Identifying material aspects of CSR activities.

As part of preparing of the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Report for 2014 we implemented the material aspects identification procedure recommended by new version G4 of the international GRI Guidelines. This process aimed at identifying the areas of our CSR activities which are recognised as important by the bank management and represent an area of concern for our stakeholders.

Firstly, implementation of this analysis allowed us to form the basis for further CSR work: we understood which of the CSR areas and management processes must be built and improved. Secondly, we used the analysis results to determine the content of the Report to make it more relevant and aimed at meeting the stakeholders’ information needs.

Table 1: Stages of identification of material aspects
Stage Stage goals Methods Result

Step 1.

Identification of material topics

To consider a wide range of topics that are material in terms of CSR for banking sector organisations, and to highlight those potentially deserving to be included in the Report

Analysis of GRI standards, ISO26000 and the Equator Principles

Analysis of the best similar companies’ reports

Media analysis

A list of 45 material topics

Step 2.

Identification of material aspects

To carry out analysis of the identified topics in terms of their importance to stakeholders and business development

Online opinion poll of 260 people, including Sberbank clients and employees

Opinion poll of Sberbank’s 10 top managers

Graphical diagram showing material topics (Materiality map, Figure 1)

Step 3.

Validation

To carry out an expert assessment of the identified topics in terms of their completeness and balance, so that the Report reflects both positive and negative impacts Assessment of the identified aspects by experts in the field of Sberbank’s strategic development A list of 18 material GRI aspects and indicators for each aspect to be revealed in the Report

The topics that received an assessment score above 4.5 points for stakeholders and above 5.0 points for business development (Figure 1) were recognised as material and included in the Report: each is described in terms of management approaches and explained in terms of corresponding GRI Guidelines aspects and indicators. The topics located outside the orange zone on the map were not recognised as material and, according to GRI Guidelines, are not required to be disclosed in the Report. Nevertheless, we made the decision to include some of these topics in the Report, which might also be of interest to our stakeholders.

Figure 1: Map of CSR aspects which are material for Sberbank’s stakeholders and management

1Management approaches to “Corporate governance improvement” are covered in the 2014 Management Report.

In the future we plan to analyse Sberbank’s and Sberbank Group’s efficiency on the basis of CSR material aspects and report on selected indicators on a regular basis. In the long term we are also considering the possibility of elaborating and implementing key performance indicators for the material aspects to build CSR management system at the Group level.