The Ethics Institute offers three primary assessment tools for organisations, each serving a specific purpose

    1. Ethics Risk Assessment (ERA): The ERA serves as an initial and critical step in an organisation’s ethics management framework. It involves a structured process to assess the organisation’s ethical landscape. This assessment focuses on understanding the organisation’s ethical status, distinguishing between right, wrong, and gray areas, evaluating the ethics management strategy, and populating the ethics risk register. By utilising both qualitative and quantitative approaches, it provides a comprehensive view of various aspects related to ethics.
    2. Ethical Culture Assessment (ECA): The ECA is a specialised evaluation designed to understand and measure the ethical culture within an organisation. It assesses the maturity of an organisation’s ethical culture by examining values, assumptions, and beliefs that either support or undermine ethical behaviour. It offers scores and indicators to help organisations strengthen their ethical culture and prevent ethical breaches.
    3. Ethics Management Maturity Assessment (EMMA): The EMMA assesses the level to which elements of an ethics programme are institutionalised within organisations. This assessment includes a self-assessment phase, during which the organisation evaluates its ethics management programme using provided indicators and evidence. TEI subsequently reviews the self-assessment, collaborates with key ethics management stakeholders, and delivers a comprehensive report, complete with an indicator rating of the organisation’s overall ethics management maturity and its performance in specific categories. EMMA aids organisations in comprehending the maturity of their ethics programmes, pinpointing areas for improvement, and ensuring the maintenance of an ethical culture, as well as adherence to governance guidelines. 

An Ethics Risk Assessment (ERA) is a meticulously planned and structured assessment process, serving as the initial step in the ethics management framework. It is a critical instrument for organisations to gain insights into their ethics-related landscape, providing a solid foundation for a comprehensive understanding of ethics risks and opportunities. The ERA aligns with the principles outlined in the King IV Good Corporate Governance Guidelines, which emphasize the importance of fostering an ethical culture within an organisation and effectively managing ethics.

The primary objectives of an ERA are as follows:

The primary objectives of an ERA are as follows:

  1. Determine the organisation’s ‘State of Ethics’: The ERA answers the fundamental question, “Where do we stand in terms of ethics?” This establishes a benchmark for assessing ethics risks and opportunities.
  2. Distinguish between ‘right,’ ‘wrong,’ and ‘grey’ Areas: The assessment categorises clear ethical violations as ‘wrong,’ commendable ethical practices as ‘right,’ and identifies areas that may be ethically ambiguous or uncertain as ‘grey.’
  3. Evaluate ethics management strategy, structure, and processes: The ERA scrutinises the organisation’s strategy for managing ethics, the structural elements in place, and the processes used to uphold ethical standards.
  4. Populate the ethics risk register: The ERA helps identify and document key ethics risks, ensuring their effective integration into the organisation’s risk management framework.

The ERA employs a two-fold methodological approach, starting with a qualitative assessment, followed by a quantitative assessment. This combination of approaches allows for a comprehensive exploration of ethics-related aspects.

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The Ethical Culture Assessment (ECA) is a specialised evaluation designed to comprehend and measure the ethical culture within an organisation. It delves into the values, assumptions, and beliefs that either support or undermine ethical behavior. The ECA’s primary objective is to assess the maturity of the organisation’s ethical culture, accomplished through three key levels of assessment:

  1. Total Ethical Culture Maturity Index: This provides a single score representing the overall degree of ethical culture risk, reflecting how well the organisation’s values, assumptions, and beliefs collectively support an ethical culture.
  2. Ethical Culture Maturity Indicators: There are seven unique dimensions that, when present within the organisation, support an ethical culture and reduce overall ethics risk. These dimensions are identified through a comparative analysis between mature and fragile ethical cultures in real organisations.
  3. Item-Level Scores: These scores indicate which specific elements either support or hinder an ethical culture. They help ethics management practitioners pinpoint what aspects of the ethical culture are functioning effectively or suboptimally.

Organisations undergo an ECA to gain a clear understanding of their ethical culture and assess the alignment of their values and beliefs with ethical behavior. This assessment aids in identifying areas for improvement and informs strategies to fortify the ethical culture. A robust ethical culture is essential for preventing ethical breaches and scandals.

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The Ethics Management Maturity Assessment (EMMA) is designed to evaluate the degree to which ethical programme elements are integrated within organisations. The process comprises three main phases:

  1. Self-Assessment: Organisations perform a self-assessment using provided indicators and supporting documentary evidence. This phase involves internal stakeholders assessing the maturity of the organisation’s ethics management programme.
  2. TEI Assessment: TEI reviews the self-assessment, evaluates the evidence provided, and engages with key ethics management personnel to gain a comprehensive understanding of the organisation’s ethics management programme.
  3. Reporting: TEI delivers a comprehensive report detailing the results of the EMMA, which includes an indicator rating for the organisation’s overall ethics management maturity, as well as specific category ratings, typically ranging from “Full compliance” to “No compliance.”

EMMA offers organisations a clear assessment of their ethics management maturity, determining whether essential ethics program elements are in place to establish and sustain an ethical culture. This tool measures ethics maturity in alignment with King IV requirements or relevant public sector ethics frameworks. It encompasses indicators structured around various aspects of an ethics management programme, including leadership commitment, governance structures, ethics strategy, corporate citizenship strategy, codes and policies, institutionalisation, and reporting. The assessment aids organisations in identifying areas for improvement and strengthening their ethics management programmes to ensure compliance with ethical standards and governance guidelines.