Vodafone PLC. Business Ethics

Term Paper, 2012

14 Pages, Grade: B


Table of contents:

1.1 Ethical practices of Vodafone Plc.
1.1.1 Observing integrity in the company’s activities
1.1.2 Disclosure
1.1.3 Compliance
1.1.4 Hierarchy and professionalism
1.1.5 Ethical Principles Adherence

2.0 Corporate responsibility acts and procedures at Vodafone plc.
2.1 Social responsibilities undertaken by Vodafone
2.1.1 Poverty eradication plans and sponsorships
2.1.2 Vodafone and Infrastructure Development
2.2 Vodafone and Economic Responsibility
2.2.1 Employment and sponsorships
2.2.2 Responsibility to the People
2.2.3 Relationship with other companies
2.3 The Environment
2.3.1 Water Conservation
2.3.2 Cleanliness and littering

3.0 Conclusion



Today every business is trying to mould its activities in order to serve the society and gain its trust by keeping in mind the welfare of its customers, employees, stakeholders, external parties and also consider the environmental impact it causes along with other factors that eventually impact the growth of the business. Company's today are focusing more on being responsible i.e. maintaining business integrity than just making profits.

Vodafone plc. is one such company that allows corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities to hold a substantial part in conducting its business activities and also drafting their strategies in a manner that helps it acquire its business goal responsibly The main goal of Vodafone plc is to act responsibly. As said by Guy Laurence the CEO of Vodafone UK, "with growth comes real responsibility” and Vodafone justifies this action of being responsible by maintaining reliability, by operating in a way that attracts employees to work for them and by making customers put their trust in them. (Madeineurope.ru n.d.)

As a brand Vodafone is currently positioned 2nd by brand finance as UK most valuable brand, its ranked 17th by Millward Brown as brands top 100 brand ranking, 13th by brand finance as brand finance global 500(1000), 10th by clear| M& C Saatchi as top desirable handheld technology brands in Australia, and 64th by Barron’s as world’s most reputable company. (Rankingthebrands.com 2013) The rankings above show Vodafone’s strong brand value. It provides competitive advantage to the company and makes it stand out in the telecommunication sector. It shows the amount of trust customer’s hold in the company. All this is a result of Vodafone’s ethical actions towards the business environment and its ability to maintain integrity by taking into consideration every aspect of being socially responsible than just making profits.

Started in 1985, Vodafone plc. is a British multinational communications company, leading the toll in the best communications company in the world. Operating in a heavily crowded communications industry, the company has managed to keep their standards at the highest level, attracting attention from many people in the process. Vodafone plc. has branches and firms in most of the countries in the world, managing to control the market through the extensive marketing and sales strategies

(Cassell & Miho 2006, p. 2). The marketing department gives the business a competitive edge in the market especially by focusing on the concept corporate social responsibility.

The employees of the company and the society mainly help in making the social responsibility exercises successful. The business also maintains a high ethical level and standards that pull more customers to their business (Cassell& Miho 2006, p.4). The nature of ethical maturity and level or corporate social responsibility makes the company, which essentially deals in phones and other electronics, to sell massively in many markets like the Chinese market. The paper analyses the ethical values and the corporate social responsibility practices that yield successful sales and marketing in Vodafone plc with the view of promoting the activities of the firm further. The ethical values discussed include integrity, accountability, disclosure, openness, and corporate social responsibility exercises like cleaning the environment and attending to the customers well.

1.1 Ethical practices of Vodafone Plc.

1.1.1 Observing integrity in the company’s activities

Integrity is the first ethical practice for all the people involved with the Vodafone plc. The statutes of Vodafone plc require that all the people in the company and its branches, or all the people acting for the company in any capacity must conform to the legal standards in the country of operation (Tilling et al. 2009, p.24). Employees must also act honestly when dealing with different parties that claim links to the organization. In exercising the integrity as required by Vodafone plc, the sellers and the clients of Vodafone plc undertake correct pricing of the products. This makes the products from Vodafone plc cheaper and more reliable than those of their competitors do. The company’s statues provide a detailed and clear strategy for setting prices for their products. This ethical measure ensures that the company maintains the good image by engaging in a healthy price competition.

1.1.2 Disclosure

As part of the ethical practices for the best of the consumers, the company encourages disclosure of important information to its stakeholders (Cassell& Miho 2006, p.5). The company insists that the records and the returns that are relevant to the consumers must be provided to them to enable them track the performance of the business. Through the practice of disclosure, however, Vodafone plc.ensures that the confidentiality and privacy of the company is not interfered with for the purpose of competition and quality maintenance. The Vodafone plc.database for example contains the financial results in terms of the profits one the years for the customers to know the performance of the company over time as follows.

illustration not visible in this excerpt

Source: (Tilling et al 2009, p.24)

Interpretation of the chart: the turnover shows the total production in the market while the profit before tax shows the excess of revenues over the expenditures. Profit for the year represents the profit after deducting the tax expenses. Basic eps shows the earning that shareholders received per share. *Losses for year to 31 March 2006 reflect write-downs of assets, principally in relation to the Mannesmann acquisition. Proportionate turnover includes £7,100 million from discontinued operations Such information from the company builds the trust of the customers in the company hence the integrity of the staff also faces easier scrutiny from the public.

1.1.3 Compliance

Compliance forms the other ethical practices that all the people claiming links with Vodafone plc must maintain. In order for one to have the best cooperation from the company, they must demonstrate the ability to comply with the laws of the areas they work in and the general statutes of the company. In the countries where their markets are located, Vodafone plc understands that the institutions there have different regulations and provisions that the people must follow (Bryan-Low 2008, p. 1114). In that regard, any person demonstrating inability to cope with the laws cannot work effectively with Vodafone plc. The statutes of Vodafone plc state that It is the personal and individual responsibility of each Relevant Officer in the Vodafone plc. to, and each Relevant Officer must, adhere to the standards, laws, regulations, and restrictions imposed by those laws, rules and regulations, including those relating to accounting and auditing matters. In Africa, for example, the company expects the clients and employees must pay the required rates before they can operate including the house rates. This is not the same in India as in India the employees can set up before they pay the rates.

1.1.4 Hierarchy and professionalism

Professionalism and hierarchy is also highly rated at Vodafone plc. All the people at the company interact in manners that depict them as professionals and keep the image of the firm at the best levels. By professionalism, the code of ethics at the company requires that the members of the company must exercise professional conduct at several levels. In interaction with seniors, the levels of respect and hierarchy must stay at the desired height. The people must treat the customers in a professional manner so that the customers keep faith in Vodafone plc. Interactions among the employees and agents should not de-motivate any of the parties, which is achievable only through high professional levels.

1.1.5 Ethical Principles Adherence

Vodafone plc insists that the employees and all the people dealing with the business must observe the basic ethical principles in the company. Initially, the company has designed a detailed and comprehensive code of conducts script that guides and informs its employees and partners. Each person executing any activity on behave of the Company is obliged to follow each of the ethical principle highlighted in the script strictly. Furthermore, the company imposes strict actions to any person who violates any of the provided ethical principles (Tilling et al. 2009, p.24). Some of the basic principles reigning in the company include the idea that people should shun bribery and corruption at all levels in their duties. The people should avoid conflicts of interest, protect the data of the company, conserve the environment, and undertake good customer relations (Almar& Jesse 2004, p. 401). Most of the ethical work in the company aims at the corporate image and the corporate social responsibility, which forms the core of the ethical performance.


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Vodafone PLC. Business Ethics
University of Cambridge
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vodafone, business, ethics
Quote paper
Peterson Kelly (Author), 2012, Vodafone PLC. Business Ethics, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/280650


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