Building an Effective Ethics Program
Sep. 28, 2016 --
An Introduction for Lockheed Martin Suppliers
Ethics programs aim to prevent and detect criminal conduct, reinforcing compliance with legal requirements. However, ethics is about more that just following the law. Ethics programs help foster an organizational culture in which employees feel empowered to ‘do the right thing,’ even when laws and regulations don’t provide clear guidance. In an ethical culture, employees speak up when they see or hear something that doesn’t seem right.
Imporance of Ethics
Your organization may be legally required to have elements of an ethics and compliance program. Whether or not this is the case, an effective ethics program can help reduce your firm’s reputational risk and mitigate penalties should an enforcement action be brought against you. Ethics programs can also serve as a competitive advantage; Experience and studies have shown that people want to work with and for ethical companies.
Key Legal Standards
There is a growing body of laws and regulations related to ethics and compliance. For example, Section 52.203-13 of the U.S. Federal Acquisition Regulation outlines requirements for select government contractors. Official guidance on the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and the UK Bribery Act, in addition to the U.S. Federal Sentencing Guidelines for Organizations, also provides frameworks for effective ethics and compliance programs.
Lockheed Martin’s Ethics Supplier Mentoring Program aims to help suppliers of all sizes meet the various expectations set by laws, regulations, industry organizations and customers. The program features self-serve resources, live webinars, and the opportunity to work one-on-one with a Lockheed Martin Ethics Officer. These resources can be used to create or enhance an ethics program.