Questions enable the exploration of any given social, environmental and ethical issue to the fullest possible extent - or whatever extent question developers agree.
Scorecards seek to categorise all the policies and practices described by businesses in their answers, as well as those observed in the wider world.
Questions and scorecards are developed and improved as part of an on-going, open, collaborative, and defined process.
1. Issue identified
R100 constantly monitors its question set to ensure it covers all social, environmental and ethical issues that affect business and wider society. It also works to ensure all questions are material and relevant to businesses of all sizes and sectors.
2. First draft of QUESTION & SCORECARD
If a new question and scorecard are being developed from scratch – to broach an issue not examined by previous or current questions – then the policy team at R100 will initiate desk process. In the course of drafting the question itself, its rationale and glossary, the team will also identify how businesses are currently responding to the issue and assess the standard and maturity of their policies and practices. The challenge the responsibility issue poses and the ways in which businesses are responding to it, once identified, are then translated into answering requirements, which form the heart of the question, and to the statements and examples listed in the scorecard. A new question and scorecard is typically assessed by a range of experts in the field before being sent to businesses to answer.
3. First answers to QUESTION from businesses
Businesses draft their answers. These are reviewed by R100 in the first instance. The R100 team then assists businesses in working towards complete, accurate and verifiable answers. Businesses are encouraged to submit draft answers a week or two prior to a roundtable meeting to examine the topic so that they can improve and develop their draft answers before sharing them with a wider group.
4. Roundtable meeting with business and non-business experts
At the roundtable meeting, up to 32 business and non-business experts come together for three hours to debate and revise the question and scorecard. The businesses’ answers are reviewed and the NGOs, unions and/or academics present ask respondents further questions. Typically, it is a head of policy from a business that attends. The non-business experts may adjust their questioning in light of business disclosures and explanations. Both sides are able to learn from one another and gain valuable insight and understanding. The meetings offer unique opportunities for participants to consider the various policies and practices businesses adopt in response to the responsibility issue under examination and consider and debate POOR, OKAY, GOOD or EXCELLENT practice standards.
5. Next versions of QUESTION & SCORECARD created
R100 records all proposed changes and improvements to the question and the scorecard which are mooted at the roundtable meeting, or which occur to attendees subsequently on further reflection. Changes and improvements that are uncontroversial or straightforward are made without delay. Those that are not are debated further, as required, until a decision can be made as to what changes to make, if any. A second version of the question and scorecard can then be created and published.
6. More detailed business answers to a better QUESTION
Better questions and scorecards emerge from this process. Better questions lead to better answers from businesses. As the questions become increasingly informed, challenging and useful to respond to, more businesses attempt answers.
7. Better informed SCORECARD for business to measure up against
In turn, a better and more complete picture of what things businesses do in response to the responsibility issue under examination emerge. As a result, the scorecards become better informed and increasingly complete and reliable for businesses to assess against.