When is the deadline for nominations and/or completed questionnaires?
Nominations for the 2015 World’s Most Ethical Companies recognition are now open. The 2015 questionnaire has not been sent to nominees. We will provide the new deadline when we release the 2015 questionnaire.

How do I access/receive the Ethics Quotient (EQTM) questionnaire?
To receive the questionnaire, you must nominate your company through the WME Nomination page.  Survey links are not automatically sent upon submission.

Can I nominate another company?
Yes. Be sure to include contact details for that company.

Who can complete the EQ questionnaire?
Any authorized representative of an organization who has sufficient knowledge of the company and its compliance, ethics, governance and corporate social responsibility initiatives, or sufficient access to individuals that can provide the appropriate information. Typically, the individuals with leadership or oversight responsibility for the legal, compliance, ethics sustainability or corporate communications functions submit questionnaires on behalf of their companies.

Can I download the EQ questionnaire before completing it online? I’d like to make sure that I have all the information.
Yes, when the questionnaire is released, it will be available for download prior to completing the survey online. You may wish to familiarize yourself with the questions before completing the survey online. You may also find useful to have a copy of the questionnaire completed well in advance of the submission deadline in order to collect or coordinate any information that may be necessary to obtain from other stakeholders within the organization. Inconsistent and/or incomplete responses are not going to benefit company scores. Each year, the questionnaire is reviewed for relevancy and updated best practices.

The questionnaire should take approximately 1.5 hours to complete. You may download the PDF copy of the 2014 questionnaire here. If you are a privately-held company, you can download the 2014 survey here. You may stop and/or exit the questionnaire at any time during the process, and resume your progress by following your unique link provided. Also, you are able to go back and edit your responses on any of the pages before you submit your questionnaire for review.

Can any company participate?
Yes. Any organization, public or private, large or small, for profit or not for profit, U.S. or foreign-based is eligible to participate. All companies who submit a survey will receive a benchmarking scorecard that explains how they stacked up to the World’s Most Ethical Companies.

Are there different criteria for companies of different industries or sizes?
In past years, the questionnaire has been the same for all organizations, as well as the evaluation criteria used. However, a portion of the evaluation criteria is modified to account for varying standards and regulations across different industries, geographic regions, etc.

Can I submit additional documents both in hard copy and/or digitally?
We strongly encourage you to provide supporting documentation to substantiate your responses. While this is not mandatory, serious lack of validation may prevent your organization from getting full credit for good performance. The documentation we encourage to provide typically includes the type that is not easily obtainable from the public domain. This may include the documents concerning your compliance and ethics program such as policy samples, a recent example of a training and communication plan, sample of training and/or communication materials, program reports, copies of board minutes, conflict of interest certification form, high level organization chart showing reporting lines, etc. Companies may redact information from these documents where appropriate.

If possible, please email materials electronically to wmeapplications@ethisphere.com. If the number/size of documents is too large, please mail electronic materials to the address below. Printed materials sent will not be returned.

Ethisphere Institute
Re: WME 2014 Supporting Docs
6263 N. Scottsdale Rd, Ste. 205
Scottsdale, AZ 85250

When are supporting materials and documentation due?
Materials for the 2015 World’s Most Ethical Companies designation are not yet being accepted.

Will you be verifying the information provided by nominees?
Yes. What the questionnaire responses result in are initial, “unverified” EQ scores. It is important to understand that while the EQ score is the foundation for the WME selection process, the process does not end once the questionnaire is complete. The EQ scores and initial analysis simply help us to narrow the number of entrants to a more select group for further consideration. As indicated above, providing supporting documentation helps ensure that the candidate organization receives proper credit for the good performance. Once a company’s EQ score warrants additional consideration, a series of comprehensive due diligence efforts begin. This process may include multiple means of independent verification on an as-needed basis that may include additional research, request for documentation (unless already provided) to support or add additional context to select answers and/or interviews with company leadership. A candidate’s “verified” score may be higher or lower than the initial “unverified” score once the research is complete, however if we are unable to verify certain aspects of your reported performance, the resulted scores may be discounted.

When will we know if we’ve made the list or not?
Organizations slated to be recognized as one of The World’s Most Ethical Companies will be announced publicly at the Global Ethics Summit in New York City. Senior level management, the persons involved in the process and/or the person who filled out the questionnaire within those organizations will be notified prior to the announcement.

Those organizations which are not selected as a WME Company will receive a formal notice. General data regarding the company’s score will also be made available via a high level scorecard report.

How much does it cost to participate?
It’s FREE, provided the questionnaire is completed online. If you choose to return the answers in any other way (e.g. PDF or Word doc, hard copy etc), a small data processing fee of $150 will apply as the data will require re-keying by our staff.

Will my responses be confidential or my EQ score made public?
Responses are confidential as long they are not based on publicly available information. The EQ scores are not made public at this time, but aggregate or masked EQ scores are made available for benchmarking and research purposes.

Will you provide any report or analysis to a participating company?
Yes, all participating organizations are entitled to receive a complimentary, high-level benchmarking scorecard.

I want a more in depth analysis of my performance with more detailed benchmarking. How can I get it?
Ethisphere Institute offers a range of premium analytical and benchmarking services to participating organizations. Please contact us here to learn more.

Is there an awards ceremony or dinner to announce or honor the World’s Most Ethical Companies?
Yes, there will be an awards celebration! The companies listed as the World’s Most Ethical Companies will be announced on the first day of the Global Ethics Summit in NYC in March and honored at a dinner and awards ceremony that very same night. Additional information and details regarding the dinner are forthcoming.

What if our company is nominated by a third party?
We do accept third party nominations. Companies being nominated for WME will be contacted directly by an Ethisphere staff member requesting someone from the company with sufficient knowledge of relevant areas complete the online questionnaire.

Does past performance affect future results (i.e., are past winners advantaged in any way)?
Past winners are given no inherent advantage throughout the process over non-winners or companies applying for the first time. Typically, companies that have participated in the questionnaire in previous years (both winners and non-winners) are more familiar with the process and are therefore more aptly prepared when it comes to completing the questionnaire.

Are there specific criteria (e.g., compliance, governance, CSR) Ethisphere considers during the evaluation process?
Yes. The main evaluation categories are: Corporate Citizenship and Responsibility; Ethics and Compliance Program; Corporate Governance; and Reputation, Leadership and Innovation. Please refer to the WME Methodology page for more detailed information on the categories and their weighting in the evaluation process.

I feel that some of the responses do not precisely reflect our situation. Can I provide additional clarification?
As expected with standardized multiple choice questions, you should choose the answer that best fits your organizational situation. We have done our best to provide a wide range of plausible choices for most questions. If you feel you wish to clarify your responses, you may enter comments at the end of the questionnaire and/or send your comments to info@ethisphere.com or by physical mail using the address provided above.

Does each question carry the same weighting?
No. Some questions are for validation purposes only and carry no weight on how the questionnaire ultimately fares in the EQ scoring process. Some questions are more significant for certain industry sectors, while certain others more relevant for companies of a particular size.