Our sector is a mature one but like many others it needs to evolve to meet the expectations of its customers, the market and regulators, as far as Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues are concerned. ESG aspects like employee diversity (ethnicity, gender, disability, and LGBTQ+), mental wellbeing, climate action and effective governance are coming to the forefront of our stakeholders’ decision making. It is believed that next generation of insurance claims will come from ESG issues linked to the impact of climate change on communities and D&O claims linking fiduciary duties to climate action and human rights. For these reasons it is important for the insurance value chain consisting of multiple players (insurers, brokers, associations, etc) to prepare the industry for this transition which is why we have worked with Weightmans to create this guide.
We are committed to providing support to our members to integrate ESG into their businesses whatever stage of implementation you may be at. If you are already a long way into your journey you may use the content for continuous improvement while if you are now beginning to embrace ESG, the guide will help your planning and implementing of your ESG objectives.
This is a living dynamic guide which will be added to and amended as priories shift. You may also want to keep a copy of our separate mini guide handy to check where you are on your journey.
A message from Weightmans, the authors
We hope that this answers why ESG or sustainability could matter to your firm and how it enables you to add value to the markets and communities in which you operate.
We firmly believe that the days of firms only existing to maximise profits for their shareholders have gone. Instead, we are seeing firms developing a sense of purpose and a vision to achieve longer term sustainability in their business models.
Effective ESG integration starts by getting the governance right; this guide provides the tools to lay a solid foundation of ESG governance before exploring specific ESG Stepping Stones.
The Guide adopts an approach of Plan-Do-Check-Act for integrating ESG into ‘business-as-usual’. To help you to develop your ESG plan, step by step guidance is provided right from stakeholder identification to the completion of an ESG materiality assessment so as to help prioritise the ESG aspects most relevant to you.
There are insights into assigning roles and responsibilities and we look at training in sustainability/ESG and mentoring. We have also detailed how to set an assurance and review process which can reassure you about progress in your ESG integration. A checklist is provided to help with internal reviews and developing an action plan for improving areas where progress is required.
Finally, the guide provides specific information on eleven ESG areas which are relevant to insurance brokers. These include: low-carbon or green offices; carbon management including carbon offsets; diversity, equality and inclusion; mental health and wellbeing; engaging with local communities; modern slavery and human rights; anti-bribery and corruption; data privacy; investment strategy; responsible procurement and partnership with clients on green repairs.
. Guidance on these eleven areas is at very high-level, so we recommend you also look at the additional resources provided in each Stepping Stone chapter.
Abhay Srivastava and Nick Barker Weightmans (co-authors)
Disclaimer: The information in this guide is of a general nature, for guidance only and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) do not guarantee or verify the accuracy or completeness of the content and cannot accept any responsibility for any loss occasioned to any person or entity as a result of action or refraining from action as a result of any item herein.