Allstate's Management of Key Sustainability Opportunities and Risks

Company
Stakeholder Engagement & Materiality
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We continually seek stakeholder input to ensure we are focusing on what matters the most.

Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder inclusiveness is a core principle of GRI sustainability reports, and we do our best to identify all of Allstate’s stakeholders and respond to their expectations and interests. We regularly engage the following stakeholder groups: agency owners, financial specialists, customers and consumers, employees, investors, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), opinion leaders, policy makers and suppliers.

We identify stakeholder groups by engaging with senior leaders, consulting our sustainability council, collecting feedback from employees and examining our value chain. We select stakeholders according to their knowledge and understanding of our company as a whole, orientation relative to or within the financial services industry and the extent to which they can impact or be impacted by Allstate. For our 2015 sustainability materiality assessment, we engaged our stakeholders through interviews, surveys and industry research.

In addition to engaging stakeholders for the purpose of our materiality assessment, we have many other ongoing engagement efforts. We engage customers, consumers, investors, agency owners, employees, policy makers and opinion leaders primarily through our annual reputation study. We administer this study in partnership with the Reputation Institute. During the assessment, we collect feedback from 8,000 individuals across these seven stakeholder groups, identify key topics and develop strategies to address gaps we may uncover. While this study constitutes one of our primary modes of stakeholder engagement, many are stakeholder-specific. To learn more about how we engage agencies, employees and suppliers, click on each respective link.

Our Sustainability Materiality Process

Our 2015 sustainability materiality assessment followed the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) guidelines. The process begins with topic identification, followed by a prioritization of the resulting topics and concludes with an internal validation session.

Topic Identification

Because of the dynamic and rapidly evolving nature of our industry, Allstate is committed to refreshing our materiality assessment every few years. Our most recent assessment began with an exploration of potentially relevant topics to Allstate and our stakeholders. We collected this list of topics by compiling sector-specific and public lists provided by various transparency-focused sustainability organizations, including GRI and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB). We also reviewed peers, industry research and other publicly available resources.

Topic Prioritization

After collecting a preliminary list of sustainability topics relating to the insurance industry, we engaged our internal and external stakeholders. Following each engagement, we assessed evidence of each stakeholder’s concern for a given topic. We ultimately translated this information into the matrix found below.

Topic Validation

After finalizing the critical topics identified by our stakeholders, we hosted a validation session. During this session and after multiple one-on-one conversations, the Allstate Sustainability council reviewed the results of the prioritization, offered comments and confirmed the findings.

Key Topics Raised in Our 2015 Sustainability Materiality Assessment

By conducting this assessment, we gained invaluable feedback regarding what matters most to Allstate and our stakeholders. In particular, the assessment found the following four topics to be the most significant to both Allstate and our stakeholders. In response, our report now focuses on these four topics with detailed information designed to answer the questions of all interested stakeholder groups.

Risk & Climate

Stakeholders driving topic:
Investors, Opinion Leaders, NGOs, Agencies, Allstate
Stakeholder Feedback:
Climate change has the potential to affect Allstate’s profitability due to the increasing number of weather-related catastrophic events. In particular, these events could increase the number of claims customers file and affect the stability of Allstate’s investment portfolio. The rising number of claims could impact customer experience. Further, accurate integration of climate change into risk modeling continues to be important for the industry as a whole. Allstate has an opportunity to contribute to climate change mitigation using the extensive climate-related data that it collects to promote sustainable policies and expanding the number of sustainable investments the company makes through its portfolio.

To find out more about how Allstate is managing this topic, see Risk & Climate.

Community

Stakeholders driving topic:
NGOs, Agencies, Allstate
Stakeholder Feedback:
While reputation is important to any company, it is particularly important for Allstate since the company promises to be there during some of the most trying times of customers’ lives. Because Allstate believes in being a force for good in its communities, the company is better positioned to achieve its social impact goals and substantially improve trust with stakeholders—driving shared value.

To find out more about how Allstate is managing this topic, see Community.

Privacy & Information Security

Stakeholders driving topic:
Opinion Leaders, Agencies, Allstate
Stakeholder Feedback:
Privacy and Information Security is linked to Allstate’s reputation and commitment to ethics and integrity. Allstate should continue to train employees on data security and privacy practices; to promote flexible, risk-based legislation and serve as a leader in its approach to cybersecurity for stakeholders.

To find out more about how Allstate is managing this topic, see Privacy & Information Security.

Workforce & Diversity

Stakeholders driving topic:
Investors, Employees, NGOs, Agencies, Suppliers, Allstate
Stakeholder Feedback:
Finding innovative ways to overcome the shortage of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) professionals and adapt to an increasingly diverse world is vital to the future of Allstate’s workforce. Generational differences also present new challenges; Allstate has an opportunity to further align corporate activity and messaging with the importance millennials place on corporate responsibility. Allstate should continue to emphasize retention by promoting professional development and engagement opportunities. It is important for the company to also provide agency owners and financial specialists with the support they need to maintain a healthy talent pipeline.

To find out more about how Allstate is managing this topic, see Workforce & Diversity.

Allstate Value Chain Map

Internal Influences
  • The Environment
  • Opinion Leaders
  • Policy Makers
  • Communities
    • Suppliers
    • Investors
  • Buliding Operations
    Claims
    Employees
    Investments
  • Agency Owners
    Agency Employees
    • Customers
    • Consumers
External Influences
  • Activists
  • Regulators
  • NGOs
  • Industry Associations

Topics

The table below outlines the scope of topics (17) included in this assessment and where Allstate’s impact occurs with respect to each (positive or negative). See the value chain map for additional context.

Environment

Topic Internal External
Risk & Climate Allstate Business, Claims, Investments Agencies, Customers, Investors
Energy and Emissions Building Operations The Environment
Waste Building Operations The Environment

Society

Topic Internal External
Community Allstate Business Agencies, Communities, Customers, NGOs
Customer Privacy and Data Security Allstate Business Agencies, Customers, Suppliers
Financial Inclusion Communities
Sustainable Procurement Allstate Business Suppliers
Transparent Communications Customers, Investors, Regulators

Business Practices

Topic Internal External
Corporate Governance Allstate Business Agencies, Investors
Ethics and Integrity Claims, Employees Agencies, Investors
Claims and Product Innovation Allstate Business Agencies, Customers, Investors
Public Policy Allstate Business Investors, Regulators
Responsible Investment Investments Communities, the Environment, Investors

Workforce

Topic Internal External
Agency Engagement Allstate Business Agencies, Communities
Employee Safety and Wellness Employees
Inclusive Diversity Employees
Workforce & Diversity Employees