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Jenoptik staff improve sustainability in the workplace

We launched the first company-wide sustainability competition, focusing on environmental protection, in 2020. All independently implemented projects in the daily working environment that contributed to greater sustainability at Jenoptik were assessed. There were no requirements in terms of savings or size – every single step, even the tiniest one, towards greater environmental protection is welcome.

More than 40 projects, both small and large, from all areas of the company were submitted over the summer of 2020. The entries addressed a wide variety of topics that were tackled jointly by employees in their work environments, including, for example, avoiding waste by reusing packaging, switching to drinking water dispensers, or using environmentally-friendly cleaning agents.

The winning project addressed two issues at once: an intact environment and a pleasant working environment. Colleagues from the Light & Safety division transformed an unused space at the Camberley location, UK, into a paradise for insects, birds, and also employees, who can spend their break and relax here, by planting shrubs, wildflowers, and insect hotels. In the summer, “Watchmore Park” was used as a coronavirus-friendly exercise space for outdoor yoga classes. We shared the winning project, along with the other top 10 projects, with all employees on the intranet. In response, initial ideas for further initiatives have already emerged.

When it comes to sustainability, however, we don't just focus on environmental protection. Instead, we take a fully integrated approach to the issue: in addition to environmental protection, our activities focus on our social responsibility and a commitment to our region, respect for human rights in our supply chains, our employee matters, compliance, and governance issues. For some specific areas, we have developed targets on the basis of a materiality analysis, which was used to survey our stakeholders on the key non-financial issues, and have taken various initiatives to sustainably embed these issues in the corporate structure, corporate culture, and management.

A few examples should serve to illustrate this: The diversity rate, which is calculated from the average number of female managers and managers with an international background, is to increase to 30 percent by 2022, and 33 percent by 2025. A Diversity Council has been in place since 2020 to help achieve this goal by supporting initiatives for more diversity, and we also operate various platforms that encourage women to share views, for example. We also aim to increase the share of green electricity we use around the world to 70 percent by 2022, and 75 percent by 2025, as well as make our supply chain more transparent and help to protect human rights and the environment. In early 2021, we also started to make our group financing more sustainable and to integrate ESG components into the new debenture loans to be issued and the new syndicated loan planned for the end of 2021. The development of our indicators and initiatives are summarized in the Non-Financial Report.