Governance at ARMOR GROUP centers on board meetings (2 per year), discussion meetings with investors (6 per year), strategic meetings with partner managers (2 per year), general management meetings (8 per year) and executive committee meetings (monthly). The Group’s social responsibility efforts are managed by a CSR Committee created in 2011. This meets three times a year, supported by a network of contacts in France and in the subsidiaries.
The CSR Committee is chaired by the CEO and co-ordinated by the CSR Director. Its members include the Group’s functional (HR, Finance, Legal, etc.) and operational directors for all activities (Purchasing, Marketing, Production, etc.). Each member is both an ambassador for the Group and a contact point for requirements expressed by the company’s stakeholders (employees, customers, suppliers, shareholders, local authorities, etc.). Other parties may be invited to take part subject to the meeting agenda.
An annual CSR management review is held in the subsidiaries, involving the CSR correspondents, the subsidiary senior management team, and the Group CSR Department. Giving consideration to local factors in the overall CSR strategy helps to optimize and ensure it is incorporated at all levels of governance.
The Group’s requirements are related in an action plan and quantified targets. The consolidated results are disclosed on specific media, such as the CSR report or other dedicated communication channels.
ARMOR GROUP’s has a clear goal: Secure ISO 9001 (Quality), ISO 45001 (Occupational Health and Safety) and ISO 14001 (Environment) certification for all its production sites to align management systems in all the Group’s entities. The Colombian subsidiary secured triple Certification in late 2020, while the other subsidiaries are targeting the same outcome over the coming years. The transition from OHSAS 18001 and ISO 45001 will be made gradually until 2021.
To implement a joined-up CSR strategy, ARMOR GROUP also considers the requirements of its stakeholders. This profusion of views and opinions helps position and guide the Group’s strategy.
A process to identify key stakeholders has been in place since 2016. It is based on three main criteria, frequency of contact, stakeholder impact on ARMOR GROUP and the influence of ARMOR GROUP on the stakeholder. Some of the Group’s key stakeholders are presented below. In late 2019, the CSR Committee began a survey on the way the company was viewed by a representative sample of its stakeholders. The findings fed into research on the Group’s future 2022-2025 strategic cycle.
A CSR week was organized in Mexico on ethics and governance. As a result, all employees were invited to training courses and workshops to boost the teams’ values and honesty, especially regarding corruption risks.
In 2012, the concept of dual materiality helped define the company’s strategy and priority issues. These social issues are significant given their impacts on the Group, risks and opportunities for the Group and stakeholder requirements.
The 6 challenges for socially-responsible innovation cover an array of topics that are both risks and opportunities for the Group. They are geographically plotted in a materiality matrix and regularly updated by the CSR Committee. The matrix is a tool to rank subjects to prioritize and plan actions within the Group.
ARMOR GROUP carries out a self-assessment on its CSR maturity every four years to measure the effect of various CSR activities. The questionnaire features roughly 300 questions based on ISO 26000 guidelines, key ILO conventions, the 10 main principles of the Global Compact, SA 8000 requirements, the 26 criteria of the Advanced level Global Compact and good CSR practice.
ARMOR France and each of the subsidiaries assess their progress against 7 topics:
• Governance and CSR management
• Fair business practices
• Human rights and working conditions
• Health and safety
• The environment
• Product and consumer issues
• The community and local development
Because humanism is one of the Group’s values, its international expansion strives to be consistent with human rights, and is a prerequisite for all new sites. It includes a certain number of precautionary measures and checks followed by regular monitoring.
As well as introducing monitoring systems and applying local regulations on human rights, compliance with the 8 fundamental conventions of the ILO is a top priority for ARMOR GROUP:
• C105 and C29: abolition of forced labor
• C182 and C138: abolition of child labor
• C87 and C98: freedom of association and the right of collective bargaining
• C100: equal remuneration
• C111: non-discrimination.
Senior manager teams in the subsidiaries are accountable for properly applying them, with support from the Group’s Human Resources and Legal Departments. An annual monitoring process helps keep a watchful eye on the process. Since its implementation in 2010, not one case of non-compliance has been reported.
In 2015, these principles were included in the Group’s code of ethics, which features a whistleblowing procedure available to stakeholders. The system is managed by an ethics specialist, i.e., the Head of Legal Affairs. Furthermore, each of the Group’s entities is formally assessed against these criteria at four-year intervals (see CSR maturity score).
In addition to these principles, and in connection with the 6 challenges for socially-responsible innovation, the code of ethics reaffirms the Group’s commitment to all its stakeholders. One of these commitments concerns, in particular, fair business practices. In accordance with the French Sapin II law, ARMOR’s anti-corruption code of conduct sets out the fundamental principles that the Group undertakes to respect in
combating different forms of corruption. Following a risk assessment by country, department, and business, the code of conduct has been translated into all the Group’s languages and is fully compliant with
local legislation. It was also publicized in an information campaign in 2019 for all employees worldwide and geared to local audiences.
ARMOR GROUP has always been especially keen to comply with the principles of personal data protection. As such, the company has brought in a policy to comply with French data protection legislation and the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into force in May 2018. A Data Protection Officer (DPO) is tasked with ensuring constant compliance and to address any enquiries.
As with the code of ethics, and in compliance with French legislation, a whistleblowing system with personal protection measures has been included in the anti-corruption code of conduct. This covers all the Group’s entities. The Head of Legal Affairs has been nominated as the ethics and compliance specialist to ensure that any such alerts are dealt with confidentially. Internal audits, reported in an annual review, also ensure that business practices meet the Group’s commitments.
In addition, buyers are also subject to a code of conduct featuring the following priorities: equity and impartiality, confidentiality, compliance and fostering compliance with mutual undertakings, integrity,
and exemplary conduct. They also attend a training module on combating corruption once they are recruited and regularly take part in CSR awareness sessions with a specific focus on their occupations.
As a signatory of the Responsible Supplier Relations Charter, in 2011, ARMOR GROUP secured certification from the same body in 2015. This accolade honors French companies with a track record of long-term, balanced
relationships with their suppliers and underlines ARMOR GROUP’s proactive stance for responsible purchasing. The charter has since adopted ISO 20400 requirements on Responsible Purchasing and ARMOR GROUP renews its
commitment to it on an annual basis.
As a result, we reiterate our pledge to our customers, suppliers, employees, local authorities, and other partners that we will ensure good relations in full compliance with human rights and business ethics.