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Global Citizenship

At Plantronics, Global Citizenship refers to the values of promoting environmental health, reducing our environmental footprint, and being a socially responsible citizen. Simply put, it's about being good to our customers, our employees, our communities, and our planet.

Product Stewardship


Our communities are the heart of where we live and work. We're proud to support them through our contributions of time, products, funds, and skills.

Corporate Headquarters (Santa Cruz, CA)

  • Our relationship with Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Cruz County goes back to 1997 when we participated in the annual food drive for the first time. Over the past 17 years, we've donated more than 2.5 million pounds of food for local families.
  • Our 2013 Holiday Food Drive generated over 1.4 million meals for families in need.
  • Each week, employees volunteer their time during lunch to distribute food to those in need via the Meals on Wheels program.

Plantronics México (Tijuana, Mexico)

  • Twice a year employees and their families volunteer to participate in cleaning the Tijuana beaches; over the years more than 1,500 associates have participated in this program.
  • Plamex supports local schools with donations of equipment, machinery, furnishings, and information on recycling.
  • Work teams visit homes for the elderly, spending time dancing, singing, and playing games.

Community Support Worldwide

  • Our Asia Pacific offices support a special education school in China and employees in China have donated the proceeds from a company Ping-Pong tournament to a local charity.
  • Our Clarity office is a local sponsor of Hearing Loss Association of America's (HLAA) annual Walk4Hearing which raise funds for programs and services for people with hearing loss.
  • In Europe, we support a handicapped welfare program in the Netherlands, as well as road safety and antidrug programs in Sweden.


Sun & Solar
Emissions Reporting
Smarter Working
Awards & Recognition
Water Conservation
  • Solar and Sun Power

    Santa Cruz
    Tijuana, Mexico
    Royal Wootton Bassett, UK
    Chattanooga, Tennessee
    • Santa Cruz

      Our headquarters in Santa Cruz, CA feature the largest solar and sun tube installation in Santa Cruz County. Eighty percent of our site utility bill is offset by solar power. Hundreds of sun tubes reduce lighting costs and save energy by using natural light. In total, our energy conservation efforts save approximately 1,395,000 kilowatts annually.

      Monitoring System

      In June of 2006, Plantronics commissioned a 262 kW photovoltaic system. Integral to the system is the web-based monitoring. Plantronics wanted to monitor the system to:

      • Confirm production of electricity.
      • Enable maintenance department to monitor system output.
      • Allow employees to see, from their desktops, that the system is performing.
      • Help enhance their already environmentally friendly image.

      The system installer, Barry Swenson Builder, wanted to monitor the system to:

      • Confirm the day to day system performance.
      • Confirm the expected monthly output.
      • Advertise their successful installations.
      System Size 262.5 kW
      SAPC 165 Modules 1260
      SAPC 175 Modules 312
      Xantrex 225 kW Inverter 1
      Xantrex 30 kW Inverter 2
      System Orientation South
      Module Pitch 20 degree
      Project Developer Real Estate Strategies & Solutions
      General Contractor Barry Swenson Builder
      Project Integrator ElectroRoof
      System Installer Owens Electric and Solar
      Roofer Central Coating Company
    • Tijuana, Mexico

      Our manufacturing facility in Tijuana, Mexico, has just completed the largest solar installation in Tijuana County and the State of Baja California. It is the second largest capacity installed over the roof in Latin America. There are 4,284 panels generating 1.3 Megawatts of electricity, enough to offset seventy percent of the building's annual consumption of electricity. Our louvered ceiling lets in natural light directly from the top, but at an angle that avoids glare, further reducing the facility's impact on the environment.

    • Royal Wootton Bassett, UK

      Our facility in the United Kingdom has also added solar panels to its roof. 584 panels in total, generating roughly 115,350 kilowatt hours to date since June 2013.

    • Chattanooga, Tennessee

      The solar panels at our Clarity facility in Tennessee have generated over 60,200 kilowatt hours in their second year, five percent more than was estimated. These panels will reduce CO2 emissions by 942 tons over a 25 year period.

