Our governance

Learn about our corporate governance framework which is designed to ensure the Group lives up to its obligations and commitments as it works to enhance shareholder value. 

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Our approach

The Qantas Board of Directors is responsible for confirming that Qantas has an appropriate corporate governance framework to ensure the creation, protection and enhancement of shareholder value. Key to this is responsible, ethical and sustainable business practices.

The Board endorses each of the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) Corporate Governance Council's Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations (ASX Principles).

The role of the Board

The Board adopted its Board Charter (PDF) on 1 September 2003. The Board Charter is reviewed annually by the Board, with the last review conducted and amendments approved on 24 August 2023.

The Board has established Committees that are responsible for considering detailed issues and making recommendations to the Board. The Board has approved charters for each Committee:

Audit Committee Charter (PDF)
Nominations Committee Charter (PDF)
Remuneration Committee Charter (PDF)
Safety, Health, Environment and Security Committee Charter (PDF)

Board Committee Members

  • Audit Committee: Belinda Hutchinson (Chair), Dr Heather Smith, Todd Sampson and Dr Nora Scheinkestel.
  • Nominations Committee: Richard Goyder (Chair), Belinda Hutchinson and Antony Tyler.
  • Remuneration Committee: Dr Nora Scheinkestel (Chair), Dr Heather Smith, Doug Parker and Todd Sampson.
  • Safety, Health, Environment, and Security Committee:  Antony Tyler (Chair), Vanessa Hudson, Belinda Hutchinson, Doug Parker and John Mullen.

Qantas Constitution

The Qantas Constitution (PDF) is Qantas' key governance document. The Qantas Sale Act requires the Constitution to contain specific provisions designed to reflect Qantas' position as Australia’s national carrier.

Driving ethical business practice

The Qantas Group is committed to complying with all applicable laws and regulations, and to conducting business with the highest standards of ethics and integrity.

We monitor global developments in governance, laws, and business practices, and work collaboratively across our global footprint to ensure we continue to meet these standards. The Qantas Group Business Practices Document (PDF) provides an overview of our beliefs, values, and business practices and highlights the standards to be upheld by all employees.

Risk management

The aviation industry frequently deals with uncertainty, whether it's in the price we pay for fuel, business and consumer confidence and demand levels, weather patterns, geopolitical events, and as seen recently, pandemics. The Qantas Group adopts a proactive approach to enable identification, evaluation and effective management of the risks and opportunities that arise. Our commitment to strengthening business resilience and fostering a risk aware culture creates the foundation for sustainable performance and adaptability to respond to shifting market conditions.

Our approach to risk management starts with our first priority: the safety of our customers and people. Qantas was one of the first airlines to introduce an integrated Safety Management System in the 1990s, which we continue to evolve. Today we apply the same systematic approach to all risk disciplines, not just aviation safety. The system integrates the management of risks associated with aviation operational safety; workplace health and safety (WHS); aviation and cyber security; privacy and data governance; environment (including climate change); and business resilience. We continue to learn through collaboration and shared experiences to make the system better.

Qantas maintains a strong governance structure over its risk management activities. The Board has overall responsibility for the governance of risks. Oversight is maintained through the Board’s Audit Committee and Safety, Health, Environment and Security Committee (also known as CHESS).

The CHESS has responsibility for strategy, policy, systems oversight, monitoring and corporate governance over operational risks of the Qantas Group. This includes aviation safety, WHS, environment, security, and business resilience matters. CHESS also has oversight of risks associated with regulatory compliance.

The Audit Committee undertakes the functions of a risk committee as set out in the ASX Corporate Governance Principles. Risks are assessed in accordance with the Qantas Group Risk Assessment Guide (QRAG). The Audit Committee, at least annually, reviews Qantas Management’s establishment and operation of an enterprise-wide risk management system. This process is designed to identify, assess, monitor and manage all business risks, including strategic, operational, financial, and compliance risk.

The frequency with which the Board is informed about issues depends on the significance of the specific risk. Qantas’ risk management practices capture threats and opportunities that have been assessed using the QRAG, with risks reported to Executive Management based on their significance (risk rating and/or consequence levels).  The Board of Directors receives a bi-annual Group Risk Report incorporating a risk profile, trends, risk interconnectivity and monitors the management of notable risks.

Supply Chain Assurance

Qantas takes a proactive approach to managing risks in our supply chain. We have established systems and processes to ensure our suppliers (or the partners we work with) prioritise safety and sustainability in the same way we do.

Our Supply Chain Assurance program, launched in FY18, has a clear focus on six key risk areas:

  1. anti-bribery and corruption,
  2. modern slavery including child labour and forced labour,
  3. illegal logging,
  4. workplace health and safety,
  5. privacy, and
  6. cyber security including data and credit card protection.

