Deloitte is positively changing the world, according to Fortune

04 September 2018 5 min. read

Deloitte is one of the top companies globally positvely trying to change the world. This is according to Fortune Magazine, which places the global accounting and consulting giant in the same league as Alphabet, Apple, Adidas, Levi Strauss, PepsiCo and Toyota.

With the world standing at a cross-road, as multiple crises of human governance, resource allocation and climate change see humanity’s future riddled with uncertainties. With this backdrop, private companies have been constantly called upon to step up and help provide solutions for the problems that still plague the world in the 21st century. In response to this, according to the latest ranking from Fortune Magazine, more companies than ever are apparently using the profit motive to take pro-active steps to change the world.

Fortune was founded by Time co-founder Henry Luce in 1929 as "the Ideal Super-Class Magazine", a "distinguished and deluxe" publication "vividly portraying, interpreting and recording the Industrial Civilisation". Briton Hadden, Luce's business partner, was not enthusiastic about the idea – which Luce originally thought to title Power – but Luce went forward with it after Hadden's sudden death on February 27, 1929. Some 90 years on, Fortune still competes with the likes of Forbes to claim to be the voice of capitalism’s global elite. As a result, Fortune regularly publishes ranked lists. In the human resources field, for example, it publishes a list of the Best Companies to Work For. Lists include companies ranked in order of gross revenue and business profile, as well as business leaders.

The Change the World list recognises companies which look to make a positive social impact through activities that are part of their core business strategy, prioritising companies with annual revenues of $1 billion or more. Fortune writers and editors evaluate and rank the companies based on four factors. These are the measurable social impact, including reach, nature, and durability of the company's impact; business results, in which the publication considers the benefit the socially impactful work brings to the company (thus excluding non-profit work, however socially valuable); the degree of innovation employed, relative to that of others in its industry; and finally how integral the initiative is to a company's overall strategy, and how well that strategy is communicated through the ranks and elsewhere.

Deloitte is positively changing the world

While, again, Fortune asserts that more firms than ever before are making such efforts, only one firm is present on the list from the professional services sector. That is prominent Big Four member Deloitte, which appears alongside the likes of Alphabet, Apple, Adidas, Levi Strauss, PepsiCo and Toyota, as well as top named telecom firm Reliance Jio. Deloitte is featured on this year’s list for its work to prepare clients and its people for the technological changes of the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ of digital disruption. Deloitte’s commitment to making a positive impact in this regard focuses primarily on preparing the workforce for a coming upheaval which will likely see millions of labour hours repurposed away from manual or repetitive roles.

Globally, huge swathes of the labour pool lack the education, skills and training needed to succeed in the rapidly changing global economy – something which presents businesses with a colossal loss in terms of wasted talent, and unrealised growth. Deloitte subsequently professes that it is critically important that businesses lead in the development of the workforce of the future. By using learning programs that focus on critical thinking, emerging technologies such as robotics and artificial intelligence, and leadership development and advancement, the firm helps clients prepare for how and where work will be done in the future.

Alongside this, Deloitte is also committed to WorldClass, an organisation-wide societal impact initiative, which aligns Deloitte’s efforts around a global ambition. Through WorldClass, Deloitte has worked to expand access to education and career-building opportunities amid this global economic realignment. The firm’s ambition is to reach 50 million futures being altered by 2030, by creating pathways for people to fulfil their aspirations and find meaningful work in the new economy.

Social impact

Deloitte’s societal commitment goes beyond education and skills development, as well. In the 2018 financial year alone, additional Deloitte societal impact initiatives have included showcasing the social and economic value of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia; co-operating with the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford on a cross-border initiative focused on realising the economic potential of refugees living in Europe; and serving as the lead innovation partner for global initiative UNLEASH 2018, which is aimed at inspiring and supporting the next generation of leaders who are developing solutions to some of the most vexing problems facing the world today.

Punit Renjen, Deloitte’s Global CEO, commented on the firm’s inclusion in Fortune’s list, “Deloitte is deeply honoured to be listed among the top organisations changing the world. At the core of Deloitte’s business model is the fundamental belief that we exist to make a positive impact for clients, our people, and the communities in which we live and work. Through our network of Deloitte University facilities worldwide, we have embraced the opportunity to prepare and equip our people with the critical thinking and leadership skills needed to navigate the technology-driven disruption clients and our network face today.”