Corporate social responsibility programs are considered an organizational best practice. A focus on sustainability helps organizations manage their social and environmental impacts, improving their bottom line. Just as importantly, the disclosure of such activities has become a topic of importance for organizational stakeholders such as employees, customers, investors and the government. Widely documented and researched benefits to sustainability reporting and disclosure include:
- An improved organizational reputation
- A more loyal and engaged workforce
- Improved access to capital
- Increased organizational efficiency and resource reduction
The benefits of, and demand for, environmental, social and governance information has led to a tremendous increase in the number of organizations who issue public sustainability reports. To illustrate:
- According to a 2014 Corporate Register study, the overall number of sustainability reports continues to increase year on year, with almost 7,000 organizations reporting in 2012 alone.
- A 2013 Ernst & Young study shows that 95% of the Global 250 and thousands of other companies around the world, issue sustainability reports are increasingly being used by investors.
- Bloomberg has collected Environmental, Social and Governance disclosed by over 10,000 companies in 52 countries. The number of customers using this data has increased by over 47% on an annual basis since the data was made available in 2009.