Capacity building for integrated reporting is now available in a number of countries in the Middle East. Accredited by the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC), this training will be provided by Smart Media The Annual Report Company in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, and Qatar. Its objective is to develop the capacity, skills, and flexibility for organisations to put integrated thinking and integrated reporting into practice. Integrated reporting is an evolution of corporate reporting that looks beyond financial statements and shareholders alone, while focusing on how an organisation creates value for itself and all its stakeholders in the short, medium and long term.
“The role of a firm’s annual report is critical in communicating its true value beyond mere financial terms,” said Dr Vijith Kannangara, Chairman of Smart Media. “The recent GCC BDI Chairman Summit held in collaboration with Tadawul, for example, explored the value of ‘Corporate governance – beyond shareholder value.’ Panellists, including the IIRC’s Interim CEO Charles Tilley, noted how today’s investors no longer consider traditional methods of assessing organisational performance adequate. This has prompted some organisations, such as Aramex PJSC, The Saudi Investment Bank, and Al Rajhi Bank, to produce integrated annual reports,” he added.
“As provided in the IIRC’s Integrated Reporting Framework, we take a principles-based approach in describing the value creation process,” said Raja Senanayake, Chief Officer of the Smart Academy – the training and capacity building arm of Smart Media. “Our IIRC-certified training programmes provide the necessary tools and skills to build competency at two levels. The Introductory programme, in addition to beginners, also targets those responsible for governance, such as the Board, who can drive integrated thinking and reap its benefits for the organisation. At Practitioner level we build competence in those directly involved in the preparation and assessment of annual reports. Our approach includes on-the-job training as we believe that ‘learning-by-doing’ creates strong ownership which drives change from within,” Mr Senanayake elaborated.
Targeting the information requirements of diverse stakeholder groups, while not creating clutter, has long been a challenge. “One solution is the smart choice of multiple mediums, in addition to print and PDF, such as end-to-end interactive online HTML and video executive summary as these also extend the annual report’s reach through social media,” Mr Senanayake added.
Further information about Smart Media The Annual Report Company can be found at, http://www.smartannualreport.com/
For more information on the IIRC and the role of Foundation Partners, https://integratedreporting.org/
© Press Release 2020