Moving investors to action
At ShareAction we’re working to transform the investment system to serve our planet and its people. Responsible investors consider the negative impacts of their investments on people and planet, taking them as seriously as financial returns.
Since 2013, our Good Work investor coalition has been in active dialogue with the UK’s biggest employers about living wages and decent work. Thanks to that engagement, today, more than half of FTSE 100 companies are accredited Living Wage employers, among over 10,000 other employers in all sectors across the UK.
However, there remain sectors of the UK economy where low pay dominates. Grocery retail is one of these. Last year, 42 percent of workers in the sector earned less than the real living wage. Investor members of our Good Work coalition have therefore escalated their engagement with supermarkets and, as part of that, filed a shareholder resolution at Sainsbury’s—the first such resolution of its kind. Achieving 17 per cent support, we have shown both that there are enlightened institutional investors willing to challenge poverty pay but also that we have much work to do.
The Workforce Disclosure Initiative (WDI), which we founded in 2016 with support from the UK government, has developed the world’s leading framework for corporate reporting on workforce risks and impacts. The initiative generates high-quality, comparable data that investors can use to make investment decisions and inform their dialogue with investee companies.
Nearly 200 of the world’s biggest companies already report data to the WDI—a number that is growing year on year, as companies respond to shareholder and widespread demand for transparency about the quality of work, they offer their people.