Taking responsibility – locally and globally

For our team, the people of Hamburg or in global procurement


We transport more than 1.2 million people across Hamburg every day. We being the 5,300 or so employees who work at HOCHBAHN. It goes without saying that we give special priority to meeting the needs of Hamburg citizens and our team. But that’s not all: one of our TOP sustainability goals is to assume responsibility on both a local and global level.


Global responsibility

e-bus electric fleet hochbahn hamburg
When investing in electric buses, we make sure we enquire with the manufacturer about their precise sustainability credentials.

The issue of sustainable procurement is an important issue here, as products are often manufactured in processes that involve global supply chains. Our responsibility for protecting the environment and people is therefore not limited to the confines of our own operating sites in Hamburg. It also extends to the suppliers of the products and services we procure.



Both locally or globally, we expect from our suppliers and service providers that they assume the same level of responsibility as we do. The specific requirements we place on our business partners are outlined in our Code of Conduct for Suppliers and Business Partners: Compliance with Human Rights and Labour Standards, Environmental Protection and Corporate Ethics.

We base this on the objectives and values of the UN Global Compact, which HOCHBAHN committed to in 2017 and which forms an integral part of our HOCHBAHN#2030 corporate strategy and business processes.

The Code of Conduct therefore plays a key role in our business relationships with suppliers and other partners. In the case of high-risk products such as batteries for electric buses, for example, we even go one step further: In future we will be asking manufacturers for details about their sustainability record and making sure that this is a factor included in commissioning decisions. This is intended to further advance ecological and social standards along the supply chain of a procured product.


Local responsibility


As a Hamburg company, we are committed to the people of this city and to making sure our actions are in harmony with them. We also want to use our knowledge and our infrastructure to contribute to social issues such as ways out of homelessness and ways to integrate disadvantaged groups into the jobs market. Here are some of examples of the projects we’re involved in:


The “Duschbus” – where showers provide dignity

shower for homeless people donation
HOCHBAHN supports GoBanyo with the donation of a bus.
© GoBanyo

The idea: to provide homeless people with a mobile showering facility. HOCHBAHN donated a bus to the non-profit organisation GoBanyo back in the spring of 2019. Due to the fact that, even in Hamburg, many people cannot afford proper hygiene and healthcare. Around 2,000 people currently live rough on the streets here.

Thanks to a crowdfunding campaign, GoBanyo then raised the funds need to convert the bus into a “Duschbus” – or “shower bus”. And it has been a resounding success: Since December 2019, it has been travelling all over Hamburg. And it has even  found a parking space at one of our depots.


Refugees training on the job

refugees become bus driver hochbahn
These refugees have found a new home in Hamburg – and a job at the wheel of HOCHBAHN buses.

Bringing people to their destination. As well as being our remit for Hamburg, the refugees in our integration project have also dedicated themselves to this goal. Since 2017, we have been offering a brand new perspective for those who were forced to flee their homes: as bus drivers working for HOCHBAHN. Together with Dekra and the local job centre, we are training these refugees.

Their route to getting behind the wheel of HOCHBAHN buses involves the following: driving school, obtaining a German car driving licence, attending German language courses, then completing a six-month training course to obtain a bus driving licence, followed by an internship lasting several months at one of our depots.


NEUSTART – Taking opportunities

Enabling a “NEUSTART” (new start) – that’s the central aim of the initiative of the same name managed by the Hamburg training centre HAZ. Since 1978, socially disadvantaged young people have received training here in industrial metal and electrical professions. HOCHBAHN is one of seven Hamburg companies that is a member of the initiative, funding 30 training places each year. 35 employees at HAZ, 30 of whom are experienced master trainers, prepare the young people in the program for life in the world of work. They are also supported along the way by learning therapists and social education workers.


Social Days

The idea behind HOCHBAHN’s Social Day is to encourage people to take on social responsibility and to increase people’s awareness of the importance of voluntary work. With this in mind, HOCHBAHN trainees and working students leave their usual everyday work to spend a day working in aid of good social causes. In the past, for example, they have packed clothes for people in need, done gardening work at residential accommodation for homeless people, refugees and asylum seekers, and arranged a day’s holiday for children at the charity “Arche Billstedt”.


Photo of Landungsbrücken: www.mediaserver.hamburg.de / Jörg Modrow