  • Plantronics Emissions Reporting

    Plantronics is committed to reducing its impact on the environment. Our recent efforts have enabled us to put a stake in the ground and report our Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) for the first time. We understand that many aspects of our business impact the environment and the communities in which we live and work. A smaller footprint is better for business, better for our customers, and better for the planet.

    Our goal for FY15 is to reduce emissions globally by 5% in this next year. We look forward to tracking and reporting our progress.

    Excessive Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emission is problematic to our atmosphere because of its ability to trap heat; the measurement of this ability is called "Global Warming Potential." There are many GHG gases other than CO2; some of which have a Global Warming Potential 10,000 times that of CO2. For simplicity, all GHGs are measured and converted into CO2 equivalent (CO2e).

    A standard GHG report organizes the sources of emissions into two main categories:

    • Scope 1 emissions originate from company facilities directly; they include any gases burned on-site, the exhaust from company-owned vehicles, as well as fugitive emissions from fire suppression and refrigerant-containing equipment.
    • Scope 2 emissions are indirect, and result from emissions created off-site by the company's purchase of electricity.

    Plantronics is in the early stages of measuring GHG emissions, but we have captured the major sources at our three biggest facilities located in Santa Cruz, CA (US), Swindon (UK), and Tijuana (MX) (our manufacturing facility called Plamex).

    In the past year, Plantronics has managed to both grow the business and reduce total emissions relative to increases in revenue. With continued investments in solar energy generation, we expect to reduce our emissions year over year.

  • Smarter Working

    Smarter Working at Plantronics is about giving employees greater freedom and flexibility in how, when, and where they work. It's about understanding the need for and creating environments where employees can be their most productive. We believe that people are more engaged and productive when they're free to work as they please.

    At Plantronics, Smarter Working is not theoretical. It's how we work every day. Our new offices in Santa Cruz, CA, and in Royal Wootton Bassett, UK reflect this: From inspirational interior designs and "conversation booths" to teleconferencing video screens and offsite workspaces, we've redesigned our environment to encourage collaboration, communication, and contemplation.

    For us, Smarter Working is also about being a responsible global citizen. When we embrace Smarter Working and allow employees to work from whatever location they need to, like home, we help keep more cars off the road, which helps everyone save on commute time and their impact on the environment. That's a balance that benefits everyone.

    Sustainable Building Practices

    Santa Cruz Office

    Plantronics' global headquarters is located in Santa Cruz, California, known for its beautiful oceanside location and environmentally aware sensibilities. Our recent Smarter Working building redesign of our main building includes natural floor materials such as cork, sisal (plant fiber) and recycled carpet, all of which absorb sound.

    Our new ceiling wave, which also helps reduce noise, is designed to reflect the sound wave of our company logo and the ocean waves outside. Natural light and glass walls open up the interior, and ergonomically correct chairs ensure comfort for everyone. As Plantronics continues to remodel our Santa Cruz headquarters, we will continue to follow these practices.

    Royal Wootton Bassett

    In 2010, our UK facility's Smarter Working redesign reduced its carbon footprint by moving from three buildings to one, reducing floor space from 47,440 square feet to 21,154 square feet. From electrical wiring to plumbing fixtures and timber, the refurbishment reused existing building materials as much as possible.

    A "smart" lighting system saves energy, and the heat recovery system is 45 percent more fuel-efficient. The new office has facilities for cardboard crushing, paper and oil disposal, and composting.

    Main Ceiling
    • Fully recyclable Ecophon Gedina A ceiling tiles
    • 70% post-consumer recycled content
    • 5% pre-consumer recycled content
    Main Carpet
    • Total recycled content (by weight): 39.6%
      • 27.9% pre-consumer
      • 11.7% post-consumer
    • Eco-friendly "Silver" certification
    • Cork flooring
    • Sisal (plant fiber) flooring
    Acoustic Panels
    • Customized wood slats
    • All slats are made of responsibly harvested, Forest Stewardship Council–certified alder
  • Awards and Recognition

    Our manufacturing facility Plamex (Plantronics México) is the only facility in the world to win both the Ibero American and Asia Pacific Quality awards, which recognize Plamex's long-standing commitment to programs that encourage environmental sustainability.

