We operate in a business environment that is changing rapidly – we are seeing immense social and economic change, due in part to the Covid-19 pandemic.
A growing shortage of skills – particularly in high-tech areas like digital and data analytics
The emergence of ‘new ways of working’ – with greater flexibility and less time spent in the office
Increased use of digital technologies – which, in turn, has meant more emphasis on data & IT security
Greater awareness of social issues during the pandemic, especially inequality and diversity – alongside the urgent need to tackle climate change
Changes to industry regulations, with further reform in the Netherlands and the phasing-in of ISQM 1, a new international standard on audit quality
There is also a new reality for KPMG clients. Covid-19 led to severe disruption in many sectors. Globally, among the hardest hit were aviation & travel, hospitality, leisure & entertainment and retail. Meanwhile, the EU has continued to extend its rules on sustainability reporting – its new Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive will come into operation in 2023.
- 1 International Standard on Quality Management 1. ISQM 1 will replace the current ISQC 1 standard. ISQM 1 is due to come into force in December 2022.
We’ve called our strategy Trust & Growth: trust, because trust is the foundation of our business, and growth because we want to continue expanding both our assurance and advisory businesses. This year – given the changes we’re seeing in our industry – our strategy operated under the theme: Winning in the new reality.
Trust & Growth was launched in 2018 – we have just completed the first three-year phase. The second phase, now beginning, will take us through to 2024.
Public trust: high standards in everything we do
People: the best development experience
Clients: a unique service experience
Digital & innovation: 100% digitally-enabled solutions
Financial strength: long-term above-average growth
We set out annual priorities in each area – these five areas provide the basis for both business planning and personal goal-setting throughout the firm.
Every year, we make an assessment of our operating environment. With this assessment, we can identify our ‘material topics’ – in other words, those areas where we believe we can create the most value for stakeholders and society. These topics are then mapped to our five focus areas to ensure our strategy remains relevant. The assessment also provides the basis for continued engagement with our clients, employees, business partners, regulators and other stakeholders. Our latest assessment identified twelve material topics:
Strategic focus area
- 1 The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, introduced in 2018.