Top 200 Awards Business Ethics Award – Mercury Energy

As leading retailer of energy, Mercury Energy provides electricity to almost 300,000 homes and small businesses. This award recognises its outstanding leadership and commitment to protecting the environment.
Mercury has developed comprehensive Environmental Management System and Environmental Business Plan that has yielded significant financial and environment benefits. Its approach includes assessment of environmental impacts combined with performance measurement of progress towards targets to achieve continuous improvement.
Substantial resources have been committed to environmental performance including: creation of an internal ‘green’ team known as ‘G-Force’ with representation from senior management to the customer service team; EnviroNet – an intranet where staff can suggest workflow, process or business rule changes, and product or service improvements; Compass – dynamic, purpose-built database-driven intranet for knowledge management; an internal communications programme that recognises staff who demonstrate outstanding contributions to Mercury’s environmental policies; committing 10 percent of the external marketing budget to energy efficiency; environmental performance measures for all suppliers; and, monthly environmental audits.
Mercury is positively influencing customers and the wider community to act in an environmentally conscious way. It is walking the talk through its internal practices and using its marketing strategy to make difference by saving money and the environment.

Judges’ Comments
Finalists
Auckland International Airport Limited
For Stakeholder Dialogue
Auckland International Airport (AIAL) has demonstrated excellence in stakeholder dialogue through its successful partnership with the local regulatory agency Manukau City Council and the local community in securing public and regulatory approval for the development of second runway. This dialogue process took serious account of stakeholders’ views – giving them voice, listening to what they have to say and being prepared to act accordingly.
Approval was gained against an initial background of significant community opposition. The planning process initiated by AIAL and its partners addressed stakeholder concerns and resulted in beneficial environmental and community wellbeing outcomes. further benefit was the substantial savings achieved by avoiding the costs of litigation through the judicial process. Sir Barry Curtis, Mayor of Manukau City, said the agreement was “glowing example of how private, public, national and local interests can be accommodated to achieve an outcome beneficial to all”.
Ongoing dialogue is achieved through stakeholder group of community, aviation and business representatives whose role is to investigate noise monitoring, noise abatement procedures and the impact of AIAL’s operations on the community. This group is vital to sustaining the positive relationships and trust that evolved from the second runway stakeholder dialogue process.
Pumpkin Patch
For Social Responsibility
The children’s clothing company, Pumpkin Patch, with 80 stores in New Zealand, Australia and the UK is acknowledged this year as great example of smaller socially responsible company that has taken business ethics to heart.
The company is committed to fostering “family-oriented” culture. There is company creche of two dozen pre-schoolers and school holiday programme for older children, whose parents work at the Auckland head office. This is win-win, with the company benefiting from high retention of staff including mothers back from maternity leave.
Pumpkin Patch recognises long-serving employees with membership of its “six star club”. Everyone “from the lady who cleans to the CEO”, receives $5000 worth of company shares on the sixth anniversary of employment.
Pumpkin Patch extends its social responsibility to monitoring its supply chain. It aims to ensure that no supplier uses child labour, by for example, having auditors make random checks on factories in China.
The company minimises waste by using bulk plastic wrapping for clothes in transit and its website encourages online ordering thereby minimising demand for paper catalogue.
Pumpkin Patch can count its reputation for social responsibility as key business asset.

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