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Ongoing stakeholder engagement

Our comprehensive stakeholder engagement strategy helps us to identify emerging trends, opportunities and issues in our markets. This guides us in identifying what is relevant and material for reporting purposes.

Ongoing engagement with stakeholders is integral to our sustainability approach. It enables us to move forward our sustainability priorities, ensuring that our strategy is aligned with the opportunities and issues that are most relevant in the markets where we operate.

Stakeholder feedback informs our product development and business strategy. Our senior managers are active in our stakeholder discussions, and our management and board committees receive regular updates on stakeholder feedback from across our markets. Our Global Research team contributes to the debate through the publication of timely research on critical sustainability topics such as climate change and renewable energy.

In 2010, we commissioned independent social and economic impact studies on
Ghana and Indonesia, the first in a series to evaluate the wider impact of our activities.

2010 engagement summary

Employees

Each year, we conduct an internal survey – the Gallup Q12 Survey – across all of our markets to measure employee engagement. As part of this process, line managers are empowered to discuss the results of the survey with their teams, and actively integrate best practice.

Engaging employees in our sustainability and community investment priorities is fundamental to our ability to build a sustainable business. Our online environmental resources, such as a carbon calculator and best practice website, promote employee participation in our environment priorities. Staff actively use employee volunteering days to participate in our community investment programmes, including Seeing is Believing. All employees are trained on HIV and AIDS education through the Living with HIV programme.

Clients and customers

Our customer-focused approach helps us deliver a sustainable financial performance. In both our Consumer and Wholesale Banking businesses we have expanded and refined our product offering to meet the needs of our customers and clients. We have continued to make good progress in transforming our Consumer Banking business and delivering our Customer Charter. Through the Charter, we pledge to provide fast, friendly and accurate service; offer solutions to financial needs; and recognise and reward overall banking relationships. Over 39,000 Consumer Banking staff received training on how to deliver the Customer Charter in 2010. Our Net Promoter Score* – an internationally recognised measure of customer service – jumped 56 per cent from 25 to 39 in 2010.

*
‘Net Promoter Score’ and ‘NPS’ are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems, Inc., Bain & Company, and Fred Reichheld

Investors

Our core objective in building a sustainable business is to create long-term shareholder value. We have an ongoing engagement programme with mainstream investors, socially responsible investors (SRIs), and researchers. We hold one-on-one meetings with SRIs on a regular basis. In addition, in 2010 we held a series of thematic roundtables and road shows in Europe and Asia.

  • Mike Rees, Group Executive Director and Chief Executive Wholesale Banking, hosted a roundtable with SRIs in London explaining how sustainable finance is key to our business strategy of deepening client relationships
  • We outlined our sustainable business strategy to SRIs at a roundtable in Paris
  • As part of an investor road show to India and Singapore, we took some of our largest investors to the Pratham Vision Centre, run by our global community investment programme Seeing is Believing in Mumbai
  • In Asia, we collaborated with the Association for Sustainable and Responsible Investment in Asia (ASrIA) to hold sustainable investment roundtables in Thailand and Malaysia
  • We held a roundtable with SRIs in London to gather input on the findings highlighted in the social and economic impact report that we commissioned on Ghana
  • We held a series of one-on-one meetings with SRIs in London, Paris and Zurich

In 2010, Standard Chartered was included in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI World). The DJSI evaluators noted our strong performance in stakeholder engagement, human capital development, risk and crisis management, financial inclusion and climate change governance. We continued to be recognised for the third year in a row by GS Sustain and are listed in the FTSE4Good index.

Communities

Contributing to the communities where we operate is a key part of our sustainability strategy. We engage in community investment at a global, regional and country level. Our three global programmes focus on tackling avoidable blindness (Seeing is Believing), HIV and AIDS education (Living with HIV) and women’s empowerment (Goal). We operate a malaria prevention programme (Nets for Life) in Africa. Our employees actively contribute to these community initiatives through our employee volunteering programme.

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs), industry associations, governments, staff and clients are key partners in the design and delivery of our initiatives. In 2010, an independent report by The Partnering Initiative – a programme of the International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF) that promotes partnerships for sustainable development – highlighted our Seeing is Believing programme as an example of public-private partnership best practice, citing our engagement with numerous NGOs and local partners.

NGOs

Ongoing dialogue with NGOs is a key component of our engagement strategy. These discussions allow us to gain important feedback on our sustainable business strategy, and to identify opportunities and emerging trends related to socio-economic, governance and environmental issues in the countries where we operate.

Key 2010 achievements included:

  • Convened a briefing for more than 30 NGOs and development organisation clients with representatives from our Global Research and Development Organisation teams on the economic outlook for Africa. This forum provided an opportunity to share views on the economic, social and environment challenges and opportunities in Africa in 2010
  • Led a meeting for members of the Microfinance Club UK with the founder of a leading microfinance institution in Bangladesh
  • Hosted the Global Compact Network’s annual meeting at our UK headquarters. Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact, exchanged views with NGOs, businesses and other global compact stakeholders on the outcomes of the Compact’s first decade
  • Engaged in ongoing discussions led by The Climate Group
  • Contributed to discussion panels at the UNEP Financial Institutions Summit held in Seoul, South Korea in June 2010. Our panellists discussed renewable energy and project finance

Industry bodies, regulators and governments

In 2010, we collaborated with industry bodies, regulators and governments at a local and international level, playing an active role in the global debate on the wider sustainability agenda and other issues.

Our engagement includes working groups, industry-specific meetings, advisory panels and conferences. We leverage our unique global perspective to share best practice and lessons learned in areas such as trade finance. In addition, we engage in one-on-one meetings and written communication with government bodies.

Key 2010 achievements included:

  • Contributed to panels and seminars to advance the UN’s Business Call to Action, an initiative that encourages businesses to deploy their core skills to help meet the Millennium Development Goals
  • Chaired panels and debates on global and regional economic trends at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, and regional WEF meetings
  • Provided input to international industry working groups led by the Institute of International Finance
  • Engaged in country-specific sustainability discussions led by local banking associations and industry groups in our markets
Annual Report and Accounts 2010