Award categories and criteria 2019

Each of the Building Public Trust Awards is judged using a set of criteria designed to reflect openness in an organisation's communications to stakeholders.

Now in their 17th year, our Building Public Trust Awards celebrate organisations who are leading the way in open, authentic and accessible reporting and communications. The winners are announced across our dinner and lunch events.

At the dinner on 3 October 2019, we'll be celebrating the purpose and impact of reporting in relation to Charities, the FTSE 350, Private Business and the Public Sector (with the National Audit Office).  And, for the first time this year – Impact on Workforce and Society in the FTSE 350.

At our lunch on 28 November 2019, we'll be celebrating the purpose and impact of reporting in relation to Corporate Governance, Cyber Security, Remuneration, Strategic reporting, Sustainability, Tax and Financial Services.

Click on the award titles shown below for more information.

Winners and highly commended organisations announced 3 October 2019

Charities

Registered Charities in the Charity Finance ‘Charity 100 Index’ published in April 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

We will review the latest publicly available trustees’ annual report and accounts, and associated year end reporting documents, up to the reporting period ended 31 March 2019.

There is a continuing need for the Charity sector to work hard to maintain its trusted status with the public and demonstrate its purpose and wider societal impact. This award recognises high quality and innovative reporting by Charities, which should make an impact on readers of its annual report and accounts. The principles of high quality reporting should result in better - not necessarily more - information, and tell the reader a clear and compelling story about what the Charity does, why its activities are important and what its impact has been.

Key principles

  • The Charity's annual report and accounts are easy to read and engage the reader to find out more about its purpose, current activities and future plans. The Charity's annual report and accounts are open, balanced and authentic.
  • The Charity clearly communicates its purpose, strategic priorities and values in the context of the sphere in which it operates. The Charity considers its position in the context of its wider operational landscape.
  • The Charity is open and honest about how it approaches key societal issues, including, where relevant, its approach to fundraising, safeguarding and investments. The Charity is transparent in its disclosure of and rationale for senior management remuneration. The Charity demonstrates how it is responding to changes in a digital world.
  • The Charity clearly explains who its key stakeholders are, with particular focus on its beneficiaries. The Charity recognises what its responsibility is to the public and how its activities benefit them.
  • The Charity clearly explains how it is governed, what its risks are and how it manages and mitigates them in relation to its current activities, the environment in which it operates and its future plans.
  • The Charity sets out its measures of success and why these are important in delivering its purpose. The Charity clearly explains the impact it has made for its beneficiaries as well as wider society.
  • The Charity clearly articulates the drivers behind its financial performance and position, including any ethical, value for money and sustainability considerations. The Charity is transparent in its considerations of its reserves and ongoing viability.
  • The Charity presents a consistent and compelling strategic narrative with explicit alignment between all of the key elements outlined above.

 

View more

FTSE 350

This award celebrates those companies that report a clear, consistent, high quality and integrated strategic narrative across the spectrum of their reporting. It consolidates the best reporters from six other awards - strategic reporting, corporate governance, exec remuneration, tax, workforce fairness and purpose & impact.

Leading reporters will be those that communicate a clearly articulated corporate purpose and demonstrate their societal contribution, and impact, in a way that is consistent and aligned throughout.

The FTSE 350 as at 31 March 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

The period reviewed will be year ends from 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, and we will review the annual report, sustainability report and supporting reporting documents such as preliminary results and accompanying investor presentations on the company's website.

For further details, please refer to the criteria for each of the supporting awards.

 

 

View more

Overseas investment

The largest overseas-headquartered companies, based on number of employees and turnover at 31 March 2019, will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate. We will review the following publicly available statements for each company: Tax Strategy, Modern Slavery Act and Gender Pay Gap.

Gender Pay Gap:

  • Compliance with gender pay reporting requirements
  • Explanation of gender pay metrics
  • Additional analysis of gender pay position
  • Clear and targeted action planning

UK Modern Slavery Act:

  • Existence of a compliant statement;
  • Description of the business;
  • Policies;
  • Risk assessment;
  • Due diligence procedures;
  • Grievance and whistle-blowing mechanisms
  • Training;
  • KPIs & metrics;

Tax Strategy:

  • Approach to tax which is more than a bland statement
  • Governance over tax highlighting board involvement and delivery of the strategy
  • Linking tax to the rest of the business
  • Information beyond that required by the legislation

 

View more

Private business

The assessment will review the latest publicly available annual report and accounts, and associated year end reporting documents, for the largest privately owned companies, up to the reporting period ended 31 March 2019.

