Sika has a Group-wide, culturally well established and integrated Compliance Management System (CMS). The Group pursues a holistic approach to compliance and engages the whole organization throughout hierarchies, functions, and geographical areas.
In 2019, Sika’s focus has been on the following CMS initiatives:
In June 2019, the Group Compliance Officer – while remaining Head of the Group Compliance Organization – was also appointed Head of Corporate Human Resources (HR). Merging the two positions of Head HR and Head Compliance into one allows the HR and Compliance functions to cooperate very closely, which in turn helps promote strong ethical leadership and a culture of integrity across the Group. A Senior Compliance Manager joined the Group in September 2019, assuming the role of Sika’s Deputy Group Compliance Officer. Two additional positions fully assigned to the Corporate Compliance team were created in October.
The rollout of the Global Awareness-Raising Campaign on Compliance, which started in 2016, was completed in 2019. Overall, a total of more than 21,000 Sika employees in more than 100 countries were trained on the Sika Code of Conduct (CoC) and on how to use the Sika Trust Line, the internal digital platform allowing Sika employees to report suspected CoC violations and other serious misconduct. More than 4,000 Parex employees were also trained after merging with the Sika Group in 2019.
The Sika Trust Line (available in 35 languages) is an independent reporting platform available 24/7 and used as an anonymous whistleblower tool. Reports are made anonymously and handled confidentially. There is a strict non-retaliation policy in place.
In 2019, Sika launched the first global Sika Employee Survey, with the objective to measure the engagement level of employees, to identify strengths and improvement potential. More than 14,600 colleagues from all over the world participated in the survey, with an overall response rate of 78.0%. The survey confirmed that Sika’s strong corporate values represent the foundation of the unique corporate culture. It underscored that these values are broadly practiced in the Group, with managers setting the right “tone from the top” and being role models. One question of the survey asked employees whether they feel comfortable speaking up and reporting compliance or ethical concerns to their line manager. Sika’s excellent score of 80 index points out of 100 (0 meaning “I don’t feel comfortable”, 100 meaning “I feel very comfortable”) shows that a strong majority of employees have a positive attitude towards internal reporting of misconduct.
In 2019, allegations of misconduct could be substantiated in 19 instances. The analysis of the 2019 compliance cases shows the following:
- Considering the size of the Group, Sika has a very low number of compliance cases.
- Sika’s employees continue to be the most effective channel to detect
- Cases primarily resulted in dismissals, confirming Sika’s zero tolerance culture and consistency in remediation.
In 2019, Sika has released an up-to-date version of the CoC and increased the number of CoC translations from 36 to 42, all of which are available on the internal collaboration platform and the Sika intranet.
Each fiscal year, Sika General Managers (GMs) – by signing the “GRI Confirmation” – confirm their compliance with the CoC and other Corporate Policies and Manuals, and that they have offered adequate information and training to their staff. The annual “GRI Confirmation” campaign gives Sika the assurance that each GM has conducted the business in compliance with applicable laws and internal prescriptions concerning fundamental environmental, anti-corruption, antitrust, and labor laws. Furthermore, by signing the “Compliance Commitment 2020— 2021”, all General Managers and Sika Senior Managers renewed their pledge to be compliance role models, leading their staff and conducting business with highest integrity and in accordance with the CoC.
The draft design of a Compliance Audit Program covering ethical leadership, anti-corruption, antitrust and due diligence of third parties has been finalized and the approval process has been initiated. In 2020, Corporate Compliance will assess the overall implementation of Sika’s defined minimum requirements in the identified risk areas and propose a defined audit plan, to be aligned with other Sika assurance functions.