Green Pioneers in Germany

Internal sustainability ambassadors around the world are dedicated to promoting a sustainable corporate culture. With their efforts, they support implementation of our CR strategy. 

The internal Green Pioneers ambassador program was launched in Germany in 2018. Its aim is to promote and expand responsible management and conduct among the workforce. Group Corporate Responsibility (GCR) creates suitable conditions for the Green Pioneers’ work. Community Management, which is part of GCR, organizes regular meetings to share information and experience, offers internal and external expert talks, and helps plan activities. In addition, it also provides up-to-date information about the initiative on the internal social network You and Me UNITED (YAM UNITED). As of the end of 2022, the Green Pioneers groups had about665 members and subscribers on YAM UNITED (400 in 2021). This shows a growing interest in the initiative and in Deutsche Telekom’s sustainability activities.

Depending on their location, interests and expertise, the Green Pioneers come together to form subject-related or regional hubs. They act as internal multipliers for change by motivating employees to be involved in numerous resource conservation campaigns, such as an exchange for office supplies, clothing exchange campaigns, tree-planting and waste collection campaigns, and an internal company ride-sharing agency.

There are now 333 Green Pioneers in Germany. Active at 53 locations and in 19 departments, they seek out improvement potential and initiate appropriate measures. The introduction of RECUP returnable cups in our cafeterias, for example, can be traced back to impetus from the Green Pioneers. They were also involved in developing packaging machines that create tailor-made packaging for the technicians’ equipment and the field service and cause hardly any waste.

On the initiative of the Green Pioneers, smart textile containers were installed at our locations in North Rhine-Westphalia in 2022 to collect old company uniforms and worn-out jeans and cotton towels and put them back into circulation in the textile ecosystem. The upcycling containers use Internet of Things img (IoT) technology and their contents are collected independently, thanks to fill-level sensors that send a notification to the Deutsche Telekom iCloud when they are ready to be emptied. This saves unnecessary trips and thus reduces carbon emissions and fuel consumption. The cotton textiles collected are sent on to be upcycled, where they are combined with new fibers and turned into new garments. In 2022, we collected and recycled380 kilograms of clothing. This saves numerous liters of water, since less cotton needs to be grown.

With a view to boosting our employees’ motivation and commitment, we seek to offer them additional leeway and options for structuring their working lives. The flexible work arrangements we make available to all employees, such as our “job visits,” are one example of this policy. In addition to their core activities, our employees can also gain cross-departmental experience and apply their knowledge and skills. For example, the Green Pioneers take advantage of these opportunities to work on sustainability activities.

Green employee networks at our national companies

Numerous employee initiatives aimed at sustainability and environmental protection are also running at the national companies of Deutsche Telekom AG:

T-Systems Iberia (Spain)
Founded by T-Systems ITC Iberia at the end of 2019, the T-OGETHER community started its work at the beginning of 2020. T-OGETHER is a group of volunteers dedicated to promoting sustainable initiatives. At the heart of this community is an Executive Committee. It is supported by an internal advisory committee made up of some 15 experts in environmental issues, corporate responsibility, and communications. The aim of T-OGETHER is to develop ideas for sustainability in line with the company’s ecological and social goals. The members develop initiatives and propose them to the company management. Once an initiative and budget have been approved, the board of management initiates the implementation process. In the year under review, one of T-OGETHER’s initiatives involved creating a poster to raise employees’ awareness of sustainability.

Deutsche Telekom IT Solutions Hungary
At DT IT Solutions Hungary, seven experts within a Sustainability Core Team are working to raise employee awareness about the need to reduce electricity, water and paper consumption; to promote waste recycling; and to encourage more-efficient use of the company’s vehicle fleet. Environmentally-friendly photocopying and printing techniques, and the use of paperless communication were two focal areas in the year under review. In addition, a 90-member strong Green Activists Community is working to make it easier for employees to contact colleagues with regard to environmental concerns – for example, via a dedicated site within our YAM UNITED internal social network.

Magyar Telekom (Hungary)
In 2019, Magyar Telekom became the first company in Hungary to launch a community solar project. As part of the project, Magyar Telekom employees can rent a solar panel from the company for one year. As a reward for their contribution to Deutsche Telekom’s climate protection activities, the donors receive benefits such as an additional day off. The solar modules have been installed on Magyar Telekom’s training facility; the energy generated is used on site. The panels cover a quarter of the building’s energy consumption. The project was continued again in 2022, with a total of 200 employees making use of this offer in the year under review.

Other national companies committed to a more sustainable corporate culture include:

  • T-Mobile US (USA): Employees of this U.S. company have formed an online community focused on sustainability. In it, around 100 employees regularly discuss and keep up-to-date with T-Mobile’s environmental initiatives. 
  • Magenta Telekom: About 30 employees of this company in Austria served as Climate Rangers in the year under review, using joint initiatives and workshops to make the issue of climate protection more tangible.
  • T-Systems Limited (UK): An interdepartmental team reviews, discusses and promotes sustainability issues within the company.
  • OTE Group (Greece): The Green Ambassadors, founded in 2019, are working to create a green culture, inspire OTE Group employees, collect ideas and provide information about projects such as #ZEROPLASTIC and recycling programs.
  • T-Systems do Brasil Ltda.: The T-Green Team is committed to recycling and donation campaigns as well as to communicating ways to save energy and cut waste both inside and outside the company.
  • Employee communities are also active, or in the process of being established, at other national companies such as T-Mobile Czech Republic, Hrvatski Telekom (Croatia), T-Systems Mexico, and DT IT Solutions Slovakia.

To find out more about corporate responsibility at our national companies and the involvement of their employees, please visit the relevant company profiles.

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