The whitepaper outlines ten environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) key performance indicators (KPIs) for mobile operators

According to the GSMA, there are currently around 600 different ESG reporting standards currently in use throughout the mobile industry. This fragmentation not only makes measuring progress on an industrial scale very difficult, but also places a heavy burden on the operators, who often commit significant time and effort in the data collection and reporting progress to produce a report of limited value. 

Now, the GSMA has announced the release of a new whitepaper, aiming to designate ten KPIs covering key ESG topics to improve the mobile industry’s reporting consistency and impact. 

The KPIs are split into four categories, with the GSMA highlighting why these distinctions have been made: 

• Environment – Reporting against environment KPIs will help inform internal decision making, including how to set decarbonisation strategies or how to allocate capital to improve energy efficiency. The KPIs in this category are Emissions, Energy, and Waste reduction.

Digital Inclusion – Reporting progress against the core KPIs will help operators demonstrate the effort being made to reach underserved and vulnerable segments of the population. The KPIs in this category are Network coverage, Affordability, and Digital skills.

• Digital Integrity – The most compelling use case for KPIs related to data integrity will be building trust and brand recognition with clients and customers. The KPIs in this category are Data protection, Digital rights, and Online safety.

• Supply Chain – Supply chain KPIs have two particularly compelling use cases. First, they will help inform internal decision making and secondly, the disclosures will also help underpin the ESG narrative. This sole KPI in this category is called Sustainable supply chain.

More details on how each of these metrics are defined can be found in the whitepaper itself.

It is the GSMA’s hope that these improved, industry-wide metrics will allow for greater transparency surrounding ESG performance and progress.

“By aligning around common metrics, the mobile industry can accelerate both the pace and impact of ESG. Increasingly, ESG performance is a key consideration for investors, customers and employees,” explained John Giusti, GSMA Chief Regulatory Officer. “By developing this harmonised framework, we’re placing the mobile sector at the forefront of meaningful ESG reporting. These metrics will help deliver informed, data-driven decisions around ESG, build trust, and allow the mobile industry to clearly demonstrate its positive impact on society.”

The organisation also notes the increased awareness of investors with regards to ESG performance, with EY research showing that 90% of investors “attach greater importance to companies’ ESG performance when it comes to their investment strategy and decision making than they did before the global pandemic”.

An open consultation period on these metrics will now be held until September 2022, with the GSMA suggesting that they will continue to evolve to meet the industry’s needs in the near future. 


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