While stakeholder engagement is not new, it is now accepted as integral to an organisation’s sustainability and success. It is important, therefore, to understand the difference between good-quality and poor-quality engagement. The purpose of this Standard is to establish the benchmark for good-quality engagement.
Stakeholders are not just members of communities or non-governmental organisations. They are those individuals, groups of individuals or organisations that affect and/or could be affected by an organisation’s activities, products or services and/or associated performance with regard to the issues to be addressed by the engagement.
Stakeholder engagement is the process used by an organisation to engage relevant stakeholders for a clear purpose to achieve agreed outcomes. It is now also recognised as a fundamental accountability mechanism, since it obliges an organisation to involve stakeholders in identifying, understanding and responding to sustainability issues and concerns, and to report, explain and answer to stakeholders for decisions, actions and performance.
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