KPMG Survey - Dramatic Increase in CR Reporting
2 August 2005 at 1:08 pm
The KPMG International Survey of Corporate Responsibility Reporting 2005 is carried out every three years and analyses trends in CSR reporting of the world’s largest corporations, including the top 250 companies of the Fortune 500 (Global 250, G250) and the top 100 companies in 16 countries (National 100, N100).
The KPMG Survey shows that:
The majority of the 250 biggest companies in the world issued separate reports on Corporate Responsibility: 52 percent compared to 45 percent in 2002.
Corporate Responsibility reporting has changed from purely environmental reporting to sustainability (social, ethical, environmental and economic) reporting.
At national level, 41% of the companies issued separate reports. The two top countries are Japan (80%) and the UK (71%). The highest increases are in Italy, Spain, Canada, France and South Africa. There were significant decreases in Norway and Sweden.
The most remarkable is the financial sector, which shows more than a twofold increase in reporting since 2002.
This survey analyses trends in Corporate Responsibility reporting of the world’s largest corporations, including the top 250 companies of the Fortune 500 (Global 250) and top 100 companies in 16 countries (National 100) With this vast coverage of 1600+ companies, the survey provides the truly global picture of reporting trends over the last ten years.
Professor George Molenkamp, the chairman of KPMG Global Sustainability Services says that the findings of the survey are both striking and exciting.
He says corporate responsibility reporting is easier said than done. The real challenge is in the integration of corporate responsibility into the strategy and operations of a complex organisation in a more and more globalising economy.
The survey observed increasing professionalism in the form of new global reporting standards.
Molenkamp says corporate responsibility performance has definitely caught the eye of the financial sector as is reflected in recent developments, such as the so-called Equator Principles, the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJS) and the FTSE4 Good Index on the stock markets and the emergence of Social Responsible Investment funds.
He says the awareness of the financial implications of climate change issues on businesses is also growing among the financial sector after the introduction of the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme and the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol.
Major findings of the KPMG International Survey of Corporate Responsibility Reporting 2005:
Corporate Responsibility (CR) reporting has been steadily rising since 1993 and it has increased substantially in the past three years. In 2005, 52% of the Global 250 and 33% of the National 100 companies issued separate CR reports compared to 45% and 23% respectively in 2002. If we include annual financial reports with CR information, these percentages are even higher: 64% (G250) and 41% (N100).
There has been a dramatic change in the type of CR reporting, which has changed from purely environmental reporting up until 1999 to sustainability (social, environmental and economic reporting), which has now become mainstream among G250 companies (70%) and is fast becoming so among N100 companies (50%).
Although the majority (80%) in most countries still issue separate CR reports, there has been an increase in the number of companies publishing CR information as part of their annual reports.
At national level, the two top countries in terms of separate CR reporting are Japan (80%) and the United Kingdom (71%). The highest increases in the 16 countries in the survey are seen in Italy, Spain, Canada, France and South Africa. There have been significant decreases in Norway and Sweden.
The typical industrial sectors, with relatively high environmental impact, continue to lead in reporting. At global level (G250), more than 80% of the companies are reporting in the electronics & computers, utilities and automotive & gas sectors. At national level (N100), over 50% are reporting in the utilities, mining, chemicals & synthetics, oil & gas, forestry and paper & pulp sectors. But the most remarkable is the financial sector, which shows more than a two-fold increase in reporting since 2002.
The survey includes a detailed analysis of the reports of the Global 250 companies, focused on why they are committed to corporate responsibility and what influenced the content of the reports. The conclusion is that business drivers are diverse, both economic (75%) and ethical (50%). The top three are innovation & learning, employee motivation and risk management & reduction, with about 50% as motivating factors.
Independent assurance remains a valuable part of reporting. In 2005 the number of reports with an assurance statement increased to 30% (G250) and 33% (N100) from 29% and 27% respectively in 2002. Major accountancy firms continue to dominate the Corporate Responsibility assurance market with close to 60% of the statements.