Founded in 1970, Western Digital has its headquarters in the United States. The company is a leading manufacturer of data storage devices. It operates in more than 30 countries and has over a dozen facilities which specialise in either manufacturing or assembling products.
The company demonstrates support for open source through a commitment and membership to a range of standards organisations. It follows best practice by reporting the number of women it employs in technical roles. Western Digital also supports the tech start-up ecosystem through its venture capital fund and its Data Innovation Bazaar.
Western Digital has an opportunity to support access to digital technologies, especially for women and other underrepresented and vulnerable users. The company should also report the number of its employees with disabilities and how the economic value it generates is distributed.
Western Digital should disclose more information on its high-level responsibility for cybersecurity and its information security management certification. As a digital company, Western Digital should make a high level commitment to child online protection.
The company has an opportunity to enhance support for open and inclusive innovation including disclosing information on ethical guidelines followed for research and development. Western Digital also has the opportunity to support entrepreneurs from underrepresented groups.
Core social indicators
The core social indicators assess societal expectations of business conduct that companies should meet if they aspire to be part of a system transformation that leaves no one behind.
Western Digital commits to respect human rights and the ILO core labour rights. The company identifies, assesses and takes action to address its salient human rights issues in its own operations and in its business relationships. However, Western Digital does not disclose that it engages with stakeholders whose human rights could be impacted by its operations. The company has a grievance mechanism that is accessible to workers and external stakeholders to raise human rights concerns and complaints.
Western Digital publicly commits to respecting the health and safety of workers and it places health and safety expectations on its business relationships and monitors their performance. The company does not disclose a policy commitment which states that it does not require workers to work more than the regular and overtime hours and is not explicit that it requires its business relationships to do the same nor does it provide relevant information regarding paying workers a living wage or its commitment towards gender equality and women’s empowerment. Western Digital provides information on its workforce diversity on at least four indicators of diversity per employee category.
Western Digital has a policy prohibiting bribery and corruption and includes anti-bribery and anti-corruption clauses in contracts with its business relationships. Furthermore, the company takes steps to identify and address bribery and corruption and has a grievance mechanism for stakeholders to raise concerns and complaints. The company’s tax strategy is applicable to its UK operations only and Western Digital does not disclose income tax payments for all of its tax jurisdictions. Furthermore, the company does not disclose its approach to lobbying and political engagement, does not state that it does not make political contributions and discloses its lobbying expenditures for its US operations only.