As a leading retailer of home improvement products, Lowe’s has a robust and well-developed global supply chain, a footprint of retail locations and distribution centers in North America, as well as over 290,000 employees globally (Lowe’s, 2018). Since its employees, products, and services impact a wide swath of the general public, Lowe’s Code of Conduct and Business Ethics was selected for evaluation.
Lowe’s Code of Conduct and Business Ethics applies to all employees, non-executive members of the Board of Directors, and third parties acting on behalf of Lowe’s. The Code primarily focuses on potential legal liabilities and hazards to the organization, such as compliance with laws and regulations, harassment, conflicts of interest, fair dealing and competition, anti-competitive actions, working with confidential information and intellectual property, bribery and corruption, maintaining accurate records and public company reporting requirements (including insider trading), social media requirements, internal controls, usage of company assets, as well as employee relations. Each section of the Code gives brief, frequently encountered scenarios and the appropriate measures the employee should take. Additionally, the Code lists multiple options for reporting violations, describes the measures that the organization will take to investigate those reports, and defines consequences for Code violations.
Because the Code is oriented toward employees and related parties and focuses on legal, ethical, and regulatory issues, it does not speak to several other aspects of Corporate Social Responsibility – particularly environmental and sustainabilitycommitments as well as philanthropic efforts and community relations. However, as an adjunct to the Code of Conduct and Business Ethics, Lowe’s maintains a Corporate Social Responsibility webpage (Lowe’s Newsroom, 2018)with links to its commitments and efforts toward sustainability, giving back to local communities, and operational excellence.
Lowe’s Code of Conduct and Business Ethics covers a wide range of legal, ethical and regulatory issues, defines who is subject to the Code, what activities are covered under the Code, as well as what actions are required to remedy Code non-compliance (e.g., reporting and investigation processes, non-retaliation, as well as consequences for violating the Code). Because no Code of Conduct can be cover every single situation, Lowe’s Code of Conduct and Business Ethics clearly outlines that any ambiguous situation should………….