Bribery and corruption – are organisations informed and prepared?

A recently released report outlining the findings of Deloitte’s 2012 Bribery and Corruption survey reveals that organisations in Australia and New Zealand may be ill-equipped to identify and manage corruption and bribery risk.

The survey was completed by 390 organisations from Australia and New Zealand, including publicly listed companies, Australian subsidiaries of foreign companies, public sector organisations and private companies.

Some key findings are:

 

 

  • Of those organisations who have operations in high risk jurisdictions:
    • 21% have experienced a bribery and corruption incident in the last 5 years
    • Of those who have not experienced a known incident in the last 5 years, almost half have never conducted a risk assessment (and therefore may not be aware of any relevant incidents)
  • Of those organisations with offshore operations:
    • The vast majority (75%) do not have a comprehensive understanding of relevant legislation
    • Less than half (48%) have a formal policy or compliance program to manage corruption risk
    • 80% of organisations do not regard foreign bribery and corruption as one of the top 5 risks to their business in the next 5 years

As Australian and New Zealand organisations increasingly look overseas for new business and growth opportunities, it is concerning that many organisations appear unaware or unprepared for the risk of exposure to bribery and corruption.

The next step

The report provides a number of recommendations for organisations to respond more pro-actively to these risks. One of the most important recommendations is a focus on culture.

As noted in the report:

“Culture is essential. Many of the major crises that organisations have experienced have been due to the behaviour of senior level management that has permeated the operation. If people accept that it is how the organisation operates – or that corrupt behaviour is accepted in any circumstances – that becomes the culture”.

The first step in responding to the risk of bribery and corruption is understanding your organisation’s people and culture. The RightPeople Employee Attitude and Commitment Surveys are research-based survey tools that allow you to assess the level of employee engagement, their ethics and commitment and views of the organisational culture. For higher level employees and executive, the Leadership Development Survey examines your leaders’ attitudes, values and performance against a wide range of  indicators, gathering information from all levels of the organisation to identify both strengths and weaknesses. Together these tools provide a comprehensive snapshot of not only how your people are performing but how committed they are to organisational goals, their values and ethics, whether they view the culture positively or negatively and what messages managers/leaders are giving their subordinates.

All our surveys are research-based and developed using key constructs from the academic and practitioner literature.

Let us help you combat the risk of bribery and corruption by better understanding your organisational culture and employee and management values and attitudes. Contact us to find out more today.