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Stakeholder engagement creates value for both stakeholders and the Company through knowledge exchange and co-creativity. It is essential for our business license to operate and contributes to the improvement of business conditions and risk reduction on customer projects and in our own operations.
Our stakeholder relations are managed by the dedicated departments at corporate level. Their strategic implementation lies within the remit of our local colleagues in the regional entities, which engage with local stakeholder groups on a regular basis everywhere we operate, worldwide.
Our key stakeholders include, but are not limited to: customers, investors, suppliers, employees, communities, policy makers, media, non-governmental organizations, business organizations, and academia.
With regards to internal Siemens responsibilities, several key stakeholders are primarily addressed by dedicated owners and processes:
Sustainable customer relationships are the basis for our long-term success. Our customers expect us to serve them globally, in a coordinated manner, as one company. Our goal is to combine the ideas of different units to provide our customers with tailored solutions of excellent quality and achieve better business outcomes. Our key account managers understand the specific requirements of the customers’ vertical markets, speak the customers’ language and act as trusted advisors for small customers and large key customers.
Siemens takes its responsibility to maintain an intensive dialog with the capital market very seriously. Cultivating close contact with our investors, our Investor Relations team keeps them informed of all major developments throughout Siemens by providing quarterly, semiannual and annual reports, as well as analyst presentations and press releases. In addition, the Siemens management maintains close contact with investors at our frequent roadshows, capital market days and conferences.
We source goods and services from approximately 90,000 suppliers in more than 150 countries. This globally balanced, locally anchored, and close-knit network is vital for mutual success. We therefore foster dialog with our suppliers at corporate and local level and are committed to building our suppliers’ competence and intensifying knowledge transfer. That’s why we offer our internet-based information and training platform free of charge to all suppliers, with the option to actively provide feedback on how to improve processes. In addition, we hold supplier days in various regions to exchange views on how to optimize supplier relations and future collaborations.
Excellent employees are one of Siemens’ vital strengths. They have made Siemens what it is today and their expertise, capabilities, and high level of engagement are laying the foundation for our future success. To stay competitive, we need to continuously win and retain the best and brightest employees in the world. As an employer of choice, we empower our diverse and engaged people worldwide with a high-performance culture, encourage life-long learning and development, offer an attractive working environment, and ensure occupational health and safety. Since 2010, the Siemens Global Engagement Survey has been used as an important management tool that provides important information on potential areas of improvement.
Fair-minded collaboration among Company management, employees and employee representatives plays a central role at Siemens. We are committed to our social responsibility and respect and uphold the fundamental rights of our employees, which are firmly anchored in our Business Conduct Guidelines. Our Share Matching Plan allows employees at every income level to become stock owners and benefit directly from the business success of Siemens.
Siemens Government Affairs (GA) is the central authority for all contact and communication with political stakeholders. Our dialog with political decision makers and opinion leaders is based on our Company’s business strategy and corporate positioning as a thought leader and pioneer. Based on our business goals, GA experts discuss advice and co-create with political decision-makers to help find the right answers. GA specialists worldwide monitor and evaluate regional political agendas to protect and enhance our business interests. On a regional level, our country CEOs are responsible for appropriate interaction with governments, local administrations, and other policy makers.
Our Corporate Communications department and communication teams in the regions manage relationships with the media.
We also actively engage with our stakeholders on Social Media platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, and LinkedIn. We build our reputation and trust by inspiring, leading, and supporting digital conversations about relevant topics. We make sure that our content is relevant to our users and core audience.
Through corporate citizenship activities we engage with local communities to provide long-term benefits to the societies in which we operate. These activities can take a variety of forms ranging from philanthropic disaster relief to strategic shared value or inclusive business approaches like our mobile clinics in India. The responsibility for choosing and carrying out charitable activities lies with the local units in each country. This ensures that we provide support where it is needed most. In doing so, we apply high management standards and strategically focus our corporate citizenship activities in areas where our company competencies, resources, and employee volunteering can make a meaningful difference.
Stakeholder engagement at Siemens goes beyond these dedicated stakeholder groups. At corporate, business, and country level, we partner with stakeholders aiming to advance key initiatives and promote the implementation of a sustainable business principle. Siemens is a member of, and partners with, numerous national and international organizations to advance solutions: our memberships in the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, the World Economic Forum, and the United Nations’ Global Compact play a particularly important role. At the same time as these worldwide memberships, we are also active in a large number of business-specific or regional initiatives, such as the World Energy Council or econsense.
As part of our efforts to promote our ongoing dialog with experts throughout the world, we have established the Siemens Sustainability Advisory Board. This Board is composed of eight leading personalities in science and industry from a range of disciplines and different parts of the world. It supports Siemens in its ambition to become the leading sustainable enterprise in the technology sector by offering open, independent, and constructive advice on its vision, strategy, and concrete activities in the area of sustainability.
At a local level, for our customer projects and for our site operations, we engage with local stakeholders, e.g. via public dialog events. Social media offer an additional dynamic channel for enhancing stakeholder engagement and gathering valuable independent feedback.
Our Corporate Sustainability Office offers detailed guidelines and support to ensure a harmonized best-practice approach across all of our operations.