Length: 2,500 words (+/10%) [This does not include reference list, or appendices]. You can include your system map from Assignment #2 as an Appendix.
This assessment draws together the three modules of the unit. Responsible Business involves being able to make ethical decisions that increasingly need to take into account a range of other criteria focussing on people and planet, while also paying attention to profit. However, much of this decision-making happens amidst uncertainty and complexity, where it becomes difficult to determine the ‘right thing to do’.
In order to help you with this, we provided you with a framework to aid the decision-making process. In Module 1 we examined ethical frameworks and asked you to form your own view of right and wrong in relation to a specific issue: modern slavery. In Module 2 we asked you to consider the causes of modern slavery, by developing a systems map to identify the factors and actors who contribute to the problem. This process demonstrated the role that organisations can have which sometimes help, but which may also inadvertently contribute to the problem.
Having clarified your own personal values and developed an understanding of the nature of the problem, you are now in a position to make decisions. Decisions are complex: one way of reducing complexity is to base your decision-making around a set of possible scenarios.
Imagine that you work in an organisation or business in the sector that you focused on in Assessment 1 and 2. The organisation/business has developed a reputation for its ethical practice.
The Management Team has approached you because they have identified a problem. An informal internal operational review has indicated that your organisation has inadvertently been implicated in relation to modern slavery practices (e.g. a key supplier to your organisation has engaged in the practice, or there is evidence of historic involvement by your organisation).
The Management Team has outlined four scenarios (see page 3). They have asked you to examine each scenario from a range of ethical perspectives, such as legal compliance and risk, as well as identify the potential impact (consequences) of each scenario. After careful consideration of the scenarios, they would like you to recommend one scenario that you feel is the best course of action to pursue. They have also asked you to provide a brief, personal reflection detailing what you feel are the challenges of identifying the best solution possible, especially when it may conflict with your own standpoint.
You will need to deliver your advice and reflection in the form of a Report. See the next page for the structure and contents of the report.
Executive Summary (approximately 250 words or 10% of the word count)
This briefly summarises the purpose of the report, provides a brief overview of the structure of the document and identifies the scenario that you recommend.
Background (200 words)
State the name of the organisation/business (we suggest using a fictitious name) and the industry it operates within. The organisation/business should operate in the same industry you focused on in Assignments 1 and 2. You can invent an organisation for the purposes of this assignment.
Scenario Analysis – Analyse the scenarios (set out over the page) [approximately 1000 words] Give each scenario its own heading. (e.g. Scenario 1: Do Nothing).
Examine each scenario from both deontological, and consequentialist perspectives. You should consider what duty or obligation (deontological approach) the organisation has. When it comes to addressing consequentialist perspectives, it is useful to draw on the systems map that you created for Assessment Task 2, as well as matters such as risk and potential rewards. It may help to summarise your analysis in a table.
Recommendation (approximately 500 words or 20% of the word count)
Here, you will need to declare which scenario is the best course of action for the organisation/business to take. You will need to justify your recommendation. Your justification should address why this scenario is preferable to others. Support your justification with evidence from the literature, drawing on deontological and consequentialist perspectives, and your systems map.
Reflection (approximately 375 words or 15% of the word count)
What is best for an organisation is not always what we personally agree with. Reflect upon your own values and ethical position in relation to modern slavery, and compare this to the scenario that you have which you recommended for the organisation (which has been framed from a deontological or consequentialist perspective). Are they the same or different? What challenges might you face when your personal position differs from that which may be best for the organisation/business? How might you address these challenges now and in the future?
Word count: 2500 words (+ / - 10%) This does not include references or appendices.
Criteria: Please refer to the criteria reference sheet in blackboard.
NOTE: For the purposes of this assignment, you should assume that your organisation/business does not have to comply with the Modern Slavery Act.
While there are many ways of approaching scenario planning, the Management Team has developed a number of possible scenarios, each of which appear to be equally possible, not necessarily equally beneficial for the organisation.
Do nothing Take minimal internal action Take substantial visible action Take industry leadership
Overall approach There is no allocation of resources to address risk(s), in relation to modern slavery. There is a short-term allocation of resources to minimise organizational risk(s), in relation to modern slavery. There is medium-term allocation of resources to address consequences of slavery in the supply chain, minimize organizational risk(s), and realise some benefits. There is significant long-term allocation of resources to address the causes and
consequences of modern slavery. Risk(s), and benefits are
considered for multiple stakeholders.
of specific actions Some options might be that the organisation:
• Does not report the incident at all.
• Does not take any action
• Business continues as normal Some options might be that the organisation:
• Does not report the incident externally
• Looks for a ‘quick fix’ to minimize risks (such as simply ceasing to use a supplier)
• Looks for quick wins to achieve some benefits to offset costs
• Seeks to differentiate from competitors as an organisation which doesn’t condone slavery Some options might be that the o3rganization:
• Makes a voluntary disclosure on the 3rganization’s web site about the issue, and action taken to address the matter.
• An example might be to work with the supplier to improve their practices and address modern slavery.
• The o3rganization participates in modern slavery forums
• Seeks to differentiate from competitors as an organization which acts to address slavery Some options might be that the organisation:
• Voluntarily submits a report to government, which requires following the full process outlined in the Modern Slavery Act, even though it is not legally required to do so.
• Undertakes substantial action throughout and even beyond the supply chain, putting in place policies and procedures, and building the capabilities of suppliers and their staff.
• The organisation champions action in relation to modern slavery in multiple forums
• Seeks to differentiate from competitors as an organisation which acts to address slavery and its causes
There are a number of potential actions which might be undertaken by an organisation in each scenario. These might be different, or feasible, depending on your chosen industry. Therefore the examples of specific actions are illustrative and descriptive, not prescriptive.