Forética has recently launched a new version of its SGE 21 Standard, an Ethical and Socially Responsible Management System for companies and organisations.
SGE 21 is Forética’s proprietary standard, and the first European standard that since the year 2000 has allowed organisations to implement, audit and certify an ethical and socially responsible management system.
“Organisations must take a strategic approach to Social Responsibility if they are to address the challenges posed by social, environmental and good governance issues. To do so, these challenges must be grounded in their processes, and they must establish objectives and targets that are realistic and achievable, with well-defined indicators and a system of governance that can verify compliance and on-going improvement. SGE 21 is a great tool for assisting this process,” explained Germán Granda, Managing Director of Forética.
Main new features of SGE 21 in 2017 and next steps
Forética has worked to update the SGE 21 Standard to ensure it remains in line with the most demanding standards agreed at an international level. It has done this by incorporating the approach to social responsibility and sustainability of standards such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the ISO 26000 guidance standard, which recognises the SGE 21 as a management tool in Annex A.
The Standard has also been updated to reflect new trends in international codes of good governance and transparency with respect to investors, customers and public authorities, making it easier to obtain indicators to prepare sustainability reports according to Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) criteria, or to answer the questionnaires used by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and the FTSE4Good Index. The Standard has also consolidated its feature of being an effective management tool that can be compatible with and integrated into management systems for quality, environment, occupational risk prevention, regulatory compliance and innovation.
However, SGE 21 has preserved its essence in terms of establishing the requirements of ethical and socially responsible management with respect to stakeholders, divided into nine management areas, with 43 requirements and more than 160 control points.
The innovative features presented in this new version are linked to establishing more extensive requirements with respect to risk detection and management, responsible taxation, human rights in the value chain, climate change measurement and targets, compliance and prevention of corruption, as well as the incorporation of corporate and environmental goals into performance assessment.
At the same time, greater emphasis has been placed on requirements related to internal audits, quality and excellence, health and safety, identification of environmentally relevant activities and impact, access to products and services and responsible advertising and marketing strategies.
The new version of the SGE 21 has entered into force on October1, 2017, following a transition period for organisations that are already using it. Lastly, Forética announced the launch of a new SGE 21 microsite offering transparent information on certified organisations and the process of certification and conformity assessment, free access to the Standard and all the information on upcoming training courses for professionals.