Friday, July 8, 2011

GLOBAL BUSINESS STANDARDS CODEX-(GBS) AND EXAMPLES.human resources management


Create and evaluate a Code of Conduct
A corporate Code of Conduct, sometimes also refered to as Code of Ethics, helps a company to show to all involved parties, internal and external, the standards that govern its conduct, thereby conveying its commitment to responsible practice wherever it operates.

As you know, there have been many recent legal and paralegal initiatives to promote or require good conduct by corporations. Because there are now so many of these guidelines, it is not simple to get an overview, so that you're able to quickly assess if your firm's Code of Conduct is 'worldclass'. A useful article in the HBR of Dec 2005 by Professors Lynn Paine, Rohit Deshpandé, Joshua D. Margolis, and Kim Eric Bettcher may help: it provides a useful overview of all (?) things that should be considered in any Corporate Code of Conduct.

The authors suggest 8 governing ethical principles which taken together they call: The Global Business Standards Codex (GBS Codex). These 8 principles to create or evaluate a Code of Conduct and their most important aspects are:
  1. The Fiduciary Principle (Diligence, Loyalty).
  2. The Property Principle (Protection, Theft).
  3. The Reliability Principle (Contracts Premises, Commitments).
  4. The Transparency Principle (Thruthfulness, Deception, Disclosure, Candor, Objectivity).
  5. The Dignity Principle (Respect for the Individual, Health and Safety, Privacy and Confidentiality, Use of Force, Associatiation & Expression, Learning & Development, Employment Security).
  6. The Fairness Principle (Fair Dealing, Fair Treatment, Fair Competition, Fair Process).
  7. The Citizenship Principle (Law & Regulation, Public Goods, Cooperation with Authorities, Political Noninvolvement, Civic Contribution, .
  8. The Responsiveness Principle (Addressing Concerns, Public Involvement).
The article itself is already a summary of regulations and best practices. So if you want to assess or create a Corporate Code of Conduct, you are advised to read the article completely.
The Harvard Business Review (December 2005) has a useful article (Professors L. Paine,
R. Deshpand√©, J. D. Margolis, and K. Bettcher) which helps to provide a useful overview of what should be considered in a Corporate Code of Conduct.


The authors identify 8 governing ethical principles: The Global Business Standards Codex (GBS Codex). These 8 principles to create or evaluate a Code of Conduct. Their most important aspects are:
  1. The Fiduciary Principle (Diligence, Loyalty).
  2. The Property Principle (Protection, Theft).
  3. The Reliability Principle (Contracts Premises, Commitments).
  4. The Transparency Principle (Thruthfulness, Deception, Disclosure, Candor, Objectivity).
  5. The Dignity Principle (Respect for the Individual, Health and Safety, Privacy and Confidentiality, Use of Force, Associatiation & Expression, Learning & Development, Employment Security).
  6. The Fairness Principle (Fair Dealing, Fair Treatment, Fair Competition, Fair Process).
  7. The Citizenship Principle (Law & Regulation, Public Goods, Cooperation with Authorities, Political Noninvolvement, Civic Contribution, .
  8. The Responsiveness Principle (Addressing Concerns, Public Involvement).

Up to Code: Does Your Company's Conduct Meet World-Class Standards?

Codes of conduct have long been a feature of corporate life. Today, they are arguably a legal necessity--at least for public companies with a presence in the United States. But the issue goes beyond U.S. legal and regulatory requirements. Sparked by corruption and excess of various types, dozens of industry, government, investor, and multisector groups worldwide have proposed codes and guidelines to govern corporate behavior. These initiatives reflect an increasingly global debate on the nature of corporate legitimacy. Given the legal, organizational, reputational, and strategic considerations, few companies will want to be without a code. But what should it say? Apart from a handful of essentials spelled out in Sarbanes-Oxley regulations and NYSE rules, authoritative guidance is sorely lacking. In search of some reference points for managers, the authors undertook a systematic analysis of a select group of codes. In this article, they present their findings in the form of a "codex," a reference source on code content. The Global Business Standards Codex contains a set of overarching principles as well as a set of conduct standards for putting those principles into practice. This codex is meant to be used as a benchmark by those wishing to create their own world-class code. The provisions of the codex must be customized to a company's specific business and situation; individual companies' codes will include their own distinctive elements as well. What the codex provides is a starting point grounded in ethical fundamentals and aligned with an emerging global consensus on basic standards of corporate behavior.

What is Codex?

Codex Alimentarius is Latin for 'code' and 'food'. Simply translated, it means 'food code'. The Codex Alimentarius Commission has its headquarters in Rome. It is a body set up by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Health Organisation (WHO). It coordinates input from more than 160 countries to develop and endorse the standards that comprise the international food code. Called 'Codex' for short, the code was set up in 1963 to protect consumer health and ensure fair practices in world food trade. With more than 200 standards already endorsed by member countries throughout the world, the code continues to grow with new standards being debated and endorsed each year.

Codex standards are a global reference point for international food trade. Many countries insist on compliance with Codex standards for their imports. Not complying with relevant Codex standards could add significant costs to production. Codex standards are also linked to WHO agreements and at least two of these agreements require member countries to align their domestic standards with international standards wherever possible.
If you are exporting food or considering exporting, Codex standards are increasingly being used as benchmarks in WTO dispute settlement processes - and where a trade dispute arises between countries, you may find you are excluded from exporting. Many developing countries also rely on Codex because they don’t have the resources to develop risk-based food safety systems of their own. So if you plan to export to developing countries, Codex compliance is a wise business decision.

What is the Codex Steps process?

  • Step 1 A project proposal for new work prepared by a Codex subsidiary body is reviewed by the Executive Committee and compared against the criteria and priorities established by the Commission. The proposal is then referred to the Commission for approval as a new standard, guideline or related text for development. The Commission approves and decides who will undertake work.
  • Step 2 The Secretariat arranges for the preparation of a proposed draft standard. This may be through a working group of the relevant committee, an international organisation or other expert bodies.
  • Step 3 The draft text is circulated to member governments and relevant international organisations for comment.
  • Step 4 Comments are reviewed at Committee level and incorporated into the draft standard for discussion.
  • Step 5 The Commission reviews the progress made and determines whether the draft standard should continue to finalisation. Sometimes the text is considered to be ready for final adoption at this stage – called Step 5/8.
  • Step 6 The approved draft is circulated to member countries for another round of comments and finalisation by the relevant Committee.
  • Step 7 Amendments are made by the committee to the revised draft based on comments received and the proposed standard is referred to the Commission for adoption.
  • Step 8 Following a final round of comments, the Commission adopts the draft as a formal Codex text. The Standard, Guideline or other text is then published by the Codex Secretariat.
Note: At Steps 3 and 6 Codex Australia will seek comments from stakeholders that may be used to influence the direction of the draft standard. In addition to discussion at committee level, many committees now undertake more drafting between sessions of the committee through Electronic Working Groups and Physical Working Groups.

What is an "Alinorm"?

An alinorm is a Codex Committee meeting report.

2 comments:

  1. Things are changing in how ISO training is being consumed and delivered. We can help you compete in the ever changing competitive landscape by Become An ISO Auditor. That's why taking ISO training will give you a lot of benefits for your company and your employees.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi dear I am MBA student. and i am searching nice tips regarding my study.Thanks for sharing it dear. it's nice post, nice tips. i want to know about Human Resource Management. i want to know how to manage resources. because i have no experience about it. Thanks for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete