Corporate Citizenship has been asked by Reed Elsevier to assess its use of the LBG model for measuring corporate community involvement activity during 2011.
Reed Elsevier is an active member of LBG. The LBG measurement model helps businesses to improve the management, measurement and reporting of their corporate community involvement programmes. It moves beyond charitable donations to include the full range of contributions (in time, in kind and in cash) made to community causes, and assesses the actual results for the community and for the business. (See www.lbg-online.net for more information).
As managers of LBG, we have worked with Reed Elsevier to ensure its operations understand the LBG model and have applied its principles to the measurement of community involvement programmes during 2011. Having conducted an assessment, we are satisfied that the data continue to reflect LBG principles. Our work has not extended to an independent audit of the data.
In our commentary we identify some improvements that can be made as Reed Elsevier develops its application of the model in future.
Following our assurance assignment last year we recommended that, to ensure consistency in reporting across operations, Reed Elsevier should document the processes and methodologies used for calculating the cost of in-kind contributions. We are encouraged that information on some major individual activities has been more comprehensively recorded this year. The next step is to apply this approach across the board. We have provided recommendations to Reed Elsevier about this in a separate management note.
Last year we also noted that the data that Reed Elsevier captures is largely ‘input’ focussed (i.e. assessing the total contribution the company makes into the community) and that it was in a position to move to assessing what this contribution achieves for both the community and the business. We are encouraged that the company has identified an output target regarding the number of young people reached by its programmes and look forward to results in this area being reflected in future data.