New online tool provides compliance officers with complimentary, detailed information on peer practices in code of conduct content.
NEW YORK – November 29, 2011 – The Ethisphere Institute, in partnership with attorneys Ryan D. McConnell, Katharine Southard and Charlotte Simon, is pleased to announce the launch of its new Code of Conduct Dataset, a searchable, online review of the content of codes of conduct and policies from the 500 largest corporations by revenue. The information contained in the dataset, which was collected between January 2011 and September 2011, breaks down key aspects and content areas within each code of conduct by 42 criteria, ranging from whether the code includes an introductory letter from the company’s CEO to inclusion of policies on key compliance and ethics risk areas such as export controls, insider trading, and anti-corruption.
“The code of conduct is the foundation of a compliance program and sets forth the rules that all employees should follow,” said Ryan D. McConnell, a white collar criminal defense partner with Haynes and Boone who conceived of and directed the research. “This new tool is exciting as it provides compliance officers with a centralized tool for reviewing peer practices in code of conduct content. Every company should gather data to benchmark and improve their own codes of conduct on a regular basis.”
Beyond providing a free, searchable tool for compliance officers interested in researching today’s peer practices in codes of conduct, Ethisphere will use the information collected for this dataset, as well as publicly available information on more than 2,500 additional codes of conduct gathered by Ethisphere’s research team, to regularly publish statistics and best practices on codes of conduct by industry.
For example, some of these findings include:
- Five percent of retail stores do not have an antitrust policy of any kind
- Two-thirds of beverage companies’ codes listed in the dataset begin with an introduction from the CEO
- Only 17 percent of airline companies’ codes listed in the dataset contain 24/7 hotline availability information
“Ethisphere is the top organization when it comes to reviewing and benchmarking codes of conduct for multinational corporations,” said Erica Salmon Byrne, senior vice president of advisory services and assistant general counsel for Corpedia, a leading ethics, compliance, and risk assessment consulting company and licensed credentialing partner of the Ethisphere Institute. “Making this data publicly available will help significantly as companies benchmark themselves against others in their industry, providing an opportunity for companies to see areas they can improve and areas where they are doing well.”
About The Code Content Dataset
The Ethisphere Code of Conduct Dataset is an aggregation of more than 500 companies’ code and policies benchmarked by industry. The dataset is designed to be a comprehensive tool for compliance departments as they develop and improve their own codes. Compliance professionals can use the dataset to learn best practices from peers by reviewing over 500 codes.
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