CR Facts provides background information on corporate responsibility (CR) and sustainability issues at Deutsche Telekom.
Our current corporate responsibility report is available at
'Corporate Citizenship' that’s also the Art Collection Telekom. Deutsche Telekom takes the responsibility for culturally diverse and open civil societies in Europe seriously.
The redesigned website of the Art Collection Telekom was launched in late spring. The site offers an overview of all works in the collection, which has a focus on East and Southeast Europe and fosters the dialogue between East and West.
With the large exhibition 'Keeping the Balance', the Ludwig Museum in Budapest reopened its doors under strict health rules after the lockdown at the beginning of September. The project was closely accompanied and supported by our subsidiary company ‘Magyar Telekom’. Title and concept for the exhibition had already been determined in autumn 2019 and received additional meaning with the pandemic. In order to make it accessible to a broader public, the digital presence of the exhibition has been strengthened. Artists produced short video clips that were shared on Instagram and the collection's website. The exhibition is also available online as a 3D tour.
The ArtScience Residency was launched in cooperation with Ars Electronica in Linz. It enables an artist to participate in a residency in a renowned institute and at Ars Electronica to incorporate in their work the latest developments in research, technology or science. In autumn 2021, the result will be presented at the next Ars Electronica Festival.
In 2020 we closed the Global Talent Pool of 2019 and were working on a new concept of talent management, which is launched in the fall of 2020. The new concept focuses on identification, validation and long-term development of talents with the aim of placing them into strategically critical roles. In this new concept we allow leadership to identify employees with potential but also employees can raise their hands to be assessed. Employees go through a validation process of personality assessment and structured interviews, upon which leadership selects the future members of the hub – best matching role requirements. In the hub they will have a personal advisor brokering them to opportunities in line with their potential and targeted critical role. Our Board members are patrons and a broad group of business leaders serve as business sponsors of the hub. They mentor, make talents visible and open doors for them. In the hub we will work on the development of members on the long-term, over multiple career steps.
Achieving more together: international collaboration
How can international corporations put sustainability strategies into practice across borders? Deutsche Telekom employs CR managers for the relevant business segments and national companies to reach this goal. They use the CR Manager Network to regularly share best practices and discuss new challenges, thereby jointly promoting essential CR issues. The central Group Corporate Responsibility (GCR) department is responsible for managing the network.
Due to the Corona situation, the CR Manager Network focused 2020 solely on virtual meetings. Starting point in February was the supplement "Act responsibly" to the Groups strategy and the implications for CR-Managers. The virtual meeting in May had a special section on the Corona activities in the respective national companies and focused otherwise mostly on the progress made in the "We care for our planet" program, followed by several national workshops to foster international roll-out of the program. At the autmn-meeting, members of the network learned among other things about the current status of the climate targets, digital inclusion and continued with information on "we care for our planet".
Start up!: our trainee program for young innovators
Our Start up! trainee program above all targets technology and IT graduates who have an entrepreneurial spirit and are open to new challenges. Since we also increasingly want to reach talented candidates outside of Germany, the application process has been held in English since 2017. As a result, we have been able to increase the share of international participants: 30 percent of trainees were not native German speakers in 2020. In the reporting period, a total of 44 university graduates embarked on the trainee program, 59 percent of whom were women.
During a period lasting around 18 months, trainees familiarize themselves with different areas of the company in Germany and abroad. They take on challenging project assignments in various business areas. The trainees are supported by experienced managers. The program is supplemented by innovative training formats and events. Our Start up! trainees also pursue their own initiatives and support social projects within the context of our Social Days.
Our employee survey, which is conducted every two years, is an important tool for obtaining feedback from our employees, discovering weaknesses, and implementing suitable actions to eliminate those weaknesses. The analysis on team level and of other criteria (e.g. function, leader vs. employee, gender) support the derivation of fitting concrete improvement actions on all levels. Around 76% of all employees participated in the last employee survey, the share of men and woman - where gender was specified - complies approximately with gender proportion in the group (participation rate man around 67%, women around 32% and for the first time diverse around 1%). The twice-yearly pulse survey additionally helps us obtain a current snapshot of the mood at the company and verify whether the introduced actions have been successful. This lets us make quick adjustments if necessary.
