Founded in 2011 and publicly listed in 2019, Zoom Video Communications provides a communications platform offering online video, phone, chat and content sharing services. In 2020, over 450,000 organizations with more than ten employees were Zoom customers and there were more than 300 million meeting participants daily.
Zoom offers funding to groups providing internet access to vulnerable people in the US. The company’s public commitment to integrate accessible design principles into its products is evident in the various accessibility features available on its platform.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Zoom provided free live training and resources to the global education community to support educators teaching in a virtual environment. It also enabled over 125,000 schools in 25 countries to use Zoom for free to support the switch to remote learning.
The company has a Chief Information Security Officer and a dedicated cybersecurity committee. Furthermore, it published its first semi-annual transparency report in 2020, detailing government requests for user information. The company also has a reporting mechanism for online harm and cooperates with the US non-profit National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
There is limited evidence of Zoom’s initiatives targeting digital opportunities for women and girls. The company does report its community investments, however, it should also disclose how the economic value it generates is distributed among other stakeholders, as well as report its employment and the income taxes it pays in its main markets.
Little evidence was found on how Zoom contributes to sustainability research or supports sustainable development. The company has the opportunity to disclose the ethical principles it follows in its research and development (R&D) activities, as well as the number of its women employees working in technical roles.
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.
Zoom commits to respecting human rights and has a grievance mechanism accessible to both workers and external stakeholders to raise human rights concerns and complaints. However, the company does not provide a formal policy commitment with regard to respecting the ILO core labour rights. Furthermore, Zoom does not disclose a process to identify, assess and take action on salient human rights risks in its own operations and in its business relationships. The company also does not engage with stakeholders whose human rights could be impacted by its operations.
Zoom publicly commits to respecting the health and safety of workers. The company does not disclose a policy commitment stating that it does not require workers to work more than the regular and overtime hours. It is also not explicit about expecting its business relationships to do the same. In relation to workforce diversity, Zoom does not provide a breakdown of diversity per employee category. Moreover, no commitment by the company towards gender equality and women’s empowerment could be found in the public domain.
Zoom has a policy prohibiting bribery and corruption, and it includes anti-bribery and anti-corruption clauses in contracts with its business relationships. Furthermore, the company has a grievance mechanism for stakeholders to raise concerns and complaints on the topic. Zoom does not, however, disclose how it takes steps to identify and address bribery and corruption. It also does not disclose any relevant information in relation to tax, such as a global tax strategy or income tax payments in individual tax jurisdictions. Moreover, the company does not disclose its approach to lobbying and political engagement. Specifically, it has no public statement indicating that it does not make political contributions, and it does not disclose its lobbying expenditures.