The Generali Group, an international insurance company based in Italy, is a pioneer in bringing to life the Integrated Reporting “internally”. Here, Massimo Romano, who leads Generali’s group integrated reporting team, discusses the benefits that they are detecting.
Integrated Reporting helps us in defining a more complete value creation story to be highlighted to our investors, therefore we asked ourselves: why not use the same concept to drive a more transparent approach inside the company, improving our team engagement? One of the biggest benefit from Internal Integrated Reporting is that we have begun to break down “thinking silos” inside our own department. Now we can leverage continuous innovation and integrated thinking to translate financial and non-financial information into reporting instruments that support our decision-making process within the Group, and drive the connectivity of information among our people.
In addition to financial capital, Internal Integrated Reporting now tracks human capital, social capital and organisational capital. The latter capital is a term that we use to encapsulate the tacit knowledge, systems, procedures and protocols employed in the company. Each capital has a number of KPIs associated with it, that together enable us to deliver an integrated view of performance, inside and outside the organisation. These KPI’s are aligned with our Performance Management program and this is a fantastic approach in order to increase both the transparency of our internal communication and the engagement of our people towards our targets.
We hope that the output of the Integrated Reporting team will be useful to a wide range of internal stakeholders: investor relations, senior management, corporate services and subsidiary companies in the group, as well as to our external investors. This is because the same integrated thinking process can create a wider range of different views on the same data.
Internal Integrated Reporting is developing within Generali, as the team becomes more familiar with how we can utilise the concepts of the International <IR> framework. The initial version of Internal Integrated Reporting reported on KPIs by each capital, but newer versions will show how the KPIs connect with different capitals, interact with, and impact each other. Such a reporting method really helps us track our achievement of strategic objectives by concentrating on three pillars: focus, discipline and simplicity. We have fostered an environment which encourages personal and professional development in line with group values. Another innovation is the bottom up approach in preparing the Internal Integrated Reporting which is made by our people who volunteer – on an annual basis – to be part of the working group in charge of the implementation and writing of the Internal Integrated Reporting
When our team started working on the Integrated Reporting, we realised that the introduction of additional capitals (over and above financial capital), and the increased connectivity of information from the <IR> process was helpful in giving visibility to the full range of factors that materially affect the ability of the my department and the company to create value. Our realisation that this could in turn aid our internal reporting has proved to be a great way for everyone to gain greater internal visibility, leading us to work collectively in an holistic way to a better understanding on how our department contributes to the company value creation process. We are piloting our Internal Integrated Reporting within our Group and this is an innovative milestone in our long term journey toward our Integrated Reporting target.