, and vehicles. Our integrated management system further includes occupational health and safety, safety and security management, data protection and data security, and physical safeguarding of assets. In 2021, a global online QM training program was held comprising a compulsory module for all employees, an additional compulsory module for all executives, and eight elective modules. Available in 17 languages, the online compulsory employee module has now been completed by over 90 percent of the workforce.
Addressing potential risks with care and prudence is all in a day’s work for us. Not only where our customers are concerned, but also within our own company. Our risk management system is designed to identify risks, assess existing risks, and mitigate risks taken. Against this backdrop, we held a pre-assessment of TÜV SÜD’s risk management system prior to an effectiveness review in accordance with the IDW PS 981 audit standard. The review was passed without qualification.
We also revised the relevant opportunity and risk management policy; changes included adjustment of reporting thresholds and further expansion of requirements concerning the structuring of risk management organizations at local TÜV SÜD organizational units. The revised guideline came into effect in the first quarter of 2021.
As a globally operating company, TÜV SÜD accordingly has an international supply chain. Our procurement team sources goods and services from over 10,000 suppliers in more than 70 countries. To achieve this, we use regional or local suppliers for around 90 percent of our procurement needs. The short transport routes contribute to climate protection, while our use of local suppliers supports local employment markets and local infrastructures. Our procurement decisions take social and environmental criteria into consideration as well as ensuring ethically and legally flawless conduct and avoiding risks. To achieve this, we are increasingly turning to suppliers that have a similar philosophy of entrepreneurial responsibility to our own.
To communicate our sustainability goals more clearly across our entire supply chain, we issue a binding Supplier Code of Conduct, (SCoC) under which our suppliers undertake to comply with our TÜV SÜD sustainability requirements. The SCoC is available in German and now a further 13 languages. In the future, our suppliers will further undergo evaluation with respect to compliance with sustainability criteria prior to receiving orders. Our target is for all our suppliers to have signed the SCoC by 2026. Around 34 percent had already signed by the end of 2021, equivalent to around 70 percent of our purchasing volume.
TÜV SÜD AG is a legal entity with its registered office and central administration in Germany. As such, its entire global revenues are subject to unlimited tax liability. The subsidiaries of TÜV SÜD AG are subject to unlimited tax liability in the countries where their registered offices are located. In addition, cross-border business transactions may incur limited tax liabilities for TÜV SÜD AG or its affiliates. TÜV SÜD undertakes to comply with applicable national and international laws in all business decisions and actions in order to fulfill its fiscal obligations in a complete, correct, and timely fashion.
TÜV SÜD AG reports on its tax positions in detail in its Consolidated Financial Statement, in which the provisions of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) are implemented and assessed by the group auditor. For more information, see the TÜV SÜD Annual Report.