Certification of Independent Audit
To TÜV Rheinland AG, Cologne
Based on a contractual agreement, we have conducted an audit to establish a limited assurance about the statements on corporate social responsibility (CSR) made by TÜV Rheinland AG, Cologne, in the chapter »Responsibility« on pages 42–71 of the printed version of its Corporate Report for the business year 2012.
Responsibility of the Legal Representatives
TÜV Rheinland AG’s Executive Board is responsible for compiling the aforementioned chapter of CSR information in keeping with the criteria listed in the Sustainability Reporting Guidelines Vol. 3.0 (pages 7–17) of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI):
- Stakeholder inclusiveness,
- Context of sustainability,
- Comparability, and
The responsibility consists of selecting and applying appropriate methods of data collection used in drawing up the aforementioned chapter on sustainability on pages 42–71 and of confirming that assumptions and estimates on individual CSR statements are plausible under the circumstances. It also comprises the conception, implementation, and maintenance of systems and processes insofar as they are of importance for compiling the aforementioned chapter on sustainability.
Our task is to make an assessment on the basis of the work we have undertaken as to whether we have become aware of circumstances that lead us to assume that the statements on CSR for the 2012 business year made in the above-named chapter on sustainability on pages 42–71 of the Corporate Report for 2012 do not comply in material respects with the criteria of the GRI’s Sustainability Reporting Guidelines Vol. 3.0 (pages 7–17). In addition, we were instructed to make recommendations on the basis of our audit findings on the further development of CSR management and CSR reporting.
We conducted our audit with due regard for the International Standard on Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3000, which requires us to abide by our professional duties and to plan and implement the commission with due regard for the principle of materiality so as to be able to make our assessment with a limited degree of certainty.
In an audit to establish “limited assurance,” the audit activities are less extensive than those undertaken in an audit to establish a sufficient degree of certainty such as is required for annual financial statements in accordance with Section 317 of the German Commercial Code (HGB), so that a correspondingly lower degree of certainty is achieved.
The choice of audit activities is subject to the auditor’s judgment. In the course of our audit, we undertook, among others, the following activities:
- An inspection of the documents on CSR strategy, CSR management, and stakeholder dialogue along with obtaining an understanding of the topic-finding process for the CSR report;
- Interviews with employees at the Group’s headquarters in Cologne who are responsible for compiling the aforementioned chapters on CSR (the responsible areas include CSR and Sustainability, Human Resources, Occupational Health and Safety, Environment, Global Process Management, Compliance, TÜV Rheinland Immobiliengesellschaft mbH & Co KG, and other various responsibilities in the area of training and further education) or for supplying details of the processes used to draw up CSR statements and consolidate data, and of the internal control system relating to these processes;
- An on-site visit to TÜV Rheinland Japan Ltd. and the conduct of site-related interviews and surveys;
- An inspection of the documentation of the systems and processes used to record, analyze, and aggregate statements on CSR and spot checks of the implementation;
- An assessment of adherence to compliance guidelines according to the Compliance Code of the International Federation of Inspection Agencies (IFIA) for selected subsidiaries of TÜV Rheinland;
- An analytical assessment of CSR data;
- Spot checks of the evidence provided in support of individual CSR details, including inspection of internal documents, external reports, and invoices as well as an understanding of conversions, estimates, and projections.
On the basis of our audit to establish a »limited assurance,« we have not become aware of any circumstances that lead us to believe that the statements on CSR for the 2012 business year made in the above-named chapter on sustainability on pages 42–71 of the Corporate Report for 2012 do not comply in material respects with the criteria of the GRI’s Sustainability Reporting Guidelines Vol. 3.0 (pages 7–17).
Supplementary Notes – Recommendations
Without prejudice to our audit findings outlined above, we make the following recommendations on further development of CSR management and CSR reporting:
- Further implementation of the CSR Strategy and continuous reporting on the articulated CSR goals as well as progress made toward the ultimate goal: the derivation of the overall goals in a comprehensive CSR program that covers the essential spheres of activity.
- Development of systematic and documented internal control procedures for explaining and annotating changes on a central level as well as the level of individual businesses and business streams.
- Further formalizing and ensuring the consistent international adoption of definitions for all key figures for CSR.
Düsseldorf, March 18, 2013
pp Aissata Touré