Telekom Logo
2020 Corporate Responsibility Report

The results of our employee study on the culture of compliance

In 2019, as part of the Compliance-based Company Culture initiative, we conducted our second ever international employee survey on compliance after 2017. This will be continued in 2021. The aim was to once again review how our compliance culture has developed. In the future, the survey will be repeated regularly every three years at the most. The European School of Management and Technology (ESMT Berlin) and Hertie School of Governance were our research partners in this initial study. 46,000 Deutsche Telekom employees took part in the last survey, once again more than in the first survey. The initiative is supported by an expert committee created specifically for this purpose.

Responses from our employees were more positive than in 2017:

  • 98 percent of respondents affirmed their commitment to Deutsche Telekom’s rules and said they would not be willing to participate in unethical conduct (2017: 97 percent).
  • 88 percent said that their manager set a good example of ethical conduct.
  • Almost 90 percent said they had been well informed by the company about appropriate conduct at work and felt prepared to handle ethically questionable situations responsibly.  
  • The clear majority of respondents stated that management sets a good example in ethical conduct.
  • They identified weaknesses in the area of feedback culture. Some employees said they did not feel confident in expressing their opinion openly.

The identified weaknesses were discussed in depth by the Board of Management and compiled into a set of measures. The aim of the measures: to reinforce the value-oriented compliance culture at the Group and to continue the mainly positive trend in the future. Among other things, the virtual reality program “Managing Dilemmas” was introduced. It aims to help our employees recognize critical situations and behave correctly in conflict situations. We also promoted our speak-up culture through a new e-learning program and other measures. This involved a focus on virtual learning experiences in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic: Among other things, we offered an e-learning course for managers on “Ethical Leadership” and the virtual reality training course “Managing Dilemmas” for all employees.