Succession management ensuring our company is ready for the future
Top-level management plays a key role in the business success of a company. If managers at that level leave the company, their position must be filled in a timely manner, with a qualified candidate. Since 2017, we have a global systematic succession management process, which obligates around 1,700 managers in executive positions to be involved in succession planning. The process helps these managers to decide who could serve as their direct successor and who has the potential to take on their role in the mid-term. A digital platform helps executives with the nomination process.
In 2020, 4,400 potential candidates (DT internal and external, 25 percent of which were female professionals) were evaluated at special succession meetings. Successors get full transparency about the positions they are nominated to and their readiness to take on the role. This nomination and feedbackprocess is a valuable intrument to identify in a timely manner highly qualified successionb candidates in order to minimize the risk of any placement gaps. Furthermore Succession Management supports the internal mobility of executives within Deutsche Telekom.
The 80/20 model
Since 2017, we have been using the 80/20 model to give our employees the opportunity to spend up to 20 percent of their working time on projects outside of their usual remit. This allows them to work with teams from other departments. In this way, we break up departmental silos and can make better use of the company’s broad spectrum of talent. The model makes employees more visible and motivated, and enhances their network of contacts. Use of the model is voluntary and is tied to a specific Group project.
Skills management in the digital age: skillsUP!
There are 5,500 different job descriptions at Deutsche Telekom in Germany alone. As digitalization progresses, many of them no longer match the tasks and skills now required.
The skillsUP! program launched in 2018 aims to cut the number of job profiles to less than 1,000 and adapt them so that they last for the next three to five years. However, skillsUP! involves more than just modernizing job profiles. The new, up-to-date job descriptions are linked to the Group’s skills management so as to ensure holistic, integrated HR planning, make it easier to identify possible gaps in required skills, initiate training measures, or advertise new jobs. Deutsche Telekom is the first large German company to have such a mechanism. skillsUP! is the Group-wide implementation of several pilot projects that have been conducted since 2016.
Measurable success: Reduced CO2 generation at data centers
We keep our goal of reducing our carbon footprint in mind when planning and operating our data centers. To achieve this goal, we take a two-step approach. It starts with optimizing energy consumption at each data center site and then continues with improving processes throughout the global data center landscape.
The PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) figure is the key indicator for their energy efficiency. Since 2008, we have succeeded in reducing the average PUE factor at the T-Systems data centers in Germany from 1.85 to 1.56.
|Data Center Energy Usage||2016||2017||2018||2019|
|Total energy used in data centers (MWh)||535,282||837,265||735,800||647,162|
|Percentage of renewable energy (of total energy)||35||41||52||64|
Our aim is to increase the share of renewable energy on a yearly basis. Therefore our reported target is to increase our share in comparison to the previous year.
Principles for donations in the political arena
The Deutsche Telekom Group is subject to special statutory restrictions regarding donations to political parties and holders of offices due to the Federal Republic's stake in the company:
Donations to political parties
- The Deutsche Telekom Group is not permitted to make donations to political parties, as the government's stake in the Deutsche Telekom Group is currently over 25 %. The calculation of the government's stake includes both the stake held by the Federal Republic and the stake held by the Reconstruction Loan Corporation [KfW]. Donations for this purpose include both monetary payments and non-cash benefits.
- So-called genuine sponsoring does not represent a donation, i.e., a donation in return for a demonstrably adequate consideration. The consideration may, for example, be advertising for the company or its products at party conferences. The consideration must be adequate – i.e., at usual market level – in proportion to the benefit. Genuine sponsoring as part of party events does not represent a donation to the party as defined by the Political Parties Act and is thus generally permitted in the Deutsche Telekom Group.
Donations to holders of offices
- The Deutsche Telekom Group is also not permitted to make monetary donations to members of the Bundestag, where the government's (Federal Republic and Reconstruction Loan Corporation [KfW]) stake in the company is over 25 %. Non-cash benefits to members of the Bundestag are also generally not permitted.
Donations to holders of public offices
- Donations shall not be offered, promised or granted to holders of public offices for the performance of the duties of such offices or for specific actions performed while in such offices.
Measures must also be taken to ensure that the Deutsche Telekom Group only makes correct, politically unimpeachable donations in the political arena. Those acting on behalf of the Deutsche Telekom Group therefore observe the applicable legal framework conditions for donations and benefits in the political arena in Germany and abroad. In addition, the Deutsche Telekom Group has defined various additional procedures and processes that must be followed in connection with sponsoring party conventions, event invitations and the procedure in each individual case.
