Integrated reporting is quickly emerging to the forefront of the global accountancy profession. Many experts and leaders in the profession are very supportive of integrated reporting and its objectives: one integrated, concise communication about how an organization’s strategy, governance, performance, and prospects lead to the creation of value over the short, medium and long term.
The following articles address the current state of integrated reporting as well as its future implications. Topics include integrated reporting’s value proposition, the role of the CFO in implementation, implications for small- and medium-sized entities (SMEs), and some of the more philosophical aspects of integrated reporting.
- Accountancy at the Heart of the Discussion: Enhancing Reporting
Helen Brand, Chief Executive, Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
The accountancy profession must be at the heart of enhancing and developing business reporting, including integrated reporting. Integrated reporting facilitates more transparent business reporting between organizations and their stakeholders, while also contributing to better performance and sustainability of businesses.
- Applying a “Critical Lens” to Integrated Reporting’s End Game
Jeffrey C. Thomson, CMA, CAE, Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) President and CEO
Discussion on how internal and external application of integrated reporting, and integrated thinking, are needed in organizations. While organizations must think about how all of their internal processes relate, they must also consider what is most important for meeting external reporting expectations, which may vary from industry to industry. Ultimately, organizations must be able to tell their story in an integrated and connected way.
- The Value and Importance of Integrated Reporting
Marc Bihain, Secretary General, Institute of Registered Auditors
In a video interview, Marc discusses the growing importance of integrated reporting and recent European legislation designed to support it. He also provides insight into the role of the auditor in financial and non-financial reporting as well as its value for investors.
- Integrated Reporting Needs a US Strategy
Jeffrey C. Thomson, CMA, CAE, IMA President and CEO
With the release of the International Integrated Reporting Council’s Framework in December 2013, many global organizations are realizing the value of integrated reporting. Yet, many corporations in the US are hesitant to adopt it without a clear value strategy for internal users, investors, and other market constituents.
- Advancing Integrated Reporting through Research and Data
Faye Chua, Head of Future Research, ACCA
The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, International Integrated Reporting Council, and the International Association for Accounting Education and Research have awarded three research projects to stimulate fresh insight on issues at the heart of integrated reporting. Three projects are well underway and will be delivered this year.
- Board and CFO Leadership Key to Integrated Reporting Success
Alta Prinsloo, Executive Director, Strategy, and Chief Operating Officer, IFAC
Rather than thinking of integrated reporting as someone else’s job, financial professionals should see it as a natural extension of the role of the CFO and the finance function. It is clear from organizations that are embracing integrated reporting that the CFO has a central role to play in pulling together the diverse strands to transform integrated reporting from an aspiration into a reality, and to ensuring that the organization truly benefits from the exercise.
- Is Integrated Reporting Suitable for SMEs?
Giancarlo Attolini, Chair, IFAC SMP Committee, and Matteo Pozzoli, Technical Advisor, IFAC SMP Committee, and Staff Member at Consiglio Nazionale dei Dottori Commercialisti e degli Esperti Contabili
It can be argued that integrated thinking and reporting is something that SMEs already practice as it is inherent to their very survival. But can they readily adopt the International Integrated Reporting Council’s Framework? What role do small- and medium-sized practices (SMPs) play in helping them do so?
- Attracting Long-term Investors through Integrated Thinking and Reporting
Andrew Knauer, Senior Analyst, Just Capital; George Serafeim, Associate Professor of Business Administration, Harvard University School of Business; and Stathis Gould, Head of Professional Accountants in Business, IFAC
Research shows that integrated thinking and reporting can have a positive impact on the type of investors your company attracts—those who are in it for the long term and looking for sustainable value creation.
- From Integrated Reporting to Integrated Thinking to Integrated Action, and Results
Vincent Tophoff, Senior Technical Manager, IFAC
Integrated reporting is not an outcome in itself, but rather a means or a tool to create and preserve more sustainable value. Integrated thinking should lead to integrated decision making and integrated actions, which actually lead to better outcomes, or the creation and preservation of more sustainable value.
- Business Models in Integrated Reporting—Learning from the Pioneers
Stathis Gould, Head of Professional Accountants in Business, IFAC
Investor engagement, regulation, and societal expectations are driving increasing awareness and action on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance, forcing organizations to enhance reporting and disclosure, and include ESG factors in daily decision making. But how should organizations provide meaningful and specific disclosures for ESG issues? What significant initiatives and frameworks are available to help? How can organizations ensure reporting and disclosure is useful for users?
- Integrated Reporting—Seizing the Opportunity to Lead
Helen Brand, Chief Executive, ACCA
Integrated reporting has truly begun to take off around the world. But there are still many organizations that are nervous about taking the first steps into this new world of reporting—but the ACCA is not one of them, having started the process back in 2011.
Focusing on the Matters That Matter
Stathis Gould, Head of Professional Accountants in Business, IFAC
New guidance from IFAC and the IIRC, Materiality in Integrated Reporting, provides information on applying materiality in integrated reporting and supports implementation of the IIRC’s International Integrated Reporting Framework.
Integrated Reporting: Will It Make a Difference?
Nick A. Shepherd, President, EduVision
Can integrated reporting avoid the pitfalls of previous methods to improve or expand corporate reporting? Or will integrated reporting just become an added burden? What will it take for integrated reporting to make a real difference in decision making and corporate behavior?