This award recognises those companies that present a clear, concise and integrated narrative through their corporate reporting. A narrative that reflects on progress as well as plans for the future, balances shareholder and other key stakeholder needs, and takes an innovative approach to the way they communicate their key messages.

The particular focus of the award will be on those companies that demonstrate:

  • A clear articulation of company purpose and the societal need it hopes to address;
  • A forward-looking orientation to the narrative including a description of the medium to long-term direction of the company in pursuit of the purpose, supported by the short-term priorities, actions and resources needed for strategic success;
  • A clear articulation of the company’s objectives, strategic priorities and values in the context of the sphere in which it operates;
  • A description of the company’s business model including: its dependency on key resources and relationships across its value chain and how they’re managed; how it makes money; and what impact it has on these resources/relationships;
  • A discussion of the key trends shaping the markets in which the company operates as context to the strategic decisions made and what impact they’re having on its business model;
  • A clear, specific, and dynamic discussion of how the company is governed and the principal risks, including how they are assessed, managed and mitigated;
  • A recognition and discussion around the company’s key stakeholders - their material issues, impact on the strategy and business model, and the company’s response;
  • How a balanced discussion of progress, performance and impact to society is delivered- using a mix of strategic relevant financial and operational metrics; and
  • A consistent and compelling strategic narrative with explicit alignment between all of the key elements outlined above.

 

View more

Public sector (with the National Audit Office)

The Public Sector award focuses on all entities which are consolidated into the Whole of Government Accounts (“WGA”). These are the bodies at the heart of government and hence of public reporting. There is no need to self-nominate for this award.

Corporate reporting excellence is demonstrated when engaging, relevant, reliable and timely information is provided without unnecessary clutter with clear linkages to the strategic priorities; when a balance is achieved between the three pillars of reporting - content, quality and integration. Within content we look at the information the organisation has chosen to report – does it include all the critical, and relevant, including reporting on aspects of performance that did not go so well – transparency and honesty? Quality refers to the depth and materiality of the information – does the organisation use only qualitative information or is narrative supported with quantitative data, when relevant, benchmarks and targets? Does the reporting cover the past, present and future? Finally, for integration, we consider how well an organisation demonstrates a clear, consistent and balanced message across its communication channels and the linkage and inter-dependencies between the different elements reported, as well as relating them back to the strategic themes set out as key to success in the short, medium and longer-term. Clear reporting involves narrative but fuller use of diagrams and key aspects of data to help present a picture in an easy form for a reader to quickly grasp the messages being conveyed.

Underpinning our assessment of excellence in reporting is the concept of innovation – organisations who lead the way with a fresh approach to meeting the needs of Parliament, the public and other key stakeholders. Our award continues to give credit to those making real inroads in adopting these concepts and leading the way in driving fresh thinking and innovation. Transparent and insightful reporting is not necessarily about more information but about decluttering existing structures, taking a fresh approach to traditional disclosures.

Specific areas we focus on include:

  • A clear and balanced explanation of the impact (both positive and negative) of trends and factors shaping the organisation’s current and future operating environment;
  • A description of the long-term direction of the organisation, supported by the short-term strategic priorities, actions and resources needed to pursue this, with clear use of specific targets and resulting impact on society;
  • A consistent strategic narrative;
  • An insight into the organisation’s business model and the key resources and relationships managed by organisation in order to fulfil its strategic objectives;
  • A clear analysis of how for some expenditure only organisations, how the costs have been managed and what value has been generated from the expenditure;
  • A clear analysis of the profile and dynamics of the principal risks the organisation faces, including how they are managed and mitigated;
  • An explanation of how strategic performance is measured over time, accompanied by supporting trend data and future targets;
  • Clear and accessible disclosures of key financial measures that drive underlying performance;
  • Governance reporting that focuses on substance over form – balancing compliance with insight into the culture and values of the entity and how they drive its governance and "tone from the top";
  • How the Accounting Officer has evaluated what is to be included/excluded from its reporting (materiality process, stakeholder responsiveness, etc.); and
  • That the reporting is understandable and accessible to stakeholders, including the general public.

View more

Social enterprise

Social enterprises trade to tackle social problems, improve communities, people's life chances, or the environment. Measuring impact is the recognised way in which a social enterprise can demonstrate how it’s delivering on its mission and the value created for its beneficiaries and society.

This award recognises social enterprises demonstrating a positive social or environmental impact. Application is open to members of the PwC Social Entrepreneurs Club, our UK-wide network of over 250 social enterprises. To enter the awards, applicants must state how they demonstrate a positive social impact in 500 words or less, with the additional support of quantitative and qualitative evidence e.g. annual accounts, impact report and testimonials.

