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".
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.
“IT remarketing” project
Our “IT remarketing” project involves reconditioning our used IT hardware to make it suitable for further use. We continue to maintain our partnership with “AfB gemeinnützige GmbH”, which offers job opportunities to people with disabilities. Within the scope of this partnership, we will give some of our used IT hardware (e.g. laptops) to the organization in the future for reconditioning and reselling. This will not only help us save resources but also create jobs for people with disabilities as well as extend the life cycle of our used hardware.
Together against conflict resources
Telekom has been supporting the Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) since 2008. The RMI is the largest initiative in the economy for responsible raw material procurement. Its aim is to identify conflict raw materials and to prevent their extraction and trading with them. The RMI goes back to a working group founded in 2008 by the Global enabling Sustainability Initiative and Responsible Business Alliance for the sustainable extraction of raw materials. Since then, the number of metalworking and smelting companies that participate in the RMI has grown steadily.
In 2019 we held 11 workshops with major suppliers in the fields of smartphone and network technology. In the workshops we explored ways in which we can work together on sustainable design and packaging solutions as well as more energy-efficient products. In 2020 we will continue to pursue this path and advance the topic together with our partners. In addition, we continue to develop our technical specifications for greater sustainability of products to send appropriate signals to the ICT industry. We not only make demands, we also actively contribute to the discussion in order to provide impulses for more sustainable products and services. For example, we are in dialogue with the chemical industry to initiate the development of more sustainable materials for end devices such as routers and media receivers.
Demand and promote: industry-wide development program for suppliers
In 2019, we continued our supplier program under the umbrella of the ICT industry association Global enabling Sustainability Initiative (GeSI). In the reporting period, other ICT companies and their suppliers as well as sub-suppliers joined the program. So far, 23 selected suppliers have participated in the program. In 2020, we will add more suppliers to the program. The program is designed to make global supply chains for ICT products more sustainable. With these, we were not only able to achieve social and ecological improvements, but also economically measurable advantages: better working conditions have a positive effect on their motivation and increase productivity. This also improves the quality of the products, which in turn reduces the number of complaints regarding our products.
Digital Solutions: The EU’s AEOLIX project – a platform for more efficient and climate-friendly logistics chains
The aim of the EU’s AEOLIX project is to establish a new ICT platform for networking the numerous, previously isolated individual logistics systems throughout the EU. At the same time, practical services will be developed and tried out in 11 European test zones. T-Systems is participating in test zone 1: Intermodal Logistics in the Hamburg – Frankfurt Transportation Corridor. This zone will test a smartphone app that helps truck drivers drive in an ecologically responsible manner. Around 958,230 metric tons of CO2 could be spared in ongoing customer projects by analyzing driving profiles and ecodrive functions. The project has successfully been finalized in 2019.
As part of the JAC Academy, we trained five strategically important suppliers in 2019. This included not only designing and verifying internal audits along our JAC standards and norms, but also deepening relevant sustainability issues for manufacturing companies (e.g., content from "Health and Safety" standards).
Many players, one goal: forum on sustainability in supply chains
8th CSR Forum of the Joint Audit Cooperation (JAC) on January 16 and 17, 2019 in Shenzhen, China.
The JAC CSR Forum 2019 has brought together more than 260 sustainability and procurement professionals from leading telecommunications companies, information and communications technology (ICT) suppliers, corporate social responsibility (CSR) institutions, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and other organizations from research and science. In addition to presenting the JAC activities and results from the previous year, the Forum focused on the enormous opportunities and new regulations surrounding the circular economy, with a common understanding of the principles and practices that support the responsible use of the planet's resources , In addition, JAC praised supplier excellence at this forum for their efforts to support JAC activities.