    Plamex has received the Waste Reduction and Recycling award from the city of San Diego and has been ISO 14001-certified since 2007. The facility is Clean Industry-certified by Mexico for full compliance and continuous environmental improvement, and has also received several national and international environmental awards and honors, such as the Federal Ministry of Labor's Safe Industry Certificate, Baja California Quality Award for the "Best Maquiladora Company" and the PROFEPA/CNIME Environmental Award from the EPA/National Maquiladora Council.

  • Recycling

    Plantronics works continuously to reduce waste and prevent pollution at our facilities, in all aspects of the manufacturing process, and each of our products' lifecycles. At our Santa Cruz facility, we recycle all paper, cardboard, small batteries, fluorescent tubes, and e-waste.

    Our manufacturing facilities follow strict recycling programs, and their employees receive full training on best practices. Plamex, our manufacturing facility in Mexico, recycles more than 6.3 million pounds of materials (cardboard, plastics, cables, and components) per year.

    We've sent over 215,000 pounds of e-waste to our recycling company since 2012.

    Customers who purchased their headsets from AT&T can recycle their products through AT&T. For more information, visit

  • Water Conservation

    All of our Santa Cruz buildings have been designed to meet the standards of California's voluntary Savings by Design program, featuring energy-efficient construction, low-flow toilets, and waterless urinals that save approximately 300,000 gallons of water per year.

    Drought-tolerant plants, shrubs, and grasses make up the majority of our landscaping. Our "smart" irrigation system uses satellite data to calculate the amount of water to use, saving approximately 250,000 gallons of water per year.

    Total water conservation efforts at Plantronics saves more than 550,000 gallons of water each year.


With over 3,000 employees contributing their talents from California to England to China, our global team is our most valuable asset. We encourage our employees to stay involved with their communities and the environment, and support them in numerous ways, including:

Corporate Headquarters (Santa Cruz, CA)

  • Onsite health and wellness programs: Pilates, yoga, Weight Watchers, massage, bi-annual health and wellness fairs, and monthly physician led health seminars.
  • Fitness benefits: Onsite gym, bike lockers, outside basketball and volleyball courts, close access to local hiking, biking, and running trails.
  • Earth Day fairs: Every year, local organizations visit our headquarters to provide education on organic gardening, composting, water conservation, and beach cleanup days.

Asia Pacific

  • Health checks: The Human Resources department organizes annual health check-ups for all associates.
  • World Car Free Day: Associates in Suzhou, China, arranged a "No Car Day" to encourage a more environmentally friendly way to get to work (by shuttle bus, bicycle, or walking).
  • "Shining Ideas on Global Citizenship": Our office in Suzhou, China, created a competition to collect ideas for corporate improvement that management is now considering for implementation like asking for training on safety knowledge and looking at ways to save water.

Plantronics México (Tijuana, Mexico)

  • Best Place to Work in Mexico: In 2011, 2012, and 2013, the Great Place to Work® Institute named Plamex the "Best Place to Work" in Mexico. This award is based on a national survey of employees who rate their companies on credibility, respect, fairness, pride, and camaraderie. Plamex was also chosen as a "Great Place to Work for Women" in 2010.
  • Valentine's Day weddings: Plamex hosts an annual wedding ceremony for employees who otherwise wouldn't be able to afford one. Nearly 600 people have been married at Plamex over the past 11 years.
  • Employee satisfaction: With career development, kids' days, parenting and antidrug classes, and rewards for high performance, Plamex has one of the industry's lowest turnover rates.


