Strategy and Governance > Governance > 

Policy Letters and Directives

We use Policy Letters to establish a framework of broad, basic principles within which we conduct our business across the world. Corporate Directives provide more in-depth information on narrower topics, or relate only to specific business segments. A variety of business standards and practices, handbooks and guidelines are also used to govern the conduct of our people globally.

The following corporate standards have a particular relevance to sustainability.

 Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption

We comply fully with the laws of each country in which we do business. In particular, we never pay bribes, nor do we allow others to pay bribes for us. All our employees are directed to report any requests or solicitations for improper payments through our companywide reporting systems. We also have ethical standards that govern and restrict the types of entertainment, gifts and favors that our workers can give and accept.

 Diversity and Inclusion

We recognize that a diverse workforce is a valuable asset, and are committed to equal opportunity throughout every aspect of our business. We strive to provide an inclusive work environment in which different ideas, perspectives and beliefs are respected and encouraged. Our Policy Letter and Directives relating to diversity and inclusion address equal opportunity and prohibit disparate treatment because of race, religion, color, age, sex, national origin, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, veteran status and other factors that may be covered by local law.

 Health, Safety and the Environment

Every single person at Ford has responsibility for protecting health, safety and the environment. The importance of sustainable economic development – for both Ford and for society in general – is highlighted in our company policies. We regularly review our products, services, processes and facilities against objectives and targets that are designed to minimize waste and pollution from our operations and those of our suppliers, as well as any adverse impact on workers’ health and safety.

 Human Rights

Ford is committed to human rights across our global operations and supply chain. This commitment is embodied in Policy Letter 24: Ford Code of Human Rights, Basic Working Conditions and Corporate Responsibility (pdf, 156kb). This outlines our commitments on key human and labor rights issues such as working hours, harassment and discrimination, human trafficking, child labor, forced labor, health and safety, and freedom of association. It also:

  • Articulates our commitment to be a good corporate citizen and implement policies and programs to benefit the communities where we operate
  • Encourages suppliers to adopt and enforce similar policies for their own suppliers and subcontractors

In 2018, we conducted a saliency assessment for human rights, the first original equipment manufacturer (OEM) to complete such an assessment.

 Political Contributions

Ford’s Policy Letter on governmental relationships covers issues relating to public policy and political contributions. See Public Policy for more detail.


Building long-term relationships and delivering excellent products and services requires the trust and confidence both of our customers and of our employees. A key issue in maintaining that trust is data privacy and security. We recognize that customers, employees and others have concerns about this and naturally expect us to protect and handle personal information responsibly. We are committed to implementing responsible privacy and data-handling practices, and our relevant Policy Letters and Directives are designed to ensure continuing trust and confidence.

 Product Quality and Customer Safety

Ford has a number of policy statements aimed at continuously improving the quality of our products and promoting customer safety. Our quality policy (Policy Letter 1) emphasizes the importance of quality in everything we do, and recognizes that quality is defined not by Ford, but by our customers. Sustaining and improving the quality of our products also depends on collaboration between employees, suppliers and dealers.

Our Quality Operating System (QOS), and our use of key metrics, helps us to make data-driven decisions. This process includes real-world safety data, driver behavior considerations, road infrastructure and environmental factors, regulatory safety requirements and voluntary industry agreements.

Vehicle safety is a fundamental aspect of our QOS. Our Policy Letter 7 outlines our commitment to design and build vehicles that meet or exceed applicable laws and regulations while meeting the safety needs and expectations of our customers.

 Social Media Interactions

We recognize the growth and importance of social media, such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, as well as blogs and online discussion forums, and encourage our employees to use them responsibly. Our Digital Participation Guidelines (pdf, 278kb) outline what is expected of them when using social media, and the need to communicate honestly and respectfully in connection with our business.


Our work with Supplier Partners is governed by our Global Terms & Conditions, and by our Policy Letter 24 (pdf, 156kb). This policy addresses workplace issues including working hours, child labor, forced labor, non-discrimination, freedom of association, health and safety, and the environment, and is supplemented by web-guides on a range of topics. The policy applies to our own operations, but we also encourage businesses we work with throughout our supply chain to adopt similar policies.