Stakeholder Engagement

Engaging with stakeholders helps us build long-term relationships with the individuals and groups that affect our business, and challenges us to do better. For our stakeholders, it is a chance to be heard, and to influence the way we conduct our business.

Liberty Global's stakeholders include customers, employees, investors, suppliers, civil society organizations, policy makers, and those living in the communities where we operate. We listen and respond to these groups in many ways. Maintaining a regular, in-depth dialogue with these groups allows us to understand their expectations of Liberty Global as a responsible and sustainable business. This directly informs our future strategy and ensures we make responsible business decisions that take our stakeholders' views into account. It also helps us identify key material risks and opportunities.

Here are some of our recent stakeholder engagement initiatives.
 

Communities and Civil Society Organizations

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • We work with organizations that support some of our most strategic issues, such as developing digital skills. We listen to what these organizations (e.g. CoderDojo) need, and collaboratively identify the best ways of supporting them to meet our shared objectives.
  • Our CoderDojo experience told us that there is a need to easily inform kids about new coding programs. We therefore developed easy to use 'Sushi Cards' that helped explain the different coding languages.
  • We identify new ways to help keep children safe online through work with partners such as European Schoolnet.
  • European Schoolnet informed us of the need for teachers to have more resources to help them address the online issues teenagers are facing. We worked with teachers to help develop the Web We Want Handbook for Educators
  • We work with NGOs such as the Digital Accessibility Center to input into our product development.
  • After receiving input from the Digital Accessibility Center, we were able to identify the best accessibility criteria to use in our product scorecard assessment.

Customers and Consumers

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • We use Net Promoter Score (NPS) to gauge the strength of our relationship with customers. Last year, we implemented a company-wide NPS platform for the first time, to measure NPS in a consistent way. Across our markets, we now collect about 200,000 completed NPS surveys each month.
  • We use NPS to monitor our customers' experiences from purchase through product use to paying their bill, and use the data in our process for testing new products. For example, we invited customers to test our Connect Box before launch.
  • We respond to requests from our customers for environmental information relating to purchased goods and services through our submission to CDP’s Supply Chain program.
  • What customers told us influenced our decisions, from the look and feel to the packaging of the product. As a result, the Connect Box has the highest NPS of all of our WiFi modems.
  • We have now linked our global NPS targets to the remuneration of Liberty Global employees.

Employees

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • We listen to our employees through our company wide employee survey Zoom and through employee development programs.
  • We listen to our employees through our Spark innovation initiative, designed to source and refine ideas in response to real business challenges by tapping into the collective creativity of our employees, and vendors. During 2015, we expanded Spark to an additional 10,000 employees in 6 countries - now linking 22K employees together globally
  • Our employees told us that they are very happy with the level of management support they receive. They recognize that there is more opportunity to explain our new strategy, Liberty GO, more clearly, and for our leaders to better demonstrate how they represent the values of company. We are currently developing action plans with our managers to address the main feedback.

Governments and Policy Makers

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • We help influence EU policy makers through our membership of the ICT Coalition and our support of the CEO's Digital Agenda for Europe to promote a safer internet for children.
  • The issue of child safety online is as pressing as ever. We are therefore continuing to invest in tools and information to keep children safe.
  • We participate in policy conversations and programs that help deliver the priorities of the EC's Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs to encourage digital skills development in Europe.
  • We also hear from governments that there is a pressing need for more digital infrastructure within the markets where we operate. We are continuing to invest in expanding our network, such as through Project Lightning in the UK.

Investors

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • One of the main ways we engage with investors is by responding to their socially responsible investment questions through our submission to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and submission to the CDP's Climate Change Program. We also respond to FTSE4Good, Newsweek Green Ranking and MSCI ESG questionnaires.
  • Investors have emphasized the importance of human capital, and many of their questions focus on how we develop and support our people. We continue to invest in our People Agenda, our company-wide strategy to attract and retain the best people in the industry.
  • We continue to engage with DJSI and CDP on how to improve our performance. In 2015, we were ranked higher than average in our industry for both benchmarks. Additionally, in early 2016, we received the Silver Class Sustainability Award from RobecoSAM.

Industry Peers

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • We address the key issue impacting our business through our membership and participation in several organizations.
  • We are also influencing the establishment of standards for network improvement with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).
  • We are sharing our own best practices, such as our use of Phase Changing Material. As chair of the Energy2020 Access Network Energy Efficiency work stream, we are and helping develop a standard for cable operators to measure their power consumption.

Suppliers

How We Engage:

What They Told Us and What We Are Doing:

  • We follow a four step process that includes the EcoVadis assessment to collaboratively work with our suppliers to identifying the biggest risks in our supply chain. See page 17 in the report for more detail.
  • Through the EcoVadis assessment, we can assess the biggest risks we and our suppliers face. Based on this, we implement Collective Action Plans with suppliers that require extra support to address the biggest risk areas and help them improve their performance.
  • We recognize the hard work of our suppliers at our Annual Tech Summit and offer a Supplier Award for the supplier with the highest EcoVadis assessment score.
  • In 2015, we identified an opportunity with our supplier Tizzon! to use phase change material in more of our local data facilities in the Netherlands, improving energy efficiency in those sites by up to 40%.
  • We are also in dialogue with suppliers to identify opportunities to use new technology to improve our impacts. One example is our Spark campaign, which sources responses to real business challenges by tapping into the collective creativity our employees.
  • In 2015, the winning suggestion from a Spark campaign to generate network energy efficiency ideas from some of our most important vendors was tested in our labs. The idea was submitted by Centralized Power Supply and it provides back-up power during grid outages caused by national electricity reliability issues and increases operational efficiency through fewer truck rolls. This idea is now being implemented in Puerto Rico and we are currently reviewing efficiency data to assess implementation of the idea across our global network.