GRI 2-23 Values, standards and codes of conduct
For Geberit, sustainability means bringing about a sustained improvement in people’s standard of living through innovative sanitary products and thereby generating long-term added value for customers, society and investors. This means striking a balance in decision-making processes between economic, environmental and social aspects. One focal point of Geberit involves identifying important technological and social trends in good time in dialogue with stakeholders and developing suitable products and services for customers that also generate added value for other stakeholders. The long-term orientation minimises risks for business development that are not only of a purely financial nature but arise from social developments and environmental challenges, such as climate change and water scarcity, for example.
Geberit has a long commitment to sustainability and has thus followed a long-term environmental and sustainability strategy since 1990 that includes both ongoing and future projects, initiatives and activities. Each module in the strategy contains clear responsibilities with measurable objectives, derived measures and quantifiable key figures for effective monitoring. The Materiality analysis, which is used as a basis for the established Sustainability strategy and was carried out based on the GRI Standards, prioritises the key topics for Geberit and simultaneously highlights the areas in which added value for stakeholders is created. These are as follows:
- durable products with exceptional quality and design, which can be cleaned and repaired easily,
- resource-optimised, water-saving and sustainable sanitary systems for water management in buildings,
- environmentally friendly and resource-efficient production,
- comprehensive, measurable climate change mitigation that is geared towards implementation,
- a supply chain and logistics which satisfy high environmental and ethical standards,
- good and safe working conditions for all employees.
Social responsibility is realised among other things within the scope of diverse, local activities for inclusive jobs and global social projects relating to the core competencies of water and sanitary facilities.
The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) define concrete targets for 17 different themes, which the states are required to implement by 2030. Integration of the economy plays a pivotal role in implementing these targets and indicators. As a result, major opportunities with growth potential are also arising for companies geared towards sustainable products and services – such as Geberit. In accordance with the assessment of the external stakeholder panel, Geberit sees its contribution above all in four UN Sustainable Development Goals. The contributions to goal number 6 “Ensure the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”, number 8 “Promote sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all”, number 9 “Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialisation and foster innovation” and number 11 “Make cities safe, resilient and sustainable” are included in the SDG Reporting. The major economic, environmental and social effects of Geberit’s operations also lie in these four areas.
Compliance and the adherence to applicable laws and regulations in the relevant areas comprises several guidelines for social, economic and environmental responsibility. High ethical and social standards are defined and Geberit commits to sustainability and integrity. Compliance within the company is based on the Geberit Compass, the Geberit Code of Conduct for Employees introduced in 2007 and last revised in 2015, and the Code of Conduct for Suppliers.
When providing information on its commitment to sustainability, Geberit also relies on the requirements of established rating agencies. In this way, Geberit serves the growing needs of customers, suppliers, investors and other stakeholders for transparency and comparability, with the rapidly increasing number of reporting standards and ratings making a focus increasingly necessary. Various awards and rankings also serve to confirm Geberit’s perceived role as a leader in sustainability in sanitary technology.