Table of Contents
Our corporate social responsibilities
We take pride in our people-oriented culture and values. In alignment to our mission of making this world a safer place by securing the world’s connected devices; we have also committed ourselves to continuously broaden our social impact by engaging with/donating to organizations working towards humanitarian, social, welfare & environmental causes.
When it comes to our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR); we take inspiration from United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDG) and approach it as a collective team effort with concretely positive results. We take a holistic approach that starts from our focus on internal wellness & growth which naturally becomes our driving force to give/share with the society on an individual level.
Our Commitment to People at Northern.tech
In Northern.tech, we’re driven by our people-centric beliefs & value-creation model. We believe that by focusing on and investing in establishing a healthy, sustainable, and progressive ecosystem we shall be able to provide our people a place to naturally grow and prosper while achieving meaningful objectives/goals.
One of our fundamental goals is to maintain a workplace that is free of any discrimination whatsoever - all people must be treated equally.
Freedom of speech/expression is a fundamental human right and we are committed to ensuring that within our organization everyone feels absolutely free to be and express themselves exactly as they want. We don't want anyone to feel afraid or discouraged from speaking up in a professional/social meeting as it would both be a tragedy, and counterproductive.
Corporate goals change, what we did yesterday may not be relevant or the right thing to do today. Therefore, we believe in changing processes, not our people. If someone wants/needs to improve in certain areas, we add dedicated efforts to finding ways of making it happen; as opposed to shoehorning people into existing processes.
The journey itself should be the goal. Even if a business changes completely, we should be able to take pride in our collective work and accomplishments. We don’t want to achieve excellence at the expense of the well-being of our most important stakeholders i.e. our employees. We want our people to be happy about their work and achievements on a continuous basis. It is our belief that a healthy and progressive workplace naturally leads to professional excellence.
We also want to contribute towards personal, intellectual and professional growth of all our employees/interns and therefore, everyone is encouraged to request relevant books and/or courses at the company’s expense. This also includes fully-covered language courses/classes for our employees who migrate to Norway at any point during their tenure with us.
We encourage and sponsor several social events across the year. This includes events happening in our main offices (Oslo/San Francisco) as well as our remote-employees arranging a sole/team event of their own. We also sponsor online activities that bring people together, such as online gaming/socializing equipment.
Northern.tech was born and is headquartered in Norway. All our employees in Norway are subject/entitled to the Norwegian Labor Laws. We believe that it's a great set of regulations with a people-first mindset; as it ensures both the important privileges and strong protections for the employees, in areas such as working conditions, hours, vacation, health, and employment status.
Therefore, we decided to broaden the benefits of Norwegian labor laws to all of our employees, contractors and interns regardless of their demographics.
Our motivation behind this decision was to ensure protection and wellness of our remote workers distributed around the world; who often receive less protection by their local system because they work as self-employed contractors. It should not matter where anyone is from; our belief is that everyone deserves the same set of privileges and protections.
Our Commitment to Global Welfare Programs
Our approach here is unique and inclusive. Each time a short/long term company objective is achieved, we make a donation to a charity/non-profit organization chosen by one of our team members. This cycle continues until a donation is made over the choice of each one of our employees.
Our inspiration for this approach is simple: We want our employees to be the decision-makers of where and how we should be making a positive impact. Since our company is composed of people from around the world; we have been able to learn a lot about, and contribute towards a diversified number of welfare programs running in different parts of the world.
Currently, we are directly or indirectly contributing towards the following 12 of the 17 UN’s goals by:
- Partnering with/donating to globally distributed non-profit organizations dedicatedly working towards one or more of these goals
- Partnering with/providing professional services to globally distributed businesses dedicatedly focused towards addressing one or more of these goals
- Using these goals as our inspiration/guidelines towards shaping-up/growing our entire organization and its subsidiaries, its systems of governance, how we do things internally and our way of doing business with the external entities.
- End poverty in all its forms everywhere
- End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
- Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
- Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all
- Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
- Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
- Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all
- Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation
- Reduce inequality within and among countries
- Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
- Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
- Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
We aspire to take concrete steps to add the remaining 5 goals, in our list of direct or indirect contributions as soon as it is practically possible for our organization to achieve them.
- Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development
- Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
- Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development
- Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
- Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
It is our conscious decision not to reveal the detailed information about the projects/organizations we work with since it’s not our intention to gain a perceived advantage from our dedicated work towards the betterment of the global community.
