The Challenge: Traditionally, corporate social responsibility CSR has been thought of as a company’s obligation to give back to the community, the environment, and other causes. Today, it represents the measure of a company’s corporate citizenship and business strategy and has become an integral part of modern business practices and stakeholder relations.
As KCI, a global leader in wound care, prepared for a public IPO, the leadership team wanted to better understand where the company stood with regard to CSR metrics and use research and learnings to make organizational changes that would put the company in the best position for long-term success. A CSR Audit was undertaken to uncover and analyze a core subset of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) metrics and benchmark them in comparison to the reasonable expectations of prospective investors, current and potential employees, and the publicly reported performance of peer companies.
Over the course of approximately 10 weeks, we conducted a detailed audit of the company’s CSR activities and those of the company’s top competitors using a defined set of priority ESG metrics to assess where the company stood in relation to similar companies on these important factors. This included a qualitative and quantitative examination of more than 50 performance metrics, with a focus on areas of particular interest to investors.
The Results: Using a proprietary scoring system, we assigned a rating for each metric to demonstrate how each company compared to the others, and ultimately to KCI. Various factors were considered, including the execution and implementation of ESG metrics as it relates to environmental activities, business practices, company goals, and overarching policies. Ultimately, the findings were used to assess the company’s strengths and weaknesses and identify opportunities and potential threats. These were then used to create a roadmap and three-year action plan to enhance and promote KCI’s CSR efforts in order to improve their overall corporate reputation and position them attractively to investors as they began the IPO process.