Period covered by Communication on Progress (COP) From: May 2021 To: May 2022
1. Statement of continued support by the chief executive officer (owner or president in the case of small businesses)
29 April 2022
To our stakeholders:
I am pleased to confirm Global Partners Governance reaffirms its support of the Ten Principles of the United Nations Global Compact in the areas of Human Rights, Labour, Environment and Anti-Corruption.
In this annual Communication on Progress, we describe our actions to continually improve the integration of the Global Compact and its principles into our business strategy, culture and daily operations. We also commit to sharing this information with our stakeholders using our primary channels of communication.
2. Description of actions
GPG continues to place the highest priority on welfare of our staff and personnel. In 2021-22, the Coronavirus pandemic meant that staff in affected regions were asked to work at home where appropriate. Suitable equipment was provided as needed. Line managers conducted regular welfare checks and social activities were arranged to foster staff wellbeing. A staff survey was carried out and a working group was established to work collaboratively on areas for improvement we identified. A new team management structure was introduced to ensure all staff could receive regular support and advice on their progress as well as pastoral support.
Arrangements are made for personnel working overseas to have access to secure accommodation and working facilities, underpinned by insurance and contingency arrangements to ensure continuity of provision. For colleagues travelling on business we introduced a standardised risk assessment and welfare checkin process to ensure their safety and wellbeing. We have invested in security training for personnel in higher risk environments.
Workplace harassment is clearly unacceptable at GPG and we have put in place robust policies to which all personnel must adhere. Our safeguarding policy is in line with FCDO guidance and is overseen via a reporting mechanism which includes oversight at Board level.
GPG’s project work includes projects addressing human rights in countries around the world. This included work on anti- trafficking in Sudan, support for gender equality in Lebanon, and support for a Human Rights oversight Committee as well as political economy analysis in Uzbekistan, contributing to SDGs 5, 10 and 16.
GPG has a clear focus on incorporating ethical principles in all our employment practices, both in our London office and overseas. GPG believes in fair pay and is an accredited Living Wage employer – we pay at or above the London Living Wage for all positions, including internships.
The rights of our employees to a safe and non-discriminatory workplace are protected through our Equality and Diversity and Health and Safety policies. GPG’s recruitment policies also cover equality and diversity issues. GPG reviewed its HR policies this year with the advice of a law firm specialising in Human Resources to ensure they reflect current best practice, and carried out training for all staff to ensure they are familiar with their rights and responsibilities.
All staff continue to receive twice yearly performance assessments and training needs are identified and acted upon to support staff in developing their careers. We have also relaunched our Employee Assistance Programme which supports staff and their families with health, legal and childcare advice among other benefits, and have seen greatly increased uptake as a result.
GPG is committed to limiting the environmental impact of our work. Our staff at every level play their part in reducing the resources we consume to help mitigate climate change and reduce waste. Our Environmental and
Sustainability Policy sets objectives and targets in order to improve our environmental performance. We are committed to managing these aspects in order to:
- Reduce our carbon footprint
- Meet our social responsibilities
- Meet legislation
- Prevent pollution
- Use resources effectively
- Continuously improve environmental and sustainability performance
In our post pandemic work we are using what we have learned about remote and virtual delivery to inform our mixed delivery model, making it possible for us to reduce our carbon footprint. We have reviewed our contracts with a view to improving sustainability, for instance, greatly reducing the number of paper copies for which we contract. We are planning to carry out an IT audit to identify opportunities for reconditioning or recycling old equipment.
It is the policy of GPG to conduct business in an honest and ethical manner. A zero-tolerance approach is applied to bribery and corruption at every level in the business. GPG’s Ethical & Anti-bribery policy applies to all individuals working at all levels and grades, including senior managers, Directors, employees (whether permanent, fixed-term or temporary), consultants, contractors, trainees, seconded staff, interns or any other person associated with GPG, whether located in the UK or overseas.
GPG’s conflict of interests policy sets out the responsibility of all personnel to recognise situations in which a conflict of interest might arise, or there might reasonably be seen by others to be a conflict, to disclose that conflict to the appropriate person and to take further steps under the procedure described. It also includes guidance on recognising
potential conflicts. GPG’s recruitment policy reflects these provisions, gives illustrative examples of conflicts which may or may not be manageable, and highlights steps that should be taken. We have introduced a dedicated process for reporting concerns which can be accessed through our website and have provided training to staff on the new process.
We have zero tolerance for tax evasion, corruption, bribery and fraud in partnership agreements.
In our project work, GPG continued its work to support the Kuwaiti Anti-Corruption authority in developing codes of ethics for public servants, and on a proposed Code of Conduct for Members of Parliament, contributing to SDG 16.
3. Measurement of outcomes
Internally, GPG assesses outcomes by means of internal surveys, which are anonymous and encourage honest feedback. Following initial pilot surveys in 2018-19, we continue to adjust and implement our internal staff engagement survey and knowledge management survey annually, enabling us to track progress against last year’s baseline. GPG reviews learning and development, staff engagement and participation regularly and reports to its Board on progress.
GPG’s project work is measured regularly (at least quarterly) by means of reports to funders.