Sponsoring of party conventions
- The Deutsche Telekom Group is only permitted to sponsor a party convention by granting a political party a monetary payment or non-cash benefit if the donation is in return for a demonstrably adequate (i.e., at usual market level) and permitted consideration.
- The consideration may, for example, be that Deutsche Telekom is permitted to carry out valuable advertising activities and PR measures/ sales promotion at the party convention (presentation space, etc.).
- Inquiries regarding the sponsoring of party conventions must be treated in a uniform and politically balanced manner. This requires conduct that is coordinated throughout the Group in addition to the legal review of each individual case. The Deutsche Telekom Group does not support any extremist political parties.
Invitations to events
- Deutsche Telekom is only permitted to issue invitations to events that are subject to charge to political parties in the case of genuine sponsoring. The same applies to members of parliament unless these non-cash benefits are granted “for participation in events to present the position of the Bundestag or that of (one of) the parliamentary groups within the Bundestag“. Invitations to holders of domestic and foreign public offices, foreign members of parliament and holders of offices in international organizations should be refrained.
Information und decisions on individual cases
- Before donations are made in the political arena each individual case must be reviewed. Legal interpretation or issues of doubt (including those reaching beyond the legal aspects discussed above) should be submitted to DT Law & Integrity, and political issues of doubt to DT GPRA for a decision.
Risk/Opportunity Clustering of global categories
We do rate our categories as critical or non-critical based on risk and opportunity clustering (classification).
In this context, we classify products based on risk and opportunity analyses, taking into consideration a wide range of ESG sustainability aspects and risks, such as risks of unfair renumeration and treatment, forced/child labor or environmental pollution, as well as opportunities such as resoure efficiency and the potential to reduce energy consumption.
Spend Analysis 2019
In a joint project Deutsche Telekom Stiftung and German Reading Foundation aim to awaken children´s interest in math and science and improve their language and reading skills by reading aloud to them. Appropriate reading materials (books, apps, e-books) are read aloud by volunteer readers to kids aged three to ten in kindergartens, primary schools and libraries. By late 2019, a total of around 2,700 volunteers engaged as volunteer readers in Germany and abroad– including 100 Deutsche Telekom employees (as of November 2019.)
Implementation of the EU General Data Protection Regulation
After being enacted in May 2016, the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has had a binding effect since May 25, 2018. Deutsche Telekom implemented the requirements contained therein in a three-stage, EU-wide project:
- Preparation: Group Privacy drew up a set of standardized rules, known as Binding Interpretations, that apply to the entire Group. They were developed in collaboration with the national companies. The Binding Interpretations include specific recommendations and best practice examples to implement the EU regulation.
- Implementation: From January 2017 to May 25, 2018, the new requirements based on the Binding Interpretations were introduced throughout the Group. This involved checking and, where necessary, adjusting all the IT systems. All employees were made aware of the General Data Protection Regulation, and more than 10,000 experts received intensive training.
- Evaluation: The implementation period was followed by a review phase during which all affected Group entities were asked whether they had put all relevant requirements into action. In addition to this, GDPR compliance was randomly inspected at 28 companies.
Everyone needs education – education needs everyone
With the "Everyone needs education – education needs everyone" project, Deutsche Telekom and Deutsche Telekom Stiftung support the corporate volunteering efforts of Telekom employees at day care centers and schools since 2010. Employees who engage as volunteer readers or offer workskhops for programming with microcontrollers in schools can apply for sponsorship with Deutsche Telekom Stiftung.
Collaboration for the protection of minors
We want to create a safe and positive online experience for children and young people. We offer them attractive, exciting content on age-appropriate websites.
Supporting standardized child protection offers
We became a member of the non-profit organization JusProg e.V. in 2016. Its software protects children and young people on the internet by blocking certain content.
This software has been officially recognized as a general child protection program in Germany in accordance with statutory requirements (JMStV). The software was most recently evaluated in March 2017.
We donated the rights to the program codes behind our child protection software (Windows) and our child protection app, Surfgarten, (iPhone/iPad) to JusProg e.V.
Commitment to FSM
We are a founding member and part of the executive board of FSM, the Association for the Voluntary Self-Monitoring for Multimedia Service Providers. The association published the “Index for Youth Media Protection” for the first time in 2017. The 2018 youth media protection report specifically addressed teachers and educational specialists.