Having said that, we are happy to share more details with the individuals/companies who reach out and are interested in learning more about our positive impact on the society.
Our Commitment to the Environment
We believe that the Climate change is real and it’s our responsibility both on a corporate and individual level to do our part towards its mitigation.
Therefore; we have set an ambitious company-objective to “Become a net-zero carbon business by the end of 2022”. We have formed a dedicated task force to calculate our collective carbon footprints as accurately as possible and take concrete measures to achieve neutrality with a focus on scaling up our efforts and positioning ourselves in a surplus.
We plan on sharing our achievements in this regard with our stakeholders, partners and customers in the year 2023.
Our ethical business statement
Policy for with whom we do business
We believe in ethical trading and in only conducting business with countries that support democracy, the rule of law, and human rights and who have strong and effective institutions to prevent and fight corruption.
Therefore we have a policy for with whom we conduct business.
When deciding which countries we should not engage in business with, we use two international lists of countries embargoed or sanctioned for weapons proliferation, human rights abuse, financial crime, media suppression, or unjustified and unprovoked war and conflict. The US Federal Government and supranational organizations - the European Union and United Nations- compiled these lists. We adhere to their guidance.
We carefully comply with and follow guidance from the following international lists when considering who to sell our IPR, software, and services to, either directly or indirectly:
This document is reviewed annually.
Our ethical and health & safety guidelines
At Northern.tech we believe following ethical, health and safety guidelines is good for business. We expect our customers, partners and other stakeholders to live by the basic principles of good business practices as defined by the use of common sense.
Our business is based on our beliefs.
Further, we shall:
- always abide by the law
- treat and respect everyone equally regardless of gender, race, background, age, religion, disability and sexuality
- have zero tolerance for corruption
- not deal with partners, vendors, or customers if we suspect corruption or unethical behavior
If anyone suspects any irregularity, we have processes in place for informing, and/or blowing the whistle. Internally, there is a service for anyone, anonymously, to report either a) directly to the CEO, or b) directly to the board of directors without the CEO knowing.
A dedicated person in charge
We have a dedicated person responsible for Health and Safety Executive (HSE). The main purpose of this role is to control and understand the working conditions at the company, evaluate risks and make improvement plans. This internal control is to ensure a safe and environmentally friendly working environment
The HSE officer is responsible for defining the HSE policy. The CEO is responsible for implementing the HSE policy. The “verneombud” is responsible for ensuring that the defined HSE policy is implemented as expected.
The “verneombud” is a role defined by Norwegian labor law, and applies only within Norway. Outside of Norway, there is no mechanism for ensuring that the HSE policy is followed, and it is the responsibility of each and every employee to report incidents.
Working conditions include things like ventilation, cleanness, noise, lighting, ergonomy, accidents and assistance, pollution, social conditions, working hours and safety.
Setting the bar according to Norwegian standards
The HSE policy of Northern.tech originates from Norwegian labor law, but Northern.tech has decided to apply the same policy to every employee / full time contractor, regardless of which country they are employed in, to the extent possible, as we believe the Norwegian standards set a good bar.
There are no managers. Everyone reports to the same person; the CEO. All employees are encouraged to help and assist the HSE officer in his work, and especially to do so during the Periodic review process (3 times a year).
HSE work shall be continuous and everyone is responsible for reporting any incident, or areas of improvement. The HSE officer, managing director and CEO will have frequent status updates to discuss developing issues.
Annual assessments and continuous improvement
Once a year we do a more thorough evaluation of HSE conditions and results of such work since last evaluation.
Whenever a new incident, or an idea for improvement occurs, the HSE officer will bring this up and discuss the steps with the CEO. In these cases a written action plan shall be made for documentation purposes and put inside our internal compliance folder.
After a new plan has been executed, both the HSE officer and the CEO shall then review the outcome together and see if desired effects have been achieved. The result of the change shall be communicated to all employees along with updates during the process.
All new employees are given an introduction to our HSE policy, and will be informed about our procedures through our “How we do things” handbook. To ensure compliance, this is a task in our internal onboarding todo list for new employees.
Regarding environmental, social and general governance, we do an annual assessment were we look into issues such as:
- Corruption risk and handling
- Potential harmful environmental impact
- Unethical supply chain/production practices
- Review ethical guidelines (as mentioned on this site)
- Background checking of new partners and agents