Azure Everything Code of Conduct

Posted by admin in Policy | December 31st 2008


Our Code of Conduct is built around the notion that everything we do in connection with our work should be measured against the highest possible standards of business conduct. We hire great people and we all work hard to build a great company, and it’s essential that we build an environment of trust and mutual respect – among ourselves and with our suppliers, partners & customers.

Our Code of Conduct is built around the notion that everything we do in connection with our work should be measured against the highest possible standards of business conduct. We hire great people and we all work hard to build a great company, and it’s essential that we build an environment of trust and mutual respect – among ourselves and with our suppliers, partners & customers.

Always bear in mind that each of us has a personal responsibility to incorporate this policy into our own working lives, and to encourage everytone else that we work with not only within the company but also our Partners, Suppliers and Customers to incorporate the principles into all our work.

We expect all of our employees and directorate to know and follow the Code. Failure to do so can result in disciplinary action, including termination of employment. Moreover, while the Code is specifically written for Azure employees and Board members, we expect Azure contractors, consultants and others who may be temporarily assigned to perform work or services for Azure to follow the Code in connection with their work for us. Failure of a Azure contractor or consultant or other covered service provider to follow the Code can result in termination of their relationship with Azure.

If you have a question or concern you can contact your line manager who will deal with it is possible, or escalate it if required.

Contents back to top

1. Standards

Integrity

Usefulness

Responsiveness

Take Action

2. Respect

Equal Opportunity Employment

Drugs and Alcohol

Safe Workplace

Dog Policy

3. Conflicts of Interest

Personal Investments

Outside Employment

Business Opportunities

Friends and Relatives; Co-Worker Relationships

Gifts, Entertainment and Payments

4. Confidentiality

Confidential Information

Outside Communications and Research

5. Protect our Assets

Intellectual Property

Company Equipment

The Network

Physical Security

Use of the Companies Equipment and Facilities

Customer & Employee Data

6. Ensure Financial Integrity and Responsibility

Spending the Companies Money

Signing a Contract

Recording Transactions

Reporting Financial or Accounting Irregularities

Hiring Suppliers

7. Obey the Law

8. In Conclusion

1. Standards back to top

Our customers value Azure not only because we deliver services, we are not unique in that … but also because we hold ourselves to a higher standard than our competitors. Keeping the following principles in mind will help us to maintain that high standard:

Integrity

Our reputation as a company is our most valuable asset, and it is up to us to ensure that we continually earn that trust. All of our communications and other interactions with our customers and partners should increase their trust.

Usefulness

Our services should make Azure integral for all our customers whether they’re large corporations or individuals. We have many different types of customers, but one guiding principle: “Does what we are doing add value?”

Responsiveness

Alot of adding value is being responsive: We value customer feedback, and we do something about it. We pride ourselves in responding to communications from our customers and partners, whether problems or compliments. If it’s broken, fix it.

Take Action

Any time you feel our customers aren’t being well-served, don’t be shy — deal with it, or if you cannot then let someone else in the company know about it. Continually improving our services takes all of us.

2. Respect back to top

We strive to provide a supportive work environment, where we all have the opportunity to reach our best potential. Each employee, consultant and contractor is expected to do their utmost to create a respectful workplace culture that is free of harassment, intimidation, bias and discrimination of any kind.

Equal Opportunity Employment

Employment is based upon individual merit and qualifications. We strictly prohibit unlawful discrimination or harassment of any kind, including discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, or expression, age, marital status, sexual orientation or any other characteristics protected by law or otherwise.

Drugs and Alcohol

Substance abuse is incompatible with the health and safety of our employees. Consumption of alcohol is not banned at our offices nor during working hours (lunches/ dinners etc), however use judgment and don’t drink in a manner that leads to poor or impaired performance or inappropriate behavior.

Illegal drugs in our offices or at sponsored events are strictly prohibited.

Safe Workplace

We are committed to a violence and intimidation-free work environment, and we will not tolerate any level of violence or the threat of violence in the workplace.

Dog Policy

Our affection for our canine friends is an integral facet of our corporate culture. We like cats, but we’re a dog company, so as a general rule we feel cats visiting our offices would be unduly stressed out.

3. Conflicts of Interest back to top

We are obligated to do what’s best for the company, our colleauges and our customers. Should you find yourself in a position to influence a decision that may result in benefit for you or your friends or family at the expense of the Company or our customers, you are probably at least close to a conflict of interest.

