Responsibility for society
No company can live in isolation. We are all dependent on a well-functioning society in order to survive. For Saab, it is a given that we will take responsibility for people and the environment throughout the value chain.
Promoting an interest in technology
Saab’s sustainability commitment is rooted in its mission to make people and society safe by contributing to security and defence capabilities. Considering the products we sell, Saab naturally takes responsibility for information security and product safety. With its high-tech businesses, Saab also creates additional value for society. Saab’s operations play an important role in driving innovation and technological development in society. With employees in a large number of locations, Saab creates jobs and opportunities for collaboration and spreads knowledge. An important part of Saab’s innovative capabilities is university partnerships. Among other things, Saab employees have the opportunity to research for a PhD, while researchers and students from the schools can get involved in Saab’s work.
To promote an interest in technology, Saab offers a number of activities for children and young adults from preschool upward. Everything from technology classes for kids, technology contests, study visits and summer engineering school to a high school program where students have close contact with Saab’s businesses.
By promoting education and an interest in technology, Saab contributes to goal 4.4: Increase the number of youth and adults with relevant skills, including technical and vocational skills, for employment. Through university partnerships, industrial and innovation collaborations, and technology transfers Saab contributes to UN sustainable development goal 9.5: Encourage innovation and substantially increase the number of research and development workers
Saab operates in a highly competitive global market and succeeds in meeting fierce international competition through unique innovations, smart collaborations and a pragmatic approach. At the centre are our employees, who together challenge and explore the potential to maximize their and the team's capacity.
We are proud sponsors of many sporting events in Sweden. Equestrian sport is the second highest participation sport after football in Sweden and we understand how important this is to our brand visibility.
Our motivation to increase visibility and awareness is a twofold approach; first so people understand what we do and secondly to actively recruit new employees. We have a strong belief in equestrian individuals as the employees of the future.
A number of exciting collaborative projects create new knowledge and lead to greater innovation, at the same time as they spark interest in an engineering education among young equestrians. As an example, more than 500 equestrians participate annually in youth seminars on innovation and personal development tied to the equestrian environment.
In addition to the equestrian sport, we have sponsorships with a number of public arenas that further enable interaction with society.
Saab has pledged to apply the UN Global Compact’s ten principles and integrated them in its Code of Conduct. Through procurement processes and in contacts with partners we increase awareness of the UN Global Compact and in this way promote the values that we stand for. Saab has an impact on human rights through its work in a number of areas, ranging from diversity and occupational health and safety to anti- corruption and export control. The work with human rights issues is a continuous process that develops over time. Saab uses the UN guiding principles for business and human rights to support its work. According to these principles, companies are expected to identify their most important human rights issues, where there is a risk of the most serious adverse consequences from the company’s operations. Saab has identified responsible supplier relationships (right to fair working conditions) and compliance with export regulations (right to life, freedom and personal safety) as its most important issues.
Suppliers are an extension of our own operations
We see our suppliers as an extension of our own operations and expect them to take the same social and environmental responsibility we do. Systemic measures to ensure that responsibility is being taken in the supply chain not only minimise risks, but also lead to higher quality in the products we buy. Our code of conduct for suppliers, which is based on the UN Global Compact’s principles, is included in all new contracts and in contracts that are renegotiated. In the code we stipulate that we expect our suppliers to place similar demands on their subcontractors.
Saab is an inclusive, safe and healthy workplace. Diversity gives the organisation access to different perspectives and stimulates innovation. Equal treatment and non-discrimination are also aligned with human rights. Everyone who works with recruiting at Saab receives training in diversity issues, and diversity is a parameter in leadership training and the recruiting process. The company has a number of networks for women and for diversity in a broader sense. By working actively with occupational health and safety, we reduce the risk of accidents, illnesses and on-the-job injuries in the short and long term. Read more about how Saab takes responsibility as an employer in our annual report.
Leading compliance programmes
One of Saab’s fundamental values is trust. We are honest, reliable and keep our promises. By following the guidelines and principles in Saab’s Code of Conduct, our employees show what this value means in practice. The areas of anti-corruption, export control and information security are critical to Saab. The company therefore works continuously to develop better routines and processes. The goal is to have industry-leading compliance programmes.
Saab focuses in particular on UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16 and its targets 16.4, to fight illicit arms flows, and target 16.5, to fight corruption and bribery. Saab contributes by complying with export controls that apply to its products and working systematically to prevent corruption.
Collaborations, initiatives and memberships
Saab has chosen to participate in a number of sustainability initiatives and organisations. Examples include:
- The business ethics committee of the Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD)
- The steering committee of the International Forum on Business Ethical Conduct (IFBEC)
- Environmental collaborations through the Swedish Security and Defence Industry Association (SOFF)
- Environmental collaborations within Europe through the Aerospace and Defence Industries Association in Europe (ASD) and globally through the International Aerospace Environmental Group (IAEG)
- Global Compact Network Nordic Countries
- Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)
- Global Reporting Initiative (GRI)
- Green Chain
"Being a mentor is a good way to do good while gaining valuable experience in leadership and project management"
Engagement in the local community increases familiarity with and trust in our operations. As far as possible, the activities involve our employees. By offering their time and knowledge in various ways, they increase awareness of the company and build trust in our business while gaining valuable experience. Our employees serve, for instance, as math tutors, teachers, class mentors, hosts for school visits and raise funds for schools.