This program helps us understand how our suppliers are producing the goods and services we pay them for, and to make sure they comply with Qantas' Supplier Requirements (PDF).

We continually review the criteria we use to identify and assess supplier risk to ensure our methodology is reflective of the shifting global environment. If we identify material risks, we will work with suppliers to remove the risks where possible, and otherwise to substantially mitigate them.

Learn more about our Supply Chain Assurance Program (PDF)

Anti-bribery and corruption

We recognise that corruption has a negative social, economic, political and anti-competitive impact wherever it occurs. We have a responsibility not only to meet expanding foreign and domestic anti-bribery legislation, but also to ensure that our business partners and those in our supply chain operate with a consummate level of integrity.

Our Code of Conduct and Ethics and our Group Business Practices document outlines the obligations of our employees, contractors and those we do business with in relation to anti-bribery and corruption, and together with guidance from global regulators, collectively form our anti-bribery and corruption compliance program.

As outlined in our Code, the Qantas Group supports a zero-tolerance approach to crime and corruption. We prohibit our employees, contractors, agents or any persons acting on behalf of the Group from engaging in any form of bribery and corruption including conduct that creates the perception of bribery, or other economic or financial crimes. We have clear policies on gifts, benefits and hospitality, facilitation payments, charitable donations, sponsorships and conflicts of interest.

More information below:

The Group’s Business Integrity and Compliance function, reporting to the General Counsel and Group Executive, Office of the CEO, ensures that the Group is best positioned to respond to both the rapidly evolving regulatory environment and shifting societal expectations regarding corporate ethics. Our Business Integrity Compliance program is overseen by the Qantas Board, through the Qantas Audit Committee.

Supporting our Code of Conduct and Ethics is a suite of policy documents, procedures and guidelines that outline the minimum standards required of all our employees, and which support our employees to act legally and with integrity. With a focus on continuous improvement.

Risk assessment is a vital tool in bribery prevention and an essential component our corporate compliance program. Our risk assessment methodology utilises known bribery and corruption risk indicators to identify potential risk and, where required, to introduce adequate controls to mitigate that risk.

Our Group training matrix identifies those employees who, due to the nature of their role, are required to complete anti-bribery and competition law training. Training is primarily delivered online, however we may conduct face-to-face training for employees operating in high-risk roles following consideration of factors such as the corruption risk index of the country, the level of interaction with government, and the nature of the business activity. Using this risk-based approach, we may also deliver training to contractors, agents or persons who may act on our behalf.
In FY23, we developed a new online course, Acting with Integrity, which will be rolled out to employees early in FY24. The course is designed to better equip our people to navigate ethical dilemmas, guide and promote ethical decision‑making, and builds on our existing training to strengthen employees’ awareness of bribery and corruption, including possible issues that may be connected to bribery and corruption like gifts, benefits and entertainment, conflicts of interest and modern slavery

Our due diligence program assists us to assess and ensure that those we partner with operate with a commensurate level of integrity, operate within the law and meet our requirements.
We support an ethical supply chain through our due diligence program, which assesses potential third-party suppliers, including those who act on our behalf, to identify those presenting an elevated risk of bribery. Where gaps are identified we may require mitigaton action to be taken for example: strengthened policies and procedures; training programs; contractual controls; financial controls; or reporting processes.

The global nature of our business means that we interact with government and their agencies across the regions and countries in which we operate. As governments are key decision makers of issues that directly impact our business, we invest in building effective and collaborative relationships in order to achieve optimal business outcomes for the Group.

We're proud of our joint collaboration with government and broader industry to strengthen Australia’s approach to anti-corruption through our participation in dedicated focus groups, such as the Bribery Prevention Network and our association with industry bodies such as the Global Compact Network.

Whistleblower program

The Qantas Group highly values and promotes a speaking up culture, where all Disclosing Persons feel comfortable to raise matters that are of legitimate concern to them, including in relation to a potential breach of any legal or regulatory requirement or a Qantas Group Policy.

A Whistleblower program is an important element in deterring corrupt, illegal or other undesirable conduct. The Whistleblower Policy [PDF] outlines the operation of the Qantas Whistleblower program including what qualifies as a Disclosable Matter, detail regarding how Qualifying Disclosures can be made, who qualifies as a Disclosing Person and who the Eligible Recipients for Qualifying Disclosures are. The Qantas Group is committed to ensuring the protection of all Disclosing Persons, information regarding the investigation process and the protections available to Disclosing Persons is available in the Policy.

How to make a disclosure under the Whistleblower Policy

The Qantas Group encourages Disclosing Persons who have reasonable grounds to suspect a Disclosable Matter to make a disclosure via the following channels, by:

  • contacting the Whistleblower hotline, which is independently managed on behalf of Qantas by PricewaterhouseCoopers (via phone on 1800 855 212 or +612 82661453, via email, or post at PO Box Q654, QVB Post Office, Queen Victoria Building NSW 1230, Australia); or
  • submitting a report to the online Whistleblower portal, or by scanning the QR code available in Attachment 1 of the Policy.

