3. Our organisation
Our interested parties
We are people
At Eroski, people are an end, not a means. We form the base that withstands the organisation, as owners and key figures. Our degree of participation, the result of our commitment and our two-way internal communication all form part of:
· Our management and objectives.
· Our company capital and our profits.
· Our prominence in the company and business life, via the company authorities.
Day by day, Eroski's aim is to increase the participation and involvement of the owner members, and to increase our commitment through systems of evaluation, communication and empowerment geared towards encouraging management collaboration.
The owner worker growth tendency is counteracted in relative terms by the absolute reduction occurring in 2003 after Consum S.Coop. left the sphere of the Eroski Group.
We are the result of nine consumer cooperatives having joined together, and we have maintained this close relationship with the consumers, earmarking 10% of our annual profit to our commitment to them and to our surrounding environment.
The consumers are key figures: they take part in the decision-making process within the Governing Council, and they are informed of the results of the measures taken. We study how we can satisfy their needs and expectations through efficient personalised attention, establishing various channels of communication.
Our commitment is in the provision of guaranteed healthy consumer articles at competitive prices and in an education and information programme to help them develop healthy, environmentally friendly, solidarity-minded habits. We share these interests with the Eroski Foundation Member/Friend, a figure who represents the cooperative's consumer members, those who participate in the business management and decision-making processes, and with the friends of the Foundation who are interested in collaborating with Eroski's educational and solidarity-orientated initiatives.
The Member Friends are key figures in the Idea Sana EROSKI programme, and they are regularly sent information on the Eroski Foundation's activities and programmes for environmental and solidarity awareness-raising.The Eroski Foundation
This is a participative, constantly evolving organisation which furthers the development of Eroski´s values in the community. It is particularly committed to guaranteeing the ethics and transparency of all matters affecting the consumers. There are three main parts to its mission: informing consumers, promoting sustainable development, and solidarity actions.
Financial contributions to the Foundation enable us to carry out consumer-orientated action, conduct information campaigns, publish magazines and guides, provide grants and subsidies, collaborate with Third World aid organisations and stage solidarity campaigns for the donation of food, toys, school books, etc. The people mainly involved in this action are the consumers, and the aim is to provide a better quality of life for everyone.
The Foundation is run by a Board of Trustees with representatives from the companies making up the Eroski Group, the consumers, and a group of experts who provide knowledge on matters such as health, the environment, solidarity and new technologies. It also has a large cross-disciplinary technical team who remain close to the consumers, developing a social and human project always mindful of their needs.
This project consists of designing and drawing up an annual Management Plan with proposals for the members and friends, Consumer Information campaigns, informative products, solidarity, international cooperation and sustainability initiatives, Research Grants and Subsidies, an annual call for backing involvement in International Cooperation, Sponsorships and the Product Donation Programme.
Our suppliers are directly involved in the value chain, making our joint action programmes an essential tool for cooperation. Eroski particularly favours trade of fresh produce, entering into agreements with local manufacturers and trade unions who guarantee the sufficient financial stability to maximise the quality of their products.
Our collaboration affects the design and setting of product standards, subsequently controlled by the laboratory and the Quality System department, and internal management policies geared towards achieving social responsibility, with the crossintegration of all our Social Responsibility policies. This aspect is of particular importance since we obtained the SA 8000:2001 Standard.
We work together and also form a business relationship for defending workers' rights and practicing solidarity and protection of the Environment. In the same line, in 1999 we initiated a project for the diagnosis and gradual implementation of environmental management systems with the aid of the e+5 Programme, organised by Fundación Entorno in collaboration with the Ministry of Science and Technology, with the participation of over a hundred of our own brand suppliers.
Aware of the needs and expectations of our consumers, we form alliances with experts in the design and creation of products and services, and this is fundamental for innovation and continuous improvement of an offering which will provide maximum satisfaction for all our customers.
This collaboration must tend towards extending our corporate principles and values, in addition to the main models, management processes and best practices. The organisation's Management Forum and Functional Committees play an essential role here in the diffusion of our philosophy and our allies' participation in its practical development.
Our influence on society goes beyond people's contribution as a vehicle for ethics. With 10% of our annual profits set aside for societyal concerns, we contribute to the sustainable development and welfare of our environment.
Within this endeavour, the Eroski Foundation is a point of encounter for citizens aware of consumer rights, the protection of the environment and the nurturing of solidarity. It is an organisation that assumes society's objectives as its own and works to see them fulfilled, establishing channels for communication and dialogue with the various interested parties.
Eroski is a strategic ally of certain nongovernmental organisations, collaborating with human and financial resources and as a communication channel by means of social and environmental awareness campaigns, designing and defining solidarity-minded codes of conduct.
For Eroski, concern for our customers goes above and beyond the purchasing process whereby we offer them products and services of guaranteed quality. We also offer them the all-round Idea Sana EROSKI ("EROSKI Healthy Idea") education and information programme to enable them to practice responsible consumption and develop healthy, environment-friendly and solidarity-minded habits.
For those who wish to further their relationship with Eroski, we offer the possibility of contributing to our endeavour as Member Friends of the Eroski Foundation. We send them the latest information on our activities and encourage them to take part in the various environmental awareness and solidarity programmes.
Institutions and Public Administration
Compliance with legislation and our commitment to human rights and safeguarding the environment brings us closer to the business fabric and public administrations, as we are working with a common goal.
We work on a permanent basis with the various administrations, local, regional and national, providing solutions, collaborating on the creation of laws and actively participating in improving the work standards of companies in different areas. This involves taking part in debate and opinion forums for awareness raising and nurturing of Social Responsibility policies geared towards welfare and sustainable development, as is described below in the section on our external commitments.
Our endeavour to satisfy society's needs and the integration of this within our objectives, which we achieve by listening open-mindedly to all the interested parties, enables us to take our place alongside opinion leaders on an international level.
Our participation in business, sector, consumer, social and Social Responsibility forums enriches our culture while enabling us to exchange knowhow and experience.
Our human rights defence policies, protection of the environment and solidarity with the community all testify to our concern for meeting the basic needs of future generations.
We are developing innovating policies with the aim of going beyond legal requirements and benefiting and safeguarding the present and future community.
In this way we are integrating the concept of sustainable development described in the United Nations Bruntland Report.
We commit ourselves to Eroski as people, with a view to becoming key figures and coparticipants, as the integration of our own personal objectives is also one of the organisation's concerns. Policies for conciliating work and personal life (flexi-time, voluntary leave, etc.), equality of rights of common-law and marital unions, sex equality, and our participation in the decision-making process is the guarantee of our welfare, as defined by the World Health Organisation.
Eroski's rapport with its interested parties, groups with whom it maintains channels of communication, has varied to adapt to the evolution of the organisations themselves and of the environment in which they work. The high degree of commitment we have attained over the years has been maintained over time as a result of our excellent rapport and close communication and collaboration. Consumers and people are the first agents to whom we gear our search for solutions.
This change in our rapport concerns the expectations placed in us by society, the local community, our suppliers, our team of professionals, investors, governments and society in general, and it is therefore of great importance to establish two-way channels of communication that will guarantee a sincere and enriching dialogue with each of the parties involved.
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