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Who Are Our Stakeholders?

We have sustained, interdependent relationships with several distinct categories of stakeholders: employees, customers, dealers, suppliers, investors and communities. Also important is our relationship to "society," which includes government agencies, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and academia. We identified these categories of stakeholders through internal analysis and discussion during the early phases of developing our sustainability programs.


At year-end 2009, we employed approximately 176,000 individuals at 80 plants worldwide. Substantially all of the hourly employees in our Automotive operations in the United States are represented by unions and covered by collective bargaining agreements. Most hourly employees and many nonmanagement salaried employees of our subsidiaries outside the United States are also represented by unions. These unions are key partners with Ford in providing a safe, productive and respectful workplace.

Ford faces workplace health and safety challenges similar to those of many multinational manufacturing companies. These challenges include, for example, establishing and reinforcing high, common expectations for the safety of our employees worldwide. Most of our manufacturing facilities have joint union/management safety committees that guide the development and implementation of safety programs in their operations.


Ford's customers make us who we are. Ford Motor Company serves more than 4.8 million customers worldwide. Our major regional markets include North America, South America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Russia, Asia and Australia.

In these regions, we serve three primary types of customers: individual retail consumers, small business customers and large commercial fleet customers. We will continue to expand our products and services for these existing customers while working simultaneously to gain new customers in emerging markets. In North America, we are focusing on increasing our offerings of smaller and more fuel-efficient vehicles. In all of our markets, our customers' mobility needs and desires are changing faster than ever.


Our dealers are the face of Ford to our customers and communities. They are key employers and contributors to local economies. Ford and Lincoln Mercury dealers in the United States alone employed 155,687 individuals at the end of 2009, with an annual payroll of approximately $5.5 billion.


Suppliers are an integral part of our business, and our success is interdependent with theirs. We rely on 1,600 production suppliers to provide many of the parts that are assembled into Ford vehicles. Another 7,000 suppliers provide a wide range of nonproduction goods and services, from industrial materials to computers to advertising.

We have reduced the total number of production suppliers eligible for new product sourcing from 3,300 in 2004 to about 1,600 in 2009 and 1,500 in 2010. We have identified specific plans that will take us to about 850 suppliers in the near- to mid-term, with a further reduction to about 750 suppliers targeted.

Our supply base is increasingly global. We are expanding production in several regions to serve the sales growth that is expected to occur in emerging markets. We are also expanding our sourcing in these lower-cost emerging markets, as a way to serve both local markets and the global supply chain. These changes, and our efforts to ensure good working conditions in our supply chain, are discussed in detail in the Human Rights section of this report.


Our success as a company directly affects our approximately 165,000 investors. We have been focused on returning the company to profitability. (We now expect to deliver solid profits in 2010 with positive Automotive operating-related cash flow.) More information on our investors is available in the Economy section of this report. For detailed investor relations information, please visit:

We continue to maintain open communication with the investment community. We regularly host conference calls and participate in key automotive conferences during the year. In addition, our Investor Relations Web site is a good source of information for investors. It contains various Company reports, a schedule of events and investment information.


Our Company impacts the communities in which we operate in numerous ways, from the employment we provide and the taxes we pay, to the environmental and safety performance of our operations, to the ways in which we support and participate in civic life. Responsibly managing these impacts is not just about being a good neighbor; it is fundamental to the success of our business.

The communities in which we operate are composed of a diverse range of individuals and groups. They include our customers, our employees, our business partners and their employees, government regulators, members of civil society and community organizations, and those individuals who live and work around our facilities, among others. Developing and maintaining positive relationships with these varied groups is an important factor in our reputation and operational efficiency.

Engaging with These Stakeholders

Stakeholder engagement takes place in countless formal and informal ways every day across our Company, from meetings with local community groups to market research with customers to gatherings of Ford dealers and suppliers.

At the corporate level, we use a variety of mechanisms to engage with stakeholders on sustainability issues to help us better understand the broader societal issues that our Company addresses Some of these are informal and ad hoc. In fact, simply picking up the telephone to discuss an issue with any of the numerous sustainability-related organizations or individuals with whom Ford has a relationship is a part of our standard protocol.

