Institutional Good Practice Reporting Standard

irs_cover_0819In order to encourage greater levels of transparency and openness within the construction industry the Edge is encouraging the professional institutions and others to publish anonymised, consistent and comparable information on their organisations and membership in their annual reports.

The Professional Institutions serving the construction and property industries are essential contributors to the future of the wider environment - both built and natural, to society and to the economy. All professional bodies have governing charters and/or charitable objectives that commit them to the public interest in one form or another. To fulfil this responsibility institutions need to ensure that they are open, inclusive and transparent and demonstrate that they both reflect the society they serve and are responsive to its concerns.

Openness and transparency are good practice for a wide range of organisations and especially those that seek to influence public opinion. This is even more necessary for membership bodies that expect to direct the conduct of their members. In recent years the move to greater openness and reporting has been reinforced by legislation including the Equality Act 2010 and Companies (Directors’ Report) and Limited Liability Partnerships (Energy and Carbon Report) Regulations 2018 as well as government encouragement for all companies to report their data. Professional institutions should be in the forefront of the move to greater transparency.

At present UK institutions are required to publish their financial data in accordance with United Kingdom Generally Accepted Accounting Practice, the Companies Act 2006, the Charities Act 2011 and other legislation and guidance. They do so in their annual reports and accounts presented to an AGM. It would appear appropriate that they present other data in a similar place and fashion.
Institutions collect data for a range of necessary management purposes, but care should be taken to only collect, store, analyse and use data with the explicit understanding of relevant groups, whether members, staff or others, as to how it will be kept secure, shared and reported.
Data reporting should be
• Anonymised – to ensure personal privacy and confidentiality
• Permanent – allowing a picture to be tracked and built up over time
• Accessible – readily available to members, the public and regulators
• Consistent & comparable – using the same methodology and metrics each year
• Transparent – providing clear and unvarnished information

The Royal Academy of Engineering has published useful guidelines on diversity monitoring , including legal compliance, that can be applied more widely and it is anticipated that they will be followed.

The Edge is promoting an Institutional Good Practice Reporting Standard that it anticipates will be taken up by the professional institutions and other membership bodies across the design, construction and property industries; in the UK and internationally. Professional organisations will be requested to endorse and commit to working to an agreed version of the Standard and publish in each year’s annual report relevant and accurate information in line with the Standard.

- Institutional Good Practice Reporting Standard-2019
- the Edge 2019 Institutional Reporting Standard review

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