Megatrend Sustainability

The automotive industry is undergoing a radical transformation. Not only is mobility becoming increasingly automated, it is also being impacted by several dynamically evolving developments such as population growth, a shortage of resources, climate change, urbanization and demographic challenges. All of these factors are directly affecting mobility concepts of the future. Today more than ever, a company which is not able to provide solutions quickly enough may put its business success at risk. For this reason, sustainability is vitally important to us.

Indisputably, the technologies we provide have the biggest impact globally. It is our vision to cut down both mobility-induced emissions and road fatalities to zero. With our technologies, we are enabling the global automotive industry as well as other industrial sectors to realize these goals.

At the same time, sustainability for ZF also means continually reducing our own ecological footprint, maintaining a healthy and highly motivated workforce, engaging with our communities and continually developing the ecological and social performance of our suppliers.

As a signatory of the Global Compact and in line with our very own values at ZF, we are commited to working towards strengthening human rights and improving labour conditions wherever needed. Also we believe in protecting the environment and fighting corruption with zero tolerance. By doing so, ZF will not only support, but shape the transformation of the automotive industry.

ZF Group Sustainability Programm

The strategic framework of our sustainability program is determined to a large extent by the global megatrends which are continuously altering the world in which we do business. Taking this into account, our sustainability management in 2016 was characterized by the implementation and further development of the sustainability program first published in 2015. As part of this program, the company committed to meeting nonfinancial targets such as reducing specific greenhouse gas emissions in production, mitigating the environmental impact in logistics and continuously improving occupational health and safety, diversity and ZF’s appeal as an employer. Similar actions are being taken at ZF TRW where sustainability management involves assessing possible impacts of processes in production and at the end of the product life cycle on the environment and employees.


As part of the changing market environment, ZF is responding to megatrends, strong growth in the Asia-Pacific region and North America, technological and demographic change, and worldwide population growth. At the same time, highly qualified, motivated and healthy personnel are key to the company's long-term success. Therefore, attracting and systematically further developing talented personnel is one of ZF’s major challenges.

Taking responsibility for society at large and the communities we operate in is an important and intrinsic component of ZF‘s mission statement. In line with this commitment, we therefore contribute a great deal to our local communities by supporting education, sports and recreation, culture, environmental and community projects.


Conserving natural resources is the fundamental principle of our environmental strategy which is based on the environ-mental policy adopted in 1996. This policy has been amended and added to since then and it is globally binding for all locations. It includes major areas of activity which are essential for us: climate protection, the environmental impact of our production, eco-friendly product design and environmental performance improvement. This policy is based on environmental objectives for the areas of activity and is controlled by our certified environmental and energy management system. The locations strive to achieve the objectives at a local level.

Supply Chain

Since ZF manufactures products in 40 countries worldwide, a major part of value creation in production lies in the supply of components. The costs for materials purchased from suppliers account for some 60 percent of our sales. ZF suppliers are normally contractors who procure the raw materials or basic components for the products ordered, manufacture the products and, in some cases, also design the products. When selecting strategic suppliers, ZF carefully reviews their environmental management. ??

ZF Corporate Materials Management has directed its Advanced Procurement Strategy (APS 25) toward the ZF 2025 Strategy. The APS 25 is based on the ZF environmental policy, the ZF Principles of Social Responsibility and the ten principles of the United Nations Global Compact. The APS 25 implements these principles in the supply chain. ZF requires all suppliers to comply with these three sets of principles.

Localization ratio

Our main business activities come from China, Germany and the USA, with some of the most localized procurement spending. At the same time, a lower localization ratio does not necessarily lead to increased environmental impact. Cross border transportation for example to or from Poland or Hungary may mean shorter distances compared to national transportation within the USA.

Product Responsibility

Urbanization, demographic change, sustainable resource utilization are some of the global megatrends that have been making their presence felt for many years. ZF has already charted the course for the future with its Strategy 2025. Following the “Vision 0” for 0 emissions and 0 accidents, ZF products intend to make a strong contribution to reducing emissions and accidents.

As a technology and cost leader, ZF aims to meet the demands of the mobility megatrends of tomorrow, such as efficiency, integrated safety and automated driving. With its “See, Think, Act” guiding principle, the Group has set a clear technology focus.

Efficiency, safety and automated driving are at the core of all our efforts to respond to megatrend challenges. At ZF, sustainability is not another product development objective, rather it is an integral part of our company worldwide.

Social Responsibility at ZF

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