Corporate Responsibility

Our Products | Our Operations | Our Supply Chain | RF Exposure and Assessment Standards

Corporate responsibility (CR) means operating ethically, protecting the environment – through our products, services, and operations – and supporting the communities where we do business.

Our CR programmes have broad reach, helping customers save energy, creating sources of conflict-free minerals, protecting and developing our employees and investing in the communities where we live and work. We invite you to learn more about our work and progress on this website.

OUR PRODUCTS

We design, manufacture, and distribute life changing products and solutions – to our customers, businesses, and people around the world. Our wide portfolio provides our customers with the tools they need to operate quickly, reliably, and effectively in the moments that matter.

Like most goods, our products also have environmental impacts associated with each stage of their life – design, manufacture, distribution, use, and end of life. We innovate to reduce adverse impacts and increase environmental benefits across all stages of the lifecycle and consider the following environmental principles in our product design:

  • Comply with laws and regulations
  • Use environmentally preferred materials
  • Improve energy efficiency and reduce our product carbon footprints
  • Reduce material consumption, including packaging
  • Increase the recyclable content of our products where possible
 

We encourage our customers to return used equipment for proper disposal and operate take back programmes in partnership with specialist recycling companies around the world.

We partner with suppliers and customers to find innovative solutions to product life cycle impacts. We also work with customers to help them understand how to use our products to improve their efficiency and reduce their environmental impact.

OUR OPERATIONS

We are committed to reducing the environmental impact of our operations, creating a workplace where our employees are safe, healthy and happy.

We work to minimize our environmental footprint, and set goals for energy use, recycling and waste reduction to help us achieve this. The safety of our employees in the workplace is of critical importance to our company - our safety programmes help prevent and eliminate safety hazards before injuries and illnesses occur.

The behaviour of individuals is central to our ability to reduce environmental impact and maintain a safe workplace. We engage with our employees in our EHS programmes and targets through a range of channels, including awareness programmes and employee training.

Underpinned by our Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) management system, we undertake a range of systematic activities to reduce the overall environmental impacts of our operations:

  • We conduct EHS audits at our sites to assess compliance with our EHS policy, management system and legal requirements.
  • Our Enviromental Steering Comittee monitors energy management activities across Zebra.

 

We do not shy away from our responsibility to deal with environmental liabilities where past operations have led to the need for restorative work. We are involved in a range of remediation activities, often in partnership with other companies and organisations, to ensure that former sites of manufacturing and waste disposal facilities are restored to an acceptable condition.

OUR SUPPLY CHAIN

Zebra, our customers, and our stakeholders all expect high labor and environmental standards at every stage in the supply chain manufacturing our products.

Our products contain various metals, including tantalum, tin, tungsten and gold (3TG), originating from mines around the world. Some of this production comes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and neighboring countries, where political instability and lack of security have allowed mines to be exploited by armed groups. Any association with financing armed conflict is unacceptable to us and we have engaged extensively across our supply chain to seek solutions to this problem.

Suppliers

We engage directly with our tier one suppliers (suppliers from which we buy directly) to assess their performance and encourage compliance with our Supplier Code of Conduct. We also expect our tier one suppliers to pass down social and environmental responsibility requirements to their suppliers.

Conflict Minerals

Over the past year, Zebra Technologies Corporation (“Zebra”) has engaged with its suppliers across the globe to identify any that include use of “3TG’s”, tantalum, tin, gold and tungsten in the manufacture of the components that Zebra uses in its products. Zebra has verified that its products contain 3TG minerals, as these minerals are required for the functionality of our products. Because Zebra does not purchase these metals directly from smelters or mines, like most companies, Zebra must rely on the source information for said metals that is provided by our suppliers. To help understand the origin of these minerals used in our products, Zebra requires our suppliers provide the standardized Conflict Minerals Reporting Template that traces the metals back through the supply chain.

To date, Zebra has either obtained, or is in the process of obtaining, information from suppliers concerning the origin of the 3TG minerals that are used in the manufacture of Zebra’s products. Based upon information provided by our suppliers, Zebra is unable to verify the origin of every mineral used in our products. However we are making progress every day in our efforts with our suppliers to understand the source of any 3TG’s used. 

It is Zebra’s policy to work with all our suppliers ongoing to understand the origins of any 3TG and encourage our suppliers to use verified conflict free sources of these minerals where ever possible. As of September 24, 2014, Zebra and our suppliers have identified 478 smelters in our supply chain, of which 228 are certified as conflict-free by the conflict Free Sourcing Initiative.

For more information, please visit our Compliance section.

RF EXPOSURE AND ASSESSMENT STANDARDS

Zebra Technologies designs, builds and tests all its products according to international assessment standards (by measurements or numerical computations) to meet nationally and internationally recognised exposure standards (limits of exposure with large safety margins). These products include RFID, mobile computers and other portable communications products, as well as in-vehicle radios.

Most countries follow the RF exposure limits recommended by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) or the International Committee on Electromagnetic Safety of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). These limits protect against potential adverse health effects by including substantial safety margins. Compliance with these standards provides a sound scientific basis for confidence in the safety of products using RF energy.

The exposure assessment standards for wireless portable devices used around the world have been established by the IEEE and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). These standards create strict methodological requirements for testing products for compliance with specific absorption rate (SAR) limits. For many regions, including the Americas and the European Union, testing is done for intended use of the products (e.g., use at the ear or in front of the face) and for body-worn products (e.g., in a holster on the waist).

Base stations

Stationary or mobile equipment that transmits RF energy, such as base stations, antenna sites or wireless access points, are covered by exposure guidelines based on the same scientific knowledge as the limits applied to portable radio products. For exposure to antennas at a far distance, the limits are in terms of power density (milliwatts per square centimeter), instead of SAR for portable devices operated near the body. Generally, due to the height of antennas, stationary network equipment produces RF exposure levels for members of the public that are typically hundreds or even thousands of times below established exposure limits.

New technologies

New technologies, products and services are being deployed that incorporate the use of RF energy. These include radio networks and devices for RF identification technology for logistics management, low-power access points to boost network availability in businesses, and LTE and Wi-Fi products. These technologies often use radio waves to operate and must meet the same or similar exposure guidelines as existing wireless products.

Compliance testing

Zebra Technologies products are designed, manufactured and tested according to the international assessment standards to meet national and international requirements for compliance with the science-based exposure standards. Zebra Technologies products are tested in Zebra approved external accredited independent labs. This rigorous testing provides assurances that Zebra Technologies products are compliant with national regulations and international RF exposure standards before being placed on the market.