  • Employee satisfaction: Our European office scored 84% in a survey that was carried out to assess satisfaction/engagement after the Smarter Office refurbishment and introduction of Smarter Working.
  • Fitness benefits: Gym membership and bicycle purchase schemes and team sport activities, including a Plantronics team for basketball, football, and bowling with local tournaments with other business companies.
  • Health: Through our health insurance program, we provide refunds for stopping to smoke courses, health style advices, health check once a year, among other things.

Product Stewardship

Our goal is to create safe, comfortable products that are easy to use. We strongly support global efforts to eliminate hazardous materials from all parts of the production process and packaging.

Compliance & Reporting
Product Development
Environmental Policy
Take Back Program
  • Compliance & Reporting

    Plantronics long history of supporting environmentally sound manufacturing processes has been recognized by numerous cities, agencies, and organizations over the years.

    RoHS and WEEE Compliance

    We were one of the first companies to achieve full compliance with the European Union's (EU) Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) directive. We worked closely with our suppliers to help ensure that our entire supplier network followed RoHS requirements.

    In Europe, we also led the way in complying with the EU's Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive: All discarded Plantronics products and packaging can be safely disposed of or recycled.

    Environmental management software has also improved our reporting capabilities for hazardous-materials legislation such as RoHS, REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemical Substances), and California's Proposition 65. In addition, we access a data warehouse service to improve the level of information available about our product components.

    ISO Certification

    Each one of Plantronics' global facilities has ISO 9001 certification: We are recognized for having systems in place that ensure that we develop, produce, and deliver quality products. Our Mexico and Europe facilities have also achieved ISO 14001 certification, which ensures that we are constantly improving the ways our products are manufactured.

    Commitment Letters

    The letters below may be printed and distributed as necessary, to show our compliance with various environmental regulations around the world. For letters that certify compliance with a different law, or for questions regarding our commitment to other regulations, please contact our Quality Department at qualitydept@plantronics.com.

    Plantronics Named 2013 Winner of Secretary of State's
    Award for Corporate Excellence

    Plantronics has been honored with the 2013 Secretary of State's Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) by John Kerry, the United States Secretary of State. This award recognizes companies for corporate citizenship, exemplary employment practices, environmental stewardship and innovative business practices. Plantronics won this award for our culture, innovation, community engagement and environmental leadership at Plamex, our manufacturing facility in Tijuana, Mexico. U.S. Secretaries of State have awarded the ACE since 1999 to recognize American companies that are leaders in socially responsible activities and contribute to the overall growth and development of the local economy in which they work. It is the first time ever that the honor has been given to a medium size company.

  • Product Development

    Plantronics' product design process now includes a formal environmental assessment as an essential part of the product development phase. We've also made our power supply units more energy-efficient, which complies with global regulations on product power consumption.

    In January 2011, Plantronics officially declared phthalate-free designs for our products going forward. We are currently removing phthalates from our legacy product lines.

  • Environmental Policy

    Plantronics is committed to maintaining environmentally sound processes that meet or exceed all applicable legal requirements, as well as the mandates of voluntary programs to which Plantronics subscribes. Plantronics' environmental policy guides all of the company's product development, operations and facility management around the world, and provides a framework for setting and reviewing environmental objectives and goals that include:

    • Continual operational and process improvement
    • Pollution prevention
    • Waste reduction
    • Natural resource utilization and
    • Responsible procurement of goods and services

    Plantronics provides this specification to designers, suppliers, and supply chain partners as guidance to ensure our products meet the most stringent environmental requirements enacted worldwide.

  • Plantronics Take Back Program

    The Plantronics Take Back Program allows our customers to safely dispose of their Plantronics products and prevent them from ending up in a landfill. Send us your end of life product and we will recycle it properly. Operating conscientiously is what we strive to do. Thank you for helping us meet that commitment.

    Mail your end of life Plantronics product (with postage paid) to:

    Plantronics Take-Back Program
    1470 Exposition Way, Suite 130
    San Diego, CA 92154

    Customers who purchased their headsets from AT&T can recycle their products through AT&T. For more information, visit http://www.att.com

    Alternatively, contact your local municipal office or recycling facility to find out how you can dispose of your end of life product.

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