If faced with a conflict of interest question, ask yourself:

  • Would this relationship or situation embarrass me or the Company if it showed up on the front page of a newspaper?
  • Am I reluctant to disclose the relationship or situation to my line-manager or colleauges?
  • Could I exploit the potential in a way that benefited me at the expense of the company

If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,”you should probably avoid it.

Personal Investments

One of the most common conflicts of interest arises when someone makes a personal investment in or forms an ouside of business reslationship with a customer, supplier, partner or competitor of the Company. When considering such an investment or relationship ask yourself two questions:

    • Is the investment or relationship so significant for you that someone might reasonably think that it could cause you to help your own ends at the expense of the Company?
    • Do you have a job or responsibilities at the Company that let you affect the Companies actions in ways that could help your investment or relationship at the expense of the Company?

If the answer to both of these questions is yes, even if you personally would not do anything inappropriate, the investment likely creates at least the appearance of a conflict of interest, and you should be careful to be seen to take care.

Investments by anyone in funds or similar vehicles that invest in a broad cross-section of publicly traded companies that may include competitors, customers, suppliers or partners of the Company are not considered conflicts and need not be disclosed or approved.

Outside Employment

As with personal investments, taking a job with a Company supplier, customer, partner or competitor (including as a consultant or advisor, whether paid or unpaid) can create a conflict of interest. Avoid employment or any other personal business relationship with companies that compete with the Company. In addition, don’t accept employment or fees from a supplier, customer or partner of the Company.

Business Opportunities

Business opportunities discovered through your work here belong first to the Company.

Friends and Family; Colleauge Relationships

Business relationships with relatives, spouses and significant others or close friends where the friendship is such that it could affect your judgment can easily leave you with the sort of conflict of interest that can be difficult to resolve. You should not participate in a potential or existing business relationship involving any of the above. This includes, for example, being the hiring manager for a position for which your relative or close friend is being considered or being a relationship manager for a company associated with your spouse or significant other.

To be clear, just because a relative, spouse/significant other or close friend works at Azure or becomes a Azure supplier, customer, partner or competitor doesn’t mean there is a conflict of interest. However, if you are also involved in that business relationship, it can be very sensitive. The right thing to do in that situation is to discuss the relationship with your line manager.

Finally, we understand that your co-workers can quickly become your community of friends, and that some people may establish relationships with your co-workers. While we trust and expect people to exercise good judgment in pursuing romantic relationships with their co-workers, you should recognize that romantic relationships between co-workers can, depending on the work roles and respective positions of the dating co-workers, create an actual or apparent conflict of interest. If a dating relationship does create an actual or apparent conflict, it may require changes to work arrangements or even the termination of employment of either or both individuals involved.

Gifts, Entertainment and Payments

Gifts or entertainment from a customer, supplier, partner or competitor can create the appearance of a conflict of interest. Don’t accept significant gifts or courtesy from any of our customers, suppliers, partners or competitors if it could be perceived as influencing your decisions.

That said, it is understood that not all gestures represent conflicts of interest: Inexpensive non-cash gifts, business meals and entertainment can be important aspects of many business relationships. Accepting an invitation to a cocktail party thrown by a partner, for instance, might be considered not only an acceptable business activity, but a necessary one. Similarly, accepting a bottle of wine from a supplier isn’t likely to change your assessment of a potential business relationship and may indeed cause offence if not accpeted.

Gifts from customers, suppliers, partners or competitors of cash or cash equivalents (e.g., gift certificates or prepaid gift cards) should never be accepted.

4. Confidentiality back to top

Company information that leaks to competitors & possilbly to partners and suppliers can hurt our business, damage our competitive advantage and prove costly in other ways. We must:

  • Properly dispose of confidential Company material;
  • Safeguard confidential information that the company receives from others; and
  • Take steps to keep our confidential intellectual property secret

Confidential Information

“Confidential information” includes financial, service, technology, business process and customer information. At times, a particular negotiation may require you to disclose confidential information to another party: Disclosure of this information should be on a “need to know” basis and only under a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) available from Management

There are, of course, grey areas in which you will need to apply your best judgment. When in doubt err on the side of caution and consult your line manager or the Company Directorate.

Some of us will find ourselves having family or other personal relationships with people employed by our competitors, customers, suppliers or partners. As in most cases, common sense applies.

Outside Communications and Research

Our policy is to be extremely careful about disclosing company information, and never to disclose any confidential information without authorization. It’s also a bad idea to post your opinions or information about the Company on the Internet, even if not confidential, unless you’re authorized to do so as part of your job or to have private, off the record conversations with outsiders concerning Company Business.

