Five years of Responsible Reward: take the survey

In the spring of 2017, I attended a conference for small businesses. Unbeknown to me at the time, it was going to change the course of my Reward career.

As one of the speakers explained the impact of small businesses on people and the planet, he pulled up the iconic slide of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. As I looked more closely at each goal, I realised that our own Reward profession could influence all of them! And it would do so through how we set and manage base pay, benefits, incentives and pensions.

At that moment, the concept of Responsible Reward was born in my mind. It became a personal mission to raise awareness and get some momentum with like-minded peers. I started researching what had been done so far on the integration of Reward and ESG: not a lot, in fact. So, I compiled my own research, wrote about it, and opened the debate at HR and investor conferences and on my ‘PAYING FOR GOOD’ podcast.

I remember an investor at one of my conference panels saying “we don’t want all this fluffy stuff”. At the time, he didn’t realise the importance of taking sustainability into account when assessing corporate governance and investment decisions. I’m pleased to say he’s since changed his mind and become a strong advocate. He understands that Responsible Reward is an integral part of the Employer Value Proposition and reflects how a firm conducts its commercial activities.

From just an idea five years ago, the integration of ESG and Reward is now on everyone’s radar, including my clients’, of course! Most FTSE firms mention it in some way in their remuneration reports. But I still believe there is room for improvement. We could do better at:

• choosing relevant sustainability goals for each business
• determining stretching ESG targets
• telling the story to internal and external stakeholders to increase engagement

I’d love to hear about the work you’ve done in your organisation to embed or assess the integration of reward and sustainability. So please, take the quick survey below and share your successes and challenges with me. If trends emerge in your replies, I will share them anonymously for the benefit of this audience. Click on the button most relevant to your role to start the survey.

Click here if you’re an HR professional

Click here if you’re an Investment professional

Remember that whatever sector you’re in and however big or small your organisation is, base pay, incentives, benefits and pensions are all part of your Responsible Reward offering. By linking your sustainability and remuneration strategies, you become an employer, an investment and an investor of choice.

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