Stakeholder engagement

We engage with our stakeholders to listen, and to understand their insights into the issues that matter most to our communities and our business.

Partnering with people, businesses and organisations that share our interest in a sustainable future and have a stake in our business is essential for our success. Engaging with our stakeholders strengthens our relationships and helps us make better business decisions to deliver on our commitments. 

  • We work with our customers, suppliers and other business partners across the value chain every day, as well as with government representatives, civil organisations, academia, intergovernmental organisations, local communities representatives and our consumers
  • Our business leaders engage with a variety of international organisations and business associations such as the UN Global Compact and UNESDA 
  • As organisational stakeholders of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) we can share experiences and learn from people from other companies and industries
  • We’re active members of the Corporate Leadership Group on Integrated Reporting, shaping the future of sustainability reporting standards and stakeholder engagement
  • Our leaders are active members of local business alliances such as business leaders’ forums, local UNGC networks, business councils for sustainable development and other industry associations, participating at conferences, working with civil organisations and influencing public policy related to key sustainability issues such as health and wellbeing, packaging, water and climate, and matters concerning social sustainability such as labour relations and talent attraction and retention
  • We work with local communities on sustainable solutions that support local and global sustainable development goals
  • Through our partnership with The Coca‑Cola Company we have access to consumer insights globally and locally, and we also make sure our partnerships and actions related to sustainable development are in synergy with theirs
Stakeholder group How we engage
Shareholders and analysts Annual General Meetings, quarterly roadshows and results briefings, webcasts, ongoing dialogue with analysts and investors
Employees Sustainable engagement and values index surveys, quarterly CEO management calls, Annual Leadership Conference, employee communications channels such as intranet and internal social media, individual development plans, internal communications campaigns, community and active lifestyle projects, volunteerism, Employee Works Council, whistleblower hotline
Customers Regular visits, dedicated account teams, joint business planning, joint value creation initiatives, customer care centres, customer satisfaction surveys
Consumers Consumer hotlines, local websites, plant tours, research, surveys, focus groups
Suppliers Joint value creation initiatives, annual supplier conference, sustainable sourcing, Supplier Guiding Principles, packaging associations, whistleblower hotline
Governments and regulatory authorities Recycling and recovery initiatives, EU Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health, foreign investment advisory councils, chambers of commerce
Non-governmental and intergovernmental organisations (NGOs and iGOs) Dialogue, policy work, partnerships on common issues, memberships of business and industry associations
Communities Plant visits, community meetings, partnerships on common issues, sponsorship activities, lectures at universities
The Coca‑Cola Company Day-to-day interaction as business partners, joint projects, joint business planning, functional groups on strategic issues, ‘Top-to-Top’ senior management

Every year, we ask over 360 stakeholders from the above groups to provide online feedback via our material issues survey. These surveys give our stakeholders the opportunity to prioritise our material issues based on their own interests and the relevance of these to our business.

We also ask what they think by providing open-ended questions, so they can share with us anything we might have missed or that needs more attention.

Annual stakeholder forum

Every year we bring together a group of diverse stakeholders to review our sustainability performance and to better understand their expectations for the future.

We publish a summary of the findings and make sure we learn from and put into practice the feedback we receive.

As a result of this feedback, we’re setting longer-term performance targets and increasing the focus on consumer health and sustainability in our supply chain. We’ve also made significant changes to our reporting to address stakeholder information needs: seeking a higher level of external assurance, integrating our sustainability and financial reports and consolidating issues on our materiality list to better reflect global trends.

In November 2017, leading sustainability specialist, academics, NGOs and EU bodies gathered recently for the Annual Stakeholder Forum in Vienna, Austria to collate ideas to help tackle global health and nutrition and employee engagement and wellbeing.

Participants included delegates from the academic community, European and global business and NGO partners, the world’s leading CSR organisations, sustainability assessment/rating specialists, sustainability media platforms, EU organisations, and other respected professionals.

Representing CCHBC was Mr Anastasios I. Leventis, Chairman of the Social Responsibility Committee of the Board of Directors, and Ms Charlotte J. Boyle, member of the Nomination and Remuneration Committees of the Board of Directors. There were also further representatives from CCHBC and The Coca‑Cola Company present.

The format involved initial speeches, followed by four table discussions, two on each topic, with all participants moving from table to table – the “World Café” method. This was followed by a plenary session and discussion of future possibilities.

Health & Nutrition

Professor Jürgen König, Director of the Department Nutritional Sciences from the University of Vienna, gave the keynote speech on this topic, highlighting the growth of worldwide obesity and how the World Health Organisation (WHO) seeks to combat it.  He additionally identified the importance of access to a healthy lifestyle for encouraging individual responsibility.

The table discussions focused on:

  • Improving the way we address consumer health concerns and requirements.
  • The effectiveness of regulation such as sugar taxes in addressing these needs.

The subsequent plenary discussion raised important insights and questions, including:

  • The importance of evidence-based regulation – governments sometimes change their reform initiatives too quickly.
  • The pioneering role of the Seven Countries Study in how to lower cardiovascular disease and improve overall health.
  • The need to involve partners in any initiative and the responsibility of all players, as well as big brands themselves, in making a difference to health outcomes.

Employee Engagement & Wellbeing

The keynote speaker for our other topic was Patrick Brione, Head of Policy and Research at the Involvement and Participation Association. He focused on what he saw as the four enablers of engagement:

  • Strategic narrative – provided by strong leadership to show where we’re coming from and where we’re going.
  • Engaging line managers – bringing the best out of everyone they work with.
  • Employee voices – including positive relations with trade unions and making sure everyone is heard.
  • Organisational integrity – with core values reflected in everyday actions.

The table discussions focused on:

  • Building on current initiatives to drive further engagement and wellbeing for maximum impact.
  • Better understanding of current trends in employee engagement and wellbeing.

The plenary discussion developed this in various ways, including:

  • Optimising the line managers’ crucial role in building engagement via 360-degree evaluation, plus better education and training for managers as role models.
  • What millennials expect from their jobs and how to best meet their desires.
  • The disadvantages of relying on technology-based communication and the need for more face-to-face interaction.

Feedback – and future plans

 Afterwards, we asked attendees what they thought of the Forum. Overall satisfaction levels were even higher than in previous years, with particular praise for the overall expertise, the openness of the World Café format and the range of views discussed. They also valued the clear plans of action and the leading role that the Group is taking.

Our original Issue Briefs detailed what we have already been doing. In the case of Health & Nutrition, that includes various “Inside the Bottle” and “Outside the Bottle” approaches, while for Employee Engagement & Wellbeing, there’s already a lot going on across all of our markets.

Read the story of the 2016 stakeholder forum.