Materiality Analysis

We check our sustainability activities in regular dialog with our stakeholders and integrate current societal developments in our considerations. In this, we use materiality analysis as a strategic instrument to help us identify the sustainability topics that are especially relevant in the opinion of our stakeholders and us at Beiersdorf.

Continuous Development of our Sustainability Management

As part of the development of our “We care.” Sustainability strategy, we carried out a materiality analysis for the first time in 2011. We investigated exactly where in the value chain our activities and products have an impact on society and the environment and where they influence our core business. In this process we identified the topics and issues that reflect global challenges contribute to the long-term success of our company and that are important to our stakeholders. We then integrated the insights from this analysis in the definition of the strategic framework. Furthermore, we developed key indicators by which to measure ourselves and our performance.
In 2014, we aligned our reporting processes with the GRI G4 Standard and reviewed the orientation of our activities by means of a second materiality analysis. Through a comprehensive online survey of internal and external stakeholders – from different countries and specialist fields – combined with in-depth interviews with sustainability experts and internal workshops, in which we discussed the results intensively, we identified the global environmental and societal challenges that our company and our stakeholders see as especially important.

Updating our Materiality Matrix, Responding to Chancing Influences and Demands

As the various influences on our business activity and our stakeholders’ demands change continually, we updated our materiality matrix with regard to our influence on business, the environment, and society in 2017. We began by gathering the viewpoints of colleagues from all company areas on the material topics and assessed these topics’ relevance.
We then carried out an online survey of colleagues around the world as well as external stakeholders, and checked the results of the workshops. All the results were integrated in the creation of our updated materiality matrix. 
Our 2017 materiality matrix shows the 17 topics that we and our stakeholders see as material.

We carry out materiality analyses at regular intervals to ensure they are up-to-date and to reassess our results. The materiality matrices of the past years (2011, 2014 and 2017) can be found in the download area under the corresponding year.
In 2019 we also revised our sustainability agenda. Within this framework, the topics “Regenerative Water Environments” and “Consumer Health and Wellbeing” were defined as new focus areas of our sustainability agenda. An update and adaptation of our materiality matrix is planned for this year. Further information on the new agenda can be found here.