Driving Growth Through Integrated Reporting

The rise of integrated reporting
December 10, 2013
According to research recently presented at The 7th Annual CR Reporting and Communications Summit held in London, the number of integrated reports published around the world continues to grow. 415 reports were filed in 2011 compared to 592 reports in 2012, despite the fact that the official International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) framework to guide companies through their reports was only launched on Dec. 5, 2013.1

Delegates at the summit agreed that integrated reporting creates value for companies by helping them to focus on material issues, and by doing so, drive both business growth and the long-term resilience of the organization.

In the first example, The Crown Estate ties farm leases to the market price the tenant farmers are paid for milk. When the price of milk drops, the farmer pays less. Conversely, if the price increases, the rent goes up proportionally.2

Since its introduction two years ago, this mechanism has seen the total revenue obtained from leases increase overall without destabilizing the farmers. Similarly, The Crown Estate links soil quality to rent so that farmers who make the effort to improve the soil quality pay less for their lease if they meet standardized metrics.

Unilever and Pirelli provide additional examples.

Unilever worked with the NGO Oxfam to determine a "living wage" for its employees in Vietnam in order to reduce the level of risk surrounding labor issues and quality.3 At the same time, it has seen net gains in terms of reputation and sales in the region.

At Pirelli, profits from sustainable tires are growing at more than twice the rate of traditional tires. Today it is valued at over $100 million.4

Through each of these examples, delegates are able to show how the process of integrated reporting has helped companies nurture integrated thinking that has brought coherency and commonality to the environmental, social, and business objectives of these companies. In other words, integrated reporting creates genuine shared value for companies and their stakeholders.

Wdesk provides a complete reporting solution for both CSR and financial information that streamlines and optimizes the integrated report creation, production, and publishing processes. Multiple users can collaborate simultaneously in the report on the cloud-based platform. Wdesk reduces the time and hassle required to bring the document to life and gives the reporting team more time to focus on material issues and sharing the company's vision.

For more information about the Corporate Social Responsibility Solution powered by Wdesk, request a demonstration or visit wdesk.com/csr.

1Jefferies, K. "Are Frameworks Able to Inspire the Innovation We Need to Bring About an Evolution of CR Reporting?" Presentation at The CR Reporting and Communications Summit, London, Nov. 27–28, 2013. 2Gough, M. "Why Integrated Reporting Is the Only way Forward According to The Crown Estate." Presentation at The CR Reporting and Communications Summit, London, Nov. 27–28, 2013. 3Veiga-Pestana, M. "CR Reporting as a Supply Chain Risk Management Tool." Presentation at The CR Reporting and Communications Summit, London, Nov. 27–28, 2013. 4Bettini, F. "CR Reporting as Strategic Stakeholder Engagement." Presentation at The CR Reporting and Communications Summit, London, Nov. 27–28, 2013.
Francis Quinn

About the author

Francis Quinn is the Director of Corporate Sustainability Technologies for Workiva. Before joining Workiva, he directed sustainable development for L’Oréal in Paris.