Rights and rules

As a company managing more than 42,000 employees, the adidas Group has established standards and rules that specify the Group's responsibilities towards its global workforce. These are defined in the adidas Group Labour Rights Principles. In turn, employees must comply with the Employee Code of Conduct, which explains their duty to ensure ethical business behaviour.

Labour Rights Principles

The Labour Rights Principles demonstrate the Group's commitment to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and are the guiding framework for several Group level policies that put our commitment into day-to day practice. These policies are related to issues such as employee recruitment, development, equal opportunities and compensation and benefits.

Read more about the Labour Rights Principles.

adidas Group Employee Code of Conduct

Integrity is one of the core values of the adidas Group. All employees are expected to act with fairness and responsibility as well as in compliance with relevant laws and regulations while carrying out their tasks. In order to maintain good corporate governance, we therefore adopted a Code of Conduct as part of our internal Global Policy Manual.

The Code is the cornerstone of ethical work behaviour for our employees. It defines binding rules with respect to legally compliant and ethical behaviour towards other employees, business partners and third parties, for handling information - in particular insider information - as well as for dealing with financial matters.

Read more about the Employee Code of Conduct.

The Code of Conduct is supported with mandatory online training available in ten languages. This ongoing training is aimed at raising awareness of ethical and social behaviour as well as promoting compliance with data protection requirements and other policies.

Complaints and non-compliances

To track complaints or cases of non-compliances, we have established a network of compliance managers worldwide, and the Works Council at our headquarters is also involved. In 2010 we installed a new hotline for our business operations in China and have further expanded the number of compliance managers from 10 to 30.

A whistle-blowing system assures that employees can submit complaints anonymously.

Analysing the number and nature of entries submitted in 2010, nearly 80% of all cases related to general complaints about employee-manager relations. The Human Resources department is used to addressing these issues. In all other cases employees were seeking advice on dealing with specific issues.

Ensuring data protection

Ensuring privacy around data is also an important aspect of the Group's compliance programme. Our data protection system aims to ensure personal information is handled, stored and processed according to applicable laws and internal policies globally. Online training on the 'Do's and Don'ts' is provided to all employees and special training is given to departments that manage sensitive data, such as marketing departments.

Reading this report

Performance counts and reporting is about making performance clear to readers.

So in this year's report each page identifies which Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) indicators it addresses, complementing the GRI Index.