In 2020, our agency stopped using only key financial indicators to evaluate its performance and success and began to also take into account social and environmental factors. One of our overriding company objectives is to establish a transparent organisational culture – both internally and externally.
To take us a step closer to reaching this goal, we have for the first time produced a transparency report sharing our key figures for 2022. We have recorded the key indicators that are particularly important to us and that form the basis for assessing our performance and success. The report thus only represents a snapshot and is everything other than exhaustive. We hope you will nonetheless find the published key figures of interest.
In order to successfully establish and develop a sustainable agency model, it is necessary to have a firm financial footing. After all, one can only invest in social and environmental concerns if the required financial resources are available. That is why our core tenet is that the returns from the projects we deliver for our customers are the necessary prerequisite that allow our employees, society and the environment to benefit from our economic activity.
After two years of stop-start, 2022 began brilliantly, and our workload remained at a high level until the end of the year. August was the month with the highest number of project hours we have ever recorded. Our timekeeping records show that, overall, we worked 51% more hours than in 2021.
Owing to the exceptionally high number of orders, we were able to increase agency income – in other words, the fee we receive for our work – by 71% to EUR 565.5 k.
Donating a share of our fees
We donate 1% of our agency fees to good causes. In 2022, we gave EUR 2,900 to the Kulturzeiter*innen e.V. association and to the kombinat gGmbH. This does not yet, however, include a share of the revenues generated in the second half of 2022.
In 2022 our employees for the first time also profited directly from the revenues they generated. Of the annual profit earned in 2021, a total of EUR 15 K was distributed in the form of payouts or benefits in kind.
Pay and fee progression
We not only want our employees to receive fair remuneration. We also do our utmost to close the gender gap and ensure the disparity between salary levels is not too large.
In 2022, the average annual income of salaried female employees was for the first time slightly higher than for men. The lowest salary (calculated for a full-time position) increased markedly in comparison to the highest salary so that the ratio of the highest to the lowest salary is below 2:1.
The fees for our freelancers have also gone up, which is the result not only of the increased number of hours worked but also the higher hourly rate we have paid since September 2022. Overall, the highest proportion went to female freelancers who were able to gross significantly more with us than their male colleagues.
Pro bono work
We have set ourselves the goal of investing 5% of our time pro bono into projects that result in sustainable social and environmental benefits.
In 2020, when the world was still in lockdown and many projects had been put on hold, that was relatively easy to achieve. However, in 2022, the signs that had first become apparent in 2021 became even clearer: our goal was extremely ambitious. We have breached our 5% target for the second year running as our workload was high and the total number of hours worked also rose significantly.
We were nonetheless able to increase the absolute number of pro bono hours (measured against the target number of hours) by 30%. We are considering how best to adjust the target value.
Our second survey within our community once again showed high satisfaction rates. Overall satisfaction has decreased slightly but is still above 90%. This will nonetheless prompt us to again do more in this area. We are very happy to see that the values in those categories we had previously identified as requiring action have risen.
In the course of our sustainability audits, we calculate our emission values on an annual basis and have been producing a greenhouse gas balance since 2021. In this balance, we also record the emissions generated by home-working activities as well as those that result from commissioning freelancers.
In 2022, we were able to achieve a reduction (slightly above target) in this area. This is largely due to reduced gas consumption in the office (Scope 1). By contrast, significantly higher emission values were triggered by increased mobility (commuting and business travel) and by the increased amount of work delivered by employees. More work has led to more emissions in Scope 3.
If one looks at the emission values in Scope 3 in relation to the hours worked, it however becomes apparent that we were able to achieve significant improvements in 2022. This is also where there is the greatest potential for savings in future. That is why we are working on an action plan that will help us to achieve even greater savings in this area.
One of the long-term objectives that forms part of our sustainability strategy is the calculation and reduction of the emissions caused by our customers’ marketing activities within the value chains. We will increase our focus on this issue in 2023 and are already in the process of implementing a number of steps for this purpose. We will be able to report more on this next year.
If you have any questions or suggestions relating to our transparency report, or if you would simply like more information, then please get in touch with us!