Altavia signed the United Nations Global Compact in 2008 and this year the group has attained the Advanced level, which represents the highest standard of performance in terms of the social responsibility of organisations.
Catherine Rehbinder, Group CSR Director, tells us more about this strong, responsible commitment and the concrete actions which will be led to take it even further.
What is the Global Compact and what are its missions?
The Global Compact was initiated in 2000 by Kofi Annan, then Secretary-General of the United Nations, with the aim of encouraging companies to voluntarily adopt a responsible progress approach by inviting them to integrate ten key principles, relative to Human Rights, Labour Rights, the Environment, and Anti-Corruption, into their strategies and activities. They also commit to promoting these principles throughout their networks. Today the Global Compact counts no less than 9,700 companies in 170 countries, 1,200 of which are in France.
When did Altavia join this movement?
Altavia joined the Global Compact in 2008 under the impetus of its Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Raphaël Palti. Every year for the past decade, we have communicated about our social and environmental commitments and progress by publishing our Communication On Progress (COP) text on the UN Global Compact website.
This year, we have achieved the highest stratum of the Global Compact, namely the Advanced level. At present only 8% of companies worldwide have attained the Advanced level for their COP, and at the end of 2017, 84 French companies belonged to this select club. We are very proud to be amongst the most advanced companies in the Global Compact!
What does reaching the Advanced level really mean for Altavia in terms of commitments?
As well as the annual publication of the actions that we are leading in favour of the four main themes of the Global Compact, we must communicate about how we are implementing 21 advanced criteria linked to the strategy, governance, and commitment of our stakeholders (i.e. all those with an interest in the activities of the company: staff, clients, suppliers, shareholders, associations), implementation of the principles in our value chain, and transparency. This year, our COP also includes details of how we are contributing to the UN sustainable development goals, (SDGs), adopted in 2015 by the United Nations. They are the basis of an action plan aiming, by 2030, to radically change our societies by ensuring a transition towards fair and sustainable development.
We are also now obliged to be assessed by an external third party. Consequently we underwent a peer review session in front of the Global Compact Advanced peers’ club, which evaluated our approach and validated our level. This level will be consolidated providing that we implement the action plan that we put forward.
What actions will be led as part of this action plan?
The two bases of the Altavia Group’s action plan are transparency and responsible procurement.
Firstly, we are going to set up CSR reporting, via which we will measure the impact of our actions on the environment, the human capital and society, and this on an international scale given that the Altavia Group is currently active in 30 countries.
Secondly, our actions will be focused on responsible procurement, which represents a key issue for the Group. It is crucial for us to ensure that our supply chain applies the principles of the Global Compact in terms of Human Rights, Labour Rights, respect for the environment, and ethical business.
More generally, over the coming months, Altavia must strengthen its CSR strategy by getting its stakeholders more involved. One way that we will go about this is by giving everyone to chance to comment on our COP, which will soon be made available on the group’s website.