The case for CSR/ Sustainability Reporting Done Responsibly


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Home / case studies / Case study: How SCB promotes financial literacy for retail customers and the general public

Case study: How SCB promotes financial literacy for retail customers and the general public

Siam Commercial Bank (SCB) is a leading universal bank offering, through its subsidiaries, end-to-end financial solutions to fulfill the needs of all groups of customers. SCB has been actively involved in promoting financial literacy for retail customers and the general public  Tweet This! by providing fundamental personal finance skills in financial planning, income-expense management, savings, investment, and financial risk management.

This case study is based on the 2019 Sustainability Report by SCB 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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SCB focuses on promoting financial literacy for customers and the general public by providing money management knowledge and skills to help build effective financial plans through its business and social initiatives, collaboration with external organisations, and a variety of communication channels to make financial knowledge widely available. In order to promote financial literacy for retail customers and the general public SCB took action to:

  • develop and improve the SCB website
  • partner with Mahidol University to build financial management capabilities

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2019 Sustainability Report SCB identified a range of material issues, such as corporate governance and risk management, customer experience, data governance and cyber security, responsible lending. Among these, promoting financial literacy for retail customers and the general public stands out as a key material issue for SCB.

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 SCB engages with:

Stakeholder Group                Method of engagement
Customers

 

 

·      Customer relationship-building activity

·      Information sessions on SCB financial products and services

·      Providing financial advice and knowledge to customers through online media, branch network and other electronic channels

·      Customer satisfaction surveys through telephone, questionnaire and electronic channels

·      Complaint and service channels through Customer Centre, Branch network and SCB Easy app

Employees

 

 

·      Meetings and online channels for policy and news announcement

·      Employee meetings, seminars and CSR activities

·      Annual performance evaluation

·      Employment engagement survey

·      Employee development programme

·      Employee recognition programme

·      Employee hotline

Shareholders

 

 

·      Annual general meeting

·      Extraordinary general meeting

·      56-1 Report

·      Annual report (Form 56-2)

·      Press release

·      Quarterly financial report

·      Investor meeting/conference

·      Investor call

·      Equity analyst meeting

·      Global roadshow event

Society and Environment

 

 

·      Projects and initiatives by SCB and the Siam Commercial Bank Foundation

·      Community and social surveys

·      Community engagement activities

Regulators

 

 

 

·      Assign Compliance unit to serve as SCB’s regulatory liaison

·      Attend meetings and hearings on regulatory policies and guidance from relevant authorities

·      Attend forums on regulatory compliance

·      Seek feedback and guidance on regulatory compliance

·      Offer feedback on regulations through public hearings

·      Prepare and provide support for regulatory audit

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics SCB engaged with selected groups of stakeholders through in-depth interviews to obtain suggestions, feedback and information on economic, social and environmental material topics.

What actions were taken by SCB to promote financial literacy for retail customers and the general public?

In its 2019 Sustainability Report SCB reports that it took the following actions for promoting financial literacy for retail customers and the general public:

  • Developing and improving the SCB website
  • SCB’s website has undergone constant development and improvement so as to become the information hub for SCB’s products and services as well as a conduit of financial knowledge for customers and website visitors. Here, SCB publishes articles on a wide variety of topics related to personal finance and business management which are easy to understand and relevant to day-to-day lives, such as tips for paying off mortgage quickly, credit card debt management, investment portfolio design, and marketing in the digital age, as well as creating motivation and success. These articles also weave in content on financial access and appropriate use of products and services to reinforce customers’ and the public’s understanding. Furthermore, SCB also promotes financial literacy by creating content in the form of articles, infographics, videos, or short-movies, and creating engagement in social media which have attracted a lot of interest and many followers.
  • Partnering with Mahidol University to build financial management capabilities
  • SCB has partnered with Mahidol University on the “Smart University” project under the “Digital Convergence University” concept to build financial management capabilities and help universities transition to the digital economy. This project seeks to build financial and investment foundation for university students and staff by enhancing skills, knowledge, and exposure to real experiences. Under this partnership, SCB and Mahidol University have worked together to create and develop the following initiatives:
    • “SCB Investment Lab”: The first virtual investment lab in Thailand that creates learning experiences with digital technology and virtual trading experiment.
    • “E-learning”: Mahidol platforms and apps featuring training from highly-regarded financial experts in various fields who not only educate but also motivate students.
    • “Mahidol Virtual Classroom Powered by SCB”: The first smart university classroom in Thailand featuring interactive teaching and learning among four university campuses, which are Salaya campus, Kanchanaburi campus, Nakhon Sawan campus, and Amnaj Chareon campus, to support borderless education between faculty members and students.
    • “We Mahidol App”: Mahidol’s official app that connects students and faculty members anywhere anytime to facilitate learning and lifestyle on campus with features such as class scheduling, attendance checking, event calendar, campus news and activities. Moreover, “We Mahidol App” also serves as a knowledge and communication hub and offers a payment function that works for both on-campus and off-campus stores to support the government agenda on a cashless society.

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

The GRI Standard addressed in this case is: Disclosure 413-1 Operations with local community engagement, impact assessments, and development programs

Disclosure 413-1 Operations with local community engagement, impact assessments, and development programs 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.



FBRH GRI Standards Certified, IEMA & CIM recognised Sustainability Course | Venue: London LSE

By registering for the next 2-day FBRH GRI Standards Certified, IEMA & CIM recognised course you will be taking the first step in gaining the many benefits of sustainability reporting.

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

 

References:

1) This case study is based on published information by SCB, 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:

http://database.globalreporting.org/

2) https://www.globalreporting.org/standards/gri-standards-download-center/

Note to SCB: With each case study we send out an email requesting a comment on this case study. If you have not received such an email please contact us.