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Embracing Sustainability in Our One Nexteer Culture

June 22, 2022

The automotive industry is changing rapidly, with a sustainability-focused mindset driving megatrends-aligned innovations in electrification, fuel efficiency, advanced safety and more. At Nexteer, we take pride in enabling these changes and moving toward our shared vision to be the global leading motion control technology company that accelerates mobility to be safe, green and exciting – with sustainability as a key part.

Being a good corporate citizen and making a positive impact where we do business is the basis of sustainability and inspires our environmental, social and governance initiatives. Our One Nexteer culture encourages all employees to embrace sustainability – empowering every one of us with the freedom to explore, understand, suggest and continue to improve how we make tomorrow better than today.

In 2021, we were honored to be recognized by Newsweek as one of America’s Most Responsible Companies for the third consecutive year. We will continue this stewardship for the good of the planet, our communities and our future through our longstanding work along the five key focus areas of the Nexteer Sustainability Framework, as summarized in our recent 2021 Sustainability Report.

Creating Value through Innovation

Innovation is at the heart of our shared vision. To turn our vision into reality, we continue to balance protecting our current portfolio of products while relentlessly innovating for our future in alignment with key industry megatrends such as electrification, software / connectivity, shared mobility and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) / automated driving (AD).

As the automotive industry transitions to electrification and automation, Nexteer has an incredibly important role to play. Our products are a natural solution as society is aspired and taking actions transitioning to a low carbon economy. We continue to innovate and demonstrate our commitment to manufacturing excellence, for example, recently recognized by the National Association of Manufacturers for the fifth straight year.

Championing Environmental & Social Initiatives

To promote environmental, health and safety across the company and communities we serve, we design our products and processes with continual improvement in mind – working to reduce environmental footprint, conserve resources and improve efficiency. As an example of how we live and lead excellence by embracing sustainability, our divisional cross-functional team executed a renewable energy agreement achieving cost efficiency, while meeting the need of approximately 80% of energy consumption of our Mexico operations.

In addition, I am very proud to share evidence of how sustainability ripple effects continue to spread across the organization moving us along our journey. Since its formation in 2020, our Climate Change Task Force, a subset of our global cross-functional Sustainability Work Group (SWG), has collaborated on enterprise-level initiatives such as conducting physical and transition climate risk assessments, considering climate scenarios, evaluating target-setting and exploring renewable energy options in regions.

Over the course of 2021, we also championed modern workplace preferences to continue to build our company culture. We introduced our global SmartWork policy to offer employees more flexibility regarding where and when they work, and we continue to develop opportunities for employees to learn and aspire to leadership at Nexteer. Building on the 2020 launch of our diversity, equity and inclusion program, RISE, we further defined parameters of the program and explored ways to make a greater impact.

Nurturing an Efficient & Responsible Supply Chain

Our work in the automotive industry is intertwined with the work of many other companies, and we ensure our partners hold values that are similar to ours. In 2021, we implemented a new self-assessment sustainability questionnaire process that allows us to assess relevant suppliers on their adherence to our Corporate Social Responsibility Supplier Principles. These guidelines outline environmental and social expectations, such as requiring our suppliers to establish environmental policy statements and seek appropriate training.

With the increasingly important role sustainable procurement plays in supply chain management, we continue to value collaboration and engagement with our suppliers to navigate the near-term environment, while keeping each other supported to further nurture efficient, responsible, collaborative and long-term supply chain partnerships. Together, we continue to cultivate business partnerships to support our OEM customers.

Supporting Our Communities

Over the past few years, we’ve contributed more than $2.1 million and more than 72,000 employee volunteer hours to support charitable causes and programs in the communities where we live and work around the world through our Nexteer Cares initiative. Our regional teams continued to support COVID-19 vaccination clinics and local health departments, sharing supplies when possible.

We have also worked to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) educational opportunities for students in our communities – helping develop the next generation of engineers around the world.

We appreciate all of our Nexteer colleagues’ engagement and support to their local communities and continue to make a difference! In essence, we are not only ambassadors embracing sustainability in our One Nexteer culture, but also influence those around us to make an amplified impact.

In closing, sustainability /ESG is a journey – one that’s full of challenges, however, more opportunities for those who have a positive vision in mind and continue to push forward, even just starting from the tiniest steps – because we believe our One Nexteer culture shall continue to keep us aligned, united and confident to advance this journey!

Virginia Li
Virginia Li is Nexteer’s Director of Sustainability, a member of the Sustainability Steering Committee (SSC), a proud ambassador of the Sustainability Work Group (SWG) and its Climate Change Task Force, and planning committee of the Nexteer Women’s Club (NWC).