Submitted by: The Timberland Company
Posted: Jun 17, 2008 – 12:04 PM EST
Jun. 17 /CSRwire/ - STRATHAM, NH,. - June 17, 2008 - The Timberland Company today announced several innovative changes in how it publicly reports on its corporate social responsibility (CSR) work. The company, which has traditionally reported its CSR performance in an annual report format, is moving to quarterly updates of key CSR metrics – the first of which is now available on the Timberland page at JustMean (http://timberland.justmeans.com). Full CSR reports will still be available every two years with the 2007-2008 corporate CSR report scheduled for release in Spring 2009.
JustMeans (www.justmeans.com) is a social media platform that rallies both companies and individuals around social responsibility. Timberland intends to leverage JustMeans and Web 2.0 to scale the conversations with its stakeholders around CSR issues material to their organization.
"As our stakeholder community grows increasingly sophisticated in their understanding of sustainability issues, they demand greater information about our CSR initiatives," explains Alex Hausman, Timberland's CSR Reporting Manager."This is where transparency and accountability – through accessible, relevant and timely information about our work in CSR – is critical."
Developing a full CSR report is a time-intensive process, generally taking about nine months – and allowing little time for investments in process improvements, development of data infrastructure, testing new mediums and other innovations necessary in effective CSR reporting. As a consequence, Timberland has decided to move to a two-year cycle for publishing full CSR reports.
The obvious drawback to a two-year reporting cycle is decreased communication between a company and its stakeholders – vital to the success of a CSR program.To counterbalance the two-year reporting structure, Timberland will release an online "dashboard" of performance metrics quarterly, communicating progress against key CSR initiatives. Both the dashboard and quarterly reporting process was reviewed by a Ceres-convened stakeholder group who provided guidance on the initiative.
"We believe in the adage, 'what gets measured gets managed,'" said Hausman. "Quarterly reporting will strengthen our communication with stakeholders, and also drive progress internally against our CSR initiatives."
Timberland's quarterly CSR dashboard contains performance metrics for four areas: energy, product, workplaces and service. These focus areas are the product of a year-long process to refine Timberland's long-term CSR strategy. The result is four goals, each supported by a scorecard of metrics with targets set out to 2015. The dashboard that is made publicly available is a collection of key performance indicators from those scorecards.
The four "pillars" of Timberland's strategy are: