By Tim Mohin, Director of Corporate Responsibility, Advanced Micro Devices
This week, AMD released its 18th annual corporate responsibility (CR) report. After working for months and months to gather data, write the content and finalize the report, it is easy for the report’s release to seem like the end goal.
And after all the work that goes into producing a CR report, it’s tempting each year to go into hibernation after it’s issued! However, an important lesson that we have learned in our 18 years of reporting experience is that the report’s release should actually be just the beginning.
So, what’s next?
1. Make sure your audiences actually read it
Today AMD’s newly released 2012/2013 “full report” weighs in at over 120 pages.
You don’t have to be a communications genius to know that this format will turn off most audiences. Since we want people to actually read our content, we now issue a short summary of our CR performance in addition to the full report. AMD’s CR summary is available as a 24-page magazine or a (paper-free) tablet application for iOS and Android devices.
We're working on the premise that our content has staying power year-round to create new and engaging dialogue—ranging from infographics to videos— after the initial release.
2. Continue dialogue and communication
To ensure we have ongoing and fresh dialogue on CR, AMD also issues an update newsletter twice a year, posts frequent blog posts, hosts meetings with our stakeholders and employees, and posts near constant tweets (follow @TimMohinAMD)! An increasingly important audience for companies is the socially responsible investor community.
One way AMD has continued dialogue with socially responsible investors is through a “road show” to discuss our strategy and performance.
3. Respond to surveys
Soon after the report is finalized, we start filling out in-depth questionnaires for various CR and sustainability ratings and rankings. By gathering all of the data in the report, we are well positioned to respond. As an example, the Dow Jones Sustainability Index relies on a survey that is now 96 pages long.
4. Use the report to drive performance
Each year we learn this lesson again: while reporting may seem like a surface level activity, it actually drives results. Just by asking each department within our company for CR data, we find that many of them respond by developing new programs and processes that advance AMD’s performance. I saved this point for last because, in my opinion, it is the most impactful benefit of reporting.
A few years ago, I wrote about this aspect of CR reporting in a blog post titled Is Your CSR Report a Window or a Mirror? — The post shined a light on how CR reports can, and do, drive improved performance—ultimately this is what matters most.
While the weight of a 120 page CR report may have been lifted off our shoulders this morning, there is much more work to be done! Well, we better get started…