Business, Law & Policy

IBM Cleanses Its China Ranks Of Corrupt Staff

IBM's recent anti-corruption campaign in China has reportedly resulted in the resignation or downgrading of more than 120 employees in the company's Chinese offices.

The Chinese media reported that about a month ago, over 120 employees from IBM China were investigated. Of them, about 100, including two top executives, were downgraded to a lower position and more than 20 others were asked to leave the company. According to China's CBN Weekly, most of the employees involved are from the company's sales and service departments.

Most of the affected staff are said to be senior employees in IBM, accounting for no more than 1% of the total employees of IBM China, which hires over 16,000 people in China. This anti-corruption campaign is also reported to be the largest of its kind since the technology company re-entered China 31 years ago.

As one of the largest IT companies in the world, IBM claims to have a powerful system to prevent any possible non-compliance from its employees. The company has a list of business behavior rules which has been in use for 45 years. In the 35-page document, the company defines infractions for bribery and other gift-giving activities. The company is also said to have an inspection software to monitor employees who violate the company rules.

A representative from IBM's marketing department also told local media sometimes their accounts will be reviewed twice a month by the company to make sure there is no violation of internal rules.

Geneva-based Covalence's latest report — Professional Ethics Rank– shows that IBM ranks at the top among 581 international companies listed based on such items as sustainable development, professional ethics, corporate social responsibility, international cooperation, labor standards and human rights.

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