Code of Conduct
Tetras Group is an international entity with more than 20 years’ experience of technical translation and has long ranked among the world’s top 100 translation agencies. Mindful of our responsibility to our partners, we are proud to present Tetras Group’s Code of Conduct.
Human rights and working conditions
• Discrimination, violence and harassment
Tetras Group fosters an environment for the equal treatment of employees.
It in no way discriminates or tolerates discrimination against its employees on grounds of race, gender, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation, nationality or ethnic origin, or on any other ground referred to in anti-discrimination law.
It is completely opposed to any form of violence or physical or psychological bullying in the workplace, and creates a safe working environment for all employees.
Tetras Group does not allow or tolerate inappropriate verbal, non-verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature in the workplace, i.e. harassment by the employer or any employee.
• Forced labour, slavery and human trafficking
All work must be voluntary, and an employee has the right to terminate his or her employment contract at any time, subject to applicable law. Employees must be formally employed under a signed employment contract or agreement in which the employment conditions are defined in intelligible language.
Tetras Group adheres to the Charter of Fundamental Human Rights of the European Union, which forbids slavery, forced labour, human trafficking, torture, and degrading or inhuman treatment or punishment.
• Child labour
Tetras Group does not employ persons younger than the legally established working age in any country. Where no minimum working age is defined, this age shall be 15 years. Young persons (15–18 years old) who are hired for employment must be provided with working conditions appropriate to their age and must be protected from economic exploitation or work that could endanger their safety, health, physical, psychological, moral and social development, or education.
• Wages, working hours and working environment
Tetras Group is committed to paying an employee’s wages on time and in keeping with the applicable laws of the given country according to the contractually agreed conditions.
Overtime work must never exceed the number of hours laid down by law.
Tetras Group creates a safe, healthy working environment for its employees, and in doing so implements the requirements of occupational health and safety standards in its workplaces to protect employees’ health and prevent injury, accidents and occupational diseases. It also provides regular training on occupational health and safety for all employees so that they are aware of the safety risks associated with their employment.
• Bribery and corruption
Tetras Group adheres to applicable national and international legislation on corruption and bribery. It does not accept, solicit or promise – directly or through an intermediary, for itself or for another person – any bribe to act or refrain from acting in order to influence an official act or secure an unfair advantage. It also rejects all forms of favouritism towards acquaintances, affiliated groups, or relatives.
• Financial records
Tetras Group conducts all business transparently and maintains the company’s accounting and financial records in keeping with applicable legislation and international financial reporting standards.
Tetras Group observes and enforces fair and legal competition practices with the aim of ensuring equal conditions for businesses, room for innovation, and the development of small and medium-sized enterprises. It acts in such a way as to contribute to the development of a healthy business environment and so that the principles of free competition are observed.
• Conflicts of interest
Tetras Group avoids situations in which the interests of its employees and their family members conflict with the interests of Tetras Group. Conflicts of interest, actual or perceived, undermine the Group’s good name and reputation and erode trust in relations with our customers and suppliers.
• Trade secrets and personal data protection
Tetras Group places an emphasis on the protection of trade secrets and confidential information. Confidential information is deemed to be any information not disclosed by Tetras Group. It has a duty to protect information that has been provided by business partners and is necessary for the executing of orders, and for that reason it has taken technical measures and contractual action to ensure that no confidential information is leaked by Tetras Group or its suppliers.
Tetras Group is very strict in protecting the personal data of its employees, customers and suppliers in accordance with the law on personal data protection, and precise procedures and powers have been established within the Group for the processing of personal data. Those who work with personal data are regularly trained so that they are in possession of and able to apply the latest knowledge.
Tetras Group places an emphasis on protecting the environment and preventing pollution, and on pursuing sustainable development with consideration for the rights of future generations.
In its business activities, it strives to balance economic and environmental interests, and in doing so takes preventive measures to mitigate environmental risks. Through compliance with legislation of general application, it strives to reduce the environmental impact of its business activities.
Employee Code of Conduct
The basis for Tetras’s success is the corporate culture of the entire Tetras Group, which is characterised by its employees’ integrity, prosocial behaviour, and ethical conduct. Ethical requirements relating to all employees’ activities and actions within the scope of their job description are becoming increasingly complex. The definition of employee responsibilities establishes a broad framework for the ethical conduct of Tetras Group employees. This framework is linked to compliance with standards, legislation and special requirements for ethical conduct, and the international guidelines ISO 9001:2015 and 17100:2015, adherence to which is fundamental to business success. All these principles are practised within Tetras Group and also constitute a promise to third parties. Our Employee Code of Conduct is kept up to date at all times. We constantly strive to introduce new standards for rules of ethical conduct. New legislation, helping us to perfect our definition of standards, is continuously incorporated into that Code. Membership of Tetras Group, and participation in shaping its identity, requires each individual involved to take a certain measure of responsibility. We are aware that any lapses in professional conduct could undermine business success or even damage the reputation the Group has built up over decades. Behavioural standards must be upheld. Nothing that damages or threatens Tetras Group’s interests will be tolerated.
General provisions: In the event of a serious infringement requiring an ethical decision, the following questions must be answered in advance so that further steps can be identified:
1. What kind of problem is it? Why does this situation cause me concern? Do I really not know what to do, or am I just unwilling to do what I consider right?
2. Who else will my decision affect? What are the potential consequences of my decision in regard to my supervisor, colleagues, customers, suppliers, local communities, other external stakeholders, and the entire Tetras Group?
3. How do I feel after such a decision? Can I talk about my decision to my family, friends and colleagues with a clear conscience?
4. Can I give a reason for my decision, if necessary?
5. How would I feel if another person made the same decision and it affected me?
6. How would I feel if my decision made the headlines?
7. How do the Code, laws and regulations deal with the problem at hand?
When in doubt, contact your supervisor! Everyone is responsible for speaking up at the right moment, when the situation can still be fixed. These principles also form the basis of our Employee Code of Conduct, which explains what company guidelines and principles mean in our day-to-day work, and what their practical and specific benefits are.
In general, at our company we work to instil trust in people. Trust is the cornerstone of everyday cooperation with our partners. While building trust is a long, demanding process, it can be lost in an instant. It is this fact that is the underlying premise for our Employee Code of Conduct. This document helps us build and gain trust in our day-to-day work. It provides us with specific examples of impermissible behaviour that would reckless gamble with the public’s trust in us.
Principle 1. Commitment to the customer
a) Employees mainly express their relationship to customers, translators and the public in general through the quality of their work and the way they behave. Employees must conduct themselves in such a way as to avoid disparaging or discriminating against customers, other employees and managers on grounds of gender, family relationship, social status or religion, both at and away from work.
b) Employees are obliged to conduct themselves in such a way as to avoid, in keeping with accepted principles of morality, engaging in harassment, sexual harassment, victimisation, or incitement to discrimination.
c) Employees take great care to preserve the dignity of our customers. They promote open communication. They respect and support the rights of our customers and translators, the acceptance or rejection of a proposed translation, and the right to information. They inform the customer in a clear and timely manner of the progress being made in a given project or translation.They ensure that the customer understands the entire process and the project’s expected results.
d) They are bound to confidentiality after completion of projects, and after the end of their employment.
e) When handling projects, they respect customers’ rights to professionalism in the addressing of their needs.
f) They create a pleasant, safe atmosphere within the company that allows customers’ individual needs to be met with respect for their personality, lifestyle practices, spiritual needs and human dignity.
g) They never deal with internal matters of Tetras GmbH in front of the customer.
h) They constantly improve their professional knowledge, skills and approach, and are committed to the all-round development of their personality.
Principle 2. Employees’ commitment to their profession
a) Employees are loyal to their employer, their company and other entities established by the company owner. Employee loyalty mainly consists of respecting the interests of the entire Tetras Group.
b) Employees must refrain from any activity that could morally, financially or otherwise harm the entire Tetras Group, including its reputation.
c) They always try to communicate with each other respectfully and in keeping with ethical and moral principles. They are committed to sharing their years of knowledge and experience with each other.
d) If they encounter any ambiguity or conflict in the performance of their duties, Tetras Group managers seek an amicable solution in the first instance.
e) Through their behaviour and actions, they create a sound and united culture throughout the company. Management, marketing, company leadership, internal and external employees, and translators cannot exist without each other, so they honour and respect each other.
f) They respect and actively promote good interpersonal relations among superiors and subordinates, and within the professional international team. They are polite and accommodating to everyone.
g) They must not disparage the professional skills, knowledge, services or approach of translators, team leaders, management or other employees, nor make derogatory statements about them, or comment inappropriately on the activities of other employees, especially in the presence of customers and others.
h) It is through mutual assistance and teamwork that they achieve success together. This depends on everyone’s quality of work and level of responsibility.
i) By coordinating processes, they ensure efficiency and optimal use of all resources entrusted to them. They perform only those activities that are within their power.
j) They respect their supervisors’ decisions insofar as these do not conflict with accepted principles of morality, the international guidelines ISO 9001:2015 and 17100:2015, or the laws of the Slovak Republic.
k) Employees strive for efficient use of natural resources and avoid waste as much as possible, thereby contributing to the EU’s sustainable development strategy.
l) Employees must sort waste in the workplace, thereby helping to increase the volume of recycling and actively protect the environment.
Principle 3. Commitment to company employees and translators
a) In formulating the company’s mission and vision, managers consider employee perspectives.
b) They guide and motivate employees to perform their work responsibly and to carry out their work duties with integrity.
c) They actively participate in implementing the CRM system and Tetrasoft, control its quality and, last but not least, strive to continuously improve it.
d) They establish conditions ensuring a proper, united environment across the Group. They strive to create a favourable work atmosphere. They keep employees’ personal information confidential.
e) They propose projects aimed at continuously improving work quality, especially in the provision of professional technical translations, and create an atmosphere and conditions conducive to changes required in view of fast-changing external conditions.
f) They monitor the knowledge, abilities and potential of employees and create conditions for their development. They enable Tetras Group employees to achieve professional and career growth and ensure their subsequent fair remuneration.
g) They develop dialogue among the company’s employees, translators and management. They respect employees’ opinions, take care of their needs, and help them to reach their personal goals.
h) They actively create the conditions and environment to protect employees and translators, including procedures and rules to protect them from aggressive or unethical behaviour by customers and the public.
Tetras Group employees must not be punished for reporting unethical conduct. Employees are obliged to report any violation or potential violation of the Code of Conduct that becomes known to them. Employees report violations of the Code of Conduct to their immediate superior, the next higher superior in the organisational structure, the head of the human resources department, or anonymously. Reporting is carried out orally, by telephone or in writing. Everyone to whom a violation of the Code of Conduct is reported must ensure that the reporting person remains anonymous. The reporting person’s identity may be revealed only with his or her consent. Anyone to whom a violation of the Code of Conduct is reported must deal with the report and adopt a solution that is within his or her power. Tetras Group will not tolerate any retaliation against individuals who have reported Code of Conduct compliance issues in good faith.
Tetras GmbH reserves the right to amend this Code of Conduct. Any such amendments will be notified on its website along with the date on which they take effect.
This Code of Conduct takes effect on 06/04/2023.