Further information about how to make a disclosure, and additional Eligible Recipients is available in the Policy.

Our approach to respecting human rights

We know that how a business conducts its activities and operations can affect the human rights of other people, whether they are employees, customers, workers in our supply chain, or the broader community.  We make every effort to operate our business in a way that demonstrates our commitment to the respect of the principles of the United Nations’ (UN) Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the International Labour Organisation’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles.

We have been a signatory to the UN Global Compact (UNGC) since 2017, and we are committed to incorporating the Ten Principles of the UNGC on human rights, labour, environment, and anti-corruption, in our strategies, policies, and procedures, supporting us to uphold our corporate responsibilities to safeguard people and planet.

Our commitment is reflected in our Code of Conduct and Ethics [PDF]Human Rights Policy Statement [PDF] and our Modern Slavery Statement [PDF]

More information below:

Our Modern Slavery Statement, pursuant to the Australian Modern Slavery Act 2018 (Cth) (MSA) and s54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (UK MSA) sets out the actions taken by the Qantas Group to mitigate and prevent potential modern slavery risks in our operations and supply chains. The Statement provides examples, in the form of case studies, that demonstrate our approach to address issues of potential concern and advance respect for human rights in line with international standards.  The Statement also expresses our commitment to conducting our business, including our response to potential modern slavery risk, in line with the guidance provided under the UNGPs.

The Groups governance framework underpins our response to modern slavery and broader human rights risks, including by providing a structure for accountability. Human rights and modern slavery risks in our operations and supply chains is managed consistently within our established enterprise-wide risk framework, with oversight maintained through the assurance activity of Qantas Group Audit and Risk, and ultimately the Audit Committee.

The Business Integrity and Compliance team monitor global developments with regard to human rights legislation and standards and supports the business to meet the requirements, including through the due diligence and risk assessment of suppliers in our supply chain assurance program.

As an international airline group, we have a diverse global footprint. We recognise the importance of undertaking effective human rights due diligence, including for our operations, business partners and suppliers in higher-risk environments.

We completed our first salient human rights assessment in 2018, and across FY22 and FY23 we engaged an independent business and human rights advisory firm to undertake a review of our salient human rights issues. Our salient human rights issues are the areas where we consider the most severe adverse human rights impacts could occur across our business activities and relationships. 

The review involved a Group-wide, cross-functional workshop to identify potential examples of relevant adverse human rights impacts, the themes of which were subsequently validated in a series of internal stakeholder consultation sessions. We then worked with Pillar Two to assess the indicative severity of these potential adverse human rights impacts by evaluating their scale, scope and remediability in line with international standards and frameworks.

This work informed the identification of five salient human rights issues for Qantas, which we aim to use to help us focus our human rights risk management and help ensure we manage the key risks to people and to the business.

The five areas of focus are:

  1. Respecting labour rights in our supply chain,
  2. Safeguarding customer safety and welfare,
  3. Securing customer and employee privacy,
  4. Preserving a clean, healthy and sustainable environment, and
  5. Providing safe, respectful & inclusive working environments for our people.
Infographic showing the Human rights - Five areas of focus. More information above.

We are committed to partnering with suppliers who share our commitment to compliance with the law and ethical business practices. Through our supply chain assurance program we proactively seek to identify, assess and address modern slavery risk within our supply chain.  We aim to safeguard the respect for human rights, by ensuring that suppliers within our supply chain provide adequate human and labour rights protections to workers, including safe and environmentally healthy work conditions.  

Our expectations of Suppliers are outlined in our Supplier Requirements (PDF) (which includes the Qantas Group Compliance Statement) and Supplier Code of Conduct (PDF), and reflected in relevant contractual arrangements.  Our policies are developed with regard to relevant legislation and internationally recognised standards such as the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. 

Support for our Suppliers:  

We recognise the importance of providing training and support to our suppliers, to build their capacity to effectively manage modern slavery risks. Our interactions with our suppliers, those in our extended supply chain and our business relationships are valuable experiential learning opportunities. We invest time and resources engaging in two-way dialogue to build an understanding of international standards on human rights, including modern slavery, and providing guidance on implementation of appropriate actions to address potential human rights risks. 

Further detail on our approach to managing modern slavery risk in our supply chain can be found in our Modern Slavery Statement (PDF)Opens in a new tab or window

The delivery of training to our people is key to helping us maintain the respect for human rights. Our people undertake role-based training on a wide range of human rights related issues.

The objective of the training is to build awareness, understanding and equip our people to act with integrity and with respect for human rights in their dealings with each other, our customers, and the broader community.