Subject matter experts from PwC, Social Enterprise UK and the School for Social Entrepreneurs use the following principles to screen applications and generate the shortlist of organisations whose overall excellence in delivering social or environmental impact is then considered by the independent judging panel.

Key principles:

  • The social enterprise demonstrates a positive social impact in line with its social mission and objectives
  • The social enterprise demonstrates thorough measurement and evaluation processes
  • The social enterprise clearly communicates its objectives and impact to stakeholders
  • The social enterprise includes good quantitative and qualitative evidence of its impact

View more

Impact on Workforce and Society in the FTSE 350

The FTSE 350 as at 31 March 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

The period reviewed will be 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019 and we will review the annual report and supporting corporate reporting such as corporate responsibility reports.

Fuller details to follow shortly, in the meantime, please contact building.public.trust@uk.pwc.com for further details.

View more

Winners and highly commended organisations announced 28 November 2019

Corporate governance reporting in the FTSE 350

The FTSE 350 as at 31 March 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

The period reviewed will be 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, and we will read the corporate governance report, other relevant parts of annual reports (including separate committee reports), and any linked website content.

This award, like the others, sets a high bar and takes compliance as a given. For us, governance reporting should be about activities and outcomes, not just process and procedure. As well as the core governance and committee reports we look closely at the audit committee report and the viability statement. There will also be a particular focus this year on board and senior management diversity. And, in the light of the ongoing debate on corporate governance reform we will expect to see more evidence of how directors, through their governance activities and reporting, are promoting the long-term success of companies and taking into account the views of a range of stakeholders across society.

 

View more

Cyber security reporting in the FTSE 350

Each report shall be assessed by how well it demonstrates security metric. For each metric, it shall be assigned a maturity score, either:

  • 0 (not mentioned);
  • 1 (meets expectations); or
  • 2 (exceeds expectations).

The report will be given an aggregate score equal to the sum of each of these maturity scores. The top five reports will be shortlisted for the final stage of the process, which involves holistically analysing them to determine how well they communicate their message to their audience. The metrics discussed and examples are outlined below:                                       

1. Organisation is aware of its exposure         

  • Acknowledgement of major risks and threats to operations.
  • Evidence of data discovery, infrastructure and access control initiatives within the organisation.

2. Organisation has appropriate investments, tools and expertise dedicated to information security

  • Mention of security team size, budget, sub-departments and tools – preferably with rationale behind choice.

3. Organisation regularly measures security assurance within its infrastructure, staff and threat landscape

  • Mention of ongoing activities, including awareness training, threat intelligence, security testing, policy reviews, patch management and perimeter scanning.

4. Organisation has adopted a holistic framework

  • Mention of any security control framework used by the organisation.

5. Organisation is safe in the face of cyber incidents and disasters

  • Mention of business continuity and disaster response plans.
  • Mention of capabilities of incident response team.
  • Positive indicators of incident response performance (e.g. low median response time; low percentage of critical incidents that took longer than 48 hours to resolve).

6. Security controls are subject to independent review and test

  • Mention of external review of security controls and vulnerabilities.

7. Security team has strong executive buy in, and has oversight within the organisation.

  • Mention of board involvement in security (including executive security officers).
  • Mention of successful security initiatives fully adopted by the organisation.

8. Organisation has a well-informed security strategy with clear and attainable milestones 

  • Action plan to transform security, accompanied by clear goals.
  • Rationale behind security strategy.
  • Mention of drivers and principles of security strategy.

9. Organisation is capable of anticipating and responding to global security events, including major regulations and cyber disasters

  • Positive indicators of how organisation reacted to recent cyber incidents (e.g. WannaCry, Petya).
  • Mention of compliance to topical major regulations (e.g. GDPR)
  • Mention of methods involved to improve response to these events (e.g. steering committee for regulations, lessons learned from incidents).

View more

Remuneration reporting in the FTSE 350

The FTSE 350 as at 31 March 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

Reporting will be reviewed for financial years ending in the period 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019. For this award, we shall review the remuneration report and other parts of the annual report or linked website content as relevant.

This year the award will assess the extent to which companies explain and justify the remuneration of executive directors in the context of corporate performance and longer-term company strategy. Our criteria will look for transparent disclosure of both the internal and external context to the remuneration of the executive directors and which provides a clear explanation of how the exercise of discretion has influenced their remuneration outcomes.

Underpinning the award will be a focus on fairness: we’ll look for disclosures which demonstrate how the remuneration of the executive directors is aligned with the experience of shareholders, employees and other stakeholders, while being fair to the individual director.

View more

Reporting in the Financial Services in the FTSE 350

The FTSE 350 as at 31 March 2019 will automatically be reviewed.  There is no need to self-nominate.

