Corporate Eye

Employees are our greatest asset

human capital

“Our employees are our greatest asset.”

How often have you heard (or even said) something along those lines?

It’s become a cliché, but only because of the truth it conveys. Without the people who work in it, an organisation is worth very little. Both businesses and brands are shaped and defined by people.

Communicate’s Corporate Reporting and Human Capital conference on Friday will demonstrate how to measure and communicate the value of the people in a company through corporate reporting.

Incidentally, I know there’s ongoing debate about use of the term ‘human capital’: human capital isn’t the most people-friendly phrase, conflating the idea of financial capital with people, as if people were not more important… On the other hand, thinking of people as human resources is no better, implying the commodification of people. We’ll stick with ‘human capital’, at least for now, as it does include an implication of value. (Juliet Bourke discusses just this on one of the Deloitte’s blogs.)

Increasingly, companies are trying to become more ‘human’ in their approach, in the recognition that the people in the company matter, and do indeed have value, both intrinsically, and for the company. And then the very human need for storytelling and narrative is a key feature when engaging investors and other stakeholders with your business—because of course these external stakeholders are people too.

But how do you communicate the particular skills and expertise of your people to investors?
And just how do you measure employee experience and communicate your employer brand?

Andrew Thomas, publishing editor at Cravenhill Publishing, says,

“This conference is about how companies can put people at the heart of their annual report. Organisations often fail to recognise or communicate the value of their employees as assets. This conference will look at effective methods for measuring talent and will explore how that value can be shared with investors and stakeholders.”

Discussion at this half-day conference will explore whether a standardised framework of metrics is feasible – including the science and psychology of accounting for human capital. Speakers will look at how organisations communicate and report on their human capital in their annual reports, and will highlight the key areas in which people at all levels of an organisation are critical to financial performance.

It should be very interesting indeed, bringing together academics, HR and IR experts, the FRC, IIRC and CIPD, and consultants.

For more information please visit the conference website.

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