In line with the eight characteristics of an effective grievance process outlined in the UNGPs, we understand effective grievance mechanisms should be a trusted and accessible mechanism through which adversely affected people (including employees, suppliers, workers in our supply chain and other stakeholders) can raise matters of legitimate concern, without any fear of retaliation.

We have established reporting procedures and mechanisms where employees and third parties (including suppliers and their workers) can report any concerns regarding unethical or illegal conduct, including in relation to modern slavery. Employees can report to their manager or, if they wish to remain anonymous, employees and third parties (including suppliers and their workers) are able to report through our independently managed Whistleblower channels, via phone and email, via our online portal, or by contacting an eligible recipient as named in our Whistleblower Policy.

The accessibility of appropriate grievance mechanisms to workers in our supply chains and in our suppliers supply chains, forms part of our supplier due diligence and risk assessment processes and remains an ongoing area of focus when working with our suppliers.

The review and refinement of our grievance mechanisms to ensure they remain effective (with reference to the UNGPs) is an ongoing initiative for the Group.

We understand that effecting meaningful change to address modern slavery will take time and, to be successful requires a multi-stakeholder approach between business, civil society, governments, investors, unions and importantly from those with lived experience.  Our stakeholder engagement provides opportunities to understand the perspectives of our stakeholders, to help inform and continuously improve our response to modern slavery and broader human rights issues.

Qantas is an active member of the UN Global Compact Network Australia (GCNA) and is also a member of the GCNA Modern Slavery Community of Practice.  The forum provides an opportunity for  Australian businesses to share insights and learn of leading practices to address modern slavery and human rights risk.

Qantas recognises that airlines have a role to play in preventing human trafficking. We have continued to contribute to industry initiatives to prevent human trafficking, including ongoing consultation on ICAO policy and IATA standards and practices.

We have developed human trafficking awareness training using guidance material for airlines about human trafficking, produced by the International Air Transport Association (IATA).  The training focuses on building key employees’ awareness of indicators of human trafficking, to help us recognise potential trafficking victims who may be travelling passengers and to apply victim-centred response protocols. In addition to this targeted face-to-face training, all employees receive more general human trafficking awareness training when they join the Qantas Group and on a periodic basis.

People are the core of our business, and our commitment to respect human rights, which includes labour rights, starts in our own operations. The Group aims to ensure a safe and fair working environment for our people and we also recognise the rights of our employees to freedom of association with approximately 20,000 of our employees covered by more than 50 Enterprise Agreements (EA’s).

 Our Supplier Code of Conduct creates clear expectations for suppliers in respect of labour rights and working conditions.

The Group acknowledges the complexity of immigration issues and respects that there are various views in the community and amongst shareholders about Australia’s immigration policy.

The Group has considered transport of unsuccessful asylum seekers through multiple lenses, including as part of the salient human rights issues assessment undertaken in 2018; a targeted risk assessment inclusive of the impact to our broader stakeholder group; and the Group’s capacity and qualification to “second guess” a complex and comprehensive regulatory and judicial process.

With the Group’s international flying operations still well below pre-pandemic levels, the repatriation of deportees at the request of the Australian Government has been limited to a low number of Involuntary Deportees. Involuntary Deportees include persons who overstay working visas, are denied entry for visa irregularities, and criminal extraditions.

Consistent with the Groups’ consultative approach on this complex issue to date, we expect that as our operation resumes, that our dialogue with stakeholders will also resume.

Following ongoing discussions with the Department of Home Affairs about the repatriation of deportees who have not been granted asylum by the Australian Government, the Department has updated its Persons in Custody (PIC) form so that airlines are advised whether an individual has outstanding proceedings before a court or tribunal prior to international transportation. This amendment provides the Group with an additional level of verification in line with our voluntary commitments under the UNGPs, while at the same time upholding our position that the Australian Government is best placed to make decisions on the legal status of people seeking asylum in Australia.

We aim to foster a workplace where people respect and tolerate the rights and differences of others. Harassment in the workplace is not tolerated and is a form of discrimination if it is based on an unlawful ground such as gender, race or disability. Likewise, bullying or any form of occupational violence in the workplace is not tolerated.

As part of this, we commissioned an independent survey of several thousand employees in 2019 to better understand their experience of any harassment in the workplace. The findings showed Qantas had similar instances to the national workplace averages – but we want the Qantas Group to be significantly better than this.

Following the review we have re-defined our approach to ensure all Qantas Group workplaces are safer for our people by: 

  • making it easier for people to formally report workplace bullying and harassment,
  • improving the inclusiveness of organisational culture, and
  • better managing the behaviour of customers.

Our inclusion and diversity strategy is focused on driving an improved people experience (and in turn, better business outcomes) by removing barriers to inclusion and creating greater opportunities for participation.  We do this by mitigating unconscious bias and improving access to flexibility, talent programs and dedicated leadership development.

Learn more about Inclusion and Diversity