Indeed, the very process of engaging with stakeholders on our Sustainability Report has led to expanded and enhanced information in a number of areas, including our positions on key public policy and other issues.

Some of our more formal engagement mechanisms include the following:

  • The creation of forums to gather stakeholder input on our activities, challenges and performance. As noted above, we work with stakeholder committees to help shape and provide feedback on our Sustainability Reports. We have also organized meetings with individuals and groups of stakeholders to solicit input on the key sustainability challenges and opportunities facing Ford. These and other engagements have provided valuable feedback on our sustainability strategy.
  • Outreach on emerging and ongoing issues of particular importance to Ford or our stakeholders. We believe we have taken a thoughtful approach to our stakeholders as we work through challenging issues. For example, stakeholder input has been critical to the development and testing of our approach to human rights over the past several years. Several organizations, notably the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), have been key partners with Ford, providing information, input and feedback at every step of the process, especially during conversations around shareholder resolutions. Our engagement with the ICCR and other stakeholders led us in part to make our public commitment to a 30 percent CO2 reduction by 2020. We have done outreach to the United Nations Global Compact, particularly as we developed our strategy to be a global leader in human rights, and have worked with stakeholders to address specific issues in the automotive industry supply chain (see the Human Rights section for more detail).
  • We also devoted particular efforts to engaging stakeholders on issues related to sustainable mobility, as further described in the Mobility section of this report. For example, we have partnered with the Cascadia Center for Regional Development to investigate integrated transportation solutions in high-traffic corridors. What began as an informal discussion developed into a more formalized process with several NGOs and state officials.
  • Engagement with local stakeholders in the communities in which we operate as part of our Code of Basic Working Conditions assessment process.
  • Consultation with organizations that have implemented campaigns targeting Ford.
  • Engagement with rating and ranking organizations in the investment community. This has provided insight into external perspectives on some important issues and our relative performance in addressing them.
  • Offering new product test-drive opportunities to our employees, who, in turn, communicate about our vehicles to their friends and families.
Stakeholder Communication Forums


347 plants; distribution centers/warehouses; and engineering, research/development and sales facilities worldwide*

*We have announced plans to close a number of North American facilities as part of our restructuring actions; facilities that have been closed to date are not included in the table. The table includes five facilities operated by Automotive Components Holdings, LLC (ACH), which is controlled by us. We have been working to sell or close the majority of the 15 ACH manufacturing plants; to date, we have sold five ACH plans and closed another five. We plan to close a sixth plant in 2011. We are exploring our options for the remaining ACH plants and intend to transition these businesses to the supply base as soon as practicable.

  • Community Relations Committees
  • Interactions with governments
  • Membership in associations
  • NGO dialogues


165,026 stockholders*

*As of February 12, 2010

  • Investment community forums
  • Quarterly earnings communications
  • Annual shareholders meeting
  • Annual report
  • Proxy statement
  • SEC filings (e.g., 10-K, 10-Q, 8-K)


4.8 million vehicles

  • Consumer Insight process
  • Customer care programs
  • Dealer interactions


1,600 production suppliers
7,000 nonproduction suppliers
Over $65 billion annual buy

  • Top supplier meetings
  • Aligned Business Framework supplier dialogue sessions
  • Supplier quality roundtables
  • Supplier Diversity Development Networking
  • External supplier organizations, such as the Automotive Industry Action Group and the Original Equipment Suppliers Association


Ford: 11,682
Mercury: 1,780
Lincoln: 1,376
Volvo: 2,269

* Worldwide dealerships, as of December 31, 2009. Because many of these dealerships distribute more than one of our brands from the same sales location, a single dealership may be counted under more than one brand.

  • Intranet communications
  • Brand sales and service representatives
  • Brand Dealer Councils
  • Dealer roundtables
  • President's Circle
  • Salute to Dealers
  • Advertising and public service announcements


Approximately 176,000 employees*

*As of December 31, 2009. These employee numbers do not include dealer personnel; 2009 employee numbers were adjusted to reflect the new accounting standard on the deconsolidation of many of our variable interest entities.

  • Town hall meetings
  • Labor-management committees
  • Pulse survey
  • Union representation
  • Intranet surveys and chats
  • Executive Council on Diversity
  • Local Diversity Councils
  • Employee Resource Groups