• Act responsibly. Enable sustainability.
  • 2015 Corporate Responsibility Report
2015 Corporate Responsibility Report

Stakeholder management

Companies are constantly balancing the expectations of a variety of stakeholders when managing their business. That is why a company's success depends on recognizing the interests and demands of its stakeholders and meeting and addressing these whenever possible and reasonable. Stakeholders img also expect to be kept informed of how companies are responding to their demands. Deutsche Telekom goes even further by actively surveying its stakeholders and involving them in its management processes.

Engaging in dialog with our stakeholders helps us identify trends early on, which fosters our innovation processes (click here for current examples). At the same time, this strengthens existing alliances and creates new opportunities for partnerships. This is particularly important in terms of our sustainability targets, which we can only achieve in collaboration with partners from the worlds of politics (political advocacy), society, science and research, and industry.

GRI indicator G4-25

We systematically encourage stakeholder engagement in our corporate activities. In 2011 we developed a strategy for stakeholder engagement in order to manage our various activities throughout the Group. The strategy is based on the three AA1000 img Principles developed by the NGO AccountAbility: materiality, inclusivity, and responsiveness.

We have defined three types of stakeholder engagement: Information, dialog and participation. These are based on six principles for interacting with stakeholder.

In order to ensure that our CR activities are designed effectively, we regularly assess how our stakeholders perceive and rate these activities based on our materiality process and CR topic monitoring.

Our ongoing stakeholder survey (survey) includes weighting issues (2015 results), performance assessment and open questions. Below is a summary of feedback results for the period from January 2015 to March 2016.

Recommendations on how Deutsche Telekom can further improve its corporate responsibility:

  • Stronger customer focus and improved customer service,
  • Reduction of mobility-related CO2 emissions,
  • Sharper focus on social commitment,
  • More intensive involvement of the company's employees,
  • Improved availability of offered bandwidths,
  • Expanded supply of sustainable products that enable and promote sustainable consumption

Requirements concerning the sustainability of Deutsche Telekom products:

  • Durability
  • Energy efficiency
  • Resource conservation at every stage of the value chain
  • Sustainable packaging design
  • Transparent product information

Expectations regarding compliance with global policies and regulations (e.g., concerning human rights):

  • Strict assessment of compliance both within the Group and along the supply chain (Deutsche Telekom is considered a pioneer in this area)
  • Addressing violations systematically and transparently (both internally and externally) in order to establish trust and credibility

Suggestions for strengthening commitment to sustainability among employees and in the corporate culture:

  • Increased internal communication on sustainability issues, e.g., within the Telekom Social Network
  • Stronger employee involvement, e.g., by means of specific recommendations regarding more sustainable conduct and providing more room for implementing own ideas
  • Promoting sustainable action with targeted, systematic incentives
  • Clear commitment to sustainability by corporate management as a role model
  • Improved stability within the company and reinforcing confidence in secure jobs

Requests and suggestions for improved reporting:

  • Improved reader-friendliness, e.g., by means of clearer report structure (common thread), clearer diagrams, simpler, more lively language and more interactive elements
  • Active marketing of the CR report
  • More transparency in terms of goals not achieved

In February 2016, our MagentaMobil Happy offer was discussed in social media. In a petition addressed to Deutsche Telekom, we were asked to withdraw this option - as it supposedly supports the accumulation of smartphones that are no longer being used. We would like to address these concerns.

Why do we have this offer?
We provide our customers with solutions that meet their expectations. Several market surveys have shown that there are customers who want to always have the latest end device. The offer is targeted at these customers. It is safe to assume that customers will find a way to fulfill this wish regardless of what Deutsche Telekom offers. Just like our offer for this target group, we also offer plans directed at other target groups. Customers can always opt out of receiving a new smartphone and switch to a cheaper plan instead.

What we do:
We take our economic and social responsibility just as seriously as our environmental responsibility and try to promote resource awareness among our customers. This is shown by the examples below:

  • In cooperation with Deutsche Umwelthilfe e.V., we have been raising general public awareness of conservative use of valuable resources such as gold, silver, copper and platinum with our used-cell phone collection campaigns for more than 13 years. In order to simplify the collection of used cell phones and smartphones, we have created the Handysammelcenter online collection portal. Since introducing the program in 2003, Telekom Deutschland has helped conserve resources by reusing or recycling more than two million used cell phones in cooperation with our partners Teqcycle and Deutsche Umwelthilfe e.V. Our used cell-phone collection process has been certified by DEKRA for secure data deletion. Depending on the condition of the device, the collected cell phones and smartphones are reused or properly recycled in line with environmental standards. Telekom Deutschland donates any profit generated to Deutsche Umwelthilfe e.V and has thus supported more than 770 environment and nature conservation projects to date.
  • Another one of our offers is called "Don't buy, rent". This offer leads to prolonged average utilization periods of routers and media receivers. If a customer decides to cancel the service, they return the device, which is then either repaired and reused or properly recycled.

What our customers can do:
If a customer opts for a new device, they can, for example, give their previous smartphone to a family member or friend, extending the device's operating life. This extension of the device's life has a favorable impact on its carbon footprint. Anyone who does not wish to continue using their high-quality used device - whether a tablet or a smartphone - can exchange it for a voucher at any Telekom Shop with our "Handyankauf" cell-phone trade-in service. Users can get an estimate of the value of their device online in advance. If the device is not suitable for reuse, it can be turned in at any Telekom Shop or at a local public collection point for proper recycling. You can find a map of these collection points here. End devices should on no account be disposed of in domestic waste as that would mean losing valuable resources.

In order to convince the general public of a sustainable lifestyle, we provide useful tips and tricks on green surfing and energy-conscious driving in our "We care" app magazine. The app can be downloaded for free from iOS and Android stores.

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