Sustainability Governance and Integration

Our goal is to fully integrate sustainability issues into our core business structures and processes, rather than manage them separately. As we build capacity in this area and move toward that goal, however, we recognize that it is also important to establish some sustainability-specific structures and processes.

Structures for Managing Sustainability

The following are the primary structures we use to manage and embed accountability for sustainability within Ford.

  • Board and Executive-Level Responsibility: Ford’s governance of sustainability issues builds on a strong foundation of Board of Director and senior management accountability for the Company’s environmental, social and economic performance. At the Board level, the Sustainability Committee has primary responsibility for reviewing strategic sustainability issues, though some of those issues are also addressed in other committees and by the Board as a whole. Within management, the Group Vice President of Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering has primary responsibility for sustainability issues and oversees the Sustainable Business Strategies, Environmental Policy, and Safety groups, as well as having dotted-line oversight over the Sustainable Mobility Technology group (which is formally part of the Product Development function).
  • Dedicated Sustainability Function: Ford’s Sustainability & Environmental Vehicle Matters office coordinates corporate-wide sustainability strategy and activities, including leading the Company’s corporate-level sustainability reporting and stakeholder engagement and integrating sustainability throughout the Company.
  • Integration into Core Functions: Numerous functions within the Company have responsibility for some or multiple aspects of sustainability. For example, the Workplace Health and Safety Office, the Environmental Quality Office and the Human Resources Department each manage specific issues that fall under the umbrella of sustainability. As Ford works to embed sustainability more deeply across all functions, groups such as Product Development, Purchasing, Manufacturing and Land are taking on an increasing role in the Company’s sustainability efforts. For example, Product Development is taking the lead on the Company’s sustainable mobility efforts; Global Purchasing is managing sustainability issues in the supply chain, including assessment and training programs associated with our Code of Basic Working Conditions; and Ford Land and Manufacturing personnel are implementing energy efficiency and water reduction efforts in our buildings and plant facilities. In addition, our Marketing function is involved via the "Go Green" Dealership Sustainability Program; our Information Technology group is implementing a PC power management program to help us decrease energy consumption; and our Communications department has helped us transition to the use of office paper with post-consumer recycled content.
  • Issue-Specific Structures: Ford has also developed structures to address specific global sustainability issues facing the Company. For example, we have established a Sustainable Mobility Governance Forum – a senior-level team led by the Group Vice President of Sustainability, Environment and Safety Engineering – responsible for defining our climate change strategy and delivering our sustainability strategy in the marketplace. The Group’s strategic direction is provided by a senior executive forum, including Vice President and executive stakeholders, which guides the development of the vision, policy and business goals.

Key Process for Integrating Sustainability

We believe that integrating sustainability considerations into our existing systems and processes – rather than creating new systems and processes – is the most effective way to embed sustainability into our business. The following are some examples of how we are doing this.

  • Business Plan Development, Business Plan Review and Compensation: As part of the annual business planning process, Ford’s business units develop scorecards to track their performance. Metrics from these scorecards are part of the performance assessment of managers at various levels of the Company and affect their compensation. Executive compensation is affected by the Company’s performance in a range of areas, including sustainability. Sustainability issues are a formal part of Ford’s weekly Business Plan Review (BPR) meetings, one of the key management processes used within the Company. At these regular, frequent meetings, convened by Ford’s CEO, members of the Company’s top leadership team review sales, financial, manufacturing and other information to help them manage global operations and identify issues that are critical to the future of the Company. Each unit also provides an update on performance relative to their individual scorecards. To help us manage corporate-wide sustainability issues, Ford has developed a sustainability scorecard, which is reviewed alongside other units’ scorecards at the BPR meetings. Also, functions including Manufacturing, Product Development and Purchasing have integrated sustainability-specific indicators into their overall scorecards.
  • Special Attention Review and Automotive Strategy Meetings: Ford’s CEO also convenes regular Special Attention Review and Automotive Strategy meetings to look in depth at issues identified as potential concerns on any unit’s scorecard. Sustainability issues have been covered at these meetings, including, in 2010, global energy trends, U.S. energy security, industry developments and Ford’s electrification strategy.
  • Corporate Policy Letters and Directives: Ford maintains a comprehensive set of Policy Letters, Directives and other corporate standards that govern all Company activities. Several of these relate to aspects of sustainability. For example, in 2003 Ford adopted a Code of Basic Working Conditions, the implementation of which is supported by a robust assessment and training process. The Code of Basic Working Conditions was updated in 2006, and in 2007 it was approved and formally adopted as a corporate Policy Letter #24.
  • Management Systems: Ford uses a variety of systems and processes to manage the different aspects of our business, several of which govern or incorporate sustainability issues. For example, all Ford manufacturing facilities and our Product Development function are certified to ISO 14001, the leading global system standard for managing environmental issues. We have also asked our preferred "Q1" suppliers of production parts to certify their facilities to ISO 14001. In another example, Ford’s Purchasing function has integrated assessments of working conditions into its broader process for evaluating suppliers on issues such as quality, cost and delivery (see our new Supply Chain section for more).