Aspects related to Ethics & Compliance are one of the important factors in determining the success and business continuity of a company or organization. But how can the role of Ethics & Compliance be felt directly?
The implementation of an effective Ethics & Compliance Program will greatly support the risk management aspect of a company, especially in relation to efforts to prevent violations. In addition, the application of an ethical culture and maintaining integrity contributes to creating a safe, comfortable, and conducive work environment for all employees, which in the end also has a positive impact on the company's performance and productivity.
As a continuous effort, all factors in Ethics & Compliance have a significant contribution to improve company stability, credibility, and reputation, thereby attracting investors and other business partners to invest, partner, and cooperate. Respectively, a high level of compliance with applicable laws and regulations will also reduce the potential for litigation or lawsuits that will be faced by the Company.
Then, how can we participate? Let's look into the discussion during Ethics Awareness Day: Driving Positive Change on Friday, October 21, 2022.
What is the purpose behind the Ethics Awareness Day event?
Ethics Awareness Day (EAD) is an activity organized as an effort by the Company to continuously inform, remind, and increase understanding to all employees of the importance of implementing the principles of Ethics & Compliance in all aspects of the Company's operational activities.
On this occasion, the Company also invited a guest speaker – Dwi Siska, founder and senior advisor of SustaIN Indonesia, who is also an anti-corruption practitioner in Indonesia with more than 17 years of experience. Dwi helped to increase the understanding and awareness of all employees on the importance of having high integrity standards by applying the principles of Ethics & Compliance. In her remarks, she also encouraged awareness of the dangers and negative implications of ethical violations – including fraud, bribery, and corruption, to the Company's business continuity.
What is the meaning behind this year's theme “Driving Positive Change”?
The implementation of an effective Ethics & Compliance program cannot be done alone or by only a few parties, but it needs to be done together. Adopting the theme of Driving Positive Change, the Company invites all employees and other stakeholders to participate in making positive changes; by carrying out business operations by always referring to the principles of ethics, compliance and always upholding integrity, and in line with the foundation of the Company's cultural values, especially Honesty & Integrity, for the sake of business sustainability and our common interests.
At this EAD event, there is a quote from Nelson Mandela that was conveyed by the guest speaker, “We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference.”
What is the upcoming agenda for Ethics & Compliance?
In addition, the EAD event is also used to inform programs related to Ethics & Compliance so that employees can get the latest information and take part in driving positive changes. There are three major programs held regarding the implementation of Ethics & Compliance at the end of 2022 at Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) Sinar Mas, namely:
- Business Code of Conduct (BCOC) Training – BCOC itself is a set of principles applied globally, which is used as a standard of conduct and business for all Company employees towards stakeholders. At APP Sinar Mas, the principles outlined in the BCOC are aligned with the values of l ulhur which was proclaimed by the founder of APP Sinar Mas, Eka Tjipta Wijaya, so that it reflects the ethical norms, culture, and character of our own Company.
- Socialization of Grievance Mechanism – Grievance mechanism is one of the reporting features provided by the Company, which is specifically aimed at receiving and handling complaints regarding the Company from all employees and stakeholders. Through the Grievance mechanism, the Company hopes that any complaints and aspirations from all employees and other stakeholders can be properly conveyed to the Company, so that solutions to problems that arise and improvements for the common interest can be obtained.
- New & Independent Whistleblower Channel – Whistleblower channel or Whistleblower Channel is a forum or channel provided for all employees and stakeholders to be able to submit reports or concerns or complaints, on indications or the occurrence of known irregularities and violations to the Company, in order to followed up. In an effort to improve accessibility and improve services for all employees and other stakeholders, this year the Company opened a Whistleblower channel, which can be easily accessed through the Corporate website – app.co.id/whistleblower. Through this Whistleblower channel, all stakeholders can submit reports or complaints, as well as monitor the stages of the follow-up process from reports that have been submitted.
How is the enthusiasm of the EAD participants?
The employees’ enthusiasm for the EAD’s online event can be seen through the large number of participants, of which there were more than 600 participants.
EAD's active participation is also visible from participants who had expressed their interesting questions about Ethics & Compliance, especially regarding the Whistleblower channel mechanism. Questions and answers are still open for participants who have not had the opportunity to ask questions during the event.
The Company's own Whistleblower Program has been built with reference to the ISO 37002:2021 standard – Whistleblower Management system, where the confidentiality aspect of the identity of the reporter and the report itself, the anonymous reporting feature, and the principle of non-retaliation (anti-retaliation) are highly put forward by the Company so that anyone can submit their report through the Whistleblower channel comfortably and without fear.
Reflecting on the programs carried out in previous years, how is EAD's performance this year?
The main challenge of all socialization programs – be it in the past, present, or future – is the demographic aspect of the Company, where our employees are spread across various locations in Indonesia and around the world. Therefore, accessibility to the Ethics & Compliance program for all employees is a priority and is always being improved each year.
In addition, the frequency of organizing and the quality of each similar event will continue to be improved so that more employees, as well as other stakeholders, can participate and get benefits and added value to be applied in daily activities and become a good culture.
What are the expectations of EAD this year?
The company hopes and will continue to strive so that every employee and stakeholder can have better access to programs related to Ethics & Compliance. Accessibility is the basis to later become a tool for driving positive changes so that all employees and other stakeholders can have a higher level of awareness to participate in implementing it as well as possible for the sake of progress and the common good.
The company also hopes that this year and, in the future, it can interact more directly with more employees and other stakeholders to accommodate as many aspirations, complaints, and feedbacks as possible for the improvement and progress of the Company.
So, the invitation to all employees and other stakeholders is to Make a Change, Speak Up!