According to the survey:
- Only 7% of companies provided performance data on customer focus or satisfaction, despite audit committees identifying this as a key issue
- 85% of reports did not identify brand and reputation as a key risk
- 21% of companies did not provide any operating measures of performance
As the KPMG survey reveals, annual reports should not only cover historical data, but also provide management's vision for the future. This is intended to help investors get a better view of where the company is moving and what to expect in the future.
KPMG makes four suggestions to help improve business reporting:
- Align performance measures with the drivers of shareholder value. Only a few companies report on achieving the key criteria for creating business value.
- Recognise that the financials are only the start of the story. Operational performance measures are better than historical financial data in indicating a company's development outlook.
- Join up reporting content – don't leave unanswered questions. Many reports do not address business development matters; in particular, management approaches used by the company.
- Refocus reporting culture. Companies should confirm that they apply a business-focused approach to preparing statements, and ascertain which information their stakeholders expect them to provide.
Commenting on the survey, Vitaly Chaikin, Partner, Head of Risk Consulting and Management Consulting, KPMG in Kazakhstan and Central Asia, said: “The study covers those matters, which are really important in preparation of the corporate reporting and which are also relevant to the reports prepared in Kazakhstan. During the last few years, Kazakhstani companies have been paying more and more attention to international best practice, and corporate reporting is becoming more understandable and well structured. Introduction of the practice of preparing "integrated reporting" greatly simplifies the understanding for investors and stakeholders in terms of the conduct of business and near-term prospects. However, still not all leading companies recognise the need to include in their annual reports a description of the business model, management commentary and a more profound description of the risks facing the company and this considerably obscures the understanding of the near-term and long-term prospects in the company’s development. From our side, while preparing corporate reporting, we help clients to identify that information, which is of the greatest interest for investors, and to structure and set forth logically both the financial and non-financial data. This approach allows identifying key blocks of published historical results and helps end users of the reporting to forecast future trends in the company’s development, which may in turn help raise the company’s investment rating.”