Maintaining an open and constructive dialogue with stakeholders is essential for business. It's how we understand community expectations, identify issues and discover opportunities to improve.
Why is this important?
Australia is changing – fast. This brings about challenges, and also presents opportunities for businesses like NAB to drive change for good. Creating a positive social impact is a critical part of executing our strategy, backing our communities to succeed, and achieving our new vision to become Australia’s leading bank, trusted by customers for exceptional service. This means we assess and balance risks and opportunities to drive long-term value to our customers, employees, shareholders and the communities in which we operate.
What do we do?
We’re focused on taking action on the issues that matter, and those we can have the greatest impact on. We’re sticking to what we’re good at – aligning our Social Impact Strategy to how we go about our core business. This strategy was launched in 2019. It sets four goals that we're tackling to drive real and positive change. We’re working with our people, customers and communities to help move Australia forward:
Helping people reduce financial stress and feel more in control of their money.
Creating more sustainable, accessible and inclusive communities across Australia.
Banking on nature
Driving investment in natural assets to improve the wellbeing of our communities.
Working with communities to ensure they are more resilient to climate change, and supporting a low carbon economy.
How we do it?
We apply a range of tools and approaches including philanthropy, corporate responsibility and, increasingly, shared value – leveraging our core assets and expertise as a bank to address social and environmental challenges at scale.
Our values guide the way we behave and the decisions we make. We set ourselves apart by acting responsibly, inclusively and driving social innovation.
We embed Social Impact management and reporting into governance structures and internal communications to ensure that it is understood by all our people.
Oversight of Social Impact activites rests with the NAB Board, who are provided with updates at least bi-annually on our positive societal impact as well as environmental, social and governance risks, and other related matters.
We actively engage with a wide range of external stakeholders to get their input and feedback to help inform our decisions. We conduct an annual materiality assessment to identify and prioritise the environmental, social and governance (ESG) themes that matter most to our stakeholders and to establish where we can drive the greatest impact. This assessment process is detailed in our 2018 Sustainability Report, which is available on our website.
Supporting global cooperation on the Sustainable Development Goals
We’re committed to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out by the United Nations General Assembly as part of its 2030 Agenda. As a large bank, the finance we provide spreads across almost all activities – which means we have an impact on each of the SDGs, whether directly or indirectly. These impacts are both positive and negative.
We use the SDG framework in two key ways to:
- Innovate and create products and services that meet our customers’ needs. (See SDG bond case study).
- Guide our strategy to prioritise the headline Goals where we can play a transformative role.
The four goals in our Social Impact Strategy are paired with relevant SDGs where we can make a difference to the societal challenge. This means focusing our resources on where we can have the biggest impact and linking our Social Impact Strategy to NAB’s broader ambition and responsibilities.
Our priority goals are
- #7 Affordable and clean energy
- #8 Decent work and economic growth
- #9 Industry, innovation and infrastructure
- #11 Sustainable cities and communities
- #15 Life on land.
These headline Goals are areas where NAB has already made bold commitments to invest in the systems and infrastructure to achieve transformative impact. All the Goals are important and we impact them all to varying degrees, but these four priorities are ones where we think we can play a transformative role based on our strategy, core business capabilities and partnerships. The SDGs are a collective impact framework and partnerships are at the heart of solving these global challenges. We will regularly review these priorities as our operating context changes.
1. A document outlining our approach to measuring our progress against our $55bn is available on our website Prepared in accordance with NAB’s methodology (based upon the 1993 ANZSIC standard). Excludes exposure to counterparties predominantly involved in transmission and distribution. Vertically integrated retailers have been included and categorised as renewable where a large majority of their generation activities are sourced from renewable energy.