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Identifying our material matters

Identifying our material matters

We consider a matter to be material when it has, or could have, the ability to influence our financial performance, our reputation, or impact on our licence to operate.

We follow a three-step process to determine which matters we believe materially impact our ability to create value and on which we report. The diagram below depicts the ongoing and often complex process.


Identify and assess

Matters are brought to light in a number of ways:

  • directly by stakeholders (such as regulatory change and customer insights through day-to-day engagement);
  • through internal deliberations;
  • through independent research; and
  • by continuously monitoring the external environment for trends signalling opportunities and risks that could have an impact on our operations.

These are considered taking into account the influence of the stakeholder, its ability to influence our financial performance, our reputation, or impact on our licence to operate and the expected impact on the sustainability of the Group.

For further information on our stakeholder engagement, see our GRI fact sheet.



Using the lens of our Balanced Scorecard, we consider the key matters identified through Step 1 within the context of:

  • our Purpose to help people achieve their ambitions in the right way;
  • our Goal to be the financial services group of choice in Africa;
  • the expected behaviours as informed by our Values and our code of conduct (the Barclays Way);
  • our strategy, business model and the risks associated with our business model;
  • the operating environment challenges and priorities (international, regional and local);
  • our risk and capital management framework; and
  • the opportunities and trade-offs of possible responses.

The outcomes of Step 2 are the material matters we consider most relevant to our sustainability.


Respond and monitor

Specific actions are identified to ensure we respond appropriately. These, along with the metrics against which we measure our progress, are incorporated in our Balanced Scorecard. Progress is monitored by our Executive Committee, Board and the various Board committees in accordance with their terms of reference.

These material matters and how we are responding are outlined here.