Respecting human rights

GRI indicators:

Respect for human rights is a primary value underlying relations within the ORLEN Group and with our Stakeholders. Guidance on appropriate attitudes and conduct has been compiled in the form of a document entitled ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’. It is our priority to offer fair treatment to all employees and third parties regardless of their age, sex, job, denomination, nationality or beliefs .

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The ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’  set out the values that PKN ORLEN has committed to respect: Responsibility, Development, People, Energy, Reliability. They are manifested in the everyday behaviours and attitudes described in the document and practised both inside and outside the organisation. All ORLEN Group companies (in Poland and abroad) share the same ORLEN values and every company has adopted the ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct’ as a binding code of ethics. For more information on the document, see ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’ .

Ethics Officer

Compliance with the ‘Core Values ​​and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’   is monitored by the Ethics Officer, who guarantees that employees, employers and all Stakeholders can freely report violations, helps in difficult labour issues, and builds the employees’ awareness of the importance of their own role in transforming the corporate culture. The Ethics Officer is elected by PKN ORLEN employees and performs his or her duties without remuneration. The Ethics Officer takes steps to investigate and eliminate behaviours which conflict with the ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’ , in particular:


  • Receives, selects and evaluates complaints for legitimacy and materiality; in the case of minor complaints, the Ethics Officer undertakes remedial action on his or her own, while more complex and serious cases are referred to the Secretary of the Human Capital Committee
  • Informs the parties concerned about the measures taken, with due regard to confidentiality requirements
  • Prepares, based on the complaints and comments received, an annual report and proposes solutions to improve the corporate culture;
  • Carries out educational activities to promote the ‘Core Values ​​and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’ within the Company, which include ‘Management by Values’ lectures for the management staff and training to promote the core values and standards of conduct across the Company’s functions, in accordance with reported needs

Some of the ORLEN Group companies have appointed ethics committees or ethics officers.

Most of the reports received by the Ethics Officer in 2019 related to cooperation issues, inappropriate communication or poor interpersonal relations. No incidents involving theft of company assets, a conflict of interest or alcohol abuse were reported. Most reports concerned specific violations of the ‘Core Values ​​and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’ Most of the reported issues were investigated, with corrective measures implemented.

As part of educational activities promoting the ‘Core Values ​​and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’ , the Ethics Officer delivers ‘Management by Values’ lectures to the management staff as well as business ethics awareness training (themed, in particular, around communication based on ethics and respect) and promoting the core values and standards of conduct across several functions. 140 people were trained in total in 2019.

Since June 2019, the Ethics Officer has run his own training block as part of the Onboarding Programme to present an overview of corporate values to new hires and discuss the importance of each principle of conduct owned by individual functions/offices.

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Internal and external mechanisms to obtain advice on how to report a violation or suspected violation

The Company’s employees and external Stakeholders may report a breach or suspected breach of the ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’  in connection with workplace incidents or employee behaviours. A variant path is defined for reporting and analysing information on actual or suspected breaches, depending on the severity and complexity of the problem and on the confidence of the parties involved. A suspected breach of the ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’ or any ethical dilemmas may be reported to:

  • Line manager,
  • Senior managers,
  • Ethics Officer,
  • Human Capital Committee.

PKN ORLEN has in place effective functional control, risk management and compliance supervision systems, as well as an internal audit and control function. The simultaneous operation of all these elements allows the Group to exercise ongoing and effective anti-corruption supervision. The Group has an organised management control system comprising a set of comprehensive procedures.

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The ORLEN Group Anti-Corruption Policy and  an internal order on Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing were adopted in 2018. The Workplace Bullying Policy is also in place, setting out the rules to be followed when a case of harassment is reported, as well as the rights and obligations of employees in such situations. The Workplace Bullying Policy has been implemented to ensure high standards in developing a supportive work environment based on mutual respect and trust. Every employee across the organisation is responsible for active promotion of the right behaviours, fostering healthy relationships between employees and upholding the team spirit. In view of the importance of continual efforts to bring behaviours in line with the ‘Core Values and Standards of Conduct of PKN ORLEN S.A.’  and ensuring that managers stay alert, the Rules to Prevent Workplace Bullying, Discrimination, and any Forms of Harassment at PKN ORLEN were drawn up in 2019. They are intended to support the implementation of PKN ORLEN’s Workplace Bullying Policy, which also includes measures designed to prevent any behaviour that could amount to bullying, discrimination, or other forms of harassment. The key human rights policies and internal regulations also include: Collective Bargaining Agreements, setting out the conditions that should be met by the substance of an employment relationship, and the rules of remunerating and granting other benefits to employees. Supplier Code of Conduct , being an integral part of the business relationships with suppliers, including supplier qualification and  assessment procedures. The ORLEN Group CSR Strategy until 2022, setting out the directions of social responsibility initiatives, and the Integrated Management System Policy.

For more information on the ORLEN Group’s regulations governing human rights issues, see ‘Non-financial statement of PKN ORLEN and the ORLEN Group for 2019’.

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