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Sustainability, Health, and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

Highlights of sustainability and CSR at SAP

2019 was an impactful year for sustainability, CSR, and diversity at SAP. 

Sustainability: Learning from Leading Companies

Learn how you can integrate sustainability as part of your strategy and positively contribute to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

Our sustainability, health and well-being, and CSR focus

SAP’s purpose to help the world run better and improve people's lives is the guiding principle to our business strategy, in particular, our sustainability, health, and corporate social responsibility (CSR) portfolio. We believe social, environmental, and economic activities and performance are interrelated – each impacting the others. Our efforts focus on creating a sustainable future for SAP, our customers, and society. For us, it is crucial to be a responsible business that intelligently strives to balance people, planet, and profit. 

Sustainability Impact

How can software positively impact sustainability? Through our customers. Using SAP solutions they turn sustainability concepts into concrete actions that benefit people throughout the world.

Sustainable Operations

We believe that improving our sustainability performance gives us insight that helps our customers do the same. We focus on three key metrics: environmental, social, and economic.

Health and Well-Being at SAP

Explore why SAP is one of the most attractive places to work, and how our Global Health & Well-Being group fosters workplace health.

Corporate Social Responsibility

SAP is a powering opportunity for all people through digital inclusion with the help of our talent, technology, and strategic partnerships.

Recogniton of our record of sustainability and corporate social responsibility

10 years of strategic sustainability

In 2019, SAP celebrated 10 years of embedding economic, social, and environmental sustainability in our long-term strategy. We've made incredible strides in our journey with solutions that help both SAP and customers run better, but more work lies ahead. Join us in our effort to help the world run better and achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs - also called UN Global Goals) by 2030.

Watch the replay of our 10th-anniversary event

To mark our progress towards a decade of action, spin the wheel for a fun exploration of what SAP and our customers are doing to contribute to the 17 SDGs.

As technological innovation rapidly changes the skills and competencies needed to succeed in today's digital world, we are tackling this challenge head-on. 

Learn more about this commitment

17 Global Goals to Achieve a Sustainable Future

As laid out in the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework, the issues our customers  and the world at large face are bigger, more global and more interconnected than ever before. We are committed to play our part to establish strategic partnerships to co-innovate and advocate practical problem solving in support of the SDGs.

Awards and recognition

In 2019, SAP received numerous awards and recognition for our performance related to sustainability:

  • Dow Jones Sustainability Indices: SAP ranked as software sector lead for the 13th consecutive year
  • FTSE4GOOD: SAP remains a constituent of the FTSE4GOOD Index Series
  • SAP has been reconfirmed as the constituent of the Ethibel Sustainability Index (ESI) Excellence Europe and the Ethibel Sustainability Index (ESI) Excellence Global
  • AAA ranking by MSCI
  • In both the Vigeo Eiris ESG rating as well as in the EcoVadis CSR rating, SAP has reached the highest performance level “advanced” and “gold”, respectively

SAP also receives many employer-related awards around the world. 

55

locations with ISO14001 certifications

94%

of SAP employees embrace sustainability

270,000

employee hours volunteered in 2019

Frequently asked questions

What is SAP’s sustainability strategy?

We define sustainability as the creation of social, environmental, and economic value for long-term business success and responsible global development. In line with this definition, we aim to move from a separate sustainability strategy to a sustainable corporate strategy. This means we seek to embed sustainability in everything we do: our solutions, our operations, and our social investment.

What is SAP’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategy?

Innovation belongs to all of us. Yet, according to The World Bank, more than half of global citizens are not included in the digital economy. SAP Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is tackling this issue head-on, powering opportunity for all people through digital inclusion initiatives.

Learn about SAP CSR

What is integrated reporting and what is SAP’s involvement in it?

The International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC, http://www.theiirc.org/) defines integrated reporting as "a process that results in communication, most visibly a periodic‚ integrated report, about value creation over time. An integrated report is a concise communication about how an organization’s strategy, governance, performance and prospects lead to the creation of value over the short, medium and long term." SAP published its first Integrated Report in 2013 (for the 2012 year). The current SAP Integrated Report may be found at www.sapintegratedreport.com

What are SAP’s carbon targets and strategy?

SAP aims to achieve a net-zero carbon footprint for SAP’s operations by 2025. This includes all direct (scope 1), indirect (scope 2), and selected categories of value chain (scope 3) greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) such as business flights, employee commuting, and co-locations of data centers. SAP will continue existing initiatives and programs to drive efficiency and innovation to avoid and reduce GHG emissions, following our approach “avoid – reduce – compensate.”

  • (1) Avoid: Whenever possible, SAP aims to avoid the creation of GHG. This is our priority (e.g., usage of virtual telecommunication instead of business flights).
  • (2) Reduce: If we cannot avoid GHG emissions, we aim to drive efficiency and reduce GHG emissions for all type of emissions (e.g., carpooling and car sharing, e-mobility).
  • (3) Compensate: Compensation / offsetting is only the last option. We extend our existing proven compensation models by enlarging our embedded internal carbon pricing model for CO2-free travel by train and airplane. Another example is the implementation of carbon neutral fuel cards for company cars. 
What is the employee engagement index?

