Our recent survey exposes a concerning trend among ESG leaders and compliance managers. Despite the enforcement of the European Union’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) in January 2023, a staggering 77% of respondents have yet to commence preparations for CSRD reporting. The survey, which engaged 175 ESG leaders and compliance managers, underscores the urgent need for action in the face of evolving compliance requirements.

The CSRD is new EU legislation requiring all large and listed companies, even some outside of the EU, to publish regular reports on the social and environmental risks they face and how their activities impact people and the environment. It aims to help investors, consumers, policymakers, and other stakeholders evaluate non-financial performance and encourage a more responsible approach to business.

Of those surveyed, 50% acknowledged that their organisations are likely to fall under the purview of CSRD, highlighting the need for prompt compliance. However, only 23% have taken the initiative to commence preparations for CSRD reporting, while less than a third (29%) plan to embark on this journey within the next six months.

Supply chain information emerges as the top concern, with 48% of respondents identifying it as the most significant challenge to CSRD compliance. This is followed by awareness and understanding (28%), and regulatory adherence (10%). Despite these challenges, an overwhelming 89% of ESG leaders and compliance managers recognise the value of implementing sustainability reporting within their organisations.

“The inaugural CSRD reports are slated for submission in 2025. Organisations that prioritise preparation over procrastination are better positioned to enact policies and procedures that ensure seamless compliance,” asserted Nick Henderson-Mayo, Director of Learning and Content at VinciWorks. “Despite Brexit, CSRD will have a big impact on British business, particularly those trying to trade with the EU, or who are part of international supply chains. By training employees on sustainability and ESG principles, awareness can be cultivated, fostering active support for the organisation’s sustainable objectives.”

To facilitate ESG leaders and compliance managers’ comprehension of CSRD, we are offering a complimentary EU CSRD guide and have launched a comprehensive suite of Sustainability training courses, available for free trial.

In a recent study carried out by VinciWorks, a global compliance eLearning provider, 175 ESG leaders and compliance managers were surveyed on CSRD reporting.

Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) is an ESG (environmental, social and governance) standard enacted by the European Union. It is designed to make corporate sustainability reporting more common, consistent and standardised like financial accounting and reporting. 

The new directive’s impact is far-ranging and essentially modernises and strengthens the social and environmental information that companies have to report. 

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Are you ready to take your sustainability efforts to the next level? 

Watch our on-demand webinar on the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) – your guide to understanding sustainability compliance and reporting.

CSRD, a new EU legislation, mandates large and listed organisations to publish reports on social and environmental risks and their impact. Join Gary Yantin, Nick Henderson-Mayo, and Naomi Grossman in this informative webinar, where they unravel CSRD’s complexities and guide you on compliance and reporting strategies.

In this session, you’ll gain an understanding of CSRD, including:

  • A deep dive into CSRD and its origin
  • Step-by-step guidance on CSRD compliance and reporting guidelines
  • Key considerations for both EU and Non-EU businesses
  • Timelines and strategies for preparing your organisation for CSRD

Watch the on-demand webinar today and embark on a sustainable journey with confidence.

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What are the benefits of ESG?

Climate change poses serious risks to companies and not just those with asset-heavy supply chains. Even the most flexible, digital professional services companies may be vulnerable.

Thus, all companies need to understand the risks posed by climate change – as well as the opportunities. Companies that prioritise climate risk management will be better positioned to withstand its effects and capitalise on new opportunities.

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What does an ESG committee do?

Companies around the world are beginning to recognise the importance of having Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) policies in place. These policies not only benefit society and the planet but can also lead to financial benefits for companies. From reducing carbon emissions to promoting diversity and inclusion, ESG policies are becoming a key part of any company’s strategy.

What is an ESG policy?

An ESG policy documents how a company is addressing the three pillars of ESG – environmental, social, and governance. This formalised document outlines the company’s ESG commitments, guiding vision on ESG issues, how the business is involved in these issues, and how ESG activities are monitored and reported.

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Engaging today’s employees and attracting tomorrow’s talent – the importance of ESG

Looking around, we see evidence of companies responding to growing environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues everywhere. Whether it is announcing net-zero emissions targets, closing the ethnicity pay gap, or reducing plastic in packaging.

These efforts are often undertaken to satisfy investor expectations or consumer demand. But another critical stakeholder group mutually benefits with ESG – employees. The key to ESG success, employees are on the frontlines of implementation. What’s more, employees want to work for companies that share their values, making ESG table stakes for talent attraction and retention.

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What does an ESG committee do?

As ESG – environmental, social, and governance – criteria become more important for regulators, investors, and customers, many managers are facing an ESG imperative – to measure ESG risks and track progress. ESG may seem like a fundamental shift in business practices, and in some cases, it may be. Fortunately, however, ESG can be integrated into many familiar business processes, such as the annual cycle of financial reporting. ESG can then be matured through annual iterations to achieve more ambitious targets.

This article outlines the key procedures that businesses need to respond to the ESG imperative, addressing stakeholder needs while creating value:

  1. The materiality assessment
  2. Goal setting and gap analysis
  3. Data collection
  4. Reporting
  5. Assurance
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What are the benefits of ESG?

Over the last decade, ESG (environmental, social, and governance) has become increasingly relevant for investors. Today, more than 300 institutional investors representing over $80 trillion assets-under-management use ESG standards to inform their decision making. ESG issues surged to the forefront with the COVID-19 pandemic, which drew attention to the fact that these risks are becoming reality. Whether pandemics, social movements, or extreme weather from climate change, these trends pose both risks and opportunities for investors. By communicating how these risks are managed, companies can show investors how they are successfully navigating a changing world.

Why is ESG information relevant for investors?

ESG complements financial information for a more holistic view of the company, and the risks and opportunities it faces. ESG risks vary widely, but all are becoming more relevant, such as physical risk from climate change (“E”), reputational risk from social injustice (“S”), and regulatory risk from corruption (“G”). These risks can impact a company’s financial performance and are thus of interest to many investors.

But ESG can also reveal opportunities. For example, net zero transition plans will require new business models and services. In his 2022 letter to CEOs, BlackRock chairman Larry Fink wrote, “Every company and every industry will be transformed by the transition to a net zero world. The question is, will you lead, or will you be led?” Investors may look to ESG information to identify those leaders.

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How can law firms demonstrate ESG commitments? 

Although ESG has been steadily gaining traction in the corporate world and becoming a top priority for many businesses, many law firms are lagging behind. 

This may be because ESG has developed outside of a regulatory landscape. But legislation is beginning to catch up and law firms, as key corporate service providers, are being expected to consult and strategize on ESG for their clients. Companies are relying on their lawyers’ skills to implement internal ESG goals.

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Since the UK Modern Slavery Act came into force, it is estimated that the number of people trapped in forced labour or forced marriages has actually increased, with the number now believed to have reached over 50 million. A mixture of armed conflict, climate change and the global pandemic has made modern slavery a growing challenge, despite an increase in regulations in many countries.

With the UK and other countries set to strengthen their regulations, in this webinar, we look at whether businesses are doing enough to eradicate modern slavery.

The webinar covered:

  • What businesses are currently doing well and how they can improve
  • MSA best practice
  • How modern slavery compliance can enhance your ESG programme
  • Guidance on producing annual modern slavery statements
  • Processes and tools to help you stay on top of your supply chains

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