Interpreting vague requirements
Even companies possessing a great deal of reporting experience, however, struggled with the challenge of rather vague legislative texts. Many found, for instance, that risk definitions were not precise enough, and that the CSR-RUG also left too much scope for interpretation when it came to materiality definitions and key performance indicators. akzente has successfully supported 25 companies in dealing with this challenge—from defining material topics all the way to the final review and publication. Some companies have integrated their non-financial report into their business report, while others have published it separately or as part of their sustainability report. The varied nature of the implementation—and its difficulties and effects—was demonstrated by a large-scale reference study carried out by akzente on behalf of the German Global Compact Network and econsense.
An insight into the political process
By early 2016, akzente had already launched the website www.csr-berichtspflicht.de. The objective was to regularly provide information about the political design of the reporting obligation and prepare companies for its implementation. We continue to use this platform to make current insights accessible. In addition to analyses and studies, it also provides an overview of all non-financial reports and declarations that have been published up until now, for the purpose of best practice searches.