Our commitment to corporate responsibility goes well beyond embedding social, environmental and economic integrity into the fabric of our business.
We aim to leverage our core skills and activities to help our clients address CR issues while acknowledging the need to also address them in our own business.
We want to be part of the global conversation and movement towards responsible business practices that create positive change in the world. We want to be part of the solution.
Our CR strategy focuses on two key elements:
Do the right thing, which means playing our part in promoting responsible business issues that are central to our business – from the quality of our services and building an inclusive workplace, to our engagement with communities and our environmental footprint.
Be a catalyst for change, which is about using our skills, voice and relationships to work with others and influence activities that make a difference, create change and have a lasting impact on the world around us.
Today we’re helping organizations around the world strengthen their own corporate responsibility agendas through the many services we provide every day.
PwC firms support these network-wide goals. During FY14, we worked collaboratively with firms from across our global network to monitor our progress against a set of leadership ladders that provide practical yet flexible guidance on the implementation of our Corporate Responsibility Strategy.
Our leadership ladders set minimum standards and provide guidance for each focus area around how each firm in the PwC network can achieve leadership in corporate responsibility. Each of the four steps on the leadership ladders considers four dimensions: behaviour change; strategy and policy; measurement and engagement; and impact assessment. All PwC network firms are required to fulfill the foundation level requirements outlined below. In the years ahead, our 21 largest firms, including PwC Canada, are committed to progress to the next levels of the ladders.
To help us move up the ladders, we continued to enhance our global PwC communications initiative called, ‘part of it’ to articulate tangible ways our people can integrate corporate responsibility into their day-to-day work with clients, each other and our communities. During FY14, this initiative, combined with continued work embedding CR into our Canadian vision and business strategy, helped us maintain our high Global People Survey scores and our employees’ perception of our CR efforts.
We have made significant progress within the people dimension of CR thanks to the implementation of an inclusion strategy. As a part of this strategy, we rolled out a number of initiatives including a National Inclusion Survey, workforce census, and a 360 equitable leadership assessment tool. We also made significant progress towards understanding and mitigating bias within our recruitment, performance and career advancement processes. In FY14, our diversity and inclusion efforts and successes earned external recognition, including a 2014 Canada’s Best Diversity Employers Award.
Our focus on enhancing employee leadership capabilities through community volunteering led to a 23% increase in the number of our people serving on not-for-profit boards – from 368 in FY13 to 451 in FY14. We also increased our ratio of skills-based volunteering opportunities offered through the PwC Canada Foundation from 29% to 45% of total volunteer experiences year over year. We continued to strengthen our commitment to Innoweave – a collaboration spearheaded by the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation to help community organizations learn about, assess and implement new approaches to achieving social impact. During FY14, the Innoweave program was honoured with the Tides Top 10 Award.
Our Corporate ResponsibilityCommittees continued to support social and environmental causes within their local communities. Over 1,700 of our people participated in our annual Corporate Responsibility Week, while 646 made a commitment to print and waste less paper. This commitment helped us achieve a 10.1% reduction of paper printed in May 2014 as compared to May 2013. At the same time, we reduced our overall paper consumption by 15% compared to FY13. We also continued to measure and manage our greenhouse gas emissions and make sustainable choices in our operations. During FY14, we were recognized as one of Canada’s Greenest Employers.
In FY14, for a third year, we completed an analysis of the firm’s economic impact on the Canadian economy. The findings of this study are highlighted within the responsible business section of this report.
Over the next year, we will continue to take action on the priorities identified within our FY13 to FY15 Corporate Responsibility Strategy. We will remain focused on our medium and long term goals – to use our combined skills, voices and relationships to build trust, ethics and integrity within the marketplace, and enhance our impacts associated with measurement frameworks, community education and capacity building initiatives. In order to promote stakeholder trust and transparency in our reporting, we will be undertaking an assurance readiness assessment of our greenhouse gas reporting and other key performance indicators presented in our annual Corporate Responsibility Highlights publication, to develop a roadmap for improving reporting efficiency and quality. We’ll also continue to engage our people in building upon our strategy for the PwC Canada Foundation and continuing to embed communities’ thinking into the core of our business.