10 Oct 14

Should your organisation be considering Integrated Reporting?

NetworkIntegrated Reporting <IR> is the process of producing a concise report on how an organisation’s strategy, governance, performance and prospects, in the context of its external environment, lead to the creation of value in the short, medium and long term. <IR> brings together reporting on financial, environmental, social and governance information in a manner that is clear, concise, consistent and comparable. 

The global authority on <IR> is the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC), whose aim is to enable <IR> to be embedded into mainstream business practice in the public and private sectors.

An integrated report should be produced periodically, ideally to coincide with other corporate reporting and focuses on the organisation’s value creation. Organisations typically produce multiple external communications on performance which can often be independent and disconnected. At the heart of <IR> is encouraging a greater cohesiveness of this reporting but also a greater sense of integrated thinking across the entire business strategy.

The Guiding Principles of <IR> have been developed to harmonise with other reporting frameworks, including GRI and UNGC. The Content Elements of <IR> are not intended to serve as a prescriptive structure for an integrated report but are a framework for the core reporting content. The information doesn’t need to be in these sections but to be classified as an integrated report it should cover the Content Elements comprehensively and show the connections.

Summary of <IR> Content Elements

  • Organisational overview and external environment: What does the organisation do?

  • Governance: How does the organisation’s governance structure support its ability to create value in the short, medium and long term

  • Business model: What is the organisation’s business model?

  • Risks and opportunities: What are the specific risks and opportunities that affect the organisation’s ability to create value?

  • Strategy and resource allocation: Where does the organisation want to go and how does it intend to get there?

  • Performance: To what extent has the organisation achieved its strategic objectives and what are its outcomes in terms of effects on the capitals?

  • Outlook: What challenges and uncertainties is the organization likely to encounter?

  • Basis of presentation: How does the organization determine what matters to include in the integrated report?

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