Sodexo’s wide range of activities and services enables us to develop strong relationships with multiple stakeholders. In 2021, we conducted our third materiality assessment to confirm the validity of our corporate responsibility roadmap. We renewed the process of identification and ranking of key issues and impacts in consultation with internal and external stakeholders and the support of an external partner EY. 

Our materiality assessment is conducted in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative’s (GRI) Sustainability Reporting Standards.

How did we develop the materiality matrix?

1. Update and Identification of the issues

In 2020, the context shifted significantly with greater awareness globally on climate change, biodiversity, social justice, sustainable finance and of course the unprecedented conditions and challenges linked to the pandemic. Therefore, the list of challenges assessed for the previous materiality, performed in 2019, was updated to include emerging topics. We collaborated with EY to undertake this review, which included a desk-based assessment of recent publications, reports, and statements from a mix of external stakeholders, such as investors, analysts, civil society organizations, governments, trade associations, and peers.

2. Prioritization of issues

The prioritization of the issues and their impacts have been established in consultation with internal and external stakeholders. Challenges were presented for quantitative assessment through surveys and interviews. Over 150 internal and external stakeholders representing the various partners, activities and regions in which Sodexo operates were consulted in June 2021. The workshops and interviews conducted by EY brought together representatives from the Strategy, Communication, Risk Management, Corporate Responsibility, Marketing, Digital and Innovation, Human Resources, Purchasing and Investor Relations teams. Company employees have also provided feedback through surveys. Interviews were also conducted with suppliers, investors, clients and NGO partners. Lastly, the analysis of external data from investors, consumer research, rating agencies and competitors greatly contributed to the assessment of the importance of the new issues.

3. Leveraging the materiality assessment outcomes

All of the consultations contributed to the quantitative and qualitative assessment of the issues, identified by the Sodexo teams upstream. Twenty-eight issues have been clearly defined and prioritized according to the Sodexo impacts identified in the Corporate Responsibility Roadmap: Better Tomorrow 2025. The outcomes of the 2021 Stakeholder consultation reinforced Sodexo’s commitment to continue the deployment of its Corporate Responsibility roadmap: Better Tomorrow 2025.

Want to know more about our 5 critical issues? Read our Business & Sustainability Report Fiscal 2023, page 41.