5. Protect Azure’s Assets back to top

Azure has a culture of openness with information shared within the company. We have no management secrets which are not open to direct employees. This openess, however, comes with responsiblity.

Intellectual Property

The Companies intellectual property rights (our technology, websites, content, trademarks, logos, copyrights, trade secrets, “know-how”) are very valuable assets. Any use of the Companies trademarks and must be cleared in advance by the Management. Report any suspected misuse of trademarks, logos or other Company intellectual property to your line manager.

Company Equipment

The Company gives us the tools and equipment we need to do our jobs effectively, but counts on us to be responsible and not wasteful with the Company stuff we are given. Nobody’s going to complain if you snag an extra cup of coffee of a morning, but company assets are not to be used for purely personal use.

The Network

Azure’s communication and Software facilities are a critical aspect of our company’s property, both physical and intellectual. Be sure to follow all security policies. If you have any reason to believe that our network security has been violated — for example, you lose your laptop or smart phone or think that your network password may have been compromised — please promptly report the incident to Management

Physical Security

Always secure your laptop, important equipment and your personal belongings, even while on Company premises. A lost laptop is a very big deal!

Use of Azure’s Equipment and Facilities

Anything you do using Azure’s corporate computing and communciations systems (e.g., our email system, software, computers, mobile devices, network, etc.) or store on our premises (e.g., letters, memos and other documents) may be disclosed publicly if required. For example, the Company may be required by law (e.g., in response to a Legal Process) to disclose the contents of corporate email, voicemail, computer files and suchlike. In addition, the company may monitor, access and disclose employee communications and other information on our corporate electronic facilities or on our physical premises where there is a business need to do so.

Customer & Employee Data

We collect and store personal information from customers & employees. Access this data only in line with local law and the Company internal policies, and keep it secure according to those standards.

6. Ensure Financial Integrity and Responsibility back to top

Financial responsibility is a core aspect of professionalism. Each person has a role in making sure that money is well spent, our records are complete and accurate and internal controls are kept up every time we pay a supplier, charge an expense to the Company, create a new contract or enter into any deals.

To make sure that we get this right, the Company has a system of internal controls to reinforce our compliance with legal, accounting, tax and other regulatory requirements.

Stay in full compliance with our system and don’t hesitate to contact your line manager or the Company directorate if you are unsure of a procedure to follow

Spending Azure’s Money

A core value of ours is to spend money wisely. When you spend money on the Companies behalf, make sure that the cost is reasonable and supported by appropriate documentation. If you’re uncertain about whether you should spend money or submit an expense for reimbursement, check with your line manager.

Signing a Contract

Each time you enter into a business transaction on the Companies behalf, there should be documentation carefully recorded. Entering into contract on behalf of the Company is a very big deal. Never sign any contract on behalf of Azure unless all of the following are met:

  • You are authorized to do so. If you are unsure whether you are authorized, ask your line manager;
  • The contract has been approved. If you are using an approved Company form contract, you don’t need further approval unless you have made changes to it or are using it for other than its intended purpose; and
  • You have studied and understood the contract and all of its ramifications and decided that it is in the Companies interes

All contracts should be in writing and should contain all of the relevant terms to which the parties are agreeing — the Company does not recognise “side agreements,” oral or written.

Recording Transactions

If your job includes recording of transactions, make sure that you’re fully familiar with all of the Company policies that apply, including our purchasing policy.

Immediately report to Accounting or Management any transactions that you think are not being recorded correctly.

Reporting Financial or Accounting Irregularities

You should never interfere in any way with the Companies financial records. Similarly, you should never falsify any record or account, including time reports, expense accounts and any other Company records.

Hiring Suppliers

As the Company grows, we enter into more and more deals with suppliers of products and services. Always strive for the best possible deal for the Company. This invariably requires that you get multiple proposals for the product or service we are seeking. Price is important, but it isn’t the only factor top be considered. Quality, service, reliability and the terms and conditions should also affect the final decision, as well as ethical policy.

VII. Obey the Law back to top

Each of us is expected to comply with legal and regulatory requirements. You should understand the main laws and regulations that apply to your job.

VIII. In Conclusion back to top

It’s not possible to spell out every possible scenario we could face. We therefore rely on ours and our colleauges good judgment to maintain a high standard of integrity for us and our company. We expect all Company members to be guided by both the letter and the spirit of this Code. Sometimes, identifying the right thing to do isn’t an easy call. If you aren’t sure, don’t be afraid to ask questions of your line manager or the Company Directorate.

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