The case for CSR/ Sustainability Reporting Done Responsibly


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Home / case studies / Case study: How Randgold respects and promotes human rights

Case study: How Randgold respects and promotes human rights

Randgold is an Africa-focused gold mining and exploration business established in 1995, with the aim of delivering long term value for all its stakeholders. In the remote areas of Africa where Randgold works, there is often a need to reinforce knowledge of and respect for human rights. Accordingly, Randgold takes extra care to make sure human rights are protected throughout its value chain.  Tweet This!

This case study is based on the 2017 Sustainability Report by Randgold published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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Randgold has a comprehensive policy that aims to set out a best practice approach towards human rights management at its sites and within Randgold’s supply chain. It covers, but is not limited to global best practice human rights requirements, such as zero tolerance for any exploitative, forced or compulsory labour, including child labour. In order to respect and promote human rights Randgold took action to:

  • implement a Human Rights Policy
  • promote human rights across its supply chain

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2017 Sustainability Report Randgold identified a range of material issues, such as cyanide management, water pollution, closure planning, local and national employment, talent attraction and retention. Among these, respecting and promoting human rights stands out as a key material issue for Randgold.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards              

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups Randgold engages with:

Stakeholder Group                Method of engagement



·      Briefings on sustainability included in investor roadshows and other forums

·      Access to meetings and calls, including with CEO and CFO

·      Formal AGM

·      Site visits

·      Materiality assessment process

·      Responding to sustainability questionnaires including CDP and DJSI

·      Responding to rating agency questionnaires





·      Information sharing and input via unions

·      Performance reviews and appraisals

·      Daily pre-start and toolbox meetings

·      Training programmes

·      Mass employee meetings with the CEO and GMs

·      Daily toolbox talks on health and safety

·      In-Reach programme

·      Materiality assessment process



·      Formal meetings and correspondence

·      Materiality assessment process

·      Site visits and inspections

·      Presentation of annual and sustainability reports

Local communities



·      Formal processes including grievance mechanisms and community development committees

·      Regular meetings between local chiefs, mine community officers, GMs and the CEO

·      Consultations, ESIAs, PPPs and local events

·      Local media and community radio

·      Training programmes

·      Materiality assessment process

·      Participation in local cultural events



·      Specialist partnerships on issues such as HIV/AIDS, water management and education

·      Formal correspondence and meetings

·      Materiality assessment process

·      Local presentations of annual and sustainability reports

Unions ·      Union representative participate in mine board meetings and at operations strategy workshops

·      Monthly and mass employee meetings

·      Formal meetings, correspondence and events

·      Onsite training

·      Unions attend monthly cost review meetings

·      Materiality assessment process

Suppliers and contractors


·      Procurement team account management relationships

·      Tender documents process

·      Supply contracts process

·      Materiality assessment process

·      Meetings with local business forums including Randgold CEO

Media ·      Publications and online information

·      Press releases and market statements

·      Interviews

·      Site visits

·      Regular in country press conferences

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics Randgold surveyed both internal and external stakeholders to identify and rank the sustainability risks they considered to be most important, and to guide the issues Randgold reported on in its sustainability report.

What actions were taken by Randgold to respect and promote human rights?

In its 2017 Sustainability Report Randgold reports that it took the following actions for respecting and promoting human rights:

  • Implementing a Human Rights Policy
  • Randgold’s group-wide Human Rights Policy covers the protection of human rights in employment, community resettlement and engagement of private security forces, while its Code of Conduct, anti-corruption and anti-bribery policies and its Conflict Free Gold Policy also make reference to the protection of human rights. These policies form an important part of induction training and Randgold also provides specialised standalone training programmes for all security personnel, including compulsory training in the UN Voluntary Principles on Business and Human Rights. Additionally, Randgold makes sure that security forces implement its human rights policy by making certain that:
    • Strict due diligence procedures are in place prior to recruitment, including a requirement to be accredited according to relevant UN agencies
    • Contractual requirements include human rights clauses
    • Compulsory training is provided for all security providers in the UN Voluntary Principles on Business and Human Rights
    • A formal disciplinary procedure is in place should any personnel be subject to credible allegations of serious human rights abuse
  • Randgold’s policy is not to arm the security forces at its mines, and it does not provide benefits to any armed groups who have committed or been accused of human rights violations. Instead, Randgold relies on the strong partnerships it builds with its host countries to keep its mines secure. Randgold’s mines are also protected by local police and government forces which sign legally binding contracts to uphold the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in all safety, security and policing matters.
  • Promoting human rights across Randgold’s supply chain
  • Randgold undertakes significant due diligence within its supply chain during the supplier selection and check, to make sure any potential supplier does not have a record of human rights infringements. Respect for human rights is further embedded in Randgold’s value chain through the inclusion of detailed human rights obligations in all supplier contracts. This ensures that all contractors have a legal duty to comply with Randgold’s zero tolerance approach to bribery, forced, bonded and vulnerable labour, corporal punishment and infringements of freedom of association.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standards addressed in this case are:

1) Disclosure 410-1 Security personnel trained in human rights policies or procedures

2) Disclosure 412-2 Employee training on human rights policies or procedures

3) Disclosure 412-3 Significant investment agreements and contracts that include human rights clauses or that underwent human rights screening


Disclosure 410-1 Security personnel trained in human rights policies or procedures corresponds to:

  • Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels
  • Business theme: Security

Disclosure 412-2 Employee training on human rights policies or procedures does not correspond to any SDG.

Disclosure 412-3 Significant investment agreements and contracts that include human rights clauses or that underwent human rights screening does not correspond to any SDG.


80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

Research by well-recognised institutions is clearly proving that responsible companies can look to the future with optimism.

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Most importantly, you will gain the knowledge to use the GRI Standards, project manage your own first-class sustainability report and:

  • Identify your most important impacts on the Environment, Economy and Society
  • Begin taking solid, focused, all-round sustainability action ASAP



1) This case study is based on published information by Randgold, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:


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