In 2014 we launched a process to identify the most important issues on which to concentrate our attention and efforts, in line with the GRI-G4 guidelines. This activity enabled us to define the materiality matrix, which pinpoints material aspects that can have a significant economic, social and environmental impact on the Group’s activities and which, influencing the expectations, decisions and actions of stakeholders, are perceived as relevant by the latter.
Materiality analysis is a dynamic process that is developed over several years. The top management identified the megatrends and material issues to prioritise in 2014.
In 2015 this analysis of the context was updated and expanded, including a broad evaluation of the scenario and the pressure of public opinion and the media on the Group and a stakeholder dialogue activity, with a qualitative approach consistent with the AA1000 standard.
More specifically, the analysis was coordinated by the Group Social Responsibility department together with a specialist company, and developed as follows:
Materiality matrix process
The starting point for the process was the identification of megatrends and material issues. The main sustainability guidelines developed by international organisations and networks (ISO26000, GRI-G4, Global Compact, Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations and ethical ratings agencies) were taken into account and an analysis of the sector and benchmarks was carried out, analysing the material issues identified by major insurance groups, businesses from other sectors with relevant experience in the field of corporate responsibility, and companies that stand out for their technological innovation. The issues covered by the media were also analysed.
In 2015 we launched a dialogue with our stakeholders for the first time in order to obtain an external point of view on the analyses conducted the year before. We identified a small group of stakeholders, chosen for their authority and knowledge of the insurance sector or for their ability to provide original and innovative perspectives.
When choosing who to involve in the dialogue we focused on four main categories:
- opinion leaders: authoritative experts recognised at national and international level (members of international organisations, academics, holders of leading roles in sustainability networks, industry journalists), sustainability managers in sectors other than the insurance one, business managers that operate via online platforms (people that regularly manage big data in their activities and have an overview of consumer habits and the macroeconomic scenario), start-uppers and incubators
- millennials: 25-35 year-olds who have carried out their training during a period in which communication technologies have expanded rapidly, regularly use social networking sites and are used to sharing and collaboration/interaction that goes beyond cultural and geographical barriers
- sustainable investors: not only investors that assess investment opportunities according to ESG criteria but also analysts, independent responsible investment advisors and ethical ratings agencies
- trade associations: insurance sector representatives that regularly collaborate and interact with consumers or consumer associations, that have relations with the institutions and the regulators and which constantly monitor the evolution of the needs and requests of the public.
The materiality matrix is approved by the Board of Directors in conjunction with the Sustainability Report.
Materiality analysis is a dynamic process:
- the results help internal departments to identify areas on which to focus their initiatives to improve the Group’s impact on the environment and civil society
- listening to stakeholders, the integration with the development of the strategy and the evolution of the general scenario allow us to monitor and adjust the assessment of the risks and opportunities related to the scenario.