iCompli Sustainability


In this webinar, iCompli Sustainability’s Karl Pfalzgraf guides you through ISO 20121, APEX/ASTM and GRI and how these standards can be integrated into your event planning and follow-up.

By watching this webinar you will learn more about:

  • What is involved in each standard
  • When the standard is most relevant to your event planning
  • Helpful tools: Meet Green Calculator, SMPP


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Shelton, CT December 3, 2015 – iCompli Sustainability announced it has formed a partnership with CSRHub, to offer a new kind of sustainability management tool and report – the ESG Metrics Brief – that brings together qualitative and quantitative data for the corporate sustainability marketplace.


We are pleased to partner with CSRHub to offer the ESG Metrics Brief
Karl Pflalzgraf, Senior Vice President, Sustainability at iCompli

The ESG Metrics Brief provides concise, yet comprehensive feedback on corporate sustainability performance. The unique benchmarking report delivers quick, easily digestible information on over 120 environmental, social and governance indicators. The ESG Metrics Brief will help corporate sustainability, procurement and investor relations officers assess performance, identify potential brand and reputation vulnerabilities, and make more informed decisions.

“We are pleased to partner with CSRHub to offer the ESG Metrics Brief,” said Karl Pflalzgraf, Senior Vice President, Sustainability at iCompli.” The iCompli team's deep analytical skills plus CSRHub’s rating system provide an unprecedented tool for organizations to evaluate how they stack up against peers and to inform next steps in their sustainability strategy and reporting.”

Using the ESG Metrics Brief, stakeholders can see how a company compares with its peers on the CSRHub rating system as well as other leading public and private sustainability scoring frameworks, including Bloomberg and CDP. The report examines a company’s current performance on key indicators such as GHG, water, waste, injury rates, women in management, a company’s progress over time, and industry averages.

Find out more about the ESG Metrics Brief


About iCompli Sustainability.

iCompli Sustainability (iCompli) provides a research-driven systems approach to help organizations make defensible decisions about their sustainability initiatives. We offer diagnostic and assessment services, data verification and report assurance, and third-party certification to industry sustainability standardsiCompli is a division of BPA Worldwide, the world’s largest media audit company. A not-for-profit organization established in 1931, BPA’s audit services have expanded to include external assurance of government and industry standards and independent verification of companies’ sustainability claims. iCompli

About CSRHub.

CSRHub® provides access to the world’s largest corporate social responsibility and sustainability ratings and information service, covering 15,000+ companies in 132 countries. By aggregating and normalizing the information from 400+ data sources, CSRHub has created a broad, consistent rating system and a searchable database that links millions of rating elements back to their source. Managers, professionals, and academics use CSRHub to benchmark company and supply chain performance, learn how stakeholders evaluate company CSR practices, and seek ways to improve corporate sustainability performance. Subscribers can access 12 indicators and millions of detailed data points on employee, environment, community, and governance performance. CSRHub is a B Corporation. For more information about CSRHub, visit www.csrhub.com or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Thursday, 03 December 2015 00:00

New! iCompli CSRHub ESG Metrics Brief

The ESG Metrics Brief is a new sustainability management tool and report that combines qualitative and quantitative data about a reporting company. This affordable and concise tool helps sustainability, procurement and IR officers assess performance, identify brand and reputation exposures, and make more informed decisions.

Covering over 120 environmental, social, and governance indicators, the ESG Metrics Brief is used to assess performance, identify potential brand and reputation vulnerabilities and make more informed decisions.

Using the ESG Metrics Brief, you can see how a company compares with its peers on the CSRHub rating system as well as other leading public and private sustainability scoring frameworks including Bloomberg and CDP. You can examine a company's current performance on key indicators such as GHG, water, waste, injury rates, women in management, track a company’s progress over time, and view industry averages.

Introductory pricing:
The 6-page ESG Metrics Brief is available at a special introductory price of $495.

exceldownloadClick here to download
sample ESG report

Find out more/order report by filling out the form below:

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Gregory Elders, Senior Analyst, Environment, Social and Governance, Bloomberg, Susan Sheehan VP Sustainability, and Sonay Aykan, PHD, iCompli Sustainability, describe the Bloomberg ESG screens for all companies, their peers and supply chain, and how analysts and investors can access and use this data to assess your company. 



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If you are like most sustainability directors we’ve talked to you probably aren’t aware that there are actually two approaches to assuring your company’s sustainability report. Where they differ is their approach to data and verification.

The two international standards most commonly used are ISAE 3000 and AA1000AS.

The International Standard on Assurance Engagements ISAE 3000 is a general standard for any assurance engagement other than audits or reviews of historic financial information conducted by public accounting firms. It’s the assurance standard commonly used by the Big 4. The assurance of sustainability reports using ISAE 3000 focuses on verifying sustainability data.

The AccountAbility AA1000 Assurance Standard, which was developed as an alternative to the Big 4 approach, focuses on evaluating an organization’s approach to sustainability through the principles of Inclusivity, Materiality and Responsiveness. Assurance under AA1000AS looks at whether the organization and its sustainability reporting respond to issues of the greatest concern to stakeholders. This is the approach that iCompli uses.

So you may be asking yourself: Which assurance standard is better and why do we use the AA1000AS standard?

In our view, AA1000AS is a better fit with the latest version of the GRI reporting framework (G4) which emphasizes materiality. Focusing on data verification can miss the forest for the trees if your report is looking at the wrong numbers. We make sure that the companies we are evaluating have engaged with their stakeholders, identified their most significant economic, environmental and social issues and have developed a management approach to addressing those issues.

One other important benefit of AA1000AS assurance is that it’s much more cost effective for our clients than ISAE 3000 from the Big 4. Counting all the trees in the forest can get expensive.

Contact us to find out the benefits of AA1000AS assurance and get your sustainability report assured.

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There is a lot of confusion out there about sustainability report assurance.

We’ve been talking to professionals who are looking to assure their latest sustainability report and we’ve been asked:

  • What are the standards for sustainability report assurance?
  • Who provides assurance?
  • How do I get the most value out assuring my sustainability report?

We’re here to set the record straight and give you quick access to the information you need to make the right decision for your organization.

In this list, we will differentiate the two main standards for assurance: the ISAE 3000 and AA1000. We will help to clarify some of the main terms you may hear in a discussion about report assurance and make sure you go into your next conversation better informed.

Read the list of the top 15 things you should know about sustainability assurance.


Specialist firms have been assuring GRI reports for many years using the globally recognized AA1000AS assurance standard.

2.  ISAE 3000 vs. AA1000AS

The two main standards for assurance providers take significantly different approaches. ISAE 3000 is used by public accounting firms and stresses data quality and evidence gathering procedures. AA1000AS is used by specialist bodies and emphasizes the need for organizations to demonstrate effective stakeholder engagement, identify material sustainability issues and put in place a responsible business strategy to respond to those issues.

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The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is the most widely used sustainability reporting framework. So when they make a change, the business world notices.

Recently, GRI introduced GRI 4.0, the organization’s the newest guidelines. These new guidelines have shifted the focus to put more emphasis on materiality, stakeholder engagement and a principled approach to reporting, among other changes.

Now, whether you are a business with experience reporting under GRI, or a newcomer to sustainability reporting, these new guidelines could throw you for a loop. With that in mind, our report assurance experts have created a comprehensive list of the top 20 things you should know about GRI 4.0.

20 Things You Need to Know about GRI G4

  1. It’s all about Materiality. G4 focuses on identifying an organization’s Material Aspects – those issues that:
    • Reflect the organization’s significant economic, environmental and social impacts; or
    • Substantively influence the assessments and decisions of stakeholders.
  2. G4 takes a broader view of what an organization’s ‘Boundary’ is: focusing on impact rather than legal control. Boundary refers to where an impact occurs for each Material Aspect identified. Impacts can be of an internal or external nature, that is, they can exist throughout the value chain.
  3. Stakeholder engagement is a critical component of Materiality. If you’re not engaging with your stakeholders and addressing their material issues – including joint ventures and other impact locations – you better start.
  4. G4 incorporates a principles-based approach. This covers content and data quality principles.
  5. G4 is both BIGGER and smaller than its predecessor. The number of Profile-type disclosures goes from 42 to 58; Performance Indicators increase from 84 to 91; and Aspects from 37 to 46. BUT you only have to report on what’s material to your organization, which means there could be less to report than under G3.1.
  6. Application Levels (A, B and C) have been eliminated. In their place, an organization can report “in accordance with GRI” to either the Core or Comprehensive Levels.
  7. The Core option contains the essential elements of a sustainability report – 34 of the 58 General Disclosures and one Specific Disclosure for each Material Aspect identified.
  8. The Comprehensive option requires additional disclosure on strategy and analysis, governance, supply chain and performance metrics – all 58 General Disclosures and ALL Specific Disclosures for each Material Aspect reported.
  9. The new disclosures on supply chain could pose a resource and data challenge for all companies but particularly for large, multinational companies with a complex supply chain.
  10. You can declare your report “in accordance with GRI” at the Core Level, but go beyond that to report on as many General Disclosures and Specific Disclosures as you see fit.
  11. GRI will not be checking Core or Comprehensive reports for compliance.
  12. G4 is offering a ‘Materiality Matters’ check, instead of the Application Level (A/B/C) check from G3.1. The ‘Materiality Matters’ check verifies that the 10 standard disclosures for Identified Material Aspects and Boundaries (G4-17 through G4-23) and Stakeholder Engagement (G4-24 through G4-27) are correctly located in the Content Index and the final report.
  13. G4 has a number of new disclosures on compensation. The good news is that some can be satisfied with information from your Proxy report.
  14. There are TWO potential “poison pills” in the new Governance Disclosures that could make reporting at the Comprehensive level problematic for even the biggest companies. You have to report compensation ratios for highest-paid individual in EACH country of significant operations.
  15. You must have a Disclosure on Management Approach (DMA) for each of the Material Aspects you’re reporting on (in theory that could be up to 46 for a large global enterprise), but if you are managing a number of Aspects similarly, you can combine the DMAs in your report (as long as you make clear which ones you have combined) so you don’t end up reporting separately on 40+ DMAs.
  16. If available for an organization’s sector, Sector Supplement Indicators (now called Sector Disclosures) will be required for both Core and Comprehensive levels – if they are material. If not, no need to report on sector disclosures.
  17. G4 Disclosures can be referenced to other reports from your company: annual reports, proxy statements, voluntary statements, a CDP response, etc. G4 wants specifics – no general references – with the section, table or pages that address the disclosure.
  18. The Content Index now asks for the location of each Standard Disclosure (page reference or link to other reports), and whether it has been externally assured. The G3.1 Content Index sections for the “Level of Reporting” (Fully/Partially/Not) or the “Type of data” (qualitative/quantitative) did not make the move to G4.
  19. If you have any disclosures assured by a third party, you have to indicate those that have NOT been assured as well.
  20. Information can be excluded if reliable data is unavailable or if there are specific legal prohibitions or confidentiality issues at play.

Not yet transitioned to reporting with GRI 4.0? If you are looking to start, learn how iCompli Sustainability can help you begin identifying gaps and opportunities within your organization.

Download the full Top 20 list here.

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