Google: Ethical Code & Social Responsibility
Google is one of the largest companies in the world. They offer a variety of services that millions around the world use daily. A majority of their services are Internet based which include Google Search, Google Maps, Gmail, and cloud storage, Drive. Most of their services are available for free use. One of their main sources of revenue is through advertisements. Companies pay to have their ad displayed atop searches and in mobile aps. They also have a growing Internet and TV service, Google Fiber, which they are rolling out to select cities. They have begun offering Google fiber here in Provo and have created hundreds of jobs locally.
It has always been my dream to, some day, be fortunate enough to work for Google. I am very intrigued by the working atmosphere and the focus they company places on innovation and technology. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Google does a fantastic job of adhering to their CSR and constantly adding value to the triple bottom line: people, planet, and profit. They have multiple websites that detail their philanthropic efforts and state what they believe in. These can be found on their informational website, google. org. One area of CSR in which they are very concerned about is being “Green.
” They have an entire website (google. com/green) dedicated to detailing and informing the world about their efforts to protect the environment. The website teaches that they are constantly investing in alternative energy, i. e. , wind and solar. In comparison to other tech companies, their centers are said to use 50% less energy than the competition. They have also committed to recycle 100% of all electronic equipment that is no longer used in their offices. Sustaining the environment is a major concern to Google management and they spend millions of dollars annually to make sure they are at the forefront of innovation (www.google. com/green/energy/). Google is one of the most profitable companies in the entire world. Because of that, they have taken the opportunity to benefit the world through multiple philanthropic efforts. They donate hundreds of millions of dollars annually in charitable giving. Their website, google. com/giving, highlights various areas in which they are concerned about and are donating money to. These include: empowering women and girls, improving computer science education, protecting threatened wildlife, fighting human trafficking and abuse, and providing clean water to third world countries.
Each year, Google donates $100 million in grants, 60,000 man-hours, and over $1 billion in products. They encourage their employees to volunteer in their communities and have committed to match all charitable donations that employees give (google. com/giving/community/). Stakeholders Because of the size of Google, they inherently have various stakeholders. In particular, they have always taken care of and satisfied the demands of their users, investors, and employees. Users Google has over 1 billion active users.
As a company, they continually innovate and bring products to the market which are aimed at making our lives more efficient, simple, and enjoyable. The companies “Code of Conduct” reads, “Our users value Google not only because we deliver great products and services, but because we hold ourselves to a higher standard in how we treat users and operate more generally” (http://investor. google. com/corporate/code-of-conduct. html). Their email platform (Gmail), web platform (Chrome), mobile operating system (Android), and cloud storage service (Drive) are some of the most used in the entire world.
Google understands this and continues to innovate and improve in order to keep their services up to date and safe for its users. They are committed to offering the best possible products at a reasonable price. Recently they began to produce and sell cell phones, tablets, and laptops which all run their software and are significantly cheaper they the competition. Because of their dedication to their users, they are ranked as the top company in the “American Customer Satisfaction Index” across all platforms (http://www.theacsi. org/index). This rating speaks volumes for Google and the interest they place in their primary stakeholders, their users. Investors Google stock is currently trading at over $1,100 per share (https://www. google. com/finance? q=NASDAQ:GOOG). Year after year they continue to grow and report record earnings. Over the last 5 years their stock price has risen from $750 to over $1,100. Forbes has ranked them as the 5th most valuable company in the world with a valuation currently at $268 billion (http://www. forbes.com/companies/google/). Many people in the finance industry consider Google to be one of the safest and smartest places to invest ones money. They are very committed to their investors and continue to grow both organically and financially. Unlike previous “tech” companies who have plateaued and eventually lost the faith of its investors, Google’s commitment to innovate and grow as a company is backed fully by the support of its investors. The management knows that growth is only possible by taking risks and spending money to innovate.
On the other hand, they regard the financial position their investors very high and are committed to making sure that all risk is minimized to its lowest possible state. Google takes very good care of its investors and, for that reason, their investors are very happy. Employees Fortune magazine recently released their annual rankings of the “100 Best Companies to Work For. ” Google remained at the top, receiving the #1 overall ranking (http://money. cnn. com/magazines/fortune/best-companies/). They remained the topped ranked company while also adding over 4,200 new jobs last year; an overall job growth of over 20%.
They have over 4,200 employees and it is a major focus with the company to make sure they are treated in the best way possible. Google is committed to providing unbeatable work conditions and benefits. Not only are they at the forefront in technology innovation, but also work environment innovation. Their offices provide every service and accommodation imaginable in order to create an environment where their employees are happy, enjoy work, and are more productive. Google’s commitment to their employees has set an industry standard in which many competing companies are trying to imitate.
At the core of how Google treats its employees is how they view them, not as being replaceable but as their strongest asset. Ethics Programs Google bases it entire ethical philosophy upon a simple phrase, “Don’t be evil. ” Those words are not only applied to how “Googlers” (Google employees) treat their users, but also how they conduct business on every level. Through the companies “Code of Conduct,” they admonish their employees to “do the right thing more generally- follow the law, act honorable and treat each other with respect” (Google Code of Conduct).
“Its built around the recognition that everything we do in connection with our work at Google will be, and should be, measured against the highest possible standards of ethical business conduct” (investor. google. com). This commitment to extremely high standards and ethical conduct helps them “hire great people, build great products, and attract loyal users. ” The Google “Code of Conduct” is found on their website for the entire world to see (http://investor. google. com/corporate/code-of-conduct. html).
It is broken down into eight sections, which are labeled: Serve Others, Respect Each Other, Avoid Conflicts of Interest, Preserve Confidentiality, Protect Google’s Assets, Ensure Financial Integrity and Responsibility, and Obey the Law. It is twelve-page document, which, very clearly and simply, describes the company’s values and core principles. The sections and content continually refer back to Google’s ethical slogan, “Don’t be evil. ” It teaches employees how to treat and act in many situations and is the bases upon which punishment is given. Communication