Ethics

"A good test to determine if a contemplated action is ethical is to ask, 'Would I want to see it in the headlines tomorrow morning?'" — Little Yellow Book

Handshakes between business people
The Little Yellow Book

Little Yellow Book

Written by CH2M co-founder Jim Howland, the Little Yellow Book is available for download in 10 languages.

CH2Mers act with integrity and faithfulness in everything we do, every day. Our commitment to ethics begins with our Little Yellow Book, a simple but powerful set of principles written by one of our founders more than 40 years ago. Wherever our work takes us, these core values guide our ethics and integrity.

CH2M walks our talk as a founding signatory of the World Economic Forum’s Partnering against Corruption Initiative and a member of the UN Global Compact Working Group on the 10th Principle, the Ethisphere Institute’s Business Ethics Leadership Alliance and the Construction Industry Ethics and Compliance Initiative. The Ethisphere® Institute has named CH2M one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies every year from 2009-2017.

Living our values

Our strong core of ethics guides everything we do. During “Ethics Month” in May, we heighten ethics awareness through regular communications from leaders. Ethics ambassadors in every major office and project site provide employees with direct access to leaders who understand how business is done in local geographies and can translate our expectations about doing business with integrity into local commercial contexts. Ethics ambassadors are safe and reliable sources of information and guidance.

Our Employee Ethics & Business Conduct Principles, published in eight languages, combines all of our ethics and compliance policies and offers tools and practical advice. As a condition of employment at CH2M, employees must commit to following these principles. Both new and seasoned employees review the principles and must pass an ethics quiz each year.

Knowing that vigilance, transparency, access without fear of retribution, and oversight are imperative to helping employees make difficult ethical decisions, we have several reporting tools and programs. Employees and members of our supply chain can use The GuideLine to seek confidential guidance, discuss concerns or report potential violations of laws or policies anonymously without fear of reprisals. The GuideLine is available in more than 200 languages 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, anywhere in the world. All contacts are investigated and addressed by trained ethics and human resources professionals who make sure the company does the right thing.

Occasionally we receive allegations concerning discrimination or corruption. All allegations are investigated by a team of legal, internal controls and, when necessary, forensic accounting staff. After reviewing documents and computer data and conducting interviews, the investigation team arrives at an independent, unbiased conclusion. Disciplinary and retraining actions are taken quickly by management, if necessary, based on the team’s recommendations.

Ethical supply chain

CH2M conducts rigorous legal, ethical and risk-based assessments of our supply chain. Our suppliers, subcontractors and business partners must comply with our Supply Chain Ethics & Business Conduct Principles to do business with CH2M.

Procurement policies on gifts, entertainment and political consultants govern how we engage with anyone who could provide access or influence in helping us secure work. Before a political consultant is hired, we require thorough due diligence and senior executive review.

Senior leaders are educated about the risks of corruption in jurisdictions where they work. In countries known for corruption, we perform specialized training and audits, making sure employees know what to do when they become aware of red flags. We update our anti-corruption policies regularly to reflect the latest developments in laws and best practices, particularly important in countries that rank high on the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index.

All employees receive training about the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the UK’s Bribery Act and other anti-corruption mandates from jurisdictions where we do business. Additional anti-corruption training is provided to employees and business partners on higher-risk projects. All senior employees also receive training about corruption, conflicts of interest and ethics and compliance.

Government participation and lobbying

Our Government Affairs team promotes the interests of CH2M, our employees and our clients, at national, state, provincial and local levels. The team focuses on issues important to the engineering and construction industry that affect the quality of our communities. These Government Affairs staff manage legislative initiatives, educate employees about ethical political advocacy, support sales, manage our political action committees and work with professional societies and nongovernmental organizations.

We engage in briefings and consultations in the U.S. and foreign legislatures; executive branch agencies; and state, provincial and local governments to address resource limitations and sustainable solutions to our communities’ needs. The team also tracks key legislation and regulatory efforts related to water, wastewater and water resources. Our employees also serve in leadership positions in professional organizations that take positions on these issues.

Our commitment to worker welfare

CH2M is committed to maintaining the highest level of human dignity on any project we touch. Learn more about worker welfare.

Report concerns

We encourage our employees and everyone who works with us to ask questions, seek guidance and report potential ethical violations via The GuideLine. We follow up on all reports and address concerns fairly and in a timely manner. We do not retaliate against those who report concerns in good faith. Whether or not the concern you raise warrants corrective action, we appreciate your willingness to reach out and ask a question. Read more in The Guideline.