The period reviewed will be 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, and we will review the annual report and linked website content as relevant.

The financial services industry is an integral part of our community, helping businesses and people invest, save and protect themselves against uncertainty. However, it has a trust problem that’s dimmed its allure in the eyes of many.

Trust does not just exist, it has to be earned and through our research with both industry firms and the public, we have found that there are 3 broad drivers (below) of this in any business. If you take action to influence any one of these drivers positively, then you will maintain or improve trust in your business and, ultimately improve your bottom line.

The focus of the award will be on those companies that demonstrate examples and an articulation of steps or initiatives they have taken to build trust in line with our three drivers of trust. The award will judged using the latest publically available annual report and associated year end reporting documents for financial services related FTSE 350 firms (including building societies and cooperatives), up to the reporting period ending 31 March 2019.

The drivers are:

  1. Values
    What is it: Whether the organisation and the stakeholder share common values.
    What does it look like: Sociability / Vision / Communitarian / Understands needs.
  2. Experience
    What is it: Whether the organisation consistently meets the stakeholders’ expectations.
    What does it look like: Expertise / Point of view / Clear communication / Responsiveness.
  3. Competence
    What is it: Whether or not the organisation ‘does what it says on the tin’.
    What does it look like: Understand benefits / Reliability / Transparency / Delivers promise.

View more

Strategic reporting in the FTSE 350

The FTSE 350 as at 31 March 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

The period reviewed will be year ends from 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, and we will review the company’s strategic report and how the strategic themes are then woven through the remainder of their annual report, corporate website and results announcements.

This award recognises those companies that present a clear, concise and integrated strategic narrative through their corporate reporting. A narrative that reflects on strategic progress to date as well as plans for the future, balances shareholder and other key stakeholder needs, and takes an innovative approach to the way they communicate their key messages.

Particular focus this year will be around those companies that articulate a clear purpose and the societal impact they hope to have, provide a forward-looking orientation to their reporting, and a clear and compelling narrative of their strategic progress in the context of insightful reporting on their business model, market trends, risks and performance.


A consistent and compelling strategic narrative with explicit alignment between all of the key elements outlined below.

  • A clear articulation of company purpose, the societal need it hopes to address and ultimately its wider impact
  • A forward-looking orientation to the narrative including a description of the medium to long-term direction of the company in pursuit of its purpose, supported by the short-term priorities for strategic success
  • A description of the company’s business model focusing on how it creates value and its dependency on and management of key resources and relationships
  • A discussion of the key trends shaping the markets in which the company operates as context to the strategic decisions made and how this impacts the business model
  • A balanced discussion of strategic performance and progress, both financial and non-financial
  • A clear, specific, and dynamic discussion of the principal risks, including how they are assessed, managed and mitigated
  • Recognition of the company’s key stakeholders and discussion around engagement, material issues and their influence on strategy and the business model

View more

Sustainability reporting in the FTSE 350

The FTSE 350 and Public Interest Entities as at 31 May 2019 will automatically be reviewed. There is no need to self-nominate.

The period reviewed will be 1 June 2018 to 31 May 2019, and we will review corporate responsibility reports (or micro-sites), corporate responsibility websites and annual reports.

This award aims to assess the depth and relevance of broader purpose and impact reporting offered throughout the publicly available information provided to stakeholders. The particular focus of this award will be on those companies that demonstrate that they are delivering a clear societal contribution and impact, that this is recognised in their purpose and delivered in a sustainable manner.

This will be assessed by focusing on organisations that clearly identify the key parts of society they impact, how sustainability is factored into core business processes, how key risks and opportunities are identified, with balanced performance monitoring and effective targets set, how governance is effective and focused on material issues, and finally that there is evidence to support these features.

View more

Tax reporting in the FTSE 350

The period reviewed will be 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, and we will review the annual report and supporting corporate reporting such as disclosures made on company's website, corporate responsibility reports and standalone tax reports.

Tax transparency continues to be a focus for large business. The debate over public country-by-country reporting and tax disclosure principles released by different stakeholders eg  The B Team and GRI (under consultation) means that this is an area of continuing focus for tax teams, corporate responsibility teams and the Board. In addition, stakeholder interest in areas such as uncertain tax positions and state aid has required companies to consider how best to communicate the detail of their tax affairs.

This award recognises those companies that present a summary of their tax affairs in a clear and innovative way, while responding to stakeholder interest and the developments above.  Our review will focus on disclosures around tax strategy, tax risk management and governance, tax performance and the total tax contribution and its wider impact.


View more

Contact us

Alan McGill

Partner, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 7711 915 663

Follow us