BRITISH COMPANIES STILL LAGGING IN DIGITAL TRANSPARENCY, COMMUNICATION, RESEARCH SHOWS
UK-based corporations have, once again, ranked below their European counterparts in terms of digital communications. Each year, corporate comms consultancy Comprend examines the corporate websites of 900 companies globally, including the UK’s largest 200 and Europe’s 500 largest companies by market capitalisation.
The Webranking research ranks corporate websites based on responses from investors, analysts, journalists and jobseekers. While the UK ranked 10th of 14 countries overall, individual companies within the UK are developing improved digital communications.
A particularly worrying statistic, from the point of investors, is the availability of key shareholder content. Only 26% of data is readily available by UK companies, and that percentage has been decreasing for the last six years. In Europe, 12% of companies offer capital development information, while only two UK companies, total, are doing so. Transparency and corporate reputation as they relate to investor information similarly suffer.
James Handslip, managing director of Comprend Ltd, says, “The results highlight that UK companies need to work harder to present comprehensive investor content. However, we were impressed with the improvements in sustainability and careers content. This is a clear sign that UK companies are moving with the times to attract talent.”
One of the most important rankings – particularly for jobseekers – was sustainability. Comprend found that a company’s sustainability section is the third-visited portion of the corporate website for a jobseeker, following the ‘careers’ and ‘about us’ sections. Leading the UK pack is Tesco, with a 9.1 score out of 11 for its sustainability content.
While some individual companies are achieving in this area, as a whole, UK companies trail behind their European counterparts. Code of conduct information is more readily available by UK companies, but they are still remiss in sharing sustainability data and tangible representations of the corporate citizenship commitments.
Several companies improved their rankings year-on-year, but Standard Life Aberdeen took the prize for most improved as it jumped 134 places to 85th overall. The company has undergone a web transformation, updating its information and simplifying its user journey to focus first on jobseekers, then on investors, followed by sustainability information. Previously, these three sections were intermingled on the company’s homepage, making navigation and focus an issue. At the bottom of the UK pack is JD Sports.
The full report can be found here.
The top 20 UK companies are:
2. British Land
4. Coca-Cola HBC
6. Royal Dutch Shell
7. William Hill
10. TUI Group
11. Direct Line Insurance
13. BT Group
14. Barratt Developments
15. Great Portland Estates
17. DS Smith
18. British American Tobacco