KPMG survey gives snapshot of global corporate responsibility trends

20 January 2014

KPMG’s 2013 Survey of Corporate Responsibility Reporting has shown that New Zealand is falling behind in Corporate Responsibility reporting compared to other countries in the Asia Pacific region.

The recently released KPMG Survey of Corporate Responsibility Reporting provides a snapshot of current global trends in corporate responsibility (CR) reporting. The survey covers reporting by the top 100 companies in 41 countries and the Global 250 (the world’s largest 250 companies, ‘G250’) across areas such as strategy, governance, materiality, stakeholder engagement and supply chain impacts. 

A special New Zealand supplement has also been produced, which explores New Zealand CR reporting in detail and explains how it compares to CR reporting worldwide.  

The key findings are:                                                            

  • Sustainability reporting is a mainstream business practice globally.
  • 71% of companies across 41 countries report on sustainability, and 93% of the G250.
  • As a region, Asia Pacific has seen the biggest increase in reporting levels (particularly India, Singapore and China).
  • 87% of the G250 identified commercial opportunities from social and environmental factors.
  • New Zealand lags the rest of the world – less than half of our largest companies produce a sustainability report. There has been no significant improvement since the last survey in 2011.
  • The quality of reports is variable. There is generally poor reporting of supply chain impacts, stakeholder engagement and governance. Reporting of metrics and targets is usually done well.
  • New Zealand companies risk missing the opportunities that come with taking a broader view of how business value is derived.

Only 17% of New Zealand’s largest companies report on how they are trying to be socially or environmentally responsible, compared to 71% of the top companies across the Asia Pacific region.

Jamie Sinclair, National Leader, Climate Change and Sustainability Services at KPMG says,

“Looking at the companies that focus on reporting, a lot of the benefits received from adequate reporting are around reputation and branding. Survey results have shown huge growth in regulation offshore, which is pushing the numbers up, particularly in Asia Pacific region, where there is a lot more regulatory pressure on those companies to report.”

Regarding reporting frameworks from New Zealand’s perspective, we are very much a commodity-based exporting country. According to the survey, our reputation as a provider of clean, safe food sources is paramount to our continued success.

“There are huge complexities in terms of the environmental constraints and social issues that we are dealing with, and organisations can have a huge impact on those factors. Being able to recognise and measure those is becoming part of the corporate valuation story. It’s about being able to tell your value creation story in a more complete way,” says Jamie.

KPMG provides support to businesses who want to step up their CR reporting. Click here to read the full survey results, and find out more about how you can bring your business’ CR reporting up to speed.