We define employee engagement as a score for the level of employee commitment, pride, and loyalty, as well as our employees’ feeling of being an advocate of SAP. It is calculated based on the results of regular employee surveys. Employee engagement remains one of SAP’s four corporate strategic goals, along with growth, profitability, and customer loyalty. In 2017, we again achieved an employee egagement score of 85%. For 2020, we aim to reach an Employee Engagement Index between 84% and 86%. For more information, visit the SAP Integrated Report, Social Highlights section.

What are SAP's global policies that govern employee behavior and avoid corruption?

Our compliance management system details our policies and procedures for ensuring ethical business conduct. Our policies govern the conduct of our management, employees, suppliers and partners, as well as critical areas of our business such as sales, vendor selection, and payroll. In addition, we train employees on the SAP Code of Business Conduct for Employees, which includes guidelines on bribery, antitrust, and a host of other topics. In the case of any breaches of compliance, we take appropriate remedial action. You can find more information in the SAP Integrated Report, Business Conduct section.

How is SAP's sustainability department structured?

At SAP, we believe that it is not enough to simply have a sustainability strategy but that, instead, our overall corporate strategy must itself be sustainable. Only by achieving this can we fulfill our vision to help the world run better and improve people’s lives. We therefore strive to promote sustainability across our entire business. Led by our chief sustainability officer, a dedicated team works to embed sustainability into our corporate strategy and promotes new sustainability initiatives across the organization. Our chief financial officer (CFO) is the sponsor for sustainability on the Executive Board, and we also have a dedicated person in charge of sustainability in each area of the business. These individuals are responsible for embedding sustainability in their business practices, for example, by setting relevant targets and implementing related programs. They are held accountable for their achievements in review meetings with the CFO and the chief sustainability officer that take place twice a year.

How does SAP ensure data privacy and security?

We have implemented safeguards to help protect the fundamental rights of everyone whose data is processed by SAP, whether they are our customers, prospects, employees, or partners. In addition, we work towards compliance with all relevant legal requirements for data protection. Our secure software development lifecycle conforms to the ISO/IEC 27034 standard for application security and is closely embedded into our ISO 9001-certified process framework for developing standard software. Our secure operations strategy focuses on the security principles of “confidentiality, integrity, and availability” to support overall protection of our business, as well as our customers’ businesses.

Industry best-practice certifications are key success factors for our secure operations strategy. Many of our cloud solutions undergo Service Organization Control (SOC) audits ISAE3402, SSAE16 SOC I Type II, and SSAE16 SOC II Type II. The SOC standards are harmonized with a number of ISO certifications including ISO 9001, 27001, and 22301. SAP is committed to ensuring compliance with the harmonized European data protection law, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). We have implemented a wide range of measures to protect data controlled by SAP and SAP customers from unauthorized access and processing, as well as from accidental loss or destruction. These include, among others, the implementation of our data protection management system (DPMS) in areas critical to data protection. This system is certified on a yearly basis by the British Standards Institute.

Sustainability News from SAP

Sustainability and CSR in action at SAP

Creating positive economic, environmental and social impact within planetary boundaries.

Holistic Steering and Reporting

Holistic steering and reporting of economic, environmental, and social performance for long-term success.

Circular Economy

Managing limited resources productivity lead the transition to an inclusive and circular economy.

Societal Impact

Enhancing dgital skills, health, equality and inclusive work.

Responsible Business

Employing and safeguarding responsible business practices across our value chain.

Environmental Management

Reducing our environmental footprint.

Tackling the challenge of the 21st century together

SAP has launched the Climate 21 program to build analytical and transactional capabilities into our enterprise applications that can help our customers understand and minimize the greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint of their products and operations along their value chains. 

Ensuring agility and resilience in times of change with enterprise software

Watch Thomas Saueressig, member of the SAP Executive Board and head of SAP Product Engineering, explain how SAP and our customers are tackling short-term challenges while planning for long-term success. Amid the pandemic, climate change, and unforeseen disruptions, agile companies are resilient companies.

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Careers at SAP

At SAP, we flourish in an environment that encourages open, free expression of ideas. You'll work alongside creative thinkers who turn big ideas into reality for our customers. And with innovative job training, mentors to help you grow, and flexibility to balance work and personal life, you get more out of your career, too.

Diversity and Inclusion

Creating a diverse and inclusive culture makes us a better company, fueling our innovation, enhancing our experience of work, and enabling us to succeed in a rapidly changing world. 

SAP Purpose and Promise

SAP's technology and people help our customers address the world’s biggest issues. Visit the SAP Purpose website to see how our solutions help people, businesses, and institutions achieve economic development, social progress, and environmental impact.

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