Ethical tone and practices sustain a culture of integrity
DTTL's Ethics team and the member firm ethics officers are responsible for designing and implementing programs to promote and sustain ethical conduct by Deloitte professionals. During FY2012, DTTL Ethics added new messaging and learning platforms to its strategy, with the goal of making discussion about ethics an integral part of professional life at Deloitte.
DTTL Ethics worked with global audit leadership to develop guidelines supporting the addition of ethics criteria to remuneration and performance evaluation processes for member firms' audit partners. DTTL also established a requirement that all member firm people annually confirm their compliance with member firm anti-corruption policies.
DTTL Ethics created an online course focused on ethical sensitivity, judgment, and decision-making skills, which more than 20 member firms launched or began customizing. The annual global ethics survey, which measures awareness and effectiveness of member firm ethics programs, was implemented by 38 member firms.
Deloitte member firms strive to uphold the trust placed in them by clients and the capital markets and to build a similar sense of trust among their professionals. One of the most important responsibilities of DTTL and member firm senior leaders is to set a tone at the top that emphasizes our commitment to ethical behavior and reinforces the responsibility of everyone in the organization to act with integrity. This tone is essential to creating a culture of integrity throughout the Deloitte organization.
The DTTL Ethics team and the member firm ethics officers work closely with senior Deloitte leaders to carry out the organization's ethics programs. These programs are designed to help member firm people understand expectations for ethical behavior, develop skills for ethical decision-making, and gain the confidence to speak up about challenging ethical situations.
DTTL's formal ethics program comprises the following elements:
- The nine Ethical Principles and four Shared Values of the Deloitte member firms (see below)
- A global ethics policy that sets out the specifications for member firms' own ethics programs
- A global anti-corruption policy that addresses matters such as bribery, facilitation payments, political and charitable contributions, and gifts and entertainment
- Ethics training programs, including a new online training course (launched in FY2012), an introductory online course, classroom programs, and facilitator-led interactive case discussions
- Support activities, including communications, workshops, and webinars to facilitate best practice sharing among member firms
- Provision of a survey to allow member firms to measure their program's effectiveness
- Practice review program to measure compliance with global ethics policies and encourage collaborative discussions and continuous improvement over time
In addition, DTTL plays a role in various multilateral efforts to promote ethical conduct in the business world. The efforts in which DTTL participates include:
- World Economic Forum, Partnering Against Corruption Initiative (PACI)—Since April 2010, a DTTL leader has held a position on the PACI board to represent the professional services sector. Ordinarily rotated annually among the Big Four, this board position was offered to Deloitte for a second year and was held by DTTL Chairman of the Board Steve Almond from June 2011 through October 2012.
- UN Global Compact—DTTL Ethics sits on the Global Compact's Working Group on Anti-Corruption (the tenth Global Compact principle). Deloitte U.S. partners led the Compact's Sub-Working Group on Anti-Corruption Risk Assessment and played an instrumental role in creating a new risk assessment guideline.
- Conference Board—DTTL's Deputy Ethics Officer serves as a member of the Executive Committee for the Conference Board's Global Council on Business Conduct.
Ethical Principles of the member firms of DTTL
All of the Deloitte member firms have adopted the following Ethical Principles, which provide the foundation for their ethics programs:
- Honesty and Integrity—We act with honesty and integrity.
- Professional Behavior—We operate within the letter and the spirit of applicable laws.
- Competence—We bring appropriate skills and capabilities to every client assignment.
- Objectivity—We are objective in forming our professional opinions and the advice we give.
- Confidentiality—We respect the confidentiality of information.
- Fair Business Practices—We are committed to fair business practices.
- Responsibility to Society—We recognize and respect the impact we have on the world around us.
- Respect and Fair Treatment—We treat all our colleagues with respect, courtesy, and fairness.
- Accountability and Decision-making—We lead by example, using our Shared Values as our foundation:
- Outstanding value to markets and clients
- Commitment to each other
- Strength from cultural diversity
Collaboration on business ethics
DTTL and its member firms collaborate with other businesses and civil society groups on efforts to promote ethical business conduct. These include:
- UN Global Compact—Working Group on Anti-Corruption and Sub-Working Group on Anti-Corruption Risk Assessment
- World Economic Forum—Board of the Forum's Partnering Against Corruption Initiative and member of the Global Agenda Council on Anti-corruption
- B20 Business Summit—Member of the B20 working group on anti-corruption and transparency
- Conference Board—Executive Committee of the Board's Global Council on Business Conduct
- University of Notre Dame Mendoza College of Business—Ongoing Deloitte U.S. support of the Notre Dame Deloitte Center for Ethical Leadership (NDDCEL)