Code of Conduct for Contractors and Vendors
Last revision date: March 2021
1. Purpose of this Code
The WikiRate Project e.V. (together with its sister organizations “The WikiRate Project” in the United States and “The Wikirate Project UK” in the United Kingdom, hereinafter “WikiRate” or “Organization”) is committed to ethical behavior. WikiRate has adopted the following Code of Conduct (this “Code”) for contractors and vendors who provide services to the Organization. This Code is intended to: promote ethical conduct and compliance with laws and regulations, provide guidance with respect to the handling of such issues, provide ways to report unethical conduct, foster a culture of integrity and accountability, and deter wrongdoing.
No code or policy can anticipate every situation that may arise. Accordingly, this Code is intended to serve as a source of guiding principles. The Organization requires contractors and vendors to use good judgment while providing services to the Organization, and to follow the highest ethical standards to which the Organization is committed. If you need additional guidance on the appropriate course of conduct, please contact the WikiRate team for support at firstname.lastname@example.org
Each contractor and vendor is required to adhere to a high standard of ethical conduct. Unethical actions are not acceptable. In addition to each of the directives set forth below, each contractor and vendor shall be guided by the following principles in carrying out their duties and responsibilities on behalf of the Organization:
- Honesty and Integrity. Contractors and vendors must not be subject to influences, interests, or relationships that conflict with the best interests of the Organization.
- Accountability. Contractors and vendors are responsible for their own adherence and the adherence of any of their employees or agents who may provide services to the Organization; such individuals should familiarize themselves with the provisions of this Code.
- Adherence to the Law. When providing services to the Organization, contractors and vendors must comply with all national and international applicable laws.
3. Conflicts of interest
A conflict of interest occurs when an individual’s private interest interferes or appears to interfere with the interests of the Organization. Conflicts of interest are prohibited as a matter of Organization policy, unless they have been approved by the Organization. In particular, a contractor or vendor must never use or attempt to use the contractor’s or vendor’s relationship with the Organization to obtain any improper personal benefit for the contractor or vendor, or for any other person. Additionally, a conflict of interest may arise when a contractor or vendor takes actions or has interests that may make it difficult to provide services to the Organization objectively and effectively. Some of the more common conflicts from which contractors and vendors must refrain are set forth below:
- Improper conduct and activities. Contractors and vendors may not engage in conduct or activities that are inconsistent with the Organization’s best interests or that disrupt or impair the Organization’s relationship with any person or entity with which the Organization has or proposes to enter into a business or contractual relationship.
- Gifts. Contractors and vendors and members of their immediate family may not accept gifts from persons or entities if such gifts are being made in order to influence them in their capacity as contractors or vendors of the Organization, or if acceptance of such gifts could create the appearance of a conflict of interest.
- Personal use of Organization assets. Contractors and vendors may not use Organization assets, labor, or information for personal use or for any purpose other than the provision of services to the Organization or an affiliate. Any contractor or vendor who is aware of a conflict of interest or is concerned that a conflict might develop is required to notify the Organization.
4. Business opportunities
Contractors and vendors are prohibited from taking (or directing to a third party) a business opportunity that is discovered through the use of the Organization’s property or information, unless the Organization has already been offered the opportunity and turned it down.
The Organization’s confidential and proprietary information is a valuable Organization asset. In providing services to the Organization, contractors and vendors often learn confidential or proprietary information about the Organization, its employees, clients, or suppliers. Contractors and vendors must maintain the confidentiality of all information so entrusted to them, except when disclosure is authorized or legally mandated. Confidential or proprietary information includes all non-public information relating to the Organization, its business, employees, clients or suppliers. Any inquiries from the news media or other outside organizations regarding the Organization or its client relationships or assignments must be referred to the Organization for appropriate disposition. Confidential and proprietary information may include, among other things:
- fee structures
- specific engagements and information about strategic business partnerships
- client and candidate data
- business strategies and practices
- confidential information provided to WikiRate by clients
- intellectual property
Unauthorized use or distribution could result in negative consequences for both the Organization and the individuals involved, including potential legal actions.
All contractors and vendors should protect the Organization’s proprietary and confidential information even after the contractor and vendor stops providing services to the Organization. In addition, contractors and vendors are prohibited from disclosing confidential and proprietary information concerning the Organization and its clients to a new employer or to others after ceasing to be associated with the Organization.
6. Fair dealing
The Organization has a history of succeeding through honest competition. The Organization does not seek competitive advantages through illegal or unethical practices. Each contractor and vendor should deal fairly with the Organization’s employees, clients, suppliers, competitors, and other service providers. No contractor or vendor should take unfair advantage of anyone through manipulation, concealment, misuse of information, misrepresentation of material fact, or any other unfair dealing practice.
7. Protection and use of organization assets
All contractors and vendors should protect the Organization’s assets and ensure their efficient use. All Organization assets should be used for legitimate business purposes only.
8. Respectful workplace
The Organization is committed to maintaining a work environment in which all individuals are treated with respect and dignity. Equal opportunity in employment is provided to employees and all applicants for employment, based on individual merit and personal qualifications. The Organization requires its contractors and vendors to do the same.
The Organization is furthermore deeply committed to maintaining a work environment that upholds and promotes human rights as enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including the elimination of forced or compulsory labor, child labor, and all forms of workplace discrimination. Every individual has the right to work in a professional and safe atmosphere that promotes equal opportunities and where discriminatory practices, including harassment, are prohibited.
The Organization requires each contractor and vendor to treat all Organization employees as well as their own staff in a respectful manner and in a way that is uniformly free of bias, prejudice, and harassment. More specifically, WikiRate prohibits discrimination or harassment of any Organization employee or contractor employees on the basis of gender, gender identity or expression, race, religious creed, color, national origin, age, sexual orientation, medical condition, ancestry, physical or mental disability, marital status, familial status, genetic characteristic, and any other characteristic protected by law.
Furthermore, WikiRate requires all employees and contracting staff to have freedom of association and collective bargaining rights, earn at least the statutory minimum wage, the prevailing industry wage or the wage negotiated in a collective agreement, whichever is higher, and prohibits practices such as recruitment fees and excessive overtime.
9. Environmental sustainability
The Organization stresses the importance of protecting the natural environment and recognizes our shared responsibility in addressing critical environmental issues facing the planet. WikiRate reserves the right to request information from its contractors and vendors regarding their own environmental practices. The Organization furthermore strongly encourages its contractors and vendors to keep it informed about available products or services that might help the Organization to reduce its environmental impacts.
10. Compliance with laws, rules and regulations
It is the Organization’s policy to comply with all national and international applicable laws, rules, and regulations. It is the responsibility of each contractor and vendor to adhere to the standards and restrictions imposed by all applicable laws, rules, and regulations.
11. Reporting concerns
Contractors and vendors, their staff, or any other third party are encouraged to report any concerns, incidents or practices which they believe are inappropriate or unethical to any officer of WikiRate at any time, and will be protected from any form of retaliation. All concerns will be taken seriously and will be investigated and addressed with care.
Reports can be submitted via:
Contact Form: https://wikirateproject.org/Contact_Us