Citizenship, Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development
Bull's CSR strategy allows the Group to grow in areas where its potential impacts and responsibilities are the most significant. It reinforces the value of the company's intangible capital and contributes towards the Group's three key commitments towards its customers: technological excellence, the development of human capital and trust..
“We can be proud of developing these services and products by encouraging sustainable growth which respects today's fundamental balance between society and the environment, while allowing us to face the challenges of tomorrow. Our expertise in big data, the cloud, green IT and digital simulation are all tools that we can harness to power the Group's sustainable development. This year, Bull also came top in the GAIA index, the leading index of French small and medium-sized enterprises recognized for their initiatives and investment in Corporate Social Responsibility.” December 2013, excerpt from Philippe Vannier's message to employees.
Companies and government agencies are an integral part of the world that surrounds them. Companies’ every action has an impact on employees, customers and shareholders, on the city or region in which they operate, and on the ecosystem in which they exist. CSR involves applying the concept of sustainable development to the corporate world. Companies that respect and listen to their stakeholders must naturally be concerned by their growth and profitability, but they must also be aware of the economic, environmental, social and societal impacts of their activities. The European Commission sees CSR as “the responsibility of companies for the impact they have on society. Focusing on CSR is in the interest of companies and society as a whole”.
Mainly positioned in the cloud and in big data, Bull integrates and manages high-performance systems and end-to-end Security Solutions. The Group offers products and services that enable its customers to leverage all the information at their disposal to create new applications. The Group's main CSR issues are linked to its activities and to IT.
For IT companies, the most obvious manifestation of CSR is the growing need for eco-efficient IT with economical use of raw materials, low energy consumption and an emphasis on recyclability.
IT must also be capable of helping other industries progress more quickly with their own challenges, such as social innovation, business transformation and the quest for long-term prosperity.
Our approach is both pragmatic and genuine, focusing on real meaningful issues, highlighting tangible achievements within businesses and delivering added value. Since the 1980s, groundbreaking projects such as “Team Spirit” and the Fredrik R. Bull Institute have testified to this concern.
Since 2010, in line with the Group’s strategy and the major challenges facing the IT sector, Bull’s CSR approach has focused on two major priorities:
Bull is actively engaged in these two areas and the eight key themes of the Group's CSR strategy encompass the seven key issues of ISO 26000, considered the international benchmark for CSR. Bull's CSR strategy is also based on established corporate responsibility principles, such as those enshrined in the United Nations Global Compact and OECD Guidelines.
In Bull Today 2013, the Group's corporate brochure, the section entitled “CSR: Fulfilling our responsibilities” reads: “Not only does Bull provide technical and business expertise, but it also offers an alternative vision of IT: one that is open and accessible, allowing people to make choices and transforming diversity into an asset. This ethical stance is an integral part of our corporate strategy (…). In real terms, this is expressed by a well thought-out CSR policy structured on two levels: the first concerns the Group’s environmental, social and corporate governance responsibility; the second is focused on benefits linked to using Bull solutions, such as green IT and HPC.”
The progress achieved takes shape through technological innovation, risk reduction and the implementation of innovative practices for the core business. For example, progress designed to optimize the energy consumption of activities, products and services has an impact on the environment and on the Group's competitiveness; an impact that also extends to Bull's customers and opens up new markets.
In 2013, Bull came top in the global ranking of 230 companies assessed by the GAIA Index for their CSR commitment. EcoVadis has ranked Bull among the highest scoring IT companies in CSR and has awarded it “gold recognition”, the highest level possible.In France, during the annual survey carried out by Sofres, almost 80% of customers said that they saw Bull as “a leading player in sustainable development”.
At the Ninth Integration Awards held in Nantes in November 2013 by Medef, the French business confederation, Bull received an award in the “Recruitment of people with disabilities” category. The SIRH (Information Systems in Human Resources) association awarded its prize for “Favorite HR Development” to Bull's Talentsoft project, in recognition of its change management and the international dimension of the project.
Bull also received the “Judges' favorite” award in 2013 from the Oracle French-speaking users association for the implementation of One ERP and Oracle Manufacturing in its lean manufacturing program. Bull also won an accolade from EMC for its partnership in data protection and recovery with the “Best EMC EMEA Partner 2013” award. During the 2013 HPCwire Readers and Editors' Choice Award, Bull received the Readers' Prize and Editorial Prize for extreme factory, voted best remote 3D visualization technology for digital simulation. The new ROMEO supercomputer designed by Bull for the University of Reims was ranked fifth in the world for energy performance in the Green 500 list. Bull's project for Polish airline LOT scooped the award for “Best in Cloud 2013”.
In 2012, the CSR Department also took into account issues relating to ethics. The director of CSR was appointed Group ethics officer. A new “Code of Conduct/Code of Ethics” was drafted. It formalizes essential shared rules, and provides benchmarks setting out the conduct the Group expects of all its employees, executives and partners. It lays down rules in respect of organizational, human, environmental and economic issues, and describes the management system to be used for its implementation. The Group’s principles dovetail with the framework of the basic principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the OECD Guidelines and the UN Global Compact.
The new “Code of Conduct/Code of Ethics” states that “Bull will not directly or indirectly receive or give, promise or demand a bribe or other undue advantage with a view to granting, obtaining or keeping a contract or other advantage. The payment of any commission or other consideration to sales agents or introducers must be the object of a written agreement in compliance with internal procedures and signed by the authorized persons. The consideration provided must not exceed reasonable compensation for actual and necessary commercial services rendered”.
In December 2013, the message from Philippe Vannier to all Group’s employees states: “The Code should be applied as we put in to practice our three core values: commitment, team spirit and agility.It is essential that each and every one of us pays close attention to the Code, makes sure it is distributed effectively and is convinced of its benefits. And it is essential that we all take great care to ensure that our behaviour within Bull and in our relationships with our business partners and Bull stakeholders adheres closely to the principles set out in this Code”.
A specific briefing note covering export control was sent to the senior managers of the Group’s various entities in late 2012. It sets out the rules and procedures to be followed for Group products potentially subject to export controls or restrictions.
Since 2008, the optional inclusion of a section devoted to CSR in Bull’s Registration Document has demonstrated our commitment. In 2011, Bull mandated Deloitte & Associates – one of its statutory auditors – to conduct an audit of a selection of the CSR indicators it reports.
The principal CSR indicators are summarized in a table which takes into account the topics covered by Article R. 225-105-1 of the French Commercial Code (French Grenelle II law) and also ties in with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the UN’s Global Compact and ISO 26000.
Learn more about Bull's CSR policy
CSR : Extract from the 2013 Registration document
Group Annual CSR Report for 2013
The two documents – the DDR and the CSR Report – are designed to complement each other.
The Group Annual CSR Report for 2013 follows the same logic used to present the Bull Group’s approach to CSR. This approach is driven by our stakeholders’ expectations, the specific major challenges which the Group has to address and also the principle of materiality.
This document also refers to CSR themes as expressed in the GRI4 Global Reporting Initiative (version 4). This formatting aims to comply with the internationally-recognized CSR reporting format and to make it easier to read and understand.