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Ethics and code of conduct

SNCF Réseau has created an ethical and code of conduct framework for all its activities. This has resulted in the implementation of systems to guide behaviour within the company and to avoid high risk situations (discrimination, harassment, conflicts of interest and fraud) when working internally or with customers and partners.

SNCF Réseau has defined ethical principles and a code of conduct for both for its employees, and suppliers and partners. Above all, it ensures the strict application of French law regarding the conduct of its activities and undertakes to comply with national and international standards such as:

  • International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions
  • UN Global Compact principles
  • Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen

The Railway System Reform law of 4 August 2014 also defined its own code of conduct to ensure that SNCF Réseau complies with the principles of transparency and non-discrimination in terms of access to the French railway system.


Implementing best practices in business

In 2008 SNCF Réseau implemented a code of conduct which forms an annex to the company’s internal rules of procedure. This document is intended for employees and indicates desirable behaviour in a working environment, especially in relation to discrimination and harassment. This code of conduct reminds all employees that their behaviour within their professional circle, and especially with outside partners, must be irreproachable.

Special attention has been focused on preventing fraud, corruption and conflicts of interest. It is strictly forbidden for any employee at SNCF Réseau to handle any working situation in which they directly or indirectly have a personal interest (especially a family or financial interest) which could compromise their independence. .

Monitoring processes have especially been strengthened for procurement and the verification of the public sector awarding of contracts. Prior to 1 July 2015 the Contract Awarding Verification department was part of the Financial and Procurement Division. Since this date it has belonged to the Legal Affairs Division and is responsible for ensuring total compliance with the procedures for the awarding of public sector contracts, thereby guaranteeing the exemplary nature of the French network operator. Company employees may also follow specialised legal training programmes regarding compliance with procedures.

A Director of Ethics and an Ethics Committee are responsible for:

  • ensuring the application of the code of conduct
  • preventing ethical risks within the company
  • suggesting measures for improvement

A professional whistleblowing system was also set up in 2014. It allows any employee to directly notify the ethics manager to ask a question or to report any suspicion of non-compliance with the ethical principles and or code of conduct of the company.