AFR Special Report: Rebuilding Corporate Trust

AFR Special Report: Rebuilding Corporate Trust

Having the trust of stakeholders and the community has never been more important in corporate Australia. In an environment of constant scrutiny, the impact that a company – its products and services, culture or operations – has on people and the environment has become everyone’s business. An organisation’s social licence to operate is not a given and can quickly be challenged, in turn impacting its future and the broader market. KPMG and the Australian Financial Review (AFR), co-hosted a roundtable exploring the issue of corporate trust.


Key insights

The AFR Special Report through a series of articles delves into this issue.

Polarised community despite greater transparency – The recently released Edelman Trust Barometer for 2018 indicates a polarised global community riven with distrust.

Taking a stand can boost CEOs in eyes of public – The Australian public has become more trusting of chief executives because they have been taking a public stance on societal issues.

Social media has given communities a voice – Before social media was around, community expectations were always changing, but not at the pace they are now.

Customer the key but other relationships also vital – The customer experience – and perspective – remains the early warning system to show if things that are not working.

Telling the whole story the trend for business – Australian companies have enthusiastically adopted the global trend toward integrated reporting, a practice that puts together information on all of a company's value drivers.

It may be legal but that does not make it right – John Stanhope is convinced that if business wants to win back the trust in the community, then it must start at the top, with directors and executives.

Restoring the faith in business – Part of the current climate of "business bashing" can be attributed to a general decline in trust for institutions ranging from business to government.

Roundtable participants

  • James Thomson, AFR, moderator
  • Richard Boele, National Leader, Human Rights & Social Impact, KPMG
  • Louise Davidson, Chief Executive Officer, Australian Council of Superannuation Investors
  • Eileen Hoggett, National Leader, External Audit, KPMG
  • Karen Penrose, Director BOQ
  • Roger Simnett, AO – Chair and CEO Australian Auditing & Assurance Standards Board
  • John Stanhope, Chairman of Australia Post
  • Michael Ullmer, Director Lend lease and Woolworths
  • Andrew Yates, National Managing Partner, Audit, Assurance & Risk Consulting, KPMG


Read the AFR Special Report on rebuilding corporate trust.

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