Our Purpose focuses on giving confidence in a world of change. As a guiding principle for every aspect of our business – from strategy and solutions to governance and behaviours, our purpose shapes our approach towards our people, clients, services, community and places factors relating to environmental issues, social behaviour and governance at the heart of our organisation.
Across RSM, our people and firms are engaged every day with impactful initiatives, by: living our values through the RSM DNA; inspiring and developing our teams; community volunteering, charity or pro-bono work; and delivering best-practice advisory and assurance services which are trusted by many thousands of organisations globally.
To ‘instill confidence’, we have started by understanding what needs to change and why; respecting and leveraging many different perspectives to define our goals; and taking responsibility for making change happen – as individuals, as RSM Member Firms and as one global organisation.
Over 2022 we took the results of a network-wide consultation process to understand activity currently underway across RSM to bring our purpose to life and to deliver impact in relation to ESG themes. To ensure openness and independence, the consultation process was executed by a third party, Landor&Fitch – a global leader in brand consultancy. The information we gathered enabled us to identify a number of opportunities for development as we consider our global impact plans and our collective direction of travel in relation to ESG.
Work to inform our impact plans:
Understanding best practice principles and activities across ESG themes from established and respected global influencers.
Member Firm Purpose and Sustainability Survey
Harnessing in-depth feedback from 66 RSM Firms globally, representative of all geographies, regions, cultures and sizes of Firm within the RSM membership.
Member Firm feedback from interviews and outputs from global programmes
Better understanding of local sustainability and CSR activity, dynamics and areas of global alignment and opportunity.
Trends analysis – Review of RDE (Residual, Dominant and Emerging) trends and drivers
Considering the critical issues facing the world and where we might make a difference.
Following this groundwork, at RSM, our impact plans to 2030 are being directed towards three key areas, with work having begun in 2022, but to be continued over the coming years as we build depth in each of these areas and create a strong global overlay alongside all the great work being conducted at individual Firm level:
1. Alignment with principled global strategic initiatives to further responsible business practices and working with strategic partners to support our approach and to bring an independent, outside-in perspective.
2. Educating all our stakeholders on ESG themes and ways in which we can all make a powerful, positive and lasting difference as we fulfil our purpose to instill confidence in a world of change.
3. Building a global ESG reporting structure - Further developing RSM’s global policy framework and, over time, developing a consistent global reporting structure across RSM against a set of key metrics, enabling uniform measurement of actions.
Alongside this is our focus on ESG advisory services. As a long-standing provider of assurance services to an extensive corporate client base globally, and understanding the regulatory and best practice requirements concerning matters of governance, accountability and measurement, puts us in an important position to influence change across a large group of stakeholders.
70% of RSM Member Firms are now offering ESG services to support client needs
“ Across RSM, there is a wealth of impactful activity underway. Whilst we celebrate the great work being done by our Member Firms, our task now is how to further leverage our collective strength so that we can make a powerful, positive and lasting difference in everything we do and with everyone we engage with.”
Lead for Purpose and Sustainability
Alignment with principled global strategic initiatives
Whilst the UN Global Compact was a programme some of our Member Firms had individually signed up to, 2022 saw RSM take the decision to sign up as a global organisation to the 10 principles of the Compact.
At RSM we have an inherent respect and advocacy for legal and regulatory regimes. Whilst our own employment culture, focus on continuing professional development, governance and quality frameworks place us in an advanced position in relation to many of the stated UN Global Compact principles, like every organisation, there are areas where we can do even better. Whilst it will take time to create a global uniformity to the individual Member Firm policies and approaches, we recognise the value and importance of seeking to do so. Over time, our aim is to put in place united global principles of behaviour which would apply to every RSM employee, client, supplier or strategic partner in every market in which we operate.
In addition to the UN Global Compact, over 2022, RSM has globally sought to champion the UN Women’s Empowerment Principles and the Sustainable Development Goals. In relation to the Women’s Empowerment Principles, we have already seen 10 Member Firms sign up, with many more reviewing what they mean and how they might adopt them. With respect to the Sustainable Development Goals, we have begun a programme to promote understanding around all these goals across RSM globally. After an internal consultation process involving all RSM Member Firms, to help channel activity and create the greatest possible impact for RSM activities globally, we have selected five Goals which are known as RSM’s Foundational Goals to champion.
Such partners included:
- Business networks and Chambers of Commerce
- Organisations supporting sustainable change (e.g. Global Sustain)
- Various global and local professional bodies Media partnerships
- Partnerships with charitable organisations covering a diverse range of issues with the highest focus:
Poverty | Hunger | Gender Equality | Cancer Child | Welfare | Healthcare