Our sustainability reporting

LUMINOUS WORLD: contemporary art from the Wesfarmers Collection on display at the National Art School, Sydney, in February 2016

This is our 19th annual sustainability report

Our previous reports can be viewed here.

Our online report covers our performance for the period 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2016 except where indicated otherwise. This is the third time we have published our sustainability report entirely online. While this online report covers all aspects of our business for the financial year ended 30 June 2016, an edited extract of our sustainability report is available here. An overview of how we performed against our 10 community and environmental impact principles is available for download here. Click here to download Our Data in Excel format.

Assured sustainability performance information for the 2016 financial year is also included in the annual report and the shareholder review.

We aim to operate our businesses in accordance with our 10 community and environmental impact principles. These principles relate to five areas: people; sourcing; community; environment; and governance. Each year, we review which issues are important to our stakeholders through our materiality process, and we strive to ensure that we are addressing these and telling our story in this report.

Sustainability issues at Wesfarmers are managed at a divisional level and overseen by the Wesfarmers Board through regular reporting. Internal targets are set by divisions in relation to some sustainability issues and our annual risk process identifies and addresses sustainability risks. Our priority issues continue to be ethical sourcing and climate change resilience.

All references to 'Indigenous' people are intended to include Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people.

Boundaries and scope

This sustainability report is a summary of the sustainability operations and activities of Wesfarmers Limited (ABN 28 008 984 049) and its subsidiary companies as at 30 June 2016.

A full list of entities included in Wesfarmers’ consolidated financial statements can be found here.

The report generally covers all our operations. If particular divisions are excluded or disclosure extends to our supply chain, this is indicated specifically. In February 2016 we announced the acquisition of Homebase in the United Kingdom, from Home Retail Group plc. Homebase sits within the Home Improvement division. We have not reported data (except for some data about our people located in Our Data) for Homebase in this year's report, but it will be included in next year's sustainability report once processes and procedures have been fully implemented.

How we define our material issues

The content of this report has been guided by our materiality process. Our material issues reflect Wesfarmers’ significant social and environmental impacts that influence the assessments and decisions of stakeholders. In order to determine the material issues which guide our report, we conducted a materiality assessment which involved consulting internal and external stakeholders to prioritise these topics and capture emerging issues.

Our material issues this year include:

Our people

  •  We maintain a relentless focus on providing safe workplaces.

  • We provide opportunities for our people to enhance their job performance and develop their careers. 

  • We strive to create an inclusive work environment, with particular attention to gender diversity and the inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Sourcing

  •  We commit to strong and respectful relationships with our suppliers.

  • We strive to source products in a responsible manner while working with suppliers to improve their social and environmental practices.

Community

  • We make a positive contribution to the communities in which we operate.

  • We are committed to providing consumers with safe products.

Environment

Governance

External standards and indices

This report has been prepared in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative's (GRI) 'Core' option. In doing so, we have described the impact of Wesfarmers’ operations against the guideline’s core elements of governance, economic, environmental and social performance. Our approach is aligned to GRI’s principles for informing report content: materiality; completeness; sustainability context; and stakeholder inclusiveness. To check where we have reported material GRI aspects, see our GRI Content Index. The relevant GRI aspects are noted at the end of each page throughout the report.

This report addresses the 10 accepted principles of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and reinforces our commitment to its principles.

Wesfarmers supports the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 17 SDGs present a broad sustainability agenda focused on the need to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice and respond to climate change by 2030. While they primarily target governments, the SDGs are designed to rally a wide range of organisations, and shape priorities and aspirations for sustainable development efforts around a common framework. The SDGs recognise the key role that business can and must play in achieving them. As part of our materiality study we have identified eight initial SDGs that reflect our community and environmental focus areas. We have indicated at the end of each page throughout this report where we are working towards an SDG.

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Assurance and basis of preparation

Ernst & Young (EY) independently assures the content of this report, at the request of the Wesfarmers Audit and Risk Committee, a sub-committee of the Wesfarmers Board.

GRI Reference: G4-15, G4-17, G4-18, G4-19, G4-20, G4-23, G4-28, G4-29, G4-30, G4-32, G4-33