A Corporate Responsibility (CR) report for a company of our size and reach could be a potentially limitless project, without some clear parameters.

Our materiality matrix - a means of charting those issues that matter most to our stakeholders and those which have the most profound effect on our business – has been used to guide the content of our 2014 CR report.

The content of this matrix, and hence the CR report, has been informed by extensive stakeholder consultation, which we carried out in 2013 as part of preparations for the submission of our five-year business plan.

The matrix content has also been guided by our Corporate Responsibility Panel, which provides the governance to decide what really matters to our organisation, from a CR perspective.

And as a further check and balance, we have compared our matrix with our Corporate Risk Profile, which focuses on those key issues (from financial to operational) that have the potential to adversely affect the business. This comparison revealed consistencies between the two – evidence that the matrix does indeed focus on those issues which are of fundamental importance to our business.

As an example of how the whole process works in practice, stakeholder feedback highlighted the importance of keeping water bills affordable – an issue also highlighted in our corporate risk profile. Value for money therefore occupies a high place on the materiality matrix, and has a section in this year’s report here.

We update our materiality assessment every two years and will do so again in 2015.

If you would like to send us a comment about this report, please email our Head of Sustainability, Chris Matthews