GIM Corporate Social Responsibility
GIM stands by its social responsibility which it wants to take on as an economically successful and future-oriented company. This responsibility to our employees and clients and to the environment and society is the basis of our business.
Our understanding of Corporate Social Responsibility is thus based on four pillars:
1. Sustainable Business
We want to contribute to preserve the nature for future generations. This is why we try to affect the environment and nature as little as possible when conducting research. We aim at obtaining our study results with as little resources as possible and at minimising our CO2 footprint. For this purpose, we regularly monitor and evaluate the environmental impact of our work and take these evaluations into account when taking business decisions. This includes for example the following measures:
- Video conferences instead of travelling in the scope of internal GIM meetings with our branches
- Use of transmission tools for our clients in the scope of study supervisions
- Using train for business trips within Germany and to bordering states
- Deutsche Bahn job ticket for our employees who commute
- Switching the vehicles in our fleet to fuel-efficient 3 cylinder models
- Reconstruction and energy-saving insulation of the roof of our building in line with the newest guidelines
- Replacing a large number of our employee’s computers with more energy-efficient laptops
- Installing new heat pumps for more efficient use of the district heat energy
- Consequent waste separation
Here you can have a look at our environmental guidelines (in German).
2. Employee Orientation
“Our employees are our most important asset.” We want to implement this famous management motto every day, so we constantly bring to our mind: we owe our success to our employees. They are our know-how, they represent us to our clients and business partners. This is why we care for them – in the past but particularly now that keywords like “war for talents” or “employer branding” are prevailing on the markets. We interpret and implement employee orientation as second CSR pillar on different levels:
Apart from the fact that our headquarter is located in a quiet area in Heidelberg Weststadt, we have created a work environment that widely protects the health of our employees. In addition, we provide our employees with licenses for an office fitness and regeneration program at the desk.
The possibility of working part-time gives our employees the chance to better balance their family lives and jobs. The cross-departmental function of the GIM family delegate who was implemented some time ago additionally underlines the fact that we take our employees’ family planning and family matters seriously.
Training and further education
For many years, our Center for Learning and Development has been offering our employees the possibility to acquire new knowledge and skills by participating in many different training formats for further education. Inherent parts of this coaching- and learning process are the GIM Academy and a special trainee program which we have tailored to our young market researchers’ needs. As a company that is certified by the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce, we take on trainees every year to open them the door to the professional world. For us, staff development means both, commitment and motivation.
Still an independent and owner-managed business, GIM has always been known for the friendly and fair work environment. The atmosphere is characterised by flat hierarchies and an “open door policy” which enables the employees to talk to their superiors or to the management at any time. In addition, the representative, old villa, GIM has moved into a couple of years ago, creates the ideal environment for creative and at the same time concentrated working as well as communicative exchange.
3. Corporate Citizenship
One aspect of social market economy is that companies can and should show commitment in various social areas (e.g. culture, social work, ecology) on top of their actual business and legal requirements. The general principle of “the company as a citizen” is specific for our economic system.
GIM’s social commitment has a long tradition. We regularly sponsor selected cultural and sociopolitical events and initiatives.
For a long time, GIM has been supporting the event “Heidelberger Frühling” – one of the most significant music festivals in Germany. The annual international event takes place every March and April in Heidelberg and the musical focus lies on classic concerts by international stars and young artists. The extensive accompanying program also features movie screenings, jazz evenings and discussion forums.
Peter Robert Keil
Our long-standing personal relation with the important contemporary painter Peter Robert Keil has a special position in our cultural commitment: GIM owns an extensive collection of paintings, sculptures and majolicas by the artist. The “Keil Collection” that is presented at GIM’s headquarters (with annually changing paintings that are exhibited) is more than “just” sponsoring – it is the passion for the idea to share the artist’s work with others.
“Mut zur Wut”
With the repeated support of the international poster competition “Mut zur Wut” and the personal relation to its initiator, the renowned poster artist and graphic designer Götz Gramlich, we want to take a stand on relevant topics beyond day-to-day business.
Ad hoc help for people in need
With regular financial support for non-governmental organisations (NGO’s) and by giving financial aid in case of natural disasters (e.g. the Philippines typhoone in November 2013), we try to improve the situation of people in need a little bit.
4. Internal and External Compliance
The way GIM communicates and cooperates with all business partners is based on a comprehensive and binding canon of values. Resulting from that, the compliance with the laws for market research and the professional codes of conduct are obligatory, just like the integrity towards all stakeholders. The way we act towards our clients, study participants and our employees is characterised by these values just like the quality of our research work. We see these GIM values that have been established in cooperation with our employees as the basis of our corporate governance und our corporate behaviour – and as guideline for our “research ethos”.
In addition, GIM takes it for granted that all its business activities are strictly aligned with the ten principles of the UN Global Compact (human rights, labour standards, environmental protection and combating corruption).