We engage regularly internally and with our external stakeholders to understand their views and priorities,
including through our formal materiality process.
Our priority issues come under six themes, see diagram. The inside ring on the diagram indicates the main ways
these themes relate to the three elements of our business case for sustainability.
Our client work
How we work with clients
on sustainability and our
- Business ethics and human rights
- Client work ethics
- Government relations/public policy
- Marketing and sustainability (including sustainable consumption)
- Marketing compliance
- Partners (JVs, affiliates, associates) & acquisitions
- Privacy and data security
- Sensitive countries
How we recruit, retain, develop and engage our people:
- Access to skills (including education and internships)
- Diversity and inclusion
- Employee engagement
- Employee relations
- Employee well-being
- Employment practices/human rights
- Health and safety
- Training and development
How we work to reduce our environmental footprint:
- Climate change
- Paper and resource use
- Supply chain environmental impacts (including environmental impact of campaigns)
- Waste and recycling
- Water use
How we apply our standards to our supply chain:
- Fair treatment of suppliers
- Living wage
- Supply chain human rights
- Compliance with Modern Slavery Act
How we support charities and social causes
- Pro bono work
Governance and management
How we manage sustainability risks and opportunities, including:
- Roles and responsibilities
- Risk management
- Stakeholder engagement
- Tax policy
Our materiality process
Our materiality assessment helps us to prioritise the social, environmental and economic issues most important to our business, to identify new issues and emerging trends and align our work to the priorities of our stakeholders.
Our formal materiality assessment in 2014 included interviews with clients, investors, NGOs and sustainable business experts as well as senior executives in our Group functions and our operating companies. The assessment took into account our own business goals, activities and impacts as well as external trends, risks and opportunities.
We updated this assessment during 2016 through an internal review and interviews with key external stakeholders.
In the diagram below, importance to stakeholders is shown on the vertical axis, and materiality to WPP on the horizontal access. All issues of high importance are included in our report